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Hermit Crab Essays: Essays Housed in Strange and Unusual Forms

May 22 @ 6:30 pm - May 29 @ 8:00 pm

Hermit Crab Essays: Essays Housed in Strange and Unusual Forms

with Summer A.H. Christiansen

Date: May 22 and May 29, 2024 (weekly on Wednesdays)
Time: 6:30-8:00pm
Location: Virtual (Zoom)

Description: Don’t be fooled by how adorable the hermit crab essay sounds! This form, used in both nonfiction and fiction writing, is a term that was originally coined by Brenda Miller and Suzanne Paola in their craft book Tell It Slant: Creating, Refining, and Publishing Creative Nonfiction. It adopts an already existing form as a container, such as a list, directions, real estate listing, etc. and is often used by authors to discuss topics that might seem too difficult or too traumatic to write about.

In Week 1 of this class, we’ll become experts in the form and look at examples from different authors. We’ll start brainstorming ideas for our essays with the help of writing exercises. We will begin planning and writing our essays. In Week 2, we will look at even more examples of hermit crab essays and work with a few new writing prompts. Then, students can share their rough draft of a hermit crab essay (or even just an outline or part of it). We will provide positive feedback and end class with many tools and ideas in our toolbelt!

This class will be most suitable for nonfiction writers. Writers of all skill levels are welcome. 

Pricing and Registration: This course is open to both members and non-members. Non-member registration will open on May 1, 2024.

  • Member price: $60/person
  • Non-member price: $75/person

Scholarships: 49 Writers offers one full scholarship to every class. Click here to apply.

Refund & Cancellation Policy: If the event or class is cancelled for reasons beyond 49 Writers’s control, all fees will be refunded in full. In the event that an attendee is unable to attend for personal reasons, fees are nonrefundable.

About the Instructor: Summer A.H. Christiansen (she/they) is a queer writer, mother, and lifelong Alaskan residing on the unceded land of T’aaḵu Kwáan and A’akw Kwáan. She has her MFA in Creative Writing from the Rainier Writing Workshop. Her work has been published in Minerva Press Rising, Bell Press Anthologies, Silver Rose Magazine, Tidal Echoes, Alaska Women Speak, and Drizzle Review. You can find out more about her work at sahchristiansen.com.


May 22 @ 6:30 pm
May 29 @ 8:00 pm
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