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Writing the Personal Essay: A WordStudio class with Emily Grosvenor (registration open)

January 12, 2017


We launched this writing workshop series with the help of an Oregon Community Foundation grant in 2016.

This is the last class in the current series. To sign up, click here to download the registration form and mail your check to AAYC.

Any questions? Please contact Tandy Tillinghast at

The Keynote Speakers for the Terroir Creative Writing Festival 2017 are Kathleen Dean Moore and Lidia Yuknavitch

December 19, 2016


We are thrilled to announce that Kathleen Dean Moore and Lidia Yuknavitch will be our keynote speakers for the 2017 Terroir Creative Writing Festival.

Kathleen Dean Moore

KathleenDMoore.jpgKathleen Dean Moore is a writer, moral philosopher, and environmental thought-leader, devoted to an unrelenting defense of the future against those who would pillage and wreck the planet.

As a writer, Kathleen is best known for award-winning books of essays that celebrate and explore the meaning of the wet, wild world of rivers, islands, and tidal shores – Riverwalking, Holdfast, Pine Island Paradox, and Wild Comfort. But her growing alarm at the devastation of the natural world led her to focus her writing on the moral urgency of action against climate change and habitat destruction. Quitting her university position, Kathleen began to write in defense of the lovely, reeling world. Her new book, Great Tide Rising: Finding Clarity and Moral Courage to Confront Climate Change, will be published by Counterpoint Books in January 2016. Her prior book, Moral Ground: Ethical Action for a Planet in Peril, gathered testimony from the world’s moral leaders about our obligation to the future.

You can read more of her work at her website.

Lida Yuknavitch


Lidia Yuknavitch is the author of the National Bestselling novel The Small Backs of Children, winner of the 2016 Oregon Book Award’s Ken Kesey Award for Fiction as well as the Reader’s Choice Award, the novel Dora: A Headcase, as well as three books of short fictions – Her Other Mouths, Liberty’s Excess, and Real TO Reel, and a critical book on war and narrative, Allegories Of Violence(Routledge). Her widely acclaimed memoir The Chronology of Water was a finalist for a PEN Center USA award for creative nonfiction and winner of a PNBA Award and the Oregon Book Award Reader’s Choice. Her novel The Book of Joan is forthcoming from Harper, as well as a book based on her recent TED Talk, The Misfit’s Manifesto.

She has also had writing appear in publications including Guernica Magazine, Ms., The Iowa Review, Zyzzyva, Another Chicago Magazine, The Sun, Exquisite Corpse, TANK, and in the anthologies Life As We Show It (City Lights), Wreckage of Reason (Spuytin Duyvil), Forms at War (FC2), Feminaissance (Les Figues Press), and Representing Bisexualities (SUNY), as well as online at The Rumpus Writing by and through the body, one workshop at a time.

She founded the workshop series Corporeal Writing in Portland Oregon, where she teaches both in person and online.  She received her doctorate in Literature from the University of Oregon. She lives in Oregon with her husband Andy Mingo and their renaissance man son, Miles. She is a very good swimmer.

Read more at her website here.



Save the Date! Mark your calendars for the 2017 Terroir Creative Writing Festival

October 17, 2016


Mark your calendars! The Terroir Creative Writing Festival will take place in McMinnville, Ore. on April 22, 2017.

What you can expect:

  • Compelling talks across genres
  • Intimate workshops where you can interact with people who have slayed the writing beasts successfully
  • A chance to mingle with old friends and make new ones
  • The opportunity to get the big picture of what your writing can contribute to this community
  • Exposure to some of the best creativity to come out in the past year

We hope you’ll make a place for us in your spring awakening in 2017!

Authors to speak on self-publishing at Linfield College October 20 at 7:30 p.m.

October 13, 2016

Stephen W. Long’s novel was funded through a crowd-funding community on Kickstarter.

McMINNVILLE – A panel of self-published authors will talk about their projects on Thursday, Oct. 20, at 7:30 p.m. in the Austin Reading Room in the Jereld R. Nicholson Library at Linfield College.

The authors will discuss dos and don’ts of self-publishing, once a tiny niche in the publishing world, that has become a legitimate alternative for many writers. Options for self-publishing authors include employing the services of a vanity press, engaging an editor, finding a graphic designer to prepare book pages or doing the entire thing on their own. The panel will explore issues involved in the process and the ways to get self-published, as well as subjects such as distribution, marketing, publicity, promotion and social media. The panel includes Ellie Gunn, Karen Huntsberger and Randy Stapilus, along with moderators Stephen W. Long and Frank Lisciandro.

The event is free and open to the public and sponsored by Third Street Books, McMinnville Public Library Linfield and Nicholson Library. For more information, contact Susan Barnes Whyte at 503-883-2517 or

Connect through Experience—Register for Personal Essay with Heather Sharfeddin

September 19, 2016



Develop your writing—develop your self with Personal Essay and Heather Sharfeddin.

People crave to understand and be understood. The personal essays, when it balances first-hand experience with introspection and insight, can facilitate that understanding. In this series we’ll explore and practice the elements of successful essays. Join fellow writers in this safe and creative environment where we will wrangle and share our own experiences through our writing.


When: Thursdays, Oct 6–27th, 6:30–8 pm

Where: Willamette Valley Vineyards Tasting Room Conf. Rm., McMinnville




Heather Sharfeddin (Sharf-a-deen)

Heather Sharfeddin is the author of four novels about the Pacific Northwest. Her work has earned starred reviews from Kirkus Reviews and Library Journal, has been honored with an Erick Hoffer award and at the New York and San Francisco Book Festivals, as well as the Pacific Northwest Book Sellers Association. She holds an MFA in writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts and a PhD in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University (Bath, England). She has taught creative writing at Randolph Macon College, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and is currently an adjunct professor at Linfield College.

For more information about her writing visit

Register now for Personal Essay  Here  Simply print out the form and mail it in with your check. Early registration is encouraged.


Any questions? Please contact workshop coordinator Tandy Tillinghast.

We are so thankful to a grant from the Oregon Community Foundation for making this workshop series possible!





Writing Poetry—Register for Writing Poetry with Barbara Drake

August 22, 2016


Poetry flyer


Fall in love with words—again. Play with poetry with Barbara Drake


Writing Poetry: How do we get ideas for poetry? How do we even start? Then what? We will use simple exercises to address those questions and experiment with different types of poetry, such as lyric, narrative, didactic, and persona poems. No experience required, just a sense of adventure and a love of words. Recommended for teens through adults of all ages.


When: Wednesdays, Sept 7–28th, 4–5:30 pm

Where: The Horseradish, Carlton




Barbara Drake has published several chapbooks and book length collections of poetry, most recently Driving One Hundred from Windfall Press. The author’s newest collection of essays is Morning Light: Wildflowers, Night Skies, and Other Ordinary Joys of Oregon Country Life, published by Oregon State University Press (Fall 2014). Her previous essay collection, Peace at Heart, was a 1999 Oregon Book Award finalist. Drake’s college textbook, Writing Poetry, has been in print and widely used in creative writing classes since 1983. Not only does she love to write; she loves to help others explore their creativity in a supportive and sociable setting. She is a Linfield College Professor Emeritus and lives with her husband on a small farm in Yamhill County.

Register now for Writing Poetry [form here]! Simply print out the form and mail it in with your check.


Any questions? Please contact workshop coordinator Tandy Tillinghast.

We are so thankful to a grant from the Oregon Community Foundation for making this workshop series possible!


Tell Your Story—Register for Life Writing: Introduction to Memoir

June 27, 2016

Life Writing flyer2-2

Bring your story to life for yourself or for family! Life Writing: Introduction to Memoir with Lisa Ohlen Harris helps you begin your story.

Whether you’re recording family history for your grandkids, writing to understand yourself better, or penning a memoir that will be a best seller, WordStudio’s Life Writing class will provide you with the tools you need to make life into literature. We’ll work on organization, scene writing, and bringing your unique personality to the page.


When: Tuesdays, July 7–26th, 6:30–8:00 pm

Where: Suite4, downtown McMinnvill


Lisa Ohlen Harris is the author of the Middle East memoir Through the Veil and The Fifth Season: A Daughter-in-Law’s Memoir of Caregiving. Both books were finalists for the Oregon Book Award. Harris teaches online for Creative Nonfiction Foundation and works as a freelance editor and writing mentor.


Register now for Life Writing( form  Found Here! ) Simply print out the form and mail it in with your check.


Any questions? Please contact workshop coordinator Tandy Tillinghast.

We are so thankful to a grant from the Oregon Community Foundation for making this workshop series possible!