Kind

We support, encourage, and inspire writers of all genres. We’ve helped many writers establish or reestablish a productive and creative mindset, fill their pages, and learn their craft through our creative writing workshops and private coaching. We don't believe in the tough-love approach. We believe in empowering writers to explore their craft.

Supportive

We only pick leaders who lead our writing workshops with love. We hire exceptional group leaders who are adept at engaging small groups of writers. We screen them for their expertise, their diplomacy, and their belief in positive reinforcement. We believe writers need a safe space to grow.

Personal

Our creative writing workshops are never about lectures with hundreds of people. Instead, our workshops are small and geared toward individual attention. We also offer one-on-one coaching for writers working on a first draft or editing for writers with a completed manuscript.

We’re expanding to San Diego!!

We are starting up our long-running Sunday Creative Writing Workshops in Carlsbad, CA in August 2019. See our San Diego Writing Workshops

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Current Creative Writing Workshops in Los Angeles, San Diego, and Online:

Get Writing Again, an email-based  workshopEmail Course: Our 15-day email-based writing workshop for those of you who want to get back to daily writing practice. Get an email every day with a writing prompt and a coaching step to help you get back on track. Learn more
Sunday Creative Writing Workshops in Los AngelesOnline: Get words on the page in our longest-running, generative, Sunday Creative Writing Workshop, where we use writing prompts designed to teach aspects of scene writing, create new, unexpected new works, or bring creativity back into writing. Join us online any Sunday you'd like, from anywhere! Learn more
Weekly Creative Writing Workshop in San DiegoSan Diego / Carlsbad, CA: Get words on the page in our longest-running, generative, Sunday Creative Writing Workshop, where we use writing prompts designed to teach aspects of scene writing, create new, unexpected new works, or bring creativity back into writing. Come any Sunday you'd like. Learn more
Writing Retreat on San Diego / Carlsbad, CAWriting Retreat in San Diego, CA / Carlsbad: Spend a weekend near the beach getting words on the page and learning to write better scenes. Writers of all genres welcome, but we will focus on writing better scenes for fiction and memoir writers. Learn more
First Draft Incubator, a Support Group for WritersThe First Draft Incubator combines group and private coaching for a low monthly fee — an affordable and less intensive option than one-on-one Private Coaching. The group meets online twice a month, and every member gets 2 hours of private coaching per month. An excellent choice for writers who want to make slow, steady progress, need check-ins, deadlines, motivation to keep on track, or can't afford private coaching. Learn more
Creative Writing Coach, Book coIntensive, one-on-one coaching for writers who are serious about completing a draft of a fiction or nonfiction book. Get help with your story structure and scene-writing tools. Includes in person or video conference meetings and feedback on your chapters as you write them. Learn more

If you are a writer who feels discouraged, uninspired, unproductive, and unmotivated, I cannot recommend this challenge enough. Before I took the 15-day challenge I felt crippled by writer's block and disappointed in myself for my lack of productivity. But through a series of relaxing and explorative prompts, the 15-day challenge allowed me to gradually untangle my writer's block, clear my mind, and remember why I love writing. Since I finished it, I now complete a writing prompt almost every day on my own. And instead of looking at that first blank page with dread and doubt, I now see it as an adventure. This challenge will change your attitude about writing for the better and rekindle your passion for the craft. It's more than worth the money. Don't hesitate!

Kaitlyn M.

"I had taken every writing class I could find both online and in-person for over three years, yet I was still floundering around with an unwritten novel in my head. Frustrated and skeptical, I went to yet another class and met Nicole Criona - and everything changed. First Draft Incubator was different. And her one-one-one personal attention was just what I needed. With her kindness and gentle encouragement, before I knew it I had an outline. She was so generous with her ideas and so sure of my ability and our way forward that I believed her. And it worked. Three months later, I had sixty written pages with a clear idea of where I was going. Every week, she helped me hurdle stumbling blocks and climb out of writing bogs that threatened to stop me in my tracks. Now, here I am, sixteen months later with a finished first draft. It is the single biggest personal accomplishment of my life and she is the reason I got here. The joy is real! I cannot thank her enough. Nicole, you were the flashlight in my darkest forest. We did it!!"

Carrie T. - Fledgling Author, soon to be hopefully be published.

Nicole, I want to thank you for your thought provoking and active participation as the facilitator of this incredible 15-Day experience! I began this workshop with lots of apprehension which was similar to how I tackled my writing, unfortunately. But, with your energy and tenacious daily prompts and up-to-the minute feedback, I was able to defeat the writers block that I often found myself in! I’ve been writing everyday since your workshop and I’m happy to say that I have actually completed two articles that I am preparing to submit for publication! I am incredibly grateful to have had this opportunity. Thank you so much for your enthusiasm, professionalism, and mindful energy that you brought to this 15-Day challenge! I’m actually considering doing it a second time!

Deb G.

I came to this course with 20-odd pages of tired material, a clichéd main character, and no idea how to map out my novel. Despite having two decades of experience as a magazine features writer, I was stumped on how to organize and sustain compelling long form fiction. Less than six weeks later, I have a complete outline and a solid second take on several important scenes.
If you’re serious about finishing your first draft, sign up for this class. Nicole will be a generous advocate for your work. She’ll honor your personal creative process and she will ask you all the hard questions at just the right time.

D.M.

I’m new to creative writing, and the 15 Day Challenge taught me so much! The daily prompts provided a journey of self exploration, and insight into new ways of bringing a story to life. Having the on-line community was invaluable. Seeing how others handled an exercise, helped me grow even more. I feel inspired to continue writing everyday. Thank you Nicole, for a wonderful experience!!

Frances S.

Since I began working with Nicole, she's provided valuable coaching and feedback every time we've met. I came to Nicole with a few ideas scrawled into a Moleskine notebook, and six months later, I proudly printed out the first draft of my manuscript. With her guidance, I've been able to propel my story, characters, and prose to a level I could not have achieved on my own. I cannot recommend working with her highly enough!

Christian U.