jen cross

About Your Facilitator…

I’m a  writer, performer, survivor, and writing workshop facilitator based in Oakland, CA, who has led transformative writing workshops in the SF Bay Area for over a decade.

Like so many others, I’ve been in love with writing, words and books since I was very young — and after my experience of trauma as a teenager/young woman, it was writing that brought me back into my breath, my voice, my possibility. My relationship with writing is ever in flux, although I’m grateful to be at the point in my life where writing can hold a central place. I’ve been publishing my work since the late 1990s.

I’m an experienced group facilitator and have been certified in the Amherst Writers & Artists method, described in Pat Schneider’s book Writing Alone and With Others, Oxford University Press (2003).

Interviews with Jen:

I’ve been facilitating writing groups since 2002, and this work has changed and opened my life! I got to talk about that a few years ago when I participated in a podcast interview with Britt Bravo and the Arts and Healing Network; we discussed the Writing Ourselves Whole workshops, the powerful and transformative uses of writing, and more: Interview with Britt Bravo about Writing Ourselves Whole (mp3)

Here’s another brief interview on the Goddard IMA blog where I talk some about how I came to be doing this work!

I got to talk with Jianda Monique about the workshops and writing as a transformational/liberatory process on her Lesbian Relationships Podcast!

Toward the end of 2012, I got to go to UC Davis as a part of the Conversations with Writers program to talk about erotic writing as liberatory practice. Here’s a link to a video of the talk — I may have gotten pretty excited about the transformative power of writing about desire. Please note: This talk opens with a sexually-explicit reading from a piece I wrote about what we do and do not learn about sexuality when we are teenagers (and how it is we learn most of what we learn).

In May 2012, in honor of National Masturbation Month (did you know May was National Masturbation Month?), I blogged for a month at We Can Come Home about orgasm as radical self love in the aftermath of trauma.

In 2013, Art Animal magazine did an interview with Carol Queen and me about the Erotic Reading Circle.

Jen’s background:

Jen reading at PPOIn 2003, I received my MA in Transformative Language Arts at Goddard College, where I studied and wrote about the ways in which erotic writing can be used as a tool for sexual- and self-healing.

Before and after that, I worked at social justice organizations in Portland, ME, and San Leandro, CA, as an advocate and psychoeducational group facilitator for domestic violence survivors.

A writer/performer, I’ve gotten to feature at such events as Sizzle, Writers With Drinks, the National Queer Arts Festival, and the Queer Open Mic. I’ve participated in Carol Queen’s stop on the LitQuake’s LitCrawl every year since 2006, and I get to co-facilitate (with the aforementioned Mz. Carol Queen!) a monthly Erotic Reading Circle at the Center for Sex and Culture!

I’ve led workshops and/or performed at:

  • Stanford University, Wesleyan University, the University of California at Davis, Dartmouth College, the University of California at San Francisco, Brown University, Goddard College, the University of Oregon at Eugene, Evergreen State University, Southern Oregon University, Pacific School of Religion;
  • the Power of Words/Transformative Language Arts annual conference;
  • the Femme Conference;
  • Survivorship and the Survivorship annual conference;
  • San Francisco Women Against Rape;
  • Bay Area Women Against Rape;
  • Community United Against Violence;
  • San Francisco PRIDE;
  • the UCSF Med Center’s Art for Recovery Program;
  • the Center for Sex and Culture;
  • staff at the UCSF Office of Medical Education program;
  • the Transformative Language Arts Network;
  • and at many other community organizations, bookstores, and schools.

I love writing with community and student groups — please contact me to organize a writing group project for your organization or group!

Visit the next page for a list of my publications.

4 Responses to jen cross

  1. Hi there, Diane!

    Thanks so much for writing! The fee information has been updated on the Calendar page, after the 8-week workshop descriptions. Please send me an email with any further questions, ok?


  2. Don’t know if my messge went through? I’m very interested in your group, but am wondering what the fee is.

  3. This sounds good! Would you tell me what the fee will be?

  4. Pingback: Write Whole: survivors write! Writing group starts January 10 (Powell at Market) | USA ADS

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