Creative Writing Class in Paris with Rolf Potts

This week I got to be a guest lecturer at Rolf’s creative writing class at the Paris American Academy in France. It was his third year participating in this program, and the school is in the Latin Quartier. I appreciated getting a glimpse of the life of a writing teacher in France, but by far the best part about my visit was getting to spend some time with writers devoted to their craft. I was inspired by their passion and their hunger for getting their heart’s work down on paper. And they did have spirit. The 15-some students were of a wide varitey of ages spanning from 14 – 70+. And you could tell, they loved writing. Whether newbies, or veterans with books under their belt, these students were making the most out of both the instruction, and the invaluable experience of spending a summer in Paris. And guess what, they were good. Don’t ask me why they wouldn’t be, I was just pleasantly surprised at the quality of writing I heard. I also found a hilarious story for my next humor collection, and met writers worth watching in the future.

My visit was on the last day of Rolf’s instruction. I got to sit in on a session of work-shopping stories, as well as had some speaking time to offer them some encouragement towards marketing their writing. And I must say, it was fun to be Rolf’s other half in this. We saw stories differently and the students were amused with our banter-induced feedback. Here are some pictures….I wasn’t taking them, so I’m sorry there aren’t more of the class.

Rolf and Jen listening to a studen’ts story in the workshop




Enjoying a funny passage in a story

Rolf giving us a lesson in Elvis impersonating. Worth the price of admission, and where the real tutelage begins…

Here are some links to Rolf’s Vagablogging that talk about the fun side of their summer program. And absolutely don’t miss Jeffrey Tayler’s lecture on “Making it in the travel writing world.”