Tuesday, January 13, 2015


I'm Stewart Kirby, and I'd like you to tell some lies.

Sign up for my Creative Writing class at the College of the Redwoods Garberville Instructional Site this Spring and write the story you've always dreamed. .

This community education course is open to all levels of writing and will focus on developing story-writing muscles by jumping in and getting started. The closest thing to a textbook will be the second half of Stephen King's ON WRITING, the gist of which being: Write a few pages every day, setting aside consistent time and space to enter that form of self-hypnosis which allows the writer to record characters attempting to resolve conflict.

No previous work necessary. This class focuses on starting and ending one or more stories. The purpose of the forum is to legitimize the time required to show events with setting, conflict and resolution, or some intriguing facsimile thereof, for a duration of eight weeks. Write one long story, or a story each week, or a combination, and share it with an audience.

If you're looking for writing motivation, and a group to give some feedback, sign up and get hacking.

Working on a story every day, always keep the flashlight just a little bit ahead. Planning too much either bottlenecks the flow and seizes up the process, or the process grinds laboriously out...and reads that way.

I think the best way to prepare for a story is to know your world, first of all. You have to have something to say. The atmosphere of your work needs to reflect your ethos. Every story you write is a branch from that one trunk

Begin by writing the first sentence and go from there. Write what you know. You can write about anything you like, and as long as there's emotional truth, readers will get it. Let characters breathe and move. Write to find out what you're writing about. Be daring and embrace failure. Develop a thick skin without losing your sensitivity.

Eliminate distractions. Dangle ideas on scraps of paper in front of you and remove them as they get addressed. Some stories take longer. The longer they sit, the harder they are to revive. Joining the class gives the excuse to make that daily commitment.

Keep audience in mind. Grammar and punctuation are the tools. Be adept.

How does the opening sentence sound? What pulls the reader in?

These things and much more to be considered in the company of fellow writers. 


I'm the weekly movie reviewer for The Independent over the past thirteen years. I've got print books of my stories available throughout Humboldt County and beyond, and I read my story LOST COASTER on the first Thursday of every month on KMUD 91.1 FM Garberville radio.

Sign up, and bring a friend!

Classes run Tuesday nights 5:30 - 8:00pm
March 3 through May 5

To register, call 707-476-4500


Saturday, January 3, 2015


Form and content in poetry in particular used to be extremely important to me.
So important, I had to show it. A lot.
Listening to birds outside my window, I was driven to express in language which didn't just capture the sound, but also visually propelled the experience. When I wanted to reveal the concealment of Sasquatch, I saw in the form a way to show the content.


turns beats written in English
gradually into claw-like marks
fading away which could just
as easily be multiplied increasingly
into total overlapping blackness,
a shift in form speaking to the
shift in understanding the
language of forbidden knowledge.

Forms of Bigfoot
openly hidden in the content.

and the way hidden forms
extend the more we look
fascinated me like a mental
Big Bang
so much, and for so long,
it's part of my DNA.

Reads straight across,
and diagonally, too.

Palindromes and anagrams a must.

I write for The Independent,
I have a radio show on KMUD 91.1 FM Garberville,
I teach Creative Writing for College of the Redwoods
and I have print books of my stories available all around
Humboldt County and beyond.

Welcome to the Redwoods!

Hey, wanna see a giant flea?