The Writing Center for Creative Aging

Our Workshops & Residencies:

Frida Kahlo’s Studio by Damian Elwes

  • integrate lifelong learning & lively discussions with the literary arts:   memoir, poetry, essay, fiction, creative non-fiction

  • in an enjoyable, safe,and supportive environment

  • tailored to meet the needs and interests of your community.

Our classes encourage participants to engage the whole writer’s body—

senses, mind, memory, imagination, heart and spirit—in bringing a poem or story to life.

“No joy like creativity.”

Dr. Oliver Sacks,
the late physician, best-selling author, and professor of neurology at NYU School of Medicine

Image courtesy of

“Creativity makes life worth living and involves a strong sense of being alive.”

Dr. Michael Piechowski,
author of Living With Intensity

Image courtesy of

The Memoir Midwife: Your helping hand in the birth of stories that need to be told. For individuals and families who want their story, the story of a loved one, to live on.

The story of where you came from. How your parents met. The role luck has played in  your life. Which forks in the road taken have “made all the difference.” What you’ve learned along the way. What, if anything, you’d change.

Learn how the WCCA can help you create a written legacy of family stories to be passed down from one generation to the next.

The Memoir Midwife © 2017 THE WRITING CENTER FOR CREATIVE AGING. All Rights Reserved.

Illustration: “Weeping Beech Park” by Ana Benaroya

Take a peek at a newborn from our nursery — a collection of memoirs by Merle Deutsch:

“Falling in Love With a Complete Stranger”

I met my future husband Murray at Perfection Frocks, a dress house specializing in cotton day-dresses located off of Broadway, down 34th Street in New York City’s garment center.

I worked there as a designer and showroom model, modeling their small-sized dresses. It was one of my first jobs upon arriving in this country from Scotland, and I was intent on finding someone who would be willing to sponsor my sister Mona into the States. more here

New Eyes Lyceum Circuit: Elevating Talks


More than a century after her death, Emily Dickinson’s poems continue to astonish and pierce the heart. Her faith in the imagination to light “the possible’s slow fuse” and her steadfast belief in the power of poetry and art to uplift the spirit lives on in her work.

Explore her genius through poetry and dance—with NJSCA veteran teaching artists Shelley Benaroya and Simone Coonrod. This informal and entertaining workshop will engage participants in a series of dance interpretations, writing invitations and lively conversations inspired by Dickinson’s work. No previous dance or writing experience required.

An expanded series of workshops is now available—offering participants space and time to explore their creative selves in greater depth.

Program Length: 60 minutes Price: $350

Program Residency (4 Workshops) Price: $1,400

“The hour we spent with Shelley and Simone uplifted our minds and emotions, challenged us to see ourselves as poets and choreographers. They made us—the audience—feel like supreme professionals. The afternoon left me wanting more.”

Elayne Risley

East Brunswick Arts Commission

Emily Dickinson & The Art of Turning Newer is a unique celebration of poetry, movement, writing, and community. Simone and Shelley put on wonderful program that requires no prior experience with poetry, only an open mind and willingness to contribute!” 

Molly Hone

Program Director @ the Montclair Public Library

I walked in not knowing much about the poet and her work, but gained so much insight into her life through the words and dance.
Workshop Particpant

East Brunswick, NJ

For more information, please view the Home News Tribune article HERE.

Other Program Offerings on the Circuit

Click on the images below for a better view.

New Eyes Lyceum Circuit © 2017 THE WRITING CENTER FOR CREATIVE AGING. All Rights Reserved.