writing class radio

andrea askowitz and allison langer

Writing Class Radio is for people who love stories and who get inspired by hearing other people tell their stories and who wants to learn a little bit about how to write their own stories. You'll hear students write their way to the truth. And you'll hear students trying to deal as we follow them outside of class and into their real lives. Plus you'll hear all the juicy stuff that happens in writing class---resistance, crying, break-throughs, connection. There's no better way to understand ourselves and each other than by writing and telling our stories. Everyone has a story. What's yours?

All Episodes

This is the third episode in a 10-part series inspired by the people Allison Langer taught memoir writing, in a men’s prison. You will hear new stories by her former students and stories from other incarcerated or formerly incarcerated people around the world.Today’s show shares a story by Roderick Richardson, an inmate in a Florida prison. Rod is a master storyteller who grew up in Liberty City, which is a very rough area in Miami. Rod took care of his six brothers and sisters when his mom was incarcerated. At 12 years old, Rod sold drugs to keep food on the table. His story is not unique, unfortunately. Rod is serving a life sentence for robbery.We also share an interview with former prison doctor, Karen Gedney. Dr. Gedney is an internal medicine specialist who spent almost 30 years as a prison physician. She was designated as one of the best in the business by the American Correctional Association and won a Heroes for Humanity Award for her work in HIV in the correctional system. Dr. Gedney ran the only regional prison medical facility in the state of Nevada. She was a naive young physician who survived a world she was ill-prepared for and turned it into a calling. You can read Dr. Gedney’s story in her book, 30 Years Behind Bars. Trials of a Prison Doctor. Writing Class Radio is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz, Xaire, and by Matt Cundill, Evan Surminski and Courtney Fox at the Sound Off Media Company. Music by Xaire, Koi, Marnino Toussaint, Amadians.There’s more writing class on our website, writingclassradio.com, including video classes, essays to study, and editing resources. If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work every Tuesday 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.A new episode will drop every other WEDNESDAY. So look for us. There’s no better way to understand ourselves and each other, than by writing and sharing our stories. Everyone has a story. What’s yours?THIS MUST BE SAID: We don’t mean to sensationalize crime or someone who breaks the law. Airing these stories is in no way meant to take anything away from the victims of violent crime. Instead, we want to share stories, because we believe that stories lead to understanding. This series is dedicated to Luis Aracena. You are missed and loved. May you rest in peace.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Dec 1

35 min 47 sec

This is the second episode in a 10-part series inspired by the people Allison Langer taught memoir writing, in a men’s prison. You will hear stories her former students wrote after taking her class and stories from other incarcerated or formerly incarcerated people around the world.To help us get this right, Xaire has agreed to co-host the series with us. Xaire is a poet, singer-songwriter, actor, and teacher who teaches writing and poetry to kids in the foster care system and kids caught up in a detention center. THIS MUST BE SAID: We don’t mean to sensationalize crime or someone who breaks the law. Airing these stories is in no way meant to take anything away from the victims of violent crime. Instead, we want to share stories, because we believe that stories lead to understanding. And if there’s something we need more of these days, it’s understanding. On this episode, you will hear one of our favorite stories by one of Allison’s favorite people: Clifton Jones AKA 2-Tall. 2-Tall’s story is about legacy and more specifically, about the promise he made to his mom and to himself. (If you’d like to follow along, see entire story at the bottom of the show notes.)You will also meet Chris Wilson who spent 16 years in prison. Chris is an entrepreneur, activist, and author of The Master Plan. Allison sent 2-Tall The Master Plan, so he could read his powerful words. For more Chris, listen to his Stoop Story. Chris talks about how his traumatic childhood and a life sentence led him to turn his life around and ultimately, help others.Writing Class Radio is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz, Xaire, and by Matt Cundill and Evan Surminski of the Sound Off Media Company. Music by Xaire, Koi, Marnino Toussaint, Amadians.There’s more writing class on our website, writingclassradio.com: including video classes, essays to study, and editing resources. If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work every Tuesday 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.A new episode will drop every other WEDNESDAY. So look for us. There’s no better way to understand ourselves and each other, than by writing and sharing our stories. Everyone has a story. What’s yours?This series is dedicated to Luis Aracena. You are missed and loved. May you rest in peace.The Making of My Unbreakable PromiseBy Clifton K. Jones (AKA 2-Tall) Down on one knee, everything around me that hadn’t disappeared was muffled and seemed to be moving in slow motion. I felt like a block of ice drifting on a frozen lake. I was stunned.   I didn’t know how long I had been kneeling in the middle of my cell, but it felt like hours. I forced myself to sand and realized that I had been holding my breath. I composed myself enough to stop my hands from shaking. Looking down, I could see the words glowing mockingly from my tablet on the floor. I roared into the darkness.        It was after 11pm, so the cell lights were off. Guys were either sleeping or bundled up in sweaters or jackets in the day room playing dominos, talking shit, or watching a late night movie on Bounce.My roommate was among the TV watchers, so I had the cell door pulled closed with a towel over the cell door window to block inquisitive eyes and signal to my roommate that I was busy.        The one thing I feared the most had materialized. I had lost my QUEEN (mother). She was gone. I thought about the last phone conversation I had with her, only days before. My mother had cried, and that was rare. I can count the times I’d seen Mrs. Francis cry. Standing at a towering six feet, Mrs. Francis was a true amazon and she wore it well. Both beauty and amazon, my mother was understanding and caring, but she didn’t play games.        On countless occasions, I can remember walking into our apartment in Bradenton’s page projects to find some unkempt stranger, an old friend who had fallen on bad times or was strung out on drugs. They would be at our smoke grey glass dinner table eating a healthy plate of yellow rice and turkey necks, buttered cornbread and sweet peas or leftover over baked macaroni and cheese, BBQ chicken and Hungry Jack biscuits. Everyone would be laughing and drinking and listening to Otis Redding or Barry White.        Like clockwork, one of my three uncles would pop in to rile my mother calling out her childhood nickname, “Hey Tocka Head,” and then head straight for the kitchen. As soon as my mother heard the lid on a pot being removed, she’d scream, “If you don’t get out of my damn pot without washing your dirty ass hands, boy I know something.”        Mrs. Frances always said whatever was on her mind, so there was never much back talk. It was well known that my mother could curse the clouds out of the sky when she was pissed off. She’d lay down the law on man, woman and child if something didn’t sit well with her. Especially if it was in regards to me or those she cared for.        When I was eight years old, my mother, uncles, and some family friends were having a small get together. Kool and the Gang was booming on the speakers on the porch. All of us kids were playing Pac-man on the Atari, eating apple Now and Laters, Funyuns rings and drinking blue cream Nehi sodas. I don’t remember exactly what jumped it off, only that it was in regard to my baby cousin, Jessica who my mom adored. Jessica’s mom was good and drunk and my mother was not having it. She threw her sister Sharon through the screen door like a scene out of a western bar fight.        How could she be gone? If my young mind could have registered the real consequences of stepping through that back door of the KFC with a snub nose 38 jammed into the small of my friend’s back as he pretended to take out the trash, I would’ve run back to high school, basketball practice, or the recording studio with a new attitude and a respect for what life was really about.        I would have made a different decision if I could have foreseen that one night I would be kneeling in a cold, dark cell trying to process a message that said my mother was dead. Gone before I could give her the keys to the house I promised to buy her when I was eleven years old.Instead, the prospect of what I thought would be a few thousand dollars to party with on my birthday lead me to squander the experience of sharing the gift of life with the woman who had given me so much of herself. She never got to see me be the person she knew I could be. So far, I had failed her and myself. There was no way I would allow the story of my life to end like this. Wherever great mothers go, I was going to make sure she would be able to say, ‘I told you he would do it.’ and rest proudly.        In our last conversation, my mother got on the topic of how she wouldn’t be here forever and what to do if something should happen to her. I brushed it off and tried to change the subject like always. “Woman, you’re not going anywhere.”        This time, she stayed serious and on topic. “If I leave here boy, don’t you start acting crazy.”        “Ma.”        “No, listen to me,” her voice thickened by emotions. “You do what you need to get your behind out of there. Promise me that if I leave here you’re gonna get out of that place and live your life. And don’t worry about me. I’ll be with your sister, your grandfather, your aunty Cat, Angelo and my mother.”        “I got you, Ma, I promise.” And I meant it.Looking around the dark cell, it felt strange thinking that my mom really wasn’t here anymore. It didn’t feel real. With mixed emotions, I left the cell to call my mother’s husband. Rod had been a part of our lives for over 20 years. We were cool, but it hadn’t always been good. As a family, we shared a history littered with frayed love and struggles. I witnessed him stand against anybody deemed a threat to my mother. Yet, I remember going into the kitchen one night and grabbing a butcher knife, because I heard him hit my mother. I was eleven and I never forgot this.        I could hear the tears in his voice when he picked up the phone. I understood his hurt, his loss, and everything else I can’t formulate into words. Calming himself, he recounted the details that lead up to him riding in the back of the ambulance with my mother before she passed, and her leaving a message telling me not to start acting up. Even in her final moments, she was more concerned about my wellbeing than her own.         In a zone, I walked laps around the dorm listening to Tupac—Hold Your Head—on my MP3 player. I had to stay focused and away from people. I knew I was one wrong word away from doing who knows what. But I also knew that if I made good decisions, my time would come.         In 1996, I was convicted of robbery with a firearm and three counts of kidnapping that I committed with three childhood friends when I was eighteen. I was given four life sentences on my first criminal offense, while my three co-defendants were allowed to go free without serving a day. That left a sour taste in my mouth, and in crucial moments such as this, I get frustrated because I feel alone and betrayed. I just want to say “Fuck it.” Then I remind myself that it’s on me not to give up on my life, my dreams. To one day cross the stage at the Grammys, amongst the greats, and pay homage to the woman who rooted for me, no matter what. Only now, circumstances had transformed my dream into an unbreakable promise.        I stopped at Bop’s cell and put my face to the glass. He waved his hand in the darkness to let me know that he was awake. Stepping outside, he immediately asked what was wrong. Maybe it was the look on my face. I explained without going into detail what I was going through and to stop me from doing anything I would regret.        With time standing still, I continued to pace and think. I knew without a doubt I would fulfill my promise to my mom, Mrs. Frances Andrew McNair.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Nov 17

34 min 21 sec

Welcome to Season 12. Today, we’re starting a 10-part series inspired by the people Allison Langer taught memoir writing, in a men’s prison. We put a call out for stories, so you will hear stories her students have written recently and stories from other incarcerated or formerly incarcerated people around the world.To help us get this right, we asked Xaire, who is a poet, singer-songwriter, actor, and teacher to co-host with us. Xaire teaches writing and poetry to kids in the foster care system. THIS MUST BE SAID: We don’t mean to sensationalize crime or someone who breaks the law. Airing these stories is in no way meant to take anything away from the victims of violent crime. Instead, we want to share stories, because we believe that stories lead to understanding. And if there’s something we need more of these days, it’s understanding. The first story in our series was written by our own Allison Langer. It’s a story about change. A change in the way Allison sees the justice system and the way she sees the people caught up in the justice system. Our hope (after hearing all the stories in the series) is that you will see in the men and women, what we have come to see: intelligent, motivated, kind human beings who made a mistake--sometimes, very big, huge, awful mistakes. Most of the people who are incarcerated are suffering from trauma, had to make very difficult choices at a young age, and got tangled up in a flawed system. Some have been misjudged and wrongfully convicted. But those men and women are NOT their crimes. They have paid their debts, matured, and are ready to move on with their lives.Maybe you will fear the incarcerated and formerly incarcerated less or not at all. Maybe you will support laws that provide equal justice and job opportunities to the formerly incarcerated. Maybe you’ll give your family members a break when they disappoint you. Maybe you will have more patience with young people who have messed up. Our hope extends to those who are victims of violent crimes. These stories are for you too. We hope hearing some of these stories will bring some relief.Writing Class Radio is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz, Xaire, and by Matt Cundill, Evan Surminski and Courtney Fox at the Sound Off Media Company. Music by Xaire and Marnino Toussaint.There’s more writing class on our website, writingclassradio.com: including video classes, essays to study, and editing resources. If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work every Tuesday 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.A new episode will drop every other WEDNESDAY. So look for us. There’s no better way to understand ourselves and each other, than by writing and sharing our stories. Everyone has a story. What’s yours?This series is dedicated to Luis Aracena. You are missed and loved. May you rest in peace.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Nov 3

33 min 9 sec

Today on our show, we’re talking about structure, voice, commitment, and especially happy endings. The story you’ll hear was written, read, and sung by Amber Petty. What makes this story so much fun? You know it when you hear it.Amber Petty used to be an actor but now she writes and helps other writers get into freelance writing. In her acting days, she performed at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater and did over 500 shows of the Off-Broadway 50 Shades! The Musical. She's written for The New York Times, Thrillist, Greatist, Bustle, MTV, IFC, and Snooki's blog. Now, she teaches Freelance Writing for Creatives and works on very important projects like her book of short stories inspired by the musical Cats.Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.WCR is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz, and by Matt Cundill, Evan Surminski and Courtney Fox at the Sound Off Media Company. Theme music by Justina Shandler.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s first draft weekly writers class, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.If you love this podcast, please tell your friends. There’s no better way to understand ourselves and each other, than by writing and sharing our stories. Everyone has a story. What’s yours?See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Oct 20

24 min 9 sec

Today on our show, we’re talking about how to frame a story. Not all publications are looking for the same thing. Actually, all pubs are different. On Writing Class Radio, we look for a change in the narrator or a discovery by the narrator. We want the narrator to reveal something big and vulnerable and important. We want something dramatic to happen. And then we want the narrator to make meaning of what happened. The story we bring you today doesn’t exactly fit into what we call a story, but it is so compelling and beautifully written. AND it was published despite it not fitting into our usual box. On today's show we talk about writing stories meant for different publications and why we think this one was published elsewhere. You’ll hear Sari Caine read her story, I Was the Real Life Queen’s Gambit Beth. Sari Caine is a native New Yorker who has been living a nomadic lifestyle since the start of the pandemic. Her story was originally published in The Independent and is an excerpt from her memoir in progress called Check Mates.Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.This episode of WCR is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz, and by Matt Cundill, Evan Surminski and Courtney Fox at the Sound Off Media Company.  Theme music by Justina Shandler. Additional music by Amadians.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s first draft weekly writers class, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.If you love this podcast, please tell your friends. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Oct 6

24 min 25 sec

Today on our show, we’re talking about voice in a new way. We always say, write like you speak. That’s one of the most important writing tenets, because if you write like you speak, you’re writing in the most truthful way. If you curse, curse. If you don’t speak in fancy prose, don’t write fancy prose.To hear more about voice, listen to Episode 43: Voices in Your Head, and Episode 44: Voices Carry.  On today's episode, we ask the question, What if your physical voice says something about you you don’t want it to say? Also, does your physical voice translate onto the page? You'll hear an essay by Mark Jason Williams, an award-winning playwright, essayist, and traveloguer who writes for The Washington Post, HuffPost, Thrillist, and more. He is currently working on an essay collection. His story is called You’d Be Cuter with a Deeper Voice. A version of this story was previously published in Out Magazine. You can also find Mark on Twitter and Facebook. Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz, and Courtney Devon of Sound Off Media. Courtney is also the lead singer for Amadians, one of our contributing musicans. Theme music by Justina Shandler. Additional music by Amadians.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s first draft weekly writers class, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.If you love this podcast, please rate and review us on ApplePodcasts. And tell your friends.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Sep 22

20 min 10 sec

Today on our show, we are featuring an essay by former student Sharon Rothberg. Sharon uses a philosophical concept to work out her feelings about the death of her daughter-in-law.  Sharon's use of time and all lingo related to time is masterful. The story structure is also exceptional as is the balanced use of humor and vulnerability.This story really shows how writing helps people figure out things we can’t really understand. Sharon Rothberg lives in Miami, Florida with her husband of 57 years. She was an English major at Tulane University and taught seventh grade English. She loves to read novels, memoirs, and biographies. Sharon came to class on a whim (and because Andrea convinced her), having nothing in particular she wanted to write about. The class pulled up the grief and trauma she’d been holding inside. Writing the story of her daughter-in-law helped Sharon release her feelings and clarify her understanding of time (that we have) on this planet.Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). This episode was produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Theme music by Justina Shandler. Additional music by Kevin Myles Wilson and Poddington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s first draft weekly writers class, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.If you love this podcast, tell your friends. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Sep 8

23 min 48 sec

For the month of August, 2021, we’re bringing back four of our listeners’ favorite episodes. Writing Class Radio brings you personal stories and tips on how to write your own stories. This episode originally aired March 3, 2020 on episode 79.Today on our show, we take a look at bringing an obsession into a story. It’s possible to go deep into an obsession that has almost nothing to do with the story you are trying to tell without being distracting. That obsession can deepen the meaning of the story by giving us a peek into you, the narrator. Editors get a lot of stories about cancer, dead dogs, aging parents, etc. We’re not saying, stay away from these topics. We’re saying, writing about an obsession is a way to write about death (or any of these topics) in a new and interesting way. The story you’ll hear is from listener Jackie Ashton. This story was previously published in the March 2019 issue of Real Simple.We also talk about why it’s important to write and read stories about death, because hiding from feelings is never good. This story illustrates what someone who is going through a difficult time might need the most: friends who remind them of joy by experiencing it with them.Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). The original episode 79 was produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Theme music is by Christine Corey. Additional music is by EMIA, Blue Jay, and Podington Bear. Episode 109 was put together by Matt Cundill and Evan Surminski of the Sound Off Media Company.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s first draft weekly writers class, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.We’re pinking out and we want you to pinkout with us by supporting one of our cancer charities: https://www.writingclassradio.com/camo-elephant-project, The Pink Wig Project, or 305 Pink Pack.Thank you for listening. If you love this podcast, tell your friends. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Aug 25

26 min 20 sec

For the month of August, 2021, we’re bringing back four of our listeners’ favorite episodes. Writing Class Radio brings you personal stories and tips on how to write your own stories. This episode originally aired July 31, 2018 on episode 47.In this episode, we examine the popular writing tenet, show DON’T tell. We believe just showing is not only impossible, but detrimental to your story. Telling gives insight into what the narrator is thinking and feeling.To test this theory, we asked our students to just SHOW. We gave the prompt: A fight and instructed them to go directly to scene without explaining. We wanted to see if show without tell would work. After ten minutes, the students were asked to continue where they left off but to move from the scene into exposition, to just TELL. They were instructed to explain what was going on in the story, give background, and tell what the narrator was thinking and feeling. What we found: It’s impossible to show without telling.You will hear short prompt responses from student Misha Mehrel, who has read many stories on this podcast, Allison Langer, and Andrea Askowitz. Andrea’s piece called Spoiled Mom was developed out of this exercise and published in June 2018 in Mutha Magazine.  Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories from the students in our class and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class. And we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). The original episode 47 was produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Theme music by Ari Herstand. Additional music by TJ North, Kevin Miles Wilson, Ari Herstand and Podington Bear. You can find all our music on our website. Episode 108 was put together by Matt Cundill and Evan Surminski of the Sound Off Media Company.Thank you for listening. If you love this podcast, tell your friends. There’s more writing class on our website, Facebook, Instagram and TwitterIf you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work Tuesdays 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Aug 18

28 min 54 sec

For the month of August, 2021, we’re bringing back four of our listeners’ favorite episodes. Writing Class Radio brings you personal stories and tips on how to write your own stories. This episode originally aired May 18, 2017 on episode 30.The format for this episode is a little different. Today we’re bringing you a guest teacher, because we think it’s smart to get different perspectives. Joyce Maynard is one of Andrea’s favorite teachers in the world. Joyce has 17 books and has been writing for 50 years. She started when since she was 13. Andrea asked Joyce to read and deconstruct her essay, Letting it Fly which was originally published in 1997 in the New York Times Lives Column. In the interview, Joyce explains what goes into writing a great story and tells us her secrets to making a good essay great.Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.The original episode 30 was produced by Virginia lora, Allison Langer and Andrea Askowitz. Theme music by Daniel Correa. Additional music by Andy G. Cohen and Podington Bear. Episode 108 was put together by Matt Cundill and Evan Surminski of the Sound Off Media Company.Click to order Joyce’s book, The Best of Us. And register for Joyce Maynard’s Guatemala workshop.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s first draft weekly writers class, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.We’re pinking out and we want you to pink out with us by supporting one of our cancer charities: https://www.writingclassradio.com/camo-elephant-project, The Pink Wig Project, or 305 Pink Pack.Thank you for listening. If you love this podcast, tell your friends. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Aug 11

25 min 8 sec

For the month of August, 2021, we’re bringing back four of our listeners’ favorite episodes. Writing Class Radio brings you personal stories and tips on how to write your own stories. This episode originally aired April 20, 2017 on episode 29.Allison Langer loves the process of working out her shit and reading it out loud. In class, she can’t hide behind a facade. Andrea Askowitz loves thinking about writing and ways to make stories stronger. She breaks down every sentence and takes out needless words. Andrea loves the craft.Cheryl Strayed, Author of Wild and Tiny Beautiful Things, says writing is equal parts heart and art. Andrea loves the art. Allison loves the heart. That’s what you get on this podcast. Equal parts heart and art.This episode is about connecting through writing. It’s also about the job of storytellers to bring us into their world. Student Nilsa Rivera tells a story about her fear of isolation because she’s hard of hearing. This is especially true and important today, during covid, when people are wearing masks and reading lips is impossible.Andrea relates to Nilsa in a very small way and emails her after class, which she immediately regrets doing. In class, students (and teacher) are only allowed to give feedback on the writing, not someone’s life because whether or not a reader or listener has had the exact same experience is irrelevant. When a story is well-told, anyone can relate to it.  You will hear how Nilsa felt about Andrea’s email and more about what it sounds like to be hard of hearing.Nilsa Rivera writes about gender and diversity issues. She’s the Non-Fiction Editor of Doubleback Review. Her work appears in Huffington Post, 50 GS Magazine, Six Hens Literary Journal, Assay: A Journal of Nonfiction Studies, Selkie Literary Magazine, and Writing Class Radio. Her work has appeared in Turning Dark into Light: A Mental Health Anthology and Home in Florida: Latinx Writers and The Literature of Uprootedness. She's currently an MFA Nonfiction candidate at Vermont College of Fine Art and lives in Riverview, Florida. She can be found at @nilsawrites and Nilsa Rivera on FBThank you for listening. If you love this podcast, tell your friends. The original episode 29 was produced by Virginia lora, Allison Langer and Andrea Askowitz. Theme music by Daniel Correa. Additional music by Ari Herstand. Episode 107 was put together by Matt Cundill and Evan Surminski of the Sound Off Media Company,There’s more writing class on our website, Facebook, Instagram and TwitterIf you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work Tuesdays 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.There’s no better way to understand ourselves and each other, than by writing and sharing our stories. Everyone has a story. What’s yours?See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Aug 4

28 min 56 sec

On episode 106, host Allison Langer tells a story about her post cancer hair. Allison’s story was rejected by The Washington Post. Should Allison give up and write something new? Or should she continue to send her story to other publications? Most often, even expertly-written stories get rejected because they’re just not a perfect fit for a particular publication at a particular time. But, how do you know if your story just sucks?Had Allison listened to Andrea’s edits, would she have gotten published? Or is it the topic of cancer that did her in?You’ll hear why a new twist on an overly-written-about subject (like cancer) may help you get published. You’ll also hear one of author Sue Shapiro’s secrets to getting published. This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz, and Virgina Lora.Theme music by Justina Shandler. Additional music by The Amadians and Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work Tuesdays 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jul 28

27 min 45 sec

This episode is about teaching the reader/listener something they don’t know anything about. Teaching can be done in two ways. One, by taking the reader into a world foreign to most people and two, by relaying information that’s rarely discussed and possibly unknown to the average person. In the story we bring you today, listener and student Danielle Huggins does both. Danielle has Bipolar Disorder and takes us inside her mind while she’s depressed. She also teaches us about Electro Convulsive Therapy (ECT). She gives us history and explains the medical process and implications. This is not a reported essay, instead, Danielle relays what she learns from her doctor and her experience. Danielle Huggins is a former middle school math teacher with a Masters Degree in Literacy. She is currently a stay-at-home mom, a student of Writing Class Radio and an avid kickboxer. Danielle has a Facebook page called My Life As a Bipolar Mom. She lives in New Jersey with her husband of 15 years, 14 year old daughter and 20 year old stepson. This essay will also be published in the Washington Post, July 20, 2021. Congratulations, Danielle! This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz, Matt Cundill and Evan Surminski from the Sound Off Media Company.Theme music by Justina Shandler. Additional music by Megatrax.com.There’s more writing class on our website, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work Tuesdays 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jul 14

22 min 25 sec

This episode is about commitment. Not commitment to love, exactly, but commitment to a concept. Listener Lucie Frost writes a satirical essay where sleep is her lover. She never slips from the concept. Humor writing requires committing to an idea and pushing that idea as far as you can go.Lucie Frost is a humor and satire writer in San Antonio, Texas. She recently retired from a lifetime as a human resources/employment lawyer. This story was originally published in Slackjaw. Her work has also been published in Next Tribe, Little Old Lady Comedy, The Haven, Lady Pieces, Points in Case, The Belladonna, and Robot Butt.You can find her on all social media platforms @lucieHfrostThis episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz and Virginia LoraTheme music by Justina Shandler. Additional music by Amadians, TJ North, Justina Shandler, and Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work Tuesdays 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jun 30

18 min 16 sec

On this episode, we bring you a story that the narrator has returned to and will probably return to all her life. Everyone has their themes and it’s okay to return to them at different points in our lives. Trigger warning…The story you will hear on this episode documents the loss of a child. If this is a sensitive issue for you, please listen to another episode.Our student and listener Emily Henderson writes a beautiful story about the loss of her son to brain cancer. In this essay, she uses her husband to tell her story from a different angle. Her husband has big enough shoulders to carry the weight of their grief. This story is in honor of all the fathers out there.Emily Henderson is a stay-at-home mom, volunteer, freelance writer, and student at Writing Class Radio. Her essays have appeared in Scary Mommy, The Santa Barbara Independent, and Love What Matters. She is currently attempting to run every single street in Santa Barbara, CA.She writes a blog called  www.myjustrightlife.com You can find her on Instagram @myjustrightlifeThis episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz and Virginia LoraTheme music by Justina Shandler. Additional music by Podington Bear and Ari Herstand.There’s more writing class on our website, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work Tuesdays 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jun 16

26 min 53 sec

On this episode, we bring you a story that is not one you hear too often but addresses a very serious situation: breast cancer in men. Kevin Wood shares his essay, A Boyhood Brush with Breast Cancer. This essay was previously published on The Good Men Project.We sat on this story for a few years not because it wasn’t expertly written, but because it lacked an important detail we felt was left out. You'll hear us discuss what happens when a key element seems to be left out of a story. Kevin Wood (kevinewood.me) is a freelance editor, writer and writing coach based in Barcelona. He serves as a contributing editor for The Good Men Project, with a focus on social justice and queer issues. His writing has appeared in The Washington Post, Witness Magazine, Fast Company, Huffington Post, Litro Magazine, The Chicago Tribune, and Thought Catalog, among others. Twitter (@simplifythenow) + Instagram (@simplify.the.now)This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz and Matt Cundill and Evan Surminski of SoundOff Media. Theme music by Justina Shandler. Additional music by Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work Tuesdays 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jun 2

28 min 51 sec

This episode is about writing like you speak, which is the best way to tell a true, authentic story. Andrea and Allison discuss why bringing your voice into a written essay makes the story so much better. You will hear an essay by Anthea Rowan, a writer and listener from Tanzania, Africa. Anthea’s story is about social anxiety. She uses her brilliant British vernacular and charms the listener. Allison and Andrea discuss the writing after the story, why writing class has fucked them up for cocktail talk, and their own experiences with social anxiety.Anthea Rowan grew up in Tanzania, Africa. She has three kids and says her writing was born by accident. Crap at most things and feeling empty nestish, a friend suggested she write for a local travel mag. A year later she was published in The Times of London. Rowan says writing saved her life after years of isolation in the African bush. She is working on her first creative non-fiction book. For more Anthea, go to @anthea_rowan on Instagram, visit her website or read her blog.This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Allison Langer, Andrea Askowitz and Matt Cundill of SoundOff Media. Theme music by Justina Shandler. Additional music by Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work Tuesdays 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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May 19

36 min 21 sec

This episode features an extreme mother story by Diana Kupershmit who is honest and vulnerable. Diana tells the truth about a very tough decision she and her husband made when their daughter Emma was born with a severe disability. Diana reads her story and then Andrea and Allison discuss the brilliant writing and why is it important to be gut wrenchingly honest.Diana’s essay was previously published in Still Standing Magazine, June 9, 2020.On this episode, we mention Krista Tippett’s On Being podcast episode with Bryan Doerries. Specifically his public health project, Theater of War, and how it relates to all storytelling. Doerries says, “Ancient stories, and texts that have stood the test of time, can be portals to honest and dignified grappling with present wounds and longings and callings that we aren’t able to muster in our official places now. It’s an embodiment of the good Greek word catharsis — releasing both insight and emotions that have had no place to go, and creating an energizing relief. Diana Kupershmit holds a Master of Social Work degree and works for the Department of Health in the Early Intervention Program, a federal entitlement program servicing children from birth to three years with developmental delays and disabilities. She has published online in the Manifest Station, Power of Moms, Motherwell Magazine, Her View from Home, Still Standing Magazine and Huffington Post. On the weekends, she indulges her creative passion working as a photographer specializing in newborn, family, maternity, and event photography.Diana’s book Emma's Laugh: The Gift of Second Chances is being released June 15, 2021. It is available for pre-order on Amazon and wherever books are sold. Please follow her on Instagram at @picsbydk https://www.instagram.com/picsbydk  or visit her website http://www.dianakupershmit.com.This episode of Writing Class Radio is hosted and produced by Allison Langer and Andrea Askowitz. The episode is also produced by Virginia Lora. Theme music by Justina Shandler. Additional music by Podington Bear and Emia. There’s more writing class on our website, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work Tuesdays 12-1 (ET). www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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May 5

44 min 47 sec

This episode is about secrets, a mom/daughter relationship, and donor-conception, a subject that hit both Andrea and Allison in the heart. When Amanda Serenyi’s friend gets pregnant using donor sperm, Amanda freaks out because she herself was donor-conceived and her mother kept this a secret until she was 33. When Amanda first submitted this essay, Allison loved it and Andrea was reluctant to publish it. You will hear why despite great writing and an interesting story, this story was almost rejected.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Matt Cundill of Sound Off Media, Andrea Askowitz, and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp is our media specialist.Theme music is by Amadians. Additional music is by Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Mar 3

39 min 20 sec

Are you writing like crazy but just can’t seem to push the send button on your submissions? Today on our show, Writing Class Radio student Margery Berger tells us what’s been holding her back.Margery Berger has told a story on this podcast before. On Episode 46: An Object is Not Just an Object she told a stunner about her obsession with her scale. Margery has been in class with us for 3, maybe 4, years. She has every ingredient to be a published writer, except one. She is perfectly self-conscious. She knows herself. She’s willing to get vulnerable. She does the work. She gives great feedback. She has endlessly interesting ideas, and a stockpile of really good stories. And she’s frickin’ talented. But, what she doesn’t have is the guts to send her stories out for publication. Today she did, not just here on Writing Class Radio, but she submitted the story heard on this episode to Next Tribe and got published the same day. You’ll hear her story: My Boyfriend Said My Hands Are Ugly and I Can’t Get Over It. You’ll also hear a conversation with Margery about what’s holding her back.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Matt Cundill of Sound Off Media, Andrea Askowitz, and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp is our media specialist.Theme music is by Amadians. There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Feb 17

34 min 16 sec

Today’s episode is about two things. 1. A great way to tell a relationship story is to choose a subject or activity that’s dear to the person you’re writing about. Then, describe that activity. 2. Stories are puzzles. There’s a false binary idea that writers are creative and therefore not good at math. We disagree. You have to tap into both sides of the brain to create good stories because there’s a mathematical equation in stories.Writing about a subject or activity or in today’s case, a puzzle, is also a great way to get published.Kristen Paulson-Nguyen, one of our past students, wrote a story called All We Can Do Is Sudoku. The story is about her father-in-law’s love for the puzzle. Of course, the story is about so much more. What’s awesome is that Kristen’s story was published on June 24, 2020 in The New York Times in the Crosswords and Games section. Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz, and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp is our media specialist.Theme music is by Amadians. There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.For more Kristen, find her on social media:Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/persistencepersonifiedTwitter: https://twitter.com/kpnwriterInstagram: https://www.instagram.com/kristenscarousel/See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Feb 3

16 min 8 sec

We asked you, our listeners, to send in your unfinished essays. We didn’t mean first drafts. We meant those essays you’ve been working on forever that you can’t get to the bottom of. Today on our show, we bring you an unfinished essay by listener Julie Schoelzel, a writer from Keene, New Hampshire. We hope to offer Julie insights into figuring out what she’s come to say and how to finish her essay. In every class, of every essay, we ask: What is the story about? After several drafts, we hope the narrator can answer this question because every scene and every detail must lead the reader/listener to that conclusion. Thank you Julie Schoelzel for being brave and sharing your story.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp is our media specialist.Theme music is by Amadians. There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jan 20

23 min 15 sec

Today’s show is about transformation. How does the narrator change? How does the narrator grow? You’ll hear a story by Autumn Hudson, an elite body tattoo artist, who went from dropping out of school, to drug addiction, to fulfilling her dream of becoming a tattoo artist. Autumn’s story exemplifies a narrator’s transformation.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Matt Cundill of Sound Off Media, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp is our media specialist.Theme music is by Amadians. Additional music by Scott Gratton. For more Autumn Hudson and to see her work, find her on Instagram @autumnhudson.tattoosThere’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support usSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jan 6

31 min 12 sec

On today’s episode hosts Andrea and Allison say goodbye to a shit year. They each took the prompt: Bye Bye 2020. Andrea got nothing and explains that the story she kept coming to--about her daughter having a rough time--is a story she’s not yet prepared to tell. Nothing else felt honest. Allison writes about her last chemo treatment on January 9, 2020. She was ready to move on from cancer forever, when six months later her dad sat down in her office midday and gave her the news: he had cancer. Her story is about the lessons she needs to learn. Again. Allison's essay might be a microcosm of what the world is going through with coronavirus and the quarantine.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora (www.virginialora.com), Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp is our media specialist.Theme music is by Amadians. Additional music by Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support usSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Dec 2020

30 min 1 sec

On today’s episode you’ll hear a story that takes a bad situation and finds the good. We don’t love sappy happy endings, but honest happy endings are the best, especially when they bring joy to the world. Jamie Katz got married on her balcony during lockdown and was greeted with some pleasant surprises. Her story also shows how much can be told with very few words. Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Matt Cundill of SoundOff Media, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp is our media specialist.Theme music is by Amadians. Additional music by John Destill and John Farla.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Dec 2020

19 min 44 sec

Today’s episode is the last in a series called Home. Writing Class Radio helped produce a documentary with Chapman Partnership, a homeless center in South Florida, exploring the meaning of home. Our documentary will air on PBS, date (tba).On this episode, you will hear a story by Marvin Jenkins, a past student, poet, Boeing employee, and dad. Marvin lost his home after he wrote an explicit text message to his girlfriend’s best friend and she kicked him out. Marvin has always been in love with Serena, but drugs got the best of him. Marvin’s essay is a great example of how taking responsibility for your actions in a story creates a reliable narrator. The voice in this essay also exemplifies how you can say ugly things, if you own that they are ugly. Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Matt Cundill of Sound Off Media Company, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp is our media specialist.Theme music by Ari Herstand. Additional music by Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.Thank you for listening! Everyone has a story. What's yours?See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Nov 2020

19 min 54 sec

Today’s episode is part of a series called Home. Writing Class Radio helped produce a documentary to help end homelessness for Chapman Partnership, a homeless center in South Florida.On this episode, you will hear a story by writer Tiffanie Drayton who takes an idea that most Americans hold about our country and turns it on its head. Typically, people come to America to seek asylum. But, Tiffanie left America to seek asylum. She left because she didn’t feel safe here as a Black American. Tiffany’s essay was published in the New York Times on June 12, 2020, which led to an agent signing and a 250k book deal. You’ll hear that story plus our conversation with Tiffanie about her experience as a Black person in America. Tiffanie came to America from Trinidad at four years old. She talks about her privilege as a dual citizen and her responsibility as a writer to call herself out for that privilege. Tiffanie Drayton (@draytontiffanie) is working on a book about fleeing American racism.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp is our media specialist.Theme music is by Ari Herstand. Additional music by Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Nov 2020

36 min 7 sec

Today’s show is part of a series called Home. Writing Class Radio helped produce a documentary to help end homelessness for Chapman Partnership, a homeless center in South Florida. We put out a public call for submissions for stories about home. The call brought so many different and fascinating takes. Thank you to all the people who submitted stories. In our series, you’ll hear a story about a woman who is torn between two homes, a man who finds home through love with a woman while he’s dealing with addiction, and a woman who finds home in another country less racially divided. Today’s story by Mary Ann Parker is about feeling at home in your skin. Trigger warning: This story contains strong language and images and is not appropriate for children. Sexual violence is discussed. Mary’s story shows how to expertly plant seeds, which is a way to drop hints and lead your reader to your conclusion. Mary Ann Parker is a war veteran and a student in our class. She is working on a memoir.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). This episode of Writing Class Radio is produced by Matt Cundill (of the Sound Off Media Company), Evan Surminski, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp and Ariel Henley are our media specialists.Theme music is by Ari Herstand. Additional music by Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month Andrea will answer all your publishing questions. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.Join us at The Sanibel Island Writers Conference Oct. 24-25, 2020. The conference (this year) is VIRTUAL and FREE Sat. noon-8 ET and Sun. noon-7 ET. Andrea and Allison teach from 12-1 ET on Sat. Sign up now. Description goes here.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Oct 2020

20 min 7 sec

Today’s show is the first in a four-part miniseries called Home. Writing Class Radio helped produce a documentary to help end homelessness for Chapman Partnership, a homeless center in South Florida.  We put out a public call for submissions for stories about home. The call brought so many different and fascinating takes on home. Thank you to all the people who submitted stories. In our series, you’ll hear a story about a woman finally feeling at home in her body, a man who finds home through love with a woman while he’s dealing with addiction, and a woman who finds home in another country less racially divided. Today’s story by Anechy Padron is about being torn between two homes.The writing technique we’re bringing out is about writing that story that doesn’t have a clear ending or resolution. We always want to make a solid point, but sometimes the point is a conflict. The story you’ll hear reveals that conflict.Anechy was born in Cuba. She’s an actress-puppeteer and writer who worked as a clown in a Cuban circus. Anechy writes in English and Spanish and has been published in the Mexican anthology, Cada Loco Con Su Tema. For more Anechy, visit her travel blog anechynotes.blogspot.com and creative blog anechy7.wixsite.com/anechymade.  Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp is our media specialist.Theme music is by Ari Herstand. Additional music by Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, follow us on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. You can ask her any question about publishing. For $25/month you can join Allison’s First Draft weekly writers group, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.Join us at The Sanibel Island Writers Conference Oct. 24-25, 2020. The conference (this year) is VIRTUAL and FREE Sat. noon-8 ET and Sun. noon-7 ET. Andrea and Allison teach from 12-1 ET on Sat. Sign up now.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Oct 2020

23 min 10 sec

This episode is about story structure and all things done well in an essay. LiAnne Yu tells a story about watching TV with her Chinese immigrant parents. As a narrator she brings us into her world--dinners in front of the TV with her parents. She uses detail to reveal character--Mork & Mindy, Sex and the City, and Fox News. She follows the five Cs of story structure: context, circumstance, complication, change, consequence.LiAnne Yu is an anthropologist and writer based in San Francisco and Kailua Kona, Hawaii. Her story was originally published in The New York Times, July 17, 2020.Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Mia Pennekamp is our media specialist.Theme music is by Emia. Additional music by Podington Bear and Ari Herstand.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Sep 2020

22 min 9 sec

This episode is about using a character to express the voice of reason. So often in a story, the narrator is in a bind and can’t see clearly. In the story we bring you today, the narrator’s wife says something that opens the narrator’s mind to a different point of view. The narrator went years believing something that might not be true. In this story, he artfully showed us the moment the story he told himself was called into question. Today’s story is by listener Nicholas Garnett, an adjunct professor of creative writing at Florida International University and Miami Book Fair International. He’s editor of the journal Sliver of Stone. His writing has appeared in Salon.com, The Florida Book Review, and other places including Best Sex Writing of 2013. Most importantly, he’s the co-producer of Lip Service, which is a Knight Foundation award winning live storytelling show in Miami. Andrea produced Lip Service for nine years and Nick was her co-producer for a few years. He’s a super nice guy and a great writer and editor. Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Ariel Henley is our media specialist.Theme music is by Emia. Additional music by Podington Bear and Ari Herstand.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: Do you have a story you just can’t get right? If you’re brave enough, we’ll edit it on the air. Send a Word doc (1,500 words max) to info@writingclassradio.com. Write HARD EDITS in the subject line.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Aug 2020

20 min 56 sec

Today on our show, we’re talking about how every word in a story matters. We have a story to share that illustrates this point so well. Essayist, teacher, and Writing Class Radio listener Amy Paturel submitted her story called “The Other Love of His Life,” which was originally published in Newsweek, April 2009. Amy’s story is a great example of how every word must lead to the final conclusion. Every scene, detail, and description should move the story forward. If not...cut. This got us thinking about how our words matter, not just to move a story along, but also because what we say or don’t say impacts other people. In Episode 81, we spoke to agent Barbara Poelle about getting a literary agent. We left out a crucial part of the conversation about bringing out stories by and about people of color. Listener Taiwo Adesina wrote to us to let us know. We are grateful and sorry.  Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Ariel Henley is our media specialist.Theme music is by Emia. Additional music by Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jul 2020

24 min 17 sec

This episode of Writing Class Radio is dedicated to George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and all those who have lost their lives in a senseless murder.The story we share with you on this episode is by student and poet Zorina Frey. Last Saturday, May 30, 2020, Andrea gave students a writing prompt and 14 minutes to write about whatever came to mind. Zorina’s response is helping us sit with the sadness, anger, and grief. It is a story that’s helping us reflect and process everything that’s going on. The prompt was Religion. Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Ariel Henley is our media specialist.Theme music is by Emia. There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jun 2020

7 min 4 sec

Today on our show, we share a New York Times Modern Love essay we love by Jessica Strawser, editor-at-large at Writer’s Digest. Her essay caught the attention of literary agent Barbara Poelle, an agent with the Irene Goodman Literary Agency and the author of Funny You Should Ask: Mostly Serious Answers to Mostly Serious Questions About the Publishing Industry. Her book is based on her Writer's Digest column of the same name. On today’s show, we share our conversation with Barbara about how to get an agent.We asked Barbara all kinds of questions: Is now a good time to query? How do I find an agent? Is there such a thing as a dream agent? Do authors even need an agent? What should I do before signing an agent? We also ask the big question: Can we write about certain experiences that aren’t our own? Barbara gives us the insider info. Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Ariel Henley is our media specialist.Theme music is by Emia. Additional music is by Justina Shandler and Poddington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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May 2020

39 min 37 sec

Today on our show, we are talking about what we can’t stop talking about, the coronavirus. Every email, text, call starts with, “How are you holding up?” It’s beautiful and exhausting, so we put out a call for coronavirus stories.We have two stories to share. One is by our own Andrea Askowitz who is still living in Madrid. Madrid is one of the most contagious cities on earth and if you’ve seen her videos of her family dancing on FB, you are aware she’s going a little stir-crazy. Writing has helped calm her. And we have a story by Sari Botton, the essays editor of Longreads. In Sari’s essay, she gives us permission to tell our stories even if they feel petty. We always say, stories matter. And now, stories matter as much as ever. But for those of us too freaked out to write, Sari also gives us permission to take the pressure off producing. We talk a lot on our show about situation and story. The stories you will hear today are both about this coronavirus situation, but they also bring us something more about the human condition. We hope these stories are both comforting and inspiring.Sari Botton’s list of writing resources for anyone interested in writing now:Vanessa Mártir offers many personal essay prompts that she made available for free in 2019 on her Writing Our Lives site.Cookbook author Julia Turshen is offering free food writing workshops via Instagram Live.Rachel McKibbens is offering writing prompts for 30 days in a Twitter thread. (Anyone can access them, but she is asking for donations to The Pink Door, the writers’ retreat for women-identified writers of color.)Weds., 3/25 The Writing Barn is offering a free webinar called “Writing Through Troubled Times.”Nancy Stohlman and Kathy Fish are offering 30 days of free writing prompts.Toby Litt has a free 10-session short story writing workshop online.The Porch Writers’ Collective in Tennessee is offering daily writing prompts on Twitter. They’ll be moving them to email, so sign up here.Barrel House is offering free online write-ins.Anna Polonyi has started Quarantine Quill, via the Paris Institute for Critical Thinking, a podcast on which she offers one writing prompt and one writing tip each day, for the duration of the lockdown in Paris.Stonewall Writers & Readers is hosting free writers’ groups online.Leigh Shulman is offering free online writing workshops next week, and also free writing prompts via email.And one more from Sari: I’ve got an into-level essay writing workshop on Skillshare. If you sign up for it, you can get a two-month free trial that lets you access all the courses on their site. Right now, Skillshare is also offering two months free (without having to give credit-card information) for current K-12 and college students, and others who qualify based on need. (I’m pretty dorky in my video, and I wish I’d thought to like, style my hair that day…? But I stand by the content of it.)Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer. Ariel Henley is our media specialist.Theme music is by Emia. Additional music is by Ari Herstand, Justina Shandler, and Poddington Bear,There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Apr 2020

29 min 39 sec

Today on our show, we take a look at bringing an obsession into a story. It’s possible to go deep into an obsession that has almost nothing to do with the story you are trying to tell without being distracting. That obsession can deepen the meaning of the story by giving us a peek into you, the narrator. Editors get a lot of stories about cancer, dead dogs, aging parents, etc. We’re not saying, stay away from these topics. We’re saying, writing about an obsession is a way to write about death (or any of these topics) in a new and interesting way. The story you’ll hear is from listener Jackie Ashton. This story was previously published in the March 2019 issue of Real Simple.We also talk about why it’s important to write and read stories about death, because hiding from feelings is never good. This story illustrates what someone who is going through a difficult time might need the most: friends who remind them of joy by experiencing it with them.Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Christine Corey. Additional music is by EMIA, Blue Jay, and Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.We’re pinking out and we want you to pinkout with us by supporting one of our cancer charities: https://www.writingclassradio.com/camo-elephant-projectThe Pink Wig Project or 305 Pink Pack.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Mar 2020

25 min 38 sec

Today on our show, we’re talking about how writing helps you figure out how you think. And helps you see yourself, specifically your failures more clearly because it’s hard to ignore a pattern when you see it in writing.We share an essay by listener, Karen Debonis who’s story, “Even the Weak Can Weather the Storm” is about what it ultimately took to make her change from being overly agreeable to a fierce badass defender of her child. It wasn’t his illness that was the catalyst, but reading back on what she’d written about herself years ago when her son was going through his illness and not liking herself.Karen Debonis began writing twenty years ago after her eleven-year-old son was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Then she put the writing aside to care for her kid. A few years ago, Karen revisited her manuscript. Karen lives and writes in upstate New York. You can find her writing at www.KarenDeBonis.com.Facebook: www.facebook.com/KDeBoniswriter/Twitter: https://twitter.com/KarenDeBonisInstagram: www.instagram.com/karendeboniswriter/Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are.There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Christine Corey. Additional music is by Ari Herstand and Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Feb 2020

17 min 59 sec

Today on our show, we’re talking to Susan Shapiro about literary citizenship. A literary citizen is someone who does good things for other literary people like re-tweet their published essays, share insider dos and don’ts, and hook people up with editors. Being a good literary citizen will help you get published because it shows that you know what’s going on in the literary world, helps build your platform, and it probably brings you some good karma. Susan Shapiro has made a career out of doing all these things and more. She’s written 12 books and thousands of essays. She teaches at NYU and The New School.We also share an essay by Susan Shapiro that was published in 2016 in The Cut, which is in New York Magazine. We love this essay and it’s about literary citizenship in a weird way.Susan is the author of Byline Bible, which is literary citizenship in book form. Byline Bible teaches you how to write a query letter, what publications want what kinds of stories, how to attract an agent, and gives lots of great examples of essays published by her students. Every author who wants to get published must read Byline Bible. Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Christine Corey. Additional music is by EMIA, and Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series--for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.Click to Join our camo-elephant hat project. Get an elephant hat for all the elephants (people who support you/people you love) in your life and support the The Pink Wig Project.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jan 2020

37 min 59 sec

On this episode, you’ll hear two stories about abortion, because we believe abortion stories must be told to keep abortions safe, legal, and accessible. If all women who had abortions told their stories, abortion would not be stigmatized, public perception would change, and laws would change. We put a call out for abortion stories. We received several, all from women who did not regret their abortions. According to The Guardian, 95% of all women who have abortions don’t regret them. So this is the story we’re telling on this episode.  The two stories are told from different perspectives in terms of time. It’s really important to be aware of where you’re standing in time while telling a story. Nicki Post, a past student in our class and a regular on our podcast, tells her story from 10 years out. Holly Bullis, a listener from Boulder, Colorado sets her story on the day she has her abortion. If you want more Nicki Post, you can hear her stories on Episode 12: Emotional Hangover, Episode 14: Taboo, Episode 23: I Fart, You Fart, and Episode 35: What Makes You You?. For more Holly Bullis, you can find her on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/HollyBullis or go to her blog The Underside of Leaves. https://theundersideofleaves.wordpress.com/ Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Christine Corey. Additional music is by EMIA, and Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. You get three videos for $50. Click Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we’ve made it easy for you to get involved. We are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.Click to Join our camo-elephant hat project. Get an elephant hat for all the elephants (people who support you/people you love) in your life or make a donation to The Pink Wig Project.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Dec 2019

38 min

Today on our show, we’re talking to Lilly Dancyger, an editor at Catapult, among many things. She’s also a freelance editor at Narratively and Barrelhouse Books, a memoir writing teacher, writer, curator of Memoir Monday, and the editor of the just-released anthology called Burn It Down. We talked to her about what she’s looking for in an essay, and how to successfully pitch to Narratively and Catapult. Read this before you submit to Lilly or anywhere. Ariel Henley reads her essay called There’s a Mathematical Equation that Proves I’m Ugly--Or So I Learned in My Seventh Grade Art Class, which was published in Narratively. Lilly tells us why she chose Ariel’s essay.And because Ariel’s essay spawned a book deal, we got Ariel on the phone to talk about how she went from idea, to essay, to publication, to agent, to published book. This episode is an inspiration to anyone looking to write their stories. Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Christine Corey. Additional music is by Justina Shandler, Ari Herstand, Andi G. Cohen, and Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. You get three videos for $50. Click on Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we’ve made it easy for you to get involved. We are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.Click to Join our camo-elephant hat project. Get an elephant hat for all the elephants (people who support you/people you love) in your life or make a donation to The Pink Wig Project.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Nov 2019

42 min 45 sec

We recorded this show from Miami and Madrid. If you are new to Writing Class Radio, welcome. Today on our show, we have the brilliant and generous Dani Shapiro, author of five novels and five memoirs, plus thousands of essays and a podcast called Family Secrets. A few years ago, Andrea sat down with Dani and talked about thinking like a writer, repeating themes in writing, figuring out what a story is about, and the conflicts all writers face, especially mothers, in revealing other people’s stories. Dani Shapiro also reads a story published in the New York Times Book Review in 2013 that we adore. It’s called The Me My Child Mustn’t Know.Dani Shapiro’s newest memoir, Inheritance is one of our favorite memoirs. In her early 50s, Dani found out her father was not her biological father. Inheritance is a thrilling page-turner. Click here to buy it. Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Christine Corey. Additional music is by Emia and Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. You can buy one for $20 or all three videos for $50. Click on Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we’ve made it easy for you to get involved. We are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions support conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Oct 2019

40 min 2 sec

Today our show is going to be a little different because shit just got really real. Three weeks ago, Allison was diagnosed with Stage 3 ovarian cancer. In this episode, we share the stories we wrote about this situation. We are treating this episode as if we’re in writing class by sharing our own writing and critiquing it, because writing and sharing and then getting and giving feedback is how we deal with whatever's going on in our lives. We thought writing and critiquing would help us process what’s going on. We hope that hearing our stories will motivate you to write and stay connected to the people you love while you go through your own shit.Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Christine Corey. There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. Through summer 2019, you get three videos for the price of two. That’s $40 for the series. Click on Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we’ve made it easy for you to get involved. We are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s publishing conversation. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. This takes place via Zoom, so anyone can join from anywhere in the world. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to join.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Aug 2019

32 min 41 sec

Today on our show, we’re talking about how to create a scene and why scenes matter. We often bring up the writing tip show AND tell. The scene is the show. It’s the action. It’s where we put dialogue and show character. Scenes are the moments we remember.For more on show and tell, listen to Episode 47: Show and Tell. You’ll hear one of Andrea Askowitz’s stories, where she fights with her son about homework. And you’ll hear stories by Allison Langer and Misha Mehrel where they show and tell effectively.Listener Michael Howell submitted the essay in this episode, How Are You Really? In his story, Mike creates the most well-described and horrifying scene while in combat in Afghanistan. He slows down, so the reader/listener knows something huge is about to happen. He gives telling details and transitions out of the scene to slow down the moment. Today, we share his story with you.Mike Howell is a 29-year-old Veteran who fought in Afghanistan. Mike Joined the Marines out of high school and is currently working as an auto service advisor. He’s also in school for business and writing. Mike hopes to eventually become a full time author. Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Christine Corey. Additional music is by Adriel Borshansky. There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. Through summer 2019, you get three videos for the price of two. That’s $40 for the series. Click on Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we’ve made it easy for you to get involved. We are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions support group. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Aug 2019

15 min 44 sec

This episode contains content about a suicide attempt.Today on our show, we’re talking about a container, which is a cool way to structure a story. It’s a method to tell your entire story while you are contained in a place or period of time. For example, on a plane, in a meeting, or an afternoon at a hair appointment. The goal is for the narrator to take the reader or listener along in the moment while stepping out of the container to tell a much bigger story. Lorinne Griswold, a listener from San Francisco, submitted her story, Self Care, which details her 20-year-old daughter’s attempted suicide. Lorinne’s essay starts right before her hair appointment and ends when she leaves that appointment. The story is told while Lorinne is sitting in the stylists chair. She expertly takes us in and out of that appointment so we feel like we are sitting in the chair with her. We learn so much about her daughter, past struggles with being a mother. We also learn how she has been dealing with the current situation, and what she has learned.Lorinne Griswold graduated from St. Mary’s College of California with a B.S. in business and has been working for Chevron for almost 30 years. Lorinne told us she has always used journaling as a creative outlet, but when she started struggling with her oldest daughter a few years ago, journaling became one of the only ways to untangle all the messy feelings in her head. She has filled more than 100 journals but has never shared her writing with anyone. That all changed when she found the Writing Class Radio podcast and realized that she wasn’t the only one using writing to work out her SH!T. Listening to others be vulnerable and honest gave Lorinne the courage to write and submit her own story. Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Christine Corey. Additional music is by Kevin Miles Wilson.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. Through summer 2019, you get three videos for the price of two. That’s $40 for the series. Click on Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we’ve made it easy for you to get involved. We are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions support group. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jul 2019

21 min 27 sec

Today on our show, we’re talking about how to write about the unbelievable. Things like UFOs, mediums, and talking to the dead. In the story you’ll hear, our narrator hears a voice from beyond.In this episode, like many past episodes, we also get into the concept of likeable narrator. If you want more on likeable narrator, listen to these episodes: Likeable Narrator--Be the Biggest Asshole in the Story; A Time I Fucked Up part 1 and part 2.We bring up likeable narrator, because we feel like the most effective way to write about the unbelievable is to be an extra-reliable narrator--someone the reader or listener can trust. The narrator has to express doubt, or else risk sounding like a crazy person. You also have to give details and reasons why you believe (a real situation or scene). Don’t try to over-convince the reader or listener, just tell your story with vulnerability.Pat Martin, a listener from Atlanta, Georgia, submitted the story in this episode. Her story was previously published in Guideposts Magazine. Pat Martin is a nurse, pastor, speaker and author of the book, You Can Get There From Here. She’s also the founder and executive director of the non-profit KIDDS Dance Project. Her philosophy for life is, "Character is better than talent any day.” Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Christine Corey. Additional music is by Adriel Borshansky and Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/), Instagram and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. Through summer 2019, you get three videos for the price of two. That’s $40 for the series. Click on Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we’ve made it easy for you to get involved. We are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions support group. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers lunch, where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jul 2019

18 min 9 sec

Today on our show, we’re talking about how to end a story when the situation is ongoing. You’ll hear an essay by the Brazilian born Miami writer, Camile Flosi Araujo. Camile brings us into her world, which changed dramatically for her when she got into a car accident that left her paralyzed from the waist down. She made a startling discovery, not that she’s pissed about the accident, although she is, but that she’s pissed at herself for how she lived before the accident. Listen to hear how she expertly ends the story that she’s still living.A version of Camile’s story was first told at Lip Service, a live storytelling event in Miami. Our co-host Andrea Askowitz produced Lip Service for nine years before leaving it under the leadership of the Miami Book Fair.Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Justina Shandler. Additional music is by Kevin Myles Wilson and Podington Bear. For more Camile Flosi Araujo find her at https://www.facebook.com/camileflosiaraujo/.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/) and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. Through summer 2019, you get three videos for the price of two. That’s $40 for the series. Click on Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we’ve made it easy for you to get involved. We are now on Patreon. For $10/month you can join Andrea’s submissions support group. We’ll support each other as we try to get our stories published. For $25/month you can join Allison’s weekly writers club (Tuesdays 12-1pm ET), where you can write and share your work. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jul 2019

25 min 12 sec

Today on our show, we’re talking about metaphors and how they work in a story. We share a story by Elizabeth Newdom whose story is shaped around a metaphor. Elizabeth’s essay first appeared in Motherwell, an online magazine that tells all sides of the parenting story.  We called the editors of Motherwell, Randi Olin and Lauren Apfel, a badass editing duo and talked to them about their tag team approach to editing, what grabbed them about Elizabeth’s story, and the use of metaphors.We’ll take you behind the scenes, so you can learn how to submit to Motherwell.Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Justina Shandler. Additional music is by Ari Herstand and Podington Bear.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/) and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. Through summer 2019, you get three videos for the price of two. That’s $40 for the series. Click on Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we’ve made it easy for you to get involved. We are now on Patreon. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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Jun 2019

27 min 29 sec

Today on our show we’re talking about perseverance, a quality important if you want to be a writer, a runner, or someone successful at crafting the dreaded college essay. What makes your essay stand out to publishers and to college admissions directors is the situation and the story. They want to see the loss or the win, because that’s what allows others to connect with your story. They also want to know what you learned from the experience and how that experience informed your character. Allison Langer has been working with high school students all over the country on their college admissions essays. This is the second episode in a two-part series where we bring you common app essays.Ransom Everglades High School graduate Wesley Cusack wrote the following essay about the challenges he faced in track and cross country and what he learned from not quitting.If you or your high schooler needs help getting started or editing along the way, Allison Langer can help. Click here for more information.Common app essay prompts: 1. Background 2. Obstacle or challenge that you faced. 3. When you changed your belief. 4. A problem you’d like to solve. 5. Accomplishment that sparked personal growth. 6. A topic (obsession) that you find so engaging that it makes you lose track of time. 7. Any topic (YAY!)Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Justina Shandler. Additional music is by Ari Herstand.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/) and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. Through spring 2019, you get three videos for the price of two. That’s $40 for the series. Click on Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we’ve made it easy for you to get involved. We are now on Patreon. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jun 2019

13 min 43 sec

Today on our show we’re talking about bragging, specifically on the dreaded college essay. How do you brag yourself up without sounding like a total $#&%$#? (We’re PG for the high schoolers...as if). The answer is, you have to be willing to get vulnerable and reveal your ugly side, then you can brag all you want.Allison has been working with high school students all over the country on their college admissions essays. This is the first episode in a two-part series where we bring you common app essays.Palmer Trinity high school senior Julia Irvin wrote this essay from the point of view of her sister, which is a clever and effective way to reveal good and bad details about the narrator.If you or your high schooler needs help getting started or editing along the way, Allison Langer can help. Click here for more information.Common app essay prompts: 1. Background 2. Obstacle or challenge that you faced. 3. When you changed your belief. 4. A problem you’d like to solve. 5. Accomplishment that sparked personal growth. 6. A topic (obsession) that you find so engaging that it makes you lose track of time. 7. Any topic (YAY!)Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Justina Shandler. Additional music is by EmiaThere’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/) and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. Through spring 2019, you get three videos for the price of two. That’s $40 for the series. Click on Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, we’ve made it easy for you to get involved. We are now on Patreon. Go to www.Patreon.com/writingclassradio or click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 2019

13 min 13 sec

Do you know how sometimes when you’re reading a story you feel like the story slows down in a critical moment? Maybe the narrator describes the people in a room or the birds on a tree nearby. Maybe there’s a flashback to a memory. In that moment, the reader becomes hyper aware and hopefully totally drawn in.Today on our show we’re talking about slowing down and expanding a moment. A moment in a story that says to the reader, “Hey, pay attention. I’m about to give you some details that are important to the story.”Devan Sandiford, a listener from Brooklyn, NY submitted a story where he slows down in the most important moment, both by explaining what’s happening in detail and by going back to another memory that explains why this moment matters.Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are.There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Virginia Lora, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer and sponsored by The Launchpad at The University of Miami, which aims to make the practice of entrepreneurship available to all students and alumni. Theme music is by Justina Shandler. Additional music is by Adriel Borshansky and Ari Herstand.There’s more writing class on our website (www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/) and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio).If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. Through spring 2019, you get three videos for the price of two. That’s $40 for the series. Click on Video Classes on our website.Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, please click here to support us.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

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May 2019

25 min 44 sec