Beginning Tuesday, September 9th, 7:30-9:30pm
$450 for 10 weeks ($425 for returning students)

Structured around in-class discussions of your work, we will focus on outline, structure, plot, narrative, dialogue and pacing, and content. You will receive written critiques and edits from me as well as your peers. This is an open class for both beginning writers as well as writers who currently have a novel or short story in progress. The class will culminate with an (optional) reading.

Email to reserve your space.



Before I took Rachel’s class, I studied playwriting at NYU, where I really struggled. The workshops there were unregulated, unmotivated, and taught by professors who were bored out of their minds at the prospect of actually interacting with students. Rachel’s class was where I started to see what I could do as an artist. It’s a rare opportunity – a class taught by a wildly talented writer who is also a gifted facilitator. From the very beginning, Rachel set a strong and supportive tone that the rest of the class followed, which is what allowed me to actually start writing something I care about. Any group of people will work together to rise to the level of their teacher, and Rachel’s class is proof – our discussions were frank and insightful, and nobody at the table was interested in literary bullshit. I finished the first short story I ever felt comfortable showing my parents in Rachel’s class. I also applied to and was accepted into four graduate programs. Seriously. Take this class.
-Emma D., Ditmas Writing Workshop
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Rachel’s workshops offer writers the opportunity to grow within a community. The deadlines keep you producing while discussing and critiquing others’ work sharpens your abilities as an editor. Her talents as a writer truly translate to her presence as a teacher— she was the first person to teach me to read like a writer. Her encouragement and guidance has made all the difference for me. I owe a lot to the experiences I’ve had in Rachel’s many classes.

-Andrew W., Ditmas Writing Workshop.


Rachel’s is a magical little class. When I took it, we had a lovely, supportive, well-read group, and showing up made my week, every week, without fail. The class is organized around spending the maximum amount of time on each student’s work. It’s utterly fair and not a moment goes misspent. (Actually, I’ve never had another class where I got as much quality workshopping done.) There’s flexibility to talk about everything from minute craft issues to long-term writing projects. The best of it is that Rachel takes a legitimate, uncontrived interest — a rare thing, that! — in your writing and your future as a writer. She also approaches prose of all kinds without preconception, so whatever it is you want to write — bring it in! It will get all the critique and attention and care that it deserves.
I recommend Rachel’s class without reservation.

-Davidas M., New York Writers’ Workshop at the JCC


I have taken Rachel’s class four times. Before taking her class, I would start writing stories but never finish them. Now I have about six full-length, edited pieces that I am proud of. Her insight into structure, plot, and dialogue have been invaluable to me and have helped carry me to a new level in my writing. The classes are well-organized, yet relaxed, giving everyone a chance to produce and critique in a way that suits their own style. Rachel’s extensive experience as an MFA student, a creative writing professor, and a published novelist also make her an incredible resource in and beyond the workshop. If students are interested, she always makes herself available to discuss writing, publishing opportunities, and MFA programs. I highly recommend Rachel’s class to anyone who wants to improve their fiction.

-Kate M., Ditmas Writing Workshop.


In the workshop I took with Rachel Sherman at the JCC, she impressed me with her generosity as a reader: even though students were working in many different genres, from prose poetry to magical realism to traditional literary fiction, Rachel looked at each piece on its own terms, with a keen eye for its particular strengths and weaknesses.  She also creates a welcoming, respectful environment in the classroom where everyone’s voice is heard.  After studying with Rachel, I had a much clearer sense of what direction my novel needed to go.  She’s a terrific teacher, and I highly recommend her course.

-Chandler S., New York Writers’ Workshop at the JCC


I’ve taken Rachel’s workshop a number of times, and I always come away with ideas for fixing current work, inspiration to begin new work, and some new friends.  Rachel’s talent as a fiction writer informs the advice she gives to her students, advice both funny and insightful, and you don’t have to write like her to get something from her classes.  She has something to offer every kind of writer and creates a great environment for people to share and learn from each other.  Take her class!

-Rebecca S., New York Writers’ Workshop at the JCC.


This upcoming session will be the third class that I take with Rachel. I had always been interested in beginning to write fiction but was never able to find the discipline or the courage to start. Her advice, encouragement and deadlines have helped me get nearly halfway through the first draft of a novel.

-Polly B., Ditmas Writing Workshop.