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The Inventive Female Voice

  • Iowa Writers' House 332 East Davenport Street Iowa City, IA, 52245 United States (map)

When: Friday, November 16th, 6:00pm-7:30pm

Saturday, November 17th, 9:30am-3:30pm (Lunch break at noon)

Sunday, November 18th, 9:30am-3:30pm (Lunch break at noon)

Where:  Iowa Writers' House, 332 East Davenport St

Cost: $265


Women have produced some of the most inventive writing of the last century. This class will take its cues from writers such as Virginia Woolf, and Gertrude Stein—both of whom boldly subverted traditional sentence structure, logic, and narrative to create forms that rang true to their experience of the world. We’ll touch base with Gloria Anzaldua and Theresa Cha, hybrid writers who crafted fierce political and personal tomes out of the everyday scraps: recipes, worksheets, songs, photographs, and letters to government officials. Our questions: How can women find a frame that fits our unruly experiences of self and body? How do we milk the interruptions, the stolen moments common to our experience as writers? How can we begin to make and break our own rules? This class will be multi-genre, and generative, though time will be allotted to workshop pre-existing pieces. This class welcomes writers of all levels, those who already experiment to those who want to play, explore, and invent.


Jennifer Colville headshot.jpg

Jennifer Colville holds an M.F.A. from Syracuse University and a Ph.D. in English and Creative Writing from The University of Utah. Her stories have appeared in The Literary Review, the Mississippi ReviewThe Iowa Review, and on the Huffington Post. A collection of short stories,Elegies for Uncanny Girls, was published by Indiana University Press in 2017. She is the founding editor of PromptPress, a journal for the interplay of visual art and writing. Jennifer has taught at The University of Iowa, San Francisco State, the University of San Francisco, and Coe College. She now co-organizes the Free Generative Writing Workshops in Iowa City.


“Woman must put herself into the text — as into the world and into history — by her own movement.” (Hélène Cixous)


Everyone has a story to tell. If you are financially unable to attend this workshop, scholarships are available through our generous partners and donors. Apply here:


Helping another person attend a workshop is helping them achieve their dreams. Thank you for making our world a better place.


All course information is sent to participants upon registering including confirmation of workshop times, location, and materials. Our workshop cancellation policy can be found here: