With attention to the growing prominence of ‘cultural and creative industries’ and the rise of liberal arts education in Hong Kong, this paper presents three case studies of instructors who teach undergraduate Chinese-language creative writing in Hong Kong’s tertiary institutions. The article begins with a brief overview of Chinese-language creative writing programmes and posits three conceptual models of the writing workshop: a site of apprenticeship to foster self-expression, a setting for skills training, and a space for social critique. Given the limited research on Chinese-language creative writing in Hong Kong, the paper documents the experiences of three prominent instructors, Hon Lai-chu, Mary Wong Shuk-han, and Wong Leung-wo. The findings indicate that despite the heterogeneous nature of course goals, class sizes, target students, and instructors’ training and background, all three instructors envision the workshop as a site for mentoring self-expression. While they do not emphasise skills-based teaching, the instructors share an implicit commitment to social criticism in their pedagogy. The paper concludes with reflections on the use of defamiliarisation as a pedagogical practice that underscores this social critique.