Writers’ Intensive Online

Announcing the 25th Annual Writing and Story Intensive

To Meet These Times

with Deena Metzger

 May 25 – May 31, 2024 via Zoom



Writing provides a lens and a focus to help us face the most difficult times. The forms and directions of the Literature of Restoration deepen our work and serve our souls as well as our communities. It has proven itself essential in guiding us with its emphasis on beauty, wisdom, the voices of the natural world and the vocabulary of dreams and by opening to the real presence of the spirits and ancestors. Even as it is our task to reimagine a future for ourselves, each other, and all beings, it is the writer’s responsibility to understand the times and carry the values that can meet them.

This session we will meet on zoom again. This format allows those who can’t travel to Topanga to join us even as we meet without the gift of the presence of the land and each other.
It is a good time to register, some have already done so. I expect we will fill very soon. A letter with more details and instructions for preparation will come to those who have registered.

Entering The Work.

In these most difficult times when so much is at stake, writers are called to find the words that can help to sustain, save, vision what matters. This intensive is envisioned as a circle, a small group of women and men gathered to devote themselves to in all the different forms and ways that present themselves.The work is difficult, arduous, often risky, engaging, beautiful and thrilling.
Many beautiful and profound works and explorations have been launched through these intensives in the last 24 years. Many writers have emerged and many have been transformed, their lives, deepened and made soulful by this intense, often luminous, writing experience augmented by community and solitude.
This Intensive provides an opportunity to begin, as well as to enter more deeply, into a manuscript. It calls us to find our own true voices, to break open the forms, to explore hidden realms, to devote ourselves to the stories and manuscripts that are calling to us. It is an opportunity to experiment and dare. This intensive honors the stories that must be told whether one is beginning the exploration or has delved deeply into a manuscript. What is called for is courage, devotion and commitment to bringing the story to the page.
Canyon Pic

Imagination and The Future:

Many participants will be experienced, even published writers, looking for inspiration, looking to deepen, looking for direction or support for new or on-going work. Some of you may be developing writers beginning a project. We expect everyone to be committed to the work.
For every writer, the imagination can be a real place. The real life and our future reside there. When we enter this sphere, the writing experience calls self and other(s) into dynamic relationships on the page. This writing can be like a council that holds all the voices, including our ancestors and descendants, the visible and invisibles and the beings of the natural world, as cohorts. It develops from the intrigue that we can each imagine and enter a new literature that looks to and helps create a vibrant and beautiful future.
Story Carriers, writers and artists living in these times of grief and possibility are called to imagine and commit to a new literature and a new culture so that the lives of the humans and non-humans and the earth itself will be vital again. Our words can destroy or restore. What we write matters. Together and as individuals, we will seek out new forms resonant with the land and these times to engage with the world, the future and the spirits. The Literature of Restoration shows the way.
On behalf of our writing and the word, we will engage storytelling, dream telling, ethical reflection, prayer, meditation, silence, divination, indigenous and wisdom traditions and the voices of both the visible and invisible presences, on behalf of a vital and sustainable future for all beings.
In this week we will address the issues that must be addressed, explore our lives, souls, minds, and creative work through formal and informal teaching, directed and spontaneous writing, circle work and individual sessions, solitude, visioning, ritual and ceremony as appropriate.


The fee for the Intensive is based on a sliding scale for tuition. A deposit reserves a space once the application process is completed. Payment plans are possible under special conditions. Please contact Jude Weber for more information.
If you have not worked with Deena before, please apply by sending a letter of intention with up to ten pages, double spaced, of current work and a description, if possible, of your current project. It might also include some of your dreams, background and interests to Jude Weber and Deena Metzger.


To familiarize yourself with Deena’s work and concerns read the pieces posted on her website, her blog Ruin and Beauty and her most recent writing: La Vieja, A Rain of Night Birds, the award-winning novel La Negra y Blanca; the novel Feral; Entering the Ghost River: Meditations on the Theory and Practice of Healing; Ruin and Beauty: New and Selected Poems; The Other Hand; Doors: A Fiction for Jazz Horn; Writing For Your Life; Tree: Essays and Pieces and Intimate Nature: The Bond Between Women and Animals.


By application only – For information on fees or to apply please contact Jude Weber at 310.985.3740 or email.