Updated post — Announcing “Upwellings” – my new online nonfiction class in November and December

(the class is now filled. Please let me know if you’d like to be added to the waiting list or are interested in future offerings. ) Dear writers – Would you like to join an instant (and steadily growing) community of supportive writers, have your drafts workshopped, and get ideas for new writings? I’m launching a new nonfiction ‘hybrid’ online course called “Upwellings,” a blend of craft talk, small-group workshops, and on-the-spot and take-home prompts and craft exercises that will generate “upwellings” of memory and creative outbursts on the page. This new course fuses some of the spontaneous elements of my “Ideas Generator” course with the traditional craft seminar and workshop. Eight spots have already been reserved, and I need to limit enrollment to a maximum of 12, so please contact me right away at dwhitescruz@yahoo.com if you are interested. The run of four courses will be held on November…

My October memoir/personal essay class

Dear writer friends – I am back for another round of memoir/personal essay teaching, after sold-out runs in July and September. As of this writing, only a couple of spots remain. The classes run on four consecutive Saturdays in October — (October 10, 17, 24 and 31 — yes, there will be a special Halloween edition) from 1230 to 230 p.m. PST. Here is how it works: Each class includes a craft talk, focusing on potentials and challenges of creative nonfiction. Then we break into working groups, with students who will ‘workshop’ each other’s work. I ask that students in this class come to class with one or two chapters of a memoir in progress, or one or two freestanding personal essays that they would like to have workshopped. This class — like all my classes — places a strong emphasis on mutual support and a lively, convivial group dynamic….

Watch my Catamaran Lit conference video. Plus, information on upcoming classes and writings. (My updated update for July 30, 2020)

hi everyone. Thanks for checking in. I’m dealing with a serious email backlog on my dwhitescruz@yahoo.com account so please be patient and bear with me. It could take me a while to respond. (there’s a lot going on an there are lots of messages in the inbox right now) I just wanted to let you know that I’m planning some early fall writing classes in memoir and personal essay (with, perhaps, a return of my Ideas Generator fiction and nonfiction class) so let me know if you’d like me to add you to the mailing list! You can leave a comment here or just reach out to me via emial My classes tend to sell out well in advance of the class dates, so being on this list really helps if you’re interested in getting a spot. Usually, the classes are quite small (for most of them, I cap it…

Classes, readings, online Catamaran Conference and more: your comprehensive summery update

hi everyone, and thanks again for checking in. I’ve been getting a lot of inquiries lately because of a story of mine that ran in the Washington Post recently about applying the lessons of the Pacific Crest Trail to the life indoors during the COVID-19 pandemic. I wanted to let you know that my August writing class — focusing on memoir and personal essays — is very close to sold out so please reach out to me at dwhitescruz@yahoo.com if you’d like me to register (and I’ll send you payment info.) There has been a lot of advance interest in this new class — I have only four spots left at this point – so please let me know right away if you are interested. I’m limiting enrollment to 12 students. This class is a chance for you to revise, flesh out and workshop memoir chapters or personal essays that…

Welcome to my website and thanks very much for checking in. Here are some updates.

Hi everyone. A couple of things. First of all, I wanted to let you know that my writing class is completely sold out at this point. Thank you so much for your advance interest – – hoping to be back with new classes soon!! Also, thank you so much for all your kind messages about my Washington Post Pacific Crest Trail story. Your messages mean so much to me. Even the comments were great. One of you even identified the fuzzy ant-like beings that kept me company along the trail. I didn’t realize that they were actually wasps, so I appreciate your entomological feedback!! If you’re new to my writing, please take a look at the “other writings” page on this website for some stories and essays you can access. I wrote a book called Under The Stars, which is pretty similar in tone and outlook to the piece I…

Announcing my online nonfiction writing class in June, open to beginning and advanced writers

Dan White

Hello friends on both coasts and all over the Midwest — I wanted to let you all that I’m launching a nonfiction writing class called Story of My Life, open to students at all levels of experience, from published authors to beginning writers. The dates for the class are June 6, 13, 20, and 27 (every Saturday in June) from 1230 to 230 PM Pacific Standard Time. Email me for details at dwhitescruz@yahoo.com and add you to the registration list. (updated: as of today there is only one spot left. Thanks, everyone, for all the advance interest in this class. I really appreciate it!) Flannery O’Connor once said, “The fact is that anybody who has survived his childhood has enough information about life to last him the rest of his days.” All of us have enough raw material for a fat book of personal essays and at least a couple of…

Honored to be joining the nonfiction faculty at Catamaran Literary Conference in July

I’m proud to announce that I will be at the Catamaran Literary Conference July 26-30, leading a workshop group each morning (9:30 a.m. – 12:30p.m.) with up to 12 writers. Each participant will submit up to twenty pages of creative nonfiction writing for review by the workshop group. The writing should be creative in nature and may be part of a larger work or a stand-alone piece. The workshop meets four mornings (Mon.-Thurs.) and each participant will learn methods for revising their own work and will receive focused feedback from the group on their craft. This class will also serve as an ideas-generating machine for writers, encouraging a strong sense of play, improvisation and experimentation to foster in-the-moment creativity. Looking forward to meeting you and delving into your work!

Return of the Ideas Generator class at Catamaran Literary Reader

To all my writing friends — this February I am expanding my Ideas Generator class at the Tannery Art Center in Santa Cruz, with all new prompts to bring out the memoirs, novels and short stories that I know are hiding somewhere deep in the La Brea Tar Pits of your mind. Last time around, we had a lot of fun with a world-building improv activity, a “street haunting” inspired by the work of Virginia Woolf, a Victor Hugo-inspired art and writing activity, and many other adventures. In February, four four weekly sessions on Tuesday evenings, I will be back with all new prompts, visuals and ideas for your enjoyment. This class is strictly generative, with a focus on mutual support and the free-flowing exchange of ideas. Registration info here. See new Tweets

My “Transgressive” new writing class in Santa Cruz

hello, everyone. I am teaching a brand-new class at the historic and spooky Tannery Arts complex in Santa Cruz (Wednesday evenings, October 30 through November 20) in which I use improvisation, close reading, intensive writing activities and a “night haunting” to help you conjure new ideas for writing projects and squash your writers’ block. Since the first class takes place the day before Halloween, I would not object in any way if you showed up in costume. In fact, there is a sordid rumor that I will teach the first class while wearing a vampire bat costume. Here is the link with all the info and registration directions

On bloodymindedness

Here is an essay I published some years back in Poets & Writers about a poet and professor whose tough-minded ideas about writing and publishing helped get me through a rough patch of writing. He told me about the value of pressing onward, and developing “sheer bloody-mindedness.” Hoping to see Professor Connor when I go back to Wesleyan for reunion next month.