Announce: Summer 09 Workshops with Writing Ourselves Whole!

Writing Ourselves Whole:
transformative writing workshops for the SF Bay Area

Contact: Jen Cross

Are you looking for an opportunity to create some new and powerful writing in an invigorating, supportive writing community? This June and July, Writing Ourselves Whole is pleased to be offering two full 8-week writing workshops and a Saturday writing retreat:

  • Write Whole: Survivors Write. Monday evenings, June 1 – July 27. Open to all women survivors of sexual trauma.

  • Declaring Our Erotic: Take back your sexuality! Tuesday evenings, June 2 – July 28. Open to queer-identified women survivors of sexual trauma.
  • Raw Silk, an erotic writing retreat open to all women! Saturday, June 20, 10am-4pm.

    All workshops offered at the Writing Ourselves Whole workshop space in downtown San Francisco. Register now or visit for more information!

    Write Whole: Survivors Write
    Eight Monday evenings, June 1 – July 27
    Open to all women survivors of sexual trauma

    Transforming our language is one of the ways we transform our lives.

    Many who are survivors of sexual trauma feel fragmented or disjointed and have come to believe we must always live our lives this way. Writing is one way to regain some control over our experiences and memories, and begin to create new sense out of them.

    Gather with other women survivors of sexual trauma in this workshop, and write in response to exercises chosen to elicit deep-heart writing, and deal with such subjects as: body image, family/community, sexuality, dreams, love, faith, and more. You’ll be encouraged to trust the flow of your own writing, and receive immediate feedback about the power of your words!

    These workshops are open to all women who identify in as survivors of sexual trauma. Though we come together as survivors, we are never required to write any particular version of “our story,” or even write about trauma at all if we don’t choose to! In this space, you have the opportunity to write as you feel called to write.

    Although the setting is a supportive one, the workshop is different from a “support group,” as the focus of the workshop itself is on each person’s writing; we create beauty out of the sometimes extraordinarily difficult stuff of our lives.

    Declaring Our Erotic
    Eight Tuesday evenings, June 2 – July 28
    For Summer 09, this workshop is open to queer women survivors of sexual trauma

    Take back your sexuality! Come together with other queer-identified women survivors to create a space in which we struggle with and celebrate our complex sexualities, in an attempt to become less isolated around, and more comfortable talking about, our sexual desires. Each week, we write in response to exercises designed to tap into different aspects of our sexual selves: memory, fantasy, experience, relationship with the body, and more!

    You will get more comfortable exploring and talking about sexual desires, receive strong and focused feedback about your new writing, explore the varied and complex aspects of sexuality and desire in a fun and confidential environment, and, of course, try your hand at some explicit erotic writing!

    Previous participants have found the group to be transformative, feeling that the work they’ve done has opened up and changed not only their relationship with their erotic selves, but with many other aspects of their lives as well.

    Raw Silk – Women write their erotic
    an erotic writing retreat open to all women
    Saturday, June 20, 2009
    Continental breakfast and light lunch provided.

    Treat yourself to a day of good food, powerful writing and great community! In this AWA-method day-long writing retreat, you’ll have the opportunity to get more comfortable exploring and talking about sexual desires, celebrate the varied and complex aspects of your sexual self, and, of course, dive into some explicit erotic writing! Surprise yourself with the power of your sensual/erotic voice. You’ll end the day with a rich body of new creative writing and feedback from your peers about what’s already strong in your work.

    For each of our all-day Saturday writing retreats, we gather in the morning for coffee and some home-baked breakfast, and then write through the rest of the morning. After a break for a light lunch, we keep on diving deep into our work through the afternoon! At the end of the day, we have some conversation about revising and editing our work, and we close by four.

    All workshops are open to folks of all writing abilities: whether you write regularly, are an infrequent journaler, or used to write and would like to again, these groups are for you!

    Our workshops held in San Francisco in an accessible space, a half-block from BART and on many MUNI lines. Spaces are still available, though limited, and pre-registration is required! Cost for full 8-week workshops is $250; fee for Saturday retreats is $100. Deposits are requested to reserve your space. To register or for more information, email or visit!

    Writing Ourselves Whole’s founder and facilitator, Jen Cross, is a freelance writer whose work has been published in close to thirty anthologies and periodicals, including Nobody Passes, Visible: A Femmethology, Best Sex Writing 2008, Best Women’s Erotica 2007, and many more. Jen has facilitated writing workshops since 2002. She received her MA in Transformative Language Arts from Goddard College, and is a certified facilitator of the Amherst Writers & Artists method (, as developed by Pat Schneider).

    Founded in 2003, Writing Ourselves Whole seeks to change the world through writing. To open our hearts to ourselves and each other, so that we might live in a community of deep expressiveness and self-love, where each individual reaches his and her most complete self. We exist in the service of transforming trauma and/or struggles around sexuality into art, and creating spaces in which individuals may come to recognize the artist/writer within.

    To express our own story changes the world. Writing is both memory and possibility at once, and in moving through and with that tension, we create change.

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