Erika's teaching marries play and discipline; she conducts her classes like a group of smart friends catching up and exchanging ideas.
Erika started teaching in a middle school classroom, and has since taught for NYU, The New School, Simon Fraser University, the Slice Magazine Conference, Mercy College, and led dozens of writing workshops for Sackett Street Writers’ Workshop. To learn more about her teaching style, read her essay, "Classroom as Community: Creating Safe Spaces in Nonfiction Workshops,” in Poets & Writers’ September 2016 issue. For thoughts on craft, read her essay on creating persona through syntax.
Testimonials from former students
Erika's class caused me to simultaneously realize that writing well is much harder than I thought it was, and become motivated to do more of it. She facilitated the workshop style in a style that made every person feel like their opinion really mattered and that the writer received so much practical feedback. And her attentiveness to my individual writing demonstrated concrete areas where I could improve.
Erika taught me that there's nothing wrong in writing, but there are things to consider. This liberated me from the "it must be PERFECT" syndrome that crippled me from sharing my writing, writing and even the thought of writing. Her lightness and sensitivity made for a class that I looked forward to and I believe encouraged the high level of writing that was produced.
Erika was born to be a creative writing teacher. Her creative nonfiction workshop was thoughtfully structured and professionally run, reading assignments were always interesting and relevant, and she created a safe, supportive environment that lent itself to constructive discussion. Also, she brought really good snacks.