Veteran Writes

Your story can change lives. Learn to tell it with skill and power.

Veterans are changing the arts in America. A new generation of artists
is responding to the traumatic experiences of prolonged war, creating haunting and memorable work.

One of the best-kept secrets
in this technically oriented culture is that simply speaking truth heals.
Rachel Remen, MD

The Writer’s Garret has developed the Veteran Writes program to support military veterans and  their families. Your story can change lives. Learn to tell it with skill and power. Share your experiences through writing in a way that will help others to better understand your service.

Veteran Writes faculty and presenters are practicing writers: poets, spoken word artists, playwrights, and novelists, writers of memoir, creative non-fiction, and short stories. Many are themselves veterans, the spouses of veterans, and the sons and daughters of veterans. All are trained workshop facilitators with a heart for serving their communities through sharing their love of the written word.

Our workshops focus on the craft of writing, as well as strategies to help participants process and write about intense experiences in a way that promotes good health. Research exploring the connection between the arts and well-being has found that writing from deep feeling boosts immune function, brings about drops in blood pressure, reduces feelings of depression, and elevates daily moods. Writing makes a difference.

Veteran Writes workshops are always free to veterans and their family members. To learn more about bringing a workshop to veterans in your organization or community, contact:

Robin Turner, Program Manager:

Discounts for writing workshops at The Writer’s Garret

Are you a veteran or family member interested in attending one of our upcoming general interest writing workshops at The Writer’s Garret? We invite you to register using the code VETS for a 100% discount on tuition.


Veteran Writes at Juliette Fowler Communities in Dallas (Fall 2016)
Instructors: Charles Kesler and Michael Clay

A weekly meeting of elder veterans learning to share their WWII experiences through writing.

Writing the Military Experience Panel Discussion at VFW Post 6796 in Dallas (Fall 2016)
Panelists: Charles Kesler, Leila Levinson, Rod Pannek, Kathleen M. Rodgers

A one-hour panel discussion to introduce veterans, spouses, and family members to the craft and healing potential of writing the military experience through memoir, fiction, and poetry.

Writing Your Story Workshop at the Veterans One Stop Center in Waco (Summer 2016)
Instructors: Jack Woodville London and Don Helin

This one-day writing workshop for veterans and spouses explores storytelling in all forms: the novel, memoir, short story, poetry, and nonfiction.

Writing as a Healing Practice Panel Discussion at the Waco Public Library (Summer 2016)
Panelists: Leila Levinson, Jack Woodville London, Ruth Pennebaker, Jenuine Poetess

A panel discussion on writing’s unique power to move, heal, and more deeply connect us to our own stories and those of others.

Learning to Share Your Story at the Center of Excellence for Returning War Veterans in Waco (Summer 2016)
Instructor: Leila Levinson

A four-week writing workshop for veterans and their spouses to learn simple, straightforward strategies to help process and write about intense experiences in a way that also promotes physical and emotional well-being.

Explore powerful writing by veterans



Flying Over Baghdad With Sylvia Plath: Experiences, Through Poetry, With Poets And Poems In Iraq And Afghanistan   Paul David Adkins

Letter Composed During a Lull in the Fighting: Poems   Kevin Power

Here, Bullet   Brian Turner

A Clock of Human Bones   Matthew Borczon

The Book of Willie   Charles Kesler

Short Story Collections

Redeployment   Phil Klay

The Things They Carried   Tim O’Brien

You Know When the Men are Gone   Siobhan Fallon


The Yellow Birds    Kevin Power

The Confusion of Languages   Siobhan Fallon

The Great Santini   Pat Conroy


Birding Babylon: A Soldier’s Journal from Iraq   Jonathan Trouern-Trend

Gated Grief: The Daughter of a GI Concentration Camp Liberator Discovers a Legacy of Trauma   Leila Levinson

Soldier’s Heart: Reading Literature Through Peace and War at West Point   Elizabeth D. Samet

Military Brats: Legacies of Childhood Inside the Fortress    Mary Edwards Wertsch