Announcing a New Course for Ambitious Writers of Memoir/Nonfiction

New workshop coming soon!

  • Workshop aimed at serious beginners through MFA-level writers

  • Learn the "5 Keys to Writing a Really Great Memoir"

  • in-class writing assignments to help you Kickstart Your Memoir and generate new work

Questions? Please get in touch!

Who Should Take this Workshop?

This workshop is aimed at serious beginners through more advanced writers.

But the question of who would benefit from its intensive, supportive environment is better answered another way:

BRAVE ON THE PAGE is a new version of a workshop I have been refining for a dozen years. Nearly all of my workshops have enrolled both beginning and experienced writers -- not to mention MFA grads, New York Times bestselling authors, even an alternative rock star or two.

Over that time I've come to see that students learn best in mixed-level environments, and, furthermore, those who seem to get the most out of my courses are students who are self-aware and open to change, who are excited to discover new connections in their own work.

My approach balances a rigorous review of craft, close readings of memoir greats, along with a careful and highly respectful review of student work.

Serious beginners will relish a crash course (literally) in the most important fundamentals of memoir writing. 

Meanwhile, more advanced students will  acquire new concepts they've likely missed along the way.

No matter your level of skill or experience, my primary goal is to create a safe and supportive atmosphere where you are encouraged to take creative risks in order to acquire new skills and insights.

Location:  Private Residence near downtown Santa Barbara

I Will Help You:

  • Learn the 5 Most Important Keys to crafting a great memoir
  • Dig deep and discover your most compelling voice(s)
  • Get clear about the deeper story you're trying to tell
  • Get accountable and stay connected thanks to other smart, engaged writers
  • Learn in an intimate, rigorous & highly supportive environment (9 students max)

Workshop Details

This 5-week course will be held in a convenient location in Santa Barbara, and will run 3 hours each session. 

This workshop will incorporate both in-class writing as well as in-depth critiques of student work.

We will also discuss important concepts in memoir, including the 5 keys to writing a really great memoir.

Meetings will focus on in-class exercises with lots of opportunity to generate new writing. Students will have the choice to share depending on their comfort level -- this is entirely optional.

Questions? Please email me.

Refund Policy

I accept payments thru Stripe. Simply click the YES, I WANT TO SIGN UP! button and follow registration instructions. You may also email me to arrange for personal checks. Please email me.

Full refunds are available up to one week before the workshop. If you need to withdraw for whatever reason up until our first workshop, I will refund 50% of the workshop fee. There is no refund after the first session.

Brave On The Page - Summer 2018
275.00 300.00

This summer in Santa Barbara, learn to dig deep, unleash your voice, and start the memoir you’ve always wanted to write. Runs 5 Thursdays from July 5 to August 2, 2018.

Sign Up Now!

Since 2005 I've helped dozens of writers to transform their life stories into successful work.

"Paul is an attentive and sensitive teacher who knows how to inspire his students to dig deep and write close to the bone. He asks the kinds of questions that help me see aspects of my writing I had never noticed before. He creates a safe space for writers to go deep."
Raven Wolfe, Goleta, CA, author of Attempting Flight
"Thanks for the excellent class.  It was a very good balance between writing assignments and reading material.  Your insights regarding writing style were accurate and helpful.  You gave individual attention and group suggestions in the proper amounts.  The class moved right along and you covered the material in a very professional fashion.  Your enthusiasm for the subject matter was inspiring."
--Jake Jacobson, Ojai, CA
 “As a writing teacher, Paul focuses on the inseparability of artistic depth and technical skill. His class made me better at story and structure—and as a writer who has always worked from instinct alone, this was enormously helpful…Paul has a wonderful ability to see into a writer’s dilemma and offer just the right advice for moving through it. Most important, he offers it in the right way, clearly but with a light touch. I’ve gone back to my writing career with increased confidence.” 
Susan Piver, Boston, MA, author of NYT-bestselling The Hard Questions series
“We met at University of the Arts [in Philadelphia] a number of years ago. You were the best writing teaching I have ever had…bar none (and I've had quite a few!) Just wanted to tell you that the story I wrote in your workshop is about to be published...Your way of teaching, using models of excellent writing along with thoughtful responses in a workshop setting (along with your warm and supportive personality) has proven to be the most generative approach I have ever experienced. Just wanted to let you know that."
Marsha Pincus, Philadelphia, PA, Carnegie Fellow & Philadelphia Teacher of the Year
WARNING! Paul Z is the kindest disciplinarian I've ever met, and he completely transformed my writing. Not only did he nudge me down new roads,and lead me up others, but he also showed me how to leverage every word, how to make each twist and turn count, how to "earn" the swerve away from traditional forms, how to ask more from myself on the page. (Thanks for a wonderful workshop experience with you. You really are a special teacher). "
Tasmine Mocke, MFA , New York City

“Paul’s feedback and coaching on my memoir-based essay in 2016 helped me see how I needed to get deeper into my story and the ways in which I needed to reconsider the core elements of my story. This feedback was extremely valuable for both the big-picture views and the specific direction of how I could approach a revision. I feel so much better prepared to revise this essay now, after months of letting it languish in unfinished drafts.”
Sari Boren, Boston, MA.