Spring 2024 Classes

Young Writers Meetup

The following classes are currently available for enrollment.

Please note that we also teach small private classes that are not listed here.

If the offerings below do not fit your schedule, feel free to email us, and perhaps we can find a class for your young writer. 

To register, please send an email to [email protected].

Please provide:

  • The title of the course
  • Your child's name
  • Your child's age as of March 15
  • A daytime phone number for us to reach you.

Either Writing Coach Shu-Hsien Ho or Royd Hatta will respond as soon as possible.

For the safety of all, we recommend masks during our in-person sessions.

Ages 7-9

Story: Special Worlds & Silly Essays

An Online Story Workshop for Ages 7-9

Photo by Jetshoots on Unsplash

Taught by Writing Coach Royd Hatta

March 21 - May 23, 2024

Thursdays 8:30 AM - 9:30 AM Pacific Time (9 lessons)

(No Session on 4/11)

Minimum 3 students 

Maximum 8 students


3 Students: $425 per student

4-8 Students: $395 per student

(Includes lesson prep, 1:1 sessions, & detailed feedback on written assignments.)

The Special World or the Extraordinary World is that place where a hero enters a new setting with its own strange rules and laws. We experience this in real life. Sometimes, it's a fun place. Other times, like going to a new school, our hearts flutter. 

When Harry Potter first enters Hogwarts for the first time, he is filled with awe and awkwardness. But it's these pressures from bullying classmates, tough professors, and strange creatures that transform Harry from a lonely boy to one that takes control of his destiny. Special Worlds do that, and that's why we encounter them in stories and in our lives. In this class, we'll draw our own maps and send our heroes to explore them. It won't be easy for the hero, but it will be fun!

Mid-way into the semester, we'll introduce a different kind of writing - Essays. We'll write intentionally silly essays like "Why corn dogs are terrible pets." Imagination and laugh-out-loud situations will be our go-to resource, but they have to be somewhat realistic too. Throughout, we'll discover a structure to all essays, articles, and debates. We'll frame essays as something to enjoy AND a tool to think. The best ones will be chosen for our website. 

Join our course to 

  • dive deeper into our characters and see how they respond to a setting
  • discover how a setting or place can be its own character
  • draw and create Setting Maps to build new scenes
  • have fun with hilarious essays
  • see how essays help us to clarify what we really think.

To register, please contact:

[email protected]

Ages 9-12

Deep into the Lion's Lair

An In-Person Story Workshop for Ages 9-12

Taught by Writing Coach Shu-Hsien Ho

March 19 - May 21, 2024

Tuesdays 1:30 PM - 2:30 PM (9 lessons)

(No Session on 4/2)

Downtown Palo Alto CA

Hosted by Parent Roberta P.

Minimum 5 students 

Maximum 10 students


4-5 Students: $425 per student

6-10 Students: $375 per student

(Includes lesson prep, 1:1 sessions, detailed feedback on written assignments & travel fee.)

"Jules should have waited for her brother Art to catch up before she entered the dark, damp cave. But she couldn't help it - the crystal seemed to be pulling her forward and she had to obey. 

She stared at the strange diamond-shape in her hands. It was smaller than a ping pong ball, but heavy like a piece of granite. 

Now it glowed blue, purple, and green all at the same time. A warm energy radiated out, traveled up her arms and into her chest! Jules's heart thumped fast.

Was this object speaking to her, or was that her wild imagination?"

Have you ever started full blast on a story in the beginning, only to lose steam after the first chapter? Believe it or not, this is what every writer faces, including professional, published authors! 

In this workshop, we'll guide you through both the exciting beginnings as well as the messy middle of your story drafts.

Join our workshop to discover 

  • how to keep your enthusiasm
  • how to use the structure of a Story Map to build new scenes
  • how to grow your momentum for each chapter
  • how to experiment with different plot directions 

This course will focus in particular on tools and techniques for crafting scenes that build suspense, mystery, and rising conflict.

All genres are welcome.

To register, please contact:

[email protected]

Ages 10-12

The Future Past • Intermediate Fiction
An Online Story Workshop for Ages 10-12
Taught by Writing Coach Royd Hatta
March 20 - May 22, 2024 (9 lessons)
Wednesdays 8:30 AM - 9:30 AM Pacific Time
(No session on April 10th)

Minimum 5 students 
Maximum 8 students

6 Students: $405 per student
7-9 Students: $365 per student

(Includes lesson prep, 1:1 sessions, detailed feedback on written assignments)

Our theme is Time Travel where students will have a choice of writing about the past or the future.

We’ll research a particular place and community with its own set of issues. 

We'll cover foundational story elements for crafting memorable characters that make us care, weaving various sentence types to keep us engaged, and, work with our Story Map to make us worried enough to keep turning the page.

Our focus is not just to write a story, but to study the craft so that our fiction AND essays pull on the right strings in our minds, hearts, and souls. When we do, our thematic message can be internalized in all three, and like the hero, we become transformed.

Join us to learn about the most powerful magic we know–Story.

We'll write our own stories and read from a novel.

Students will

  • use character elements to craft compelling stories

  • explore core themes and embed symbols

  • do historical research and work on note-taking

  • use the WV Story Map as a framework

  • apply various Tools to keep us turning the page

  • build their writing stamina

  • To register, please contact:

    [email protected]

    Ages 11-13

    Portals into Alternate Universes
    An In-Person Fiction Writing Workshop
    for Grades 6-7-8
    Taught by Writing Coaches Shu-Hsien Ho & Royd Hatta
    March 21 – May 23, 2024 (9 lessons)
    Thursdays 11 AM-12 PM
    (No session on Apr. 11)

    Sunnyvale CA: Hosted by Parent Danielle R. in her backyard

    Minimum 5 students 
    Maximum 8 students

    6 Students: $425 per student
    10 Students: $375 per student

    (Includes lesson prep, 1:1 sessions, detailed feedback on written assignments, and travel fee.)

    What if a pink unicorn lunchbox could be a portal into an alternate universe? And what if this other world were filled with giant warrior grasshoppers who threaten to take over the planet of Nemeth?

    Imagine being pulled into this conflict because a special device has attached itself to your chest! 

    This surprising premise is the story of an action-packed, humorous novel, Finn and the Intergalactic Lunchbox by Michael Buckley. We'll read this epic tale to inspire our own story writing in this spring workshop. All genres are welcome. 

    Story Forest

    Photo by Casey Horner on Unsplash

    Our course will walk through every step of the creative process:

    • brainstorming unique, complex characters and unexpected plot twists
    • understanding the structure and the power of a compelling story
    • generating and organizing ideas
    • writing with momentum
    • revising for clarity and logic
    • editing towards a final draft

    Each student will be invited to present a reading on the last day of class.

    To register, please contact:

    [email protected]

    Ages 13-15

    A Midsummer Night's Dream

    An In-Person Literary Analysis Course for Grades 8 & 9

    (Ages 13-15)

    Taught by Writing Coach Shu-Hsien Ho

    March 27 – May 22, 2024
    (8 lessons • No session April 10th) 

    Mountain View, CA: Hosted by Parent Jenny A.

    Minimum 2 students
    Maximum 7 students

    2 Students: $530 per student
    3-7 Students: $395 per student

    (Includes lesson prep, 1:1 sessions, detailed feedback on written assignments & travel fee.)

    What happens when a playwright combines mischief and mayhem, love triangles and tangles, and twisty, comic moments throughout?
    These elements are, of course, found in A Midsummer Night's Dream.
    Audiences in both Elizabethan and modern times have reveled in William Shakespeare's popular comedy.
    This course will dive into reading, discussing, and analyzing this famous play.
    Students will share their insights in a literary analysis essay, and have the opportunity to invent their own short, alternative script as well.
    As always, we'll provide a structure and specific steps for critical thinking, organizing, and writing.

    Dalton Smith at unsplash

    To register, please contact:

    [email protected]

    Ages 13-18

    Gazing into the Frame: Movie Scripts & Film Analysis

    An Online Screenwriting Course

    for Ages 13-18 (Grades 9-12)

    Taught by Writing Coach Royd Hatta

    WEDNESDAYS 10 AM - 11 AM Pacific Time
    March 20 – May 22, 2024
    (9 lessons • via Zoom • No session April 10th) 

    Minimum 3 students
    Maximum 8 students

    3 Students: $555 per student
    4-8 Students: $475 per student
    Includes lesson prep, up to 60 minutes of 1:1 coaching, detailed feedback on written assignments.
    Films, videos, and "shorts" all have well-crafted scripts. Without the text, it falls apart. The best examples in the visual medium can be powerful AND thought-provoking.
    We'll explore the "hidden" concepts of this field and see how they can be applied to our own manuscripts. 
    Students will:
    • read several film manuscripts
    • write their own short scripts
    • watch several movies & analyze them
    • see how the Story Map works with each film

    Katherine Carlyon at unsplash

    Join us, and walk away with a first draft script!

    To register, please contact:

    [email protected]

    We look forward to working with your family!

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