Learn the Craft of

Make this the year you finally write! Dust off that manuscript that has been sitting in a drawer, get a fresh new notebook, turn on some music, find yourself a little inspiration and begin. Sometimes the writing life is lonely. Join our community and learn what makes a short story tick, how to get your novel noticed by editors and agents, the basic arc of storytelling, learn to write poetry that sings off the page. 


Our Upcoming Workshops

Who We Are

We’re an independent institute of Creative Writing based out of San Francisco. Founded in 2015, we offer writing workshops in several genres to writers of all experience levels from all walks of life.

We encourage people to share their work and connect with peers and mentors. Our instructors are published working writers in their genre, professors, editors and master teachers.

Our Philosophy

As beginners and seasoned pros, we all face the blank page the same way. Many people have said that writing is based on talent and that it can’t be taught. We can and do teach people to write from all walks of life. We believe that everyone has innate talent. And that even talent needs cultivation. We see ourselves as partners in learning with our students. 

Our instructors, in addition to being experienced professional editors and professors, are all working artists who remember what it’s like to be a beginner. We love teaching writing. It makes us come alive.  

The student of Creative Writing will get an opportunity to write meaningful pieces in a vibrant community with an open exchange of ideas like this one.  
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Our Teachers

Nick Mamatas​

The author of ten novels, over one hundred short stories, and dozens of essays and articles. Award-winning editor from Viz Media.


Hollie Hardy​

An English Professor & Lecturer at Berkeley City College. Winner of the San Francisco State University Poetry Center Book Award.  A seasoned teacher and literary organizer.


Tongo Eisen-Martin

An author with a book of poetry out on City Lights Press. Winner of the American Book Award, California Book Award. Currently a Poet in residence at Cambridge University. 

Our Founder

Alexandra Kostoulas

Alexandra Kostoulas founded the SF Creative Writing Institute in 2015 because she was looking for a nurturing environment for emerging writers to belong to and realized she had to build one. In 2012 she began teaching Jack Grapes’ Method Writing Program based on the work of one of her mentors and the community kind of evolved from there.

When she was a young girl, she had the good fortune of stumbling into a writing workshop that changed her life. And throughout her life she kept writing and eventually majored in it at UC Santa Barbara, graduating with a BA in Literature and went on to get an MFA in English & Creative Writing from Mills College. Before teaching creative writing, she taught English Literature, ESL, and Composition for a decade at local colleges and universities in the Bay Area and met many amazing and dedicated students along the way.

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Writing Community

Our Teachers have taught at these Universities

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