The 90-Day Memoir is a Live-on-Zoom workshop with Alan Watt that will take you from initial idea to the completion of your memoir's first draft in 90 days.
WHEN: Thursdays, 11:00 am - 12:30 pm (PST) beginning March 18th
WHERE: Live on Zoom with Alan Watt
CLAIMING A COHERENT NARRATIVE FOR YOUR LIFE
The purpose of memoir is to create a coherent narrative that leads to a transformative experience for your protagonist: You.
We all have the story that we tell ourselves, and although the facts may be indisputable, our interpretation of them is subjective. In other words, our idea of our story is never the whole story...
...so, how on earth can we write our memoir if we don’t know the whole story?
You're going to trust your subconscious. Your subconscious is the seat of your genius. It's able to make connections and uncover meaning in areas that you might never have explored. Your subconscious is not interested in protecting your ego. It wants the truth.
The most impactful memoirs often transcend the author's personal struggle, and by reframing it, lead us to a transformational experience that is universally relatable.
"I went $64,000 in debt for my MFA in creative writing. After taking this workshop, I wonder why. This is a great class!"
Frank B. Wilderson III, Winner of The American Book Award for his memoir Incognegro
We meet once a week in a LIVE Zoom call on Thursdays from 11:00 am - 12:30 pm Pacific Time, for 14 straight weeks, followed immediately by a live Q&A to answer any questions that emerge.
The workshop is a combination of craft lessons and stream-of-consciousness writing exercises where writers read their work and I work with a number of writers one-on-one to illustrate the principles.
Each Zoom workshop is recorded. You will receive a link to rewatch the workshop as often as you wish for up to three weeks.
Every morning a daily letter lands in your inbox.
The letters were developed over the course of several years, and are a guide through the process of creating a compelling narrative.
Writers often comment on the synchronicity of the letters - on how they seem to meet you right where you are. While the letters focus on craft, they are also a response to the seemingly uncanny uniformity of experience shared by the many writers who have taken the 90-day journey before you.
The 90-Day Memoirists are a tribe, and the group forum is where we meet each day to share our daily experiences and hold ourselves accountable to our daily page count.
Over the course of 90 days we discover that we're not alone - the ups and downs that caused us to question whether or not we were really a writer, are, in fact, par for the course.
It's liberating to realize that our private struggles are universal, and that they often provide direct clues into the world of our characters.
During the first month of the workshop, in the outlining phase, I offer one-on-one story consultations where you can send me your three-page outline and I review it, make notes, and go over it with you in a one-hour consult to explore the most dynamic and compelling way to tell your story before you begin your first draft. There is an additional cost for this service.
“I feared it would be a gung-ho course where I would be bullied into adopting certain rules — it was quite the opposite — a place where I could go and learn to trust my deepest subconscious to come up with the goods. I delivered [my] book on time, it’s selling well, CAA has picked it up — none of this would have happened with such speed and ease without Al. Take the course!”
Lucinda Clare, Bestselling author of An English Psychic in Hollywood
"What was impossible to accomplish in ten years becomes possible in 90 days."
“I already had an MFA and I teach and direct a college creative writing program, but I really didn’t have an organic understanding of story. Al’s ability to merge intuition and structure is unique and invaluable. I was able to work through my outline-phobia because of the way he approached structure as a holistic approach, rather than a rigid box. Al encourages the writer to live within the questions of the story, not the answers.”
Laraine Herring, Author of Gathering Lights, Winner of the Barbara Deming Award for Women
Fourteen 90-min workshops (Thursdays 11am PST)
Live Q & A following each session
Playback access of all workshops
90 daily letters
Daily writing prompts
Group forum to stay connected
One-on-one story consultation
When - Thursdays 11-12:30 PST
Where - Live-on-Zoom
Length - 14 Sessions
There are no prerequisites to join. You will find New York Times bestselling authors writing shoulder to shoulder with first-time writers. I’m teaching a process of getting the story from your imagination to the page. Start where you are.
We offer 100% refund in the first 7 days of the workshop if you need to drop out for any reason. There can be no postponements for future workshops.
Yes, there is homework. Outlining and writing a first draft is a big undertaking. I recommend that you devote two hours a day to the workshop. If you have a busy schedule, that may not be possible, in which case, you may want to temper your expectations, but that should not discourage you from jumping into the class. It is more important that you approach this workshop as a daily or near-daily practice, even if you can only devote a little time each day than it is to cram all of your work in on weekends.
When we commit to this process, the results are often beyond our imagination … we just don’t know what they will be. This workshop is going to guide you through your protagonist’s journey, and you will likely be transformed as a result. The only thing I can promise is that if you show up and put in the time, you will have a first draft in 90 days.
I offer up to two full scholarships each semester for military veterans and for stories of cultural diversity. To apply, please submit a brief bio and a synopsis of up to 300 words describing your story to firstname.lastname@example.org. Selected recipients will be notified 10 days prior to the start of the workshop.
All workshops are recorded and available for up to three weeks, so you can watch them at any time and as often as you wish.
Yes, it probably will. While the objective of the workshop is to complete a first draft in 90 days, the goal of the workshop is to deepen your relationship to your creative spirit, and we cannot do this without creating an environment where each writer feels respected and honored, and where their story is valid. I try to be encouraging, positive, passionate, deep, thoughtful, intuitive, and extremely curious about the story you’re attempting to express. I won’t impose my ideas onto your work, but rather, through inquiry, guide you to the heart of what you’re attempting to express. This process will almost inevitably bring up doubts and fears, but that is an inevitable part of the journey. The workshop will guide you through the emotional ups and downs through the daily letters and support in the group forum and from myself as your instructor.
I offer this workshop twice a year, once in the winter and once in the summer. If you can’t make this one, stay tuned for future dates.
Workshops take place on Thursdays from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. (Pacific Time). I’m always on the Zoom call at 10:45 a.m. to welcome writers and answer questions before class. I also do a Q & A immediately following each workshop.
The 90-Day Memoir class size is not limited. In writing your first draft, you do not read your work-in-progress to the class, however, you are encouraged to read your writing exercises so I can work with you one-on-one to illustrate the principles to everyone. Also, while you are encouraged to share your work, it is not required. Once you have completed your first draft, you are invited to take The 90-Day Rewrite workshop, which is limited to four writers and you read your work each week.
If one or more of the following apply, you belong here.
* I’ve always wanted to write a memoir.
* I’ve tried in the past and gotten stuck or blocked.
* I love to write, but I’m scared I’ll do it wrong.
* Someone once told me my writing sucks…but I really want to write.
Alan is known as the Writer Whisperer. He's an L.A. Times Bestselling novelist and has won a number of awards for his writing including France’s Prix Printemps (Best Foreign Novel), the American Library Assoc.’s Alex Award, and Barnes and Noble’s Discover Great New Writers.
He has been a New York Times New and Noteworthy book recipient and a BookSense pick.
"Al Watt’s marvelous courses have helped me in every aspect of writing. When you’re thoroughly confused by plot advice and character how-to’s, drop it all and run fast to lawriterslab.com. From in-person to telecourses, you’ll find something to clear the way to your novel, screenplay, play, memoir . . . whatever is your path, you’ll have a guide.”
Guinotte Wise, Winner of the H. Palmer Hall Award; Nominated for several Pushcart Prizes
The story lives within you.
I help you find it.