Will I come and be a guest teaching artist at your school, college, or writing group?
Quite possibly. If schedules allow, that is one of my most favorite things to do.
My most popular workshop is Writing From The Body, which I've taught at several colleges, in a multi-week guest artist residency, and to ten teenagers for one wild unforgettable week.
Writing From The Body is a marriage of writing techniques and movement exercises designed to foster an environment of open creativity and experimentation. You'll leave an intensive session with a draft of an entirely new script, no matter if your workshop is an hour or five weeks. Derived from study with mentor playwrights including Constance Congdon, Eduardo Machado, Rogelio Martinez, Erik Ehn, Craig Lucas, and Cusi Cram, (who are all connected back to the great Maria Irene Fornes) Writing From The Body is a liberating way to enable the writer to get out of their critical mind to write fresh, surprising new work. It can be tailored for breaking through with first drafts, radical reconstructive rewrites, and for beginning or established writers.
Other topics I'm keen about are:
Structure of Empathy-- Born out of all this talk about "masculine vs feminine" storytelling structure, how can we as writers inhabit a structure of empathy? For our characters, their struggles, our actors, and the audience? Can it make us more nimble and exciting as writers, rather than small and limited? Can it help us write better plays?
My disability is not a your metaphor and other musings about writing inside other peoples' bodies-- As writers, we come face to face with our own prejudices, bias, and culturally ingrained stereotypes on the page. If we interrogate our assumptions, we will create more nuanced and alive characters and scenarios rather than rehashing lazy caricatures. It's not censorship. It's good writing practice. Let's find see the difference together.
With the Octavia Project, Radical Reimaginings: Science Fiction to Change the World. I create writing exercises for science fiction and fantasy world building, that explore ritual and culture in imaginary worlds as a way to think critically about our own world with new eyes (and to create a deeply rich, detailed world for your story.)
education (and a switch from first to third person):
Chana received her B.A. at Hampshire College and her M.A. with Honors from the University of Exeter in England (Playwriting.) M.F.A from Goddard College (Creative Writing). She was a writing mentor for three years with the fantastic Girls Write Now.
Chana is an active yoga teacher who received her 500 hour certification from ISHTA Yoga in NYC, under the guidance of renown yogi Alan Finger. She teaches regularly at the Brooklyn Yoga Collective in Crown Heights.