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"Working with Anya has forever changed my relationship to writing, pulling it from deep in my unconscious up into the light of inquiry." -- Annie Lewis

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Fiction Writer; Poet; Teacher of Creative Writing; Manuscript Consultant; Writing Coach; Founder of the Writing for Social Change: Re-Dream a Just World Workshops; Writing Workshop Leader.


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Archive for 'General Writing'

Trusting Our Own Vision, and, the Late Bloomers’ Club

  For A.M.-C.   “The bud stands for all things, even those things that don’t flower, for everything flowers, from within, of self-blessing; though sometimes it is necessary to reteach a thing its loveliness”   From Galway Kinnell, “St. Francis and the Sow”     I was a small girl in Brooklyn, between broken English [...]

Writing and the New Year: A request for writers.

Dear Writers and Friends,   Almost 2013!   I have a request, for you and for myself, for the new year. We have plenty of other work for our imagination to do, and so—let’s free it from that need to imagine we are writers, and write with an imagination freed to do its enormous labor [...]

Unrevised response to January 8th in Arizona

Dear Writers, I was writing about a photo (the link to the photo is at the bottom) that inevitably linked for me to current events: —————————————————————————————————- Child Riding Water Buffalo in Siam 1928:  Questions about the whole picture Anya Achtenberg on Monday, January 10, 2011 You are riding the horns of the moon, quite at [...]

Online Classes Start January 11. Claiming Our Stories: Autobiography and Autobiographical Fiction, at

Dear Writers, Looking for a place to push your work to the next step? Do it online with me and a group of varied and dedicated writers, at I will again be teaching 2 classes online for on the net, beginning Jan. 11, 2011:  Claiming Our Stories: Working with the Power of Autobiography and [...]

Writing and hard times; choices and blessings

Dear Friends, This is a quick note, about money and writing and what moves to the center of things. Times are hard, no? economically as well as in many ways. And, somehow, more and more writers are finding their way to me, as clients working with me individually, as participants in online classes. It surprises [...]

Classes online; workshop this summer; facebook?

June 13, 2010 Just a quick announcement to let you know that I will again be teaching online for on the net, session  for Part One beginning June 15, 2010, and session for Part Two beginning June 22nd, 2010:  Claiming Our Stories: Working with the Power of Autobiography and Autobiographical Fiction. Part One and Part [...]

Story classes beginning in Minneapolis, October 7! Writers and Artists Trip to Cuba in January.

Dear Writers, I want to let people know that the story class I announced previously at this site will be starting this Wednesday, October 7. I am very excited about these classes. I taught these story classes, and developed an extensive series of these classes, throughout New Mexico. Stunning writing came forward. And there are, some years [...]

Dead white English writer, and your sense of time and story structure.

December 7, 2008   Dear Writers,   I have a confession. I am in love with a dead white English guy, a writer. If it isn’t love, at least it is a shock of recognition, a wave of gratitude at being seen, the kind of amazement when someone brings something into words that illuminates, or [...]

Story, and the Republican National Convention and Minnesota Nice and East Africans in the Twin Cities and Blood Diamonds,

or, The Blood Diamond of Story. Perhaps the wonderful thing about story, about writing, is the chance to reframe everything. The free field of language which in its spiderwebbing way leads us to more truth, hidden truth, forgotten truth, truth which has been obscured and deformed.   Reframing everything. Putting everything back in context.   [...]

How can we know the writer from the dancer?

January 30, 2008  I am thinking that every act is a creative act. Only some creative acts provide an opening into something vital; other creative acts provide duplication, follow the path of habit, add to repetition, create walls – solidity – separation from the vital and the as yet unborn. And some acts, of course, create [...]