3 Weeks, 3 Personal Essays


Remember those blocks you played with as a child and how one day you could use them to create a castle with a bubbling moat and the next they became lounge chairs for Barbie as she stretched out poolside? 

Oftentimes when we have a story that demands telling, we need to take the same approach. It is through the process of play and experimentation with form that we discover new information that can transform our personal narratives. 

In this generative class we’ll explore the many facets of the personal essay. In this workshop we’ll look at samples of different types of published essays and then try out exercises that use such approaches to create momentum in our memoir essays. Each week you’ll complete a brief essay of 1,000 words for feedback from your instructor, and to share with the class to further build your skills and inspire new approaches. You will leave this class with a better understanding of how to tell your story and how playing with form can reveal these unexpected insights. 


Who is the Instructor? Melissa Fraterrigo is the author of the novel, Glory Days ( University of Nebraska Press), which was named one of "The Best Fiction of 2017" by ​Chicago Review of Books. Melissa is also the author of the short story collection, The Longest Pregnancy (Livingston Press). Her fiction and nonfiction have appeared in a variety of journals including Puerto del Sol, Massachusetts Review, Fifth Wednesday Journal, Sou’wester and Shenandoah. She has twice been nominated for Pushcart Prizes.In addition to her publications, she has taught creative writing at Bowling Green State University, Southern Utah University, Penn State-Altoona, and at the Indiana Writers’ Center. Melissa is the founder of Lafayette Writers’ Studio. 

She lives with her husband and two daughters in West Lafayette, and is a native Chicagoan. Despite horrible bouts of insecurity, through praise and plenty of rejections, Melissa has continued to write and looks forward to the opportunity to help you do the same. To learn more about Melissa or read some of her work, visit melissafraterrigo.com

Who should take this class? Open to all writers regardless of experience. It is capped at 12 students so that each writer receives individual attention on his/her writing. 

When is this class offered? This class is offered for three sessions on Wednesday mornings beginning February 5, 12, 19 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at MatchBOX Coworking Studio in downtown Lafayette. 


What is the cost? $120