Basic Info
  • Nonfiction
  • Memoir

Each of our lives is a sacred journey. Still, spiritual lessons, occurrences, and awakenings often go unnoticed in the whirlwind of everyday life or in the context of organized religion. In this class, we’ll work on discovering, mapping, and sharing our spiritual stories. We’ll generate new work in an energizing, strictly positive environment. Using prompts and in-class writing we’ll explore what we’ve learned from the people, animals, events, and problems in our lives, and how and where we’ve encountered the numinous, the divine, and, most of all, our own true, undivided selves. We’ll also spend time editing, pruning, and polishing the writing we generate. We’ll use spiritual skills such as listening to intuition and briefly dropping down into the silence beyond thought to create the best, finished writing possible. And we’ll consider the essentially spiritual nature of writing itself. Together we’ll create a small, close-knit community that fosters creativity, engenders fresh material and new ideas, and results in writing that glows from within. This class welcomes writers at all levels.

Mary Allen


Mary Allen is the author of a literary memoir, The Rooms of Heaven, published by Alfred A. Knopf and Vintage Books. Her second book-length memoir, Awake in the Dream House, was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts creative writing fellowship. She received an M.F.A. from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, and has taught in the Nonfiction Writing Program at The University of Iowa. She lives in Iowa City and is a full-time writing coach.