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6-Minute Memoir with Mary Helen Stefaniak

November 12, 2022 @ 10:00 am - 1:00 pm CST


Saturdays, November 12 & 19, 10am-1pm CST, via Zoom
Instructor: Helen Stefaniak
Nonmember: $140; Member: $120; Student/Vet/Mil $75

Objective: To capture a place, a person, a moment, or even an object, a practice, or a process plucked from your personal past, and save it from oblivion by bringing it to life on the page.

Outcome: You’ll write one or more brief memoirs i.e., a nonfiction piece up to 1200 words in length that vividly presents and explores the meaning of a particular past experience. These four- to six-minute memoirs refer to how long it takes for the author to read the piece out loud and are designed to keep audiences engaged.

Class Format: Two sessions of three hours; each are designed for students to produce one “six-minute memoir.” While some writing time will be incorporated into the first class meeting, participants will need time to write between the sessions. In the second session, students will have a chance to share and receive feedback on their drafted work.

Course Materials: Stefaniak’s forthcoming collection, The Six-Minute Memoir: Fifty-Five Short Essays on Life, will be used as the course text. Workshop participants are strongly encouraged to purchase the book. Following the anticipated release date of October 25th, a link to purchase the book will be shared.

About Mary Helen Stefaniak

Mary Helen Stefaniak
’s new novel, The World of Pondside, was released by Blackstone
Publishing in April 2022. Booklist has said of the novel—a mystery set in a nursing home—that “Stefaniak infuses an often forbidding environment with joy and dignity in this Agatha Christie-esque cyber caper. Mary Helen’s first book of nonfiction, The Six-Minute Memoir: Fifty-Five Short Essays on Life, will be published by The University of Iowa Press in Fall 2022. The essays are selected from more than 20 years’ worth of monthly columns she wrote for The Iowa Source. Mary Helen Stefaniak is a writer of fiction and essays whose work has appeared in many publications, including The Iowa Review, EPOCH, The Yale Review, AGNI,  The Antioch Review, and in several anthologies. You can read more about Mary Helen and her work at https://maryhelenstefaniak.com.


November 12, 2022
10:00 am - 1:00 pm CST
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