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TELLING A STORY OF YOUR LIFE: A Personal Essay Workshop with Kendra Allen

July 6, 2023 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm CDT


Thursdays, July 6, 13, 20, 27 & Aug 3, 10, 6:30-8:30pm CST, Hybrid: Via Zoom or in person.
Instructor: Kendra Allen
Nonmember: $150; Member: $130; Student/Vet/Mil $75



Class Full

To add your name to the waiting list, email joshua@geminiink.org.


In the span of every life are countless moments, stories, and revelations. When writing a personal narrative, how do writers select what will most speak their truth and resonate with readers?


In this 6-week course, we’ll focus on demystifying the personal narrative process by figuring out what’s a snapshot and what’s a story. Writing is hard, and writing about yourself is sometimes even harder. Most times, we typically assume we have to state our entire lives in one piece, so even the thought of putting pen to page becomes intimidating. This workshop will explore how to pinpoint storylines within ourselves by simply leaning into who you naturally are, how you naturally sound, and what you naturally gravitate to, as a writer. Through games, prompts, and other exercises, we’ll focus on generating work every week, searching for our many truths, and coming out on the other side with sentences that start with words like “I” and “My.” This course is open to adult writers of all skill levels.  

Workshop participants will leave with the following:

  • A starting point for a personal essay
  • An understanding of how to differentiate between a situation and a story
  • Techniques for nurturing your voice on the page
  • Ideas on how to create prompts for yourself to generate material

Read Kendra’s Writer’s Desk here!

An award-winning essayist and poet, Kendra Allen was born and raised in Dallas, TX. She loves laughing, leaving, and writing Make Love in My Car, a music column for Southwest Review. Some of her other work can be found in The Paris Review, High Times, The Rumpus, and more. She’s the author of the New York Times lauded poetry collection The Collection Plate (Harper Collins 2022) and essay collection When You Learn the Alphabet, which won the 2018 Iowa Prize for Literary Nonfiction. Fruit Punch (Ecco 2022), her memoir, is out now and receiving praise from all corners. Jaquira Díaz, author of Ordinary Girls, states: A stunning and original memoir about Black girlhood and coming of age. Allen is both a storyteller and poet, observing the world with curiosity and humor. Fruit Punch is simultaneously brilliant cultural commentary and an intimate portrayal of family and community, and it will stay with me for a long, long time.”

Parking at Gemini Ink

Gemini Ink offers free parking along the back wall of our downtown offices. Please access this parking lot from Augusta St and first park in any of the 12 spots along the back wall. Only when these 12 spots are full do we ask that you park elsewhere in our lot. We now rent our offices from UTSA and are collaborating with them to create a secure and accessible parking lot for our community of writers and readers.


July 6, 2023
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm CDT
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Gemini Ink
1111 Navarro St
San Antonio, TX 78205 United States


Mandy Lynn Lara