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From the time we’re small, we’re all taught how to see and think.  Advanced study will teach you how to look at scholarly work as a pattern that can be taken apart and studied. While being able to know what we think about the things we read and see are obviously critical, the more dedicated we are to the mind, the less connected we become to ourselves. In my writing class, I am going to teach you what school never did: how to feel. 

In Writing Complex Emotions, we are going to learn how to feel our somatic sensations; to identify the splashes and pulses trapped beneath years of avoidance and academic discourse, and learn how to capture their textures on the page. 

Whether you’re a literary wonder like George Saunders or a beginner, understanding emotions aren’t enough. You must feel them. Let me show you how.

This is a 4-hour workshop, split into two sessions. I am charging just $50 for this first two-session workshop. If it goes well, I will move the price to $100. So, if this interests you and you want in on the cheap price, please sign up now! 

Email amanda@amandastern.com with the subject line EMOTION.

Payment via Venmo, Paypal or Zelle.

THIS CLASS MEETS VIA ZOOM on MAY 16th and 17th from 10 am-12 pm. You will get a private Zoom link the day before the workshop.


Feelings are hard to describe, much less write. Most writers rely purely on the physical to get their emotional point across. To indicate loss to the reader, the writer might rely on subtext, and by doing so they write about things on the surface: a bereft father catches sight of a man swinging his young daughter around on the beach. We understand and feel the gulf between what one man has lost and the other takes for granted. The more details we provide about both of these men and their daughters, the more we will feel because these details will signal the weight of absence. Often, in literature, what’s seen represents what’s not there. 

Writing emotion through staging and subtext works to elicit the appropriate feeling in your reader, but sometimes that isn’t enough. What if your aim is to offer readers articulation for the unsayable? Instead of nodding toward the gulf, how do we describe what the gulf feels like inside our bodies? 

In this class, I will take you through methods that will teach you to identify and write all possible emotions. You will learn how to drop inside your body for exploration, pulling the somatic sensations into your throat and onto the page. I will also teach you how to create emotion in the atmosphere. At the end of this class, you’ll have learned how to elevate not only your prose but your communication skills.



  1. Lisa Holcomb Avatar

    Is this a class that you will be offering again?

    1. Amanda Stern Avatar
      Amanda Stern

      Hi Lisa,
      Yes! I’m putting one together for February. If you sign up for the mailing list you’ll get a notification about it. I hope the timing will work for you! Amanda

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