Dates: February 17, 24, March 3, 17, 24, 31

Time: 12-5pm

Location: West Village, NYC

Price: $600 (see below for information on payment plans and need-based scholarships)

Registration requirements: a nonrefundable $75 deposit is required to reserve your seat. This $75 is deducted from the $600 tuition.  

To register, ask questions, etc., send an email to: 

Note: This class is capped at 12 students. For more information visit: 

Announcement: Special Scholarships for Winter/Spring 2018 Writing Our Lives Classes

Have you wanted to take a class or workshop with Vanessa Mártir but haven’t had the funds? Here’s your chance! Announcing two anonymously funded, need based scholarships for upcoming Writing Our Lives classes!

Introduction to the Personal Essay (Online Class)  

Dates: 1/31, 2/7, 21, 28, 3/14

1. Scholarship ($100) for a VONA/Voices alum who:
* Is not traditionally educated (does not have nor is pursuing an MFA)
* Has not published a book with a major publisher

2. Scholarship ($100) for a single mother who would otherwise be unable to attend the workshop.

How to apply: 

Send a letter detailing:
* which class and scholarship you are applying to,
* how you are qualified for the scholarship,
* your financial need—i.e. unemployed, underemployed, etc.
* why you think you need this class, what you expect to gain from it, and why you think you are deserving of the scholarship beyond your financial need.

Send the letter with “Writing Our Lives Scholarship” in the subject line to: (Note: First dibs on scholarships go to students who have not received a scholarship in the past.)
Interested in sponsoring a scholarship?  

I created Writing Our Lives for writers of color who come from marginalized and underserved neighborhoods like me. That sometimes means that people can’t afford to take my classes. In the past, I’ve offered a free five hour class every semester as a gift to my community and to pay it forward, along with scholarships and payment plans for classes. I am now looking for ways to subsidize tuition for even more writers. Scholarship sponsorship is one way to do this. If you are interested in sponsoring a scholarship for a writer, please reach out to me at Join me in helping more people write their stories.

New Date: FREE One Day Writing Our Lives Class in NYC on 1/27/18

When: January 27th, 12pm-5pm (NEW DATE)

Where: West Village, NYCRegistration required. Send an email to with “Free One Day Class” in the Subject Line. There is homework so register in advance to get the details, location, etc.

Because I believe in paying it forward.

Because while the studies and the statistics and the numbers play their part, they do not give face to people and meaning to their struggles. Story does. Your story. Let me give you some tools to help you write yours.

Because I created this class for us: people who come from where I come from and look like me, and often these are marginalized folks who are just making ends meet. This is my gift to you. This is me telling you that your story deserves to be out in the world too.

What: In this workshop I will provide an overview of the tools that are necessary to writing a personal narrative. My approach is to focus on the micro (the short personal essay) because you can take this into the writing of a longer piece, i.e. a memoir. In this class we will discuss craft, character and scene development, sensory writing, digging into memory, etc.

Upcoming Writing Our Lives Classes (click on title for more information): 

* Introduction to the Personal Essay – online class begins on January 31st
* The Narcissist’s Guide to the Personal Essay – in-person class begins on January 27th

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