Posted on

September Classes and Events

Like it or not, autumn is creeping closer and closer – the sky is getting cloudier, the temperature is dropping, the leaves will soon be changing color. Not too far from now, yellow school buses will line the streets and you’ll be trading sandals for hardier footwear! Here at Writers & Books, we love the fall – the weather is pretty perfect for curling up with a good book and a warm cup of tea. So we’ve organized a whole host of September creative classes and events to help you start your fall off right!


  • Intermediate/Advanced Short Fiction Workshop with Matt Kotula (September 8 – October 20)
  •  2000 Word Club with Len Messineo (September 8 – November 3)
  • Intuitive Writing: Using Writing as a Tool for Self Discovery, Expression, and Actualization with Tobie Hewitt (September 8 – September 29)
  • The Great Tragedies of Shakespeare with Alfred Geier (September 9 – November 11)
  • Great Love and Great Suffering: Writing Your Spiritual Autobiography with Leah Ruekberg (September 11 – October 23)
  • Introduction to Poetry with Jess Cayer (September 11 – October 30)
  • The Story in You! Harnessing the Power of Myth and Storytelling with Almeta Whitis (September 13 – November 22)
  • Writing Aerobics with Charlie Cote (September 13)
  • The Day Poem with Karen VanMeenen (September 13)
  • Writing & Editing for Clarity with Arseniy Gutnik (September 13)
  • Teen Writers’ Circle with Wendy Low (September 13 – December 6)
  • Online Workshop: Beginner Fiction with Caedra Scott-Flaherty (September 14 – October 19)
  • Reading Robert Frost with David Sanders (September 15 – October 6)
  • Getting Started as a Freelance Writer with Ruth Thaler-Carter (September 15)
  • From Story Listening to Story Telling: Fiction Writing for Helping Professionals with David Seaburn (September 16 – September 30)
  • Time to Write with Wendy Low (September 17 – November 19)
  • Exploring Oulipo Poetry with Donna Marbach (September 17 – October 22)
  • Reading the Roaring Twenties with Rylie Day (September 18 – November 6)
  • Writing Aerobics with Tobie Hewitt (September 20)
  • Walking on Art, Sowing, Gleaning with Kitty Jospe (September 27)
  • Fall Fantasy Writing with Donna Marbach (September 27)
  • Intermediate/Advanced Poetry with Charlie Cote (September 29 – November 10)
  • Reading as Preparation for Writing and Life with Ruth Scott (September 30)


  • Double Book Release featuring Melissa Balmain and Stephen Schottenfeld (September 5)
  • Genesee Reading Series with Selena Cochran and M J Iuppa (September 9)
  • The Crisis in Our Schools Series – A Discussion with Diane Ravitch (September 10)
  • Bertrand Russell Forum – Phil Ebersole on Daedalus and Icarus: J.B.S Haldane and Bertrand Russell on Science, the Future, and the Future of Science (September 11)
  • Fringe Festival: Are You Able? (September 19)
  • Fringe Festival: G.K.C. A Night of Mystery (September 19, 20, 27)
  • Fringe Festival: Magic Words! Magic Rain! (September 20)
  • Fringe Festival: Wait for It! Improv for Kids and Teens (September 20)
  • Fringe Festival: Dead Metaphor Cabaret – Reviving Ovid’s Metamorphosis (September 20)
  • Fringe Festival: The Lonely Ones (September 20, 25)
  • Fringe Festival: Coffee with God (September 20, 21, 23)
  • Fringe Festival: Conversations (September 21)
  • Fringe Festival: One Breath, Then Another – An Interactive Yoga Show (September 21)
  • Fringe Festival: Rochester Playwrights II: New Plays and Old Songs of Rochester (September 21, 24, 27)
  • Fringe Festival: The Boy Who Came Back and Other Supernatural Stories from Western New York (September 21, 24)
  • Fringe Festival: The 24-Hour Plays (September 22)
  • The Crisis in Our Schools Series – Common Core and Issues of Testing and Curriculum: A Mock Trial (September 23)
  • History Reading Group: The Reign of Terror (September 25)
  • Fringe Festival: The Importance of Being Earnest (September 25, 26, 27)
  • Fringe Festival: Brendan (September 26)
  • Fringe Festival: Heart and Soul – Medicine and Life (September 27)
  • Fringe Festival: Words on Walls (September 27)

Don’t see what you’re looking for? Don’t worry – we’ve got plenty of other classes and events beginning in October, November, and December! Please call the front desk at 473-2590 x107 with any questions or concerns! Happy Fall!

Posted on 1 Comment

The Crisis in Our Schools Community Collaboration

Announcing A Community Read of Diane Ravitch’s Reign of Error 

A Community-Wide Discussion of Issues in Public Education in our Community

Coming Up:

Screen Shot 2014-11-25 at 1.53.49 PM


Writers & Books is pleased to announce an important community wide program, THE CRISIS IN OUR SCHOOLS: IS THERE A FUTURE FOR PUBLIC EDUCATION?, which will take place this fall in settings throughout our community.

Public education in our community and the nation faces enormous challenges. Through a community read of Diane Ravitch’s Reign of Error, we intend to initiate discussion, involving all sides of the political and educational spectrum, about those challenges, and potential solutions.

Diane Ravitch, former Assistant Secretary of Education under President George H.W. Bush, will kick off a series of forums with a keynote presentation on September 10th.  Our aim is to use the forums to both inform a wide spectrum of our community about current educational issues and motivate them to become more involved in shaping the future of public education in the greater Rochester area.

When & Where: Community Discussion Forum Events: 

  • A Discussion with Diane Ravitch: Appearing via Skype — 7 p.m., September 10, East High School Auditorium
  • The Common Core: Is it Good for Public Schools: A Moot Court Trial — 7 p.m., September 23, East High School Forum Room
  • Teacher Tenure: Good or Bad for Education? — 7 p.m., October 8, RCSD Board of Education Office. Sponsored by RCSD Board of Education
  • How do US Schools and Students Stack up Against Nations around the world? —7 p.m., October 22, Gates Library
  • Why Would Anybody Want to be a Teacher Today? — 7 p.m., November 5, Nazareth College Otto Shults Forum
  • Would a Metropolitan School District be Good for Monroe County— 7 p.m., November 19, Third Presbyterian Church.
  • What is the Role of the Community in Providing Early Childhood Learning? — 2 p.m., November 23, Kate Gleason Auditorium, Central Library.
  • What Makes a Good School? — 7 p.m., December 3, Bausch Auditorium, RMSC

All Events are Free and Open to the Public!

Intended Audience:

These important community discussions are open to the public and are intended to attract the widest possible audience to the forums, including: parents, students, teachers, administrators, business leaders, elected officials, the media, and anyone else with an interest in the future of our schools.

About Diane Ravitch:

Diane Ravitch is Research Professor of Education at New York University and a historian of education. From 1991 to 1993, she was Assistant Secretary of Education and Counselor to Secretary of Education Lamar Alexander in the administration of President George H.W. Bush. She was responsible for the Office of Educational Research and Improvement in the U.S. Department of Education. As Assistant Secretary, she led the federal effort to promote the creation of voluntary state and national academic standards.

From 1997 to 2004, she was a member of the National Assessment Governing Board, which oversees the National Assessment of Educational Progress, the federal testing program. She was appointed by the Clinton administration’s Secretary of Education Richard Riley in 1997 and reappointed by him in 2001. From 1995 until 2005, she held the Brown Chair in Education Studies at the Brookings Institution and edited Brookings Papers on Education Policy. Before entering government service, she was Adjunct Professor of History and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University.

Community Partners:

The Crisis in our Schools community partners: The Alliance for Quality Education; The Coalition for Justice in Education; Frontier Center for Urban Education at Nazareth College; Roberts Wesleyan College Department of Teacher Education; The Rochester Area Community Foundation; The Rochester Public Library; The RCSD Board of Education; The Rochester Teachers Union;The Warner School of Education at the University of Rochester; Writers & Books

More information on specified event dates to follow. For more details on the Crisis in Our Schools program, contact Lindsey Buck at or click here.

Posted on 1 Comment

“If All of Rochester…” 2015 Pick

Writers & Books is thrilled to announce our 2015 If All of Rochester Reads the Same Book, The Ages of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker. Walker will be in Rochester doing readings, book signings and appearances at local libraries and colleges March 18- 20, 2015


Book Description: On a seemingly ordinary Saturday in a California suburb, Julia and her family awake to discover, along with the rest of the world, that the rotation of the earth has suddenly begun to slow. The days and nights grow longer and longer, gravity is affected, the environment is thrown into disarray. Yet as she struggles to navigate an ever-shifting landscape, Julia is also coping with the normal disasters of everyday life – the fissures in her parents’ marriage, the loss of old friends, the hopeful anguish of first love, the bizarre behavior of her grandfather who, convinced of a government conspiracy, spends his days obsessively cataloging his possessions. As Julia adjusts to the new normal, the slowing inexorably continues.  (Taken from

About the Author: Karen Thompson Walker was born and raised in San Diego, California, where TheAges of Miracles is set.  She studied English and creative writing at UCLA, where she wrote for the UCLA Daily Burn. After college, she worked as a newspaper reporter in the San Diego area before moving to New York City to attend the Columbia University MFA program. A former book editor at Simon & Schuster, she wrote The Age of Miracles in the mornings before work –  sometimes while riding the subway.  She is the recipient of the 2011 Sirenland Fellowship as well as a Bomb Magazine fiction prize. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband.

For more information on the If All of Rochester Reads the Same Book program, please contact coordinator of “If All of Rochester Read the Same Book” Karen vanMeenen at

Click here for more resources for 2015 “If All of Rochester Reads the Same Book” 

Presenting Sponsor:


Posted on

SummerWrite 2014

It’s hard to believe, but we’re only five days away from the start of our awesome summer youth camp, SummerWrite! Every summer, Writers & Books offers half day and full day workshops for creative young readers and writers. Our programs support the basic reading and writing skills students learn in school, but they also reach further, tapping into creativity and inspiration as young people learn to discover their own passions and develop their own voices.

You can view the whole catalog here and find classes by week or by age. SummerWrite 2014 has 9 weeks, beginning on June 30 and ending on August 29. We hope to see you there! Questions? Concerns? Feel free to direct them to Sally Bittner Bonn, Director of Youth Education at 473-2590 x109 or