Writing Your Life and Getting Published | Newberry

Writing Your Life and Getting Published

Led by Mary Wisniewski. Six sessions. 6 - 7:30 pm.
Tuesday, September 22, 2020
Tuesdays, September 22 - October 27

6 - 7:30 pm

Full. Email seminars@newberry.org to be added to the wait list.

As a precaution to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, the Adult Education Seminars Program’s Fall 2020 term will continue to be held virtually. Virtual seminars meet via Zoom video conference and use email and Google Drive folders to share resources and communicate with instructors and participants. For more information about the Newberry’s virtual seminars and these tools, including a Zoom tutorial, please see our Virtual Seminars FAQ page. If you have questions about online learning, please feel free to reach out to seminars@newberry.org.

For more information about the Newberry’s response to COVID-19 please visit www.newberry.org/covid19.

Seminar Description

A personal journal can be a secret record, for the author’s eyes only. But it can also be a “test kitchen” for trying out new ideas and ways of writing. This seminar will provide exercises and inspiration for those interested in developing and maintaining a creative journaling habit. Yet it will also explore how to turn personal into public writing, by exploring how to make your memories and observations universal and fit for publication. Throughout the seminar, we will also read and discuss various non-fiction works, including diaries and memoirs, by writers like David Sedaris, Joan Didion, and Frank McCourt.

Six sessions. Registration – $210

A life-long diarist, Mary Wisniewski is an editor, reporter, and award-winning writer whose work appears in the Chicago Tribune and other publications. Additionally, she is the author of Algren: A Life, the highly-praised biography of Chicago writer Nelson Algren.

Materials List


Choose one of three books, any edition:

  • Betty Smith, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.
  • George Orwell, 1984.
  • Richard Wright, Black Boy.

First Reading:

  • There is no reading assignment for the first class.

Registration Information

Online registration opens at 9 am (CDT) on Tuesday, September 1st.

Please note: Due to COVID-19, the Adult Education Seminars staff is working remotely and will be unable to process registration over the phone. For more information about registration, including a guide to online registration, see our Registration Information page. Questions? Please contact seminars program staff via email at seminars@newberry.org.

We offer a 10% discount to members, seniors, and students.

This seminar has reached capacity. Please email seminars@newberry.org to be added to the wait list.

This seminar is part of the Newberry’s Adult Education Seminars Program. Learn more about registering for a seminar, program policies, or teaching a seminar.