International Women's Writing Guild

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Online workshops

In addition to a full schedule of workshops, we will continue with free writes, open mics, and writing circles. 

Credit/Refund Policy

If you withdraw from a workshop or class:

  • At least 10 business days prior to class: you will receive a full refund or credit towards another class
  • 9 business days prior to class until 1 business day before: you will receive a credit towards another class
  • Within 1 business day : you will receive no refund or credit.

Please note that notification of withdrawal must be processed via email writers@iwwg.orgIf IWWG must cancel a class for any reason, we will give you a full refund or, if you choose, a credit in the amount of your payment, to be used for any future class or event. 

Uprooted: Refugees of the Heart and Home

*** Limited to 25 Attendees

September 22 (7:00 - 8:30 PM EST)
September 29 (7:00 - 8:30 PM EST)
October 6 (7:00 - 8:30 PM EST)
October 13 (7:00 - 8:30 PM EST)

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"I believe one carries the shadows, the dreams, the fears and the dragons of home under one's skin..."  ~Maya Angelou 


Have you ever been forced to leave your home? As thousands flee embattled streets of Ukraine, and others escape political strife and natural disasters, our writings will explore the myriad realms of displacement - leaving home, losing home and the hope of finding home again.  Our uprootedness journey will take us through immigrant pasts,  Afghanistan evacuations, Trail of Tears,  Japanese internment, Oklahoma's Black Wall Street , Syria, Somalia and Haiti, urban renewal and eminent domain.  While we express our longing  for home and the sense of it, we acknowledge others who seek the same. Our words can bear witness to a world of 84 million displaced people, 27 million of whom are refugees. 

Inspirations: Suheir Hamad, Bonnie Raitt, Traci Kato-Kiriyama, Usha Akela,  the Beatles,  Elie Wiesel, Jacqueline Woodson, Warsan Shire, Juan Felipe Herrera and Edwidge Dandicat.

Dorothy Randall Gray is author of the bestseller, Soul Between the Lines (Avon/Harper Collins), a recent volume of poetry Sharing the Same Sky, and numerous anthology selections.  Her other published works include Muse Blues, Woman, Family, The Passion Collection, and A Taste of Tamarinda. A two year LA Poet-in-Residence Dorothy's  "When I Was A Tree" poetry film was awarded Official Selection by the Film & Poetry Video  Symposium. Her work is also featured in the upcoming Eve Ensler/Aja Monet production, VOICES. She is a former board member of the International Women's Writing Guild, NPR commentator, and UNESCO delegate. Her workshops have inspired thousands throughout the US, China, Iceland, and India. They have served a variety of audiences including beginning and seasoned writers, graduate and high school students, creative aging groups, and incarcerated populations. A global activist Dorothy is a Hedgebrook Fellow who has shared the dais with the Dalai Lama, performed poetry in Iceland, danced with tribal boys in India, and boogied with James Baldwin in NYC.

Who’s Driving this Bus?:
Separating Your Narrator From Your Character
in Memoir

September 27, 2022
4:00 - 5:30 PM EST

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The memoir genre is vast in style and content, but one thing all memoirs have in common is a narrator looking back on a former self. But how does one create this narrator on the page? Is there one self telling the story or two? What is the role of each? And how is all this related to voice? This session will use written exercises and discussion to clarify the narrator who is telling your story. We will also discuss the dangers of collapsing these roles, and how to use them to find the right narrative distance for your story.

Janet Pocorobba is the author of The Fourth String: A Memoir of Sensei and Me. Her work has appeared in The Rumpus, River Teeth, Post Road,Harvard Review, The Writer, and elsewhere. She has received writing residency fellowships from Bread Loaf, Vermont Studio Center, and Turkey Land Cove Foundation on Martha’s Vineyard. She directs and teaches in the Lesley Low-Residency MFA Program.

"Sound, Setting, and Syntax: Recipe For a Southern Writing Revival": making your writing as savory and flavorful as Southern gumbo 

October 12 and October 19, 2022
4:00 - 6:00 PM EST

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Jambalaya and Gumbo are essentially mixtures of lots of flavors that compliment each other to make the tastiest meal-- much like the craft od writing. In this workshop, we'll use the Southern writing tradition as an example of how all the best ingredients should work together. Ever had a meal that made you feel like you'd had a spiritual experience? That hit you on a physical and soul level? Well that's what writing should do. Ignite our senses! 

In this workshop, Khalisa will guide the class on what we need to make your writing sound, look, and feel like a revival and a soul meal. To stir the spirit, shake the soul, and awaken something that had been dormant. 

The recipe: sound, setting, and syntax that reads like scripture. This workshop will cover Southern sounds, the importance of setting, and language/jargon/syntax will look at the Southern writers Paul Lawrence Dunbar, James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, Alice Walker, and other writers.

Khalisa Rae is an award-winning poet, educator, and journalist in Durham, NC. She is the author of the debut poetry collection, Ghost in a Black Girl's Throat (Red Hen Press 2021), and Contributing Writer for Kindred. Her essays are featured in Autostraddle, Catapult, LitHub, as well as articles in Jezebel, Blavity, B*tch Media, NBC-BLK, and others. Her poetry appears in Southern Humanities Review, Gravy, Frontier Poetry, Florida Review, Rust & Moth, PANK, HOBART, among countless others. She is the winner of the Appy Award, Vulgar Genius, Bright Wings Poetry contest, the Furious Flower Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Prize, among other prizes. As a former Winter Tangerine, Frost Place and Watering Hole fellow, she is currently the EIC of Think in Ink BIPOC collective and the Writers of Color Speak/"Uncomposed" reading series. Her YA novel in verse, Unlearning Eden, is forthcoming. 

Write a Cozy Mystery 

2-part Series:  October 2nd and 16th, 2022
11:00 AM - 1:00 PM EST

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Are you a fan of Bree Baker’s Seaside CafĂ© Mysteries? What about the Cat in the Stacks Mysteries by Miranda James? Do you find yourself watching British detective shows like Father Brown and Midsomer Murders? Are you completely hooked on the new Jane Seymour series Harry Wild? If so, you are a fan of a mystery subgenre called a Cozy. 

According to book sale statistics, romance is the best-selling genre of commercial fiction, followed by the crime/mystery genres. But what is a cozy mystery?

In this two-part workshop, you’ll write a cozy mystery with best-selling author Abby VanDiver. Abby is the author of several popular cozy mysteries, like her Ice Cream Parlor series. She has the inside scoop (pun intended) for you and will take you through all the steps to getting your cozy mystery ready for publication. Here’s what Abby will cover in the workshop:

  • What exactly is the definition of a cozy?

  • What are the essential elements of any cozy mystery story?

  • What are the must-have conventions (called tropes) that cozy mystery readers want and expect?

  • How to identify and hide your clues and create some red herrings.

  • What is your hook?

  • How to create your amateur sleuth with depth.

  • How to build your cozy world and fun touches – hobbies, occupations, businesses and more

As a special bonus Abby will show you how to format your manuscript from the beginning in MS WORD so it is ready to be self-published if that is your choice.

Not only are cozies fun to read, but the sleuths in these stories are almost always educated, independent women who rely on their intuition to ferret out the criminal among the denizens of the cozy world they inhabit.

WALL STREET JOURNAL, USA TODAY and internationally bestselling author, Abby L. Vandiver, who also writes as Abby Collette, has always enjoyed writing. Combining that with her love of mystery she has published using a Hybrid approach, self-published and been traditionally published. Abby has penned more than twenty books and short stories. Her cozy mystery series, the Ice Cream Parlor series, is published with Penguin Berkley. Abby has authored her first Women’s Fiction novel, Where WildPeaches Grow, under the pen name Cade Bentley for Lake Union Publishing (coming August 2022). Abby resides in South Euclid, Ohio and enjoys spending time with her grandchildren and facilitating self-publishing and writing classes online with Cleveland Literary and at her local library. Learn more at

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Phone: (617) 792-7272

Mailing Address:

The International Women’s Writing Guild

888 8th Avenue, #537
New York, NY 10019

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