Upcoming classes: Fiction
THURSDAY, JANUARY 4 —FEBRUARY 1 | Whatever your background, if you’re looking to generate pages and gain insight into your project, set aside five Thursday evenings this winter. You’ll find a supportive community designed to foster productivity and good writing habits. We’ll set goals, frame a workable practice that makes sense for you, and hold each other accountable – without blame.
Each session will start with a check-in and a writing prompt suitable for generating new material or deepening existing work. We’ll share what we’ve worked on in the intervening week, as applicable, and spend time writing.→ READ MORE
TUESDAYS, JANUARY 9 —FEBRUARY 13 | In this class you will birth, nurture, and release a brand-new flash fiction story. You will engage in extensive revisions of your work, and then during our last two weeks together, submit your finished piece to three literary journals for publication, or to three literary contests for judging. A laptop, tablet, or iPad is required for this workshop. If you write longhand, please also bring your journal or notebook along with your computer (not in place of it). Students registering for this class should be prepared to create new work from scratch in a concentrated, serious environment.→ READ MORE
THURSDAYS, JANUARY 11 — MARCH 8 | This course is designed for students who have experience in a fiction writing workshop and want to go deeper in developing their writing. In our intimate workshop, we will discuss the direction your work is taking and how you can move it towards publication. Your will have the opportunity to have your work discussed in the workshop at least four times. We will discuss craft issues as they relate to strengthening your individual writing. You will be expected to read and give feedback on other students’ work.
Jenny Bitner’s fiction has been published in Mississippi Review, The Sun, Fence, The Fabulist and PANK.→ READ MORE
TUESDAYS, JANUARY 16 —30 | For our foreseeable futures, crisis—personal, political, civilizational crisis—will remain a fact of life. How we, as writers, incorporate these multiple and interconnected moments of truth into our journalism and creative (fiction, poetry, nonfiction) writing will be a major measure of our ability to reach readers awash in unprecedented instability.
This interactive course will incite writers to delve deeper into the inflection points that drive our narratives—and, often, our lives. Using examples from the classical and contemporary literature and journalism of crisis, we will explore the ways these narratives use crises to structure, move and animate their work.→ READ MORE
SUNDAYS, JANUARY 21—FEBRUARY 18 | One of the most difficult narrative issues in fiction writing is how to emotionally move your readers. Often, what we writers render on the page are concepts of drama meant to profoundly affect the reader, but it does not. In this five-week process class we will dissect the intricate concepts of how emotions are developed in fiction, and master how to recognize and apply narrative craft that develop dramatic emotions in ways that can move our readers. These skills will be developed through in-class writing exercises and assignments, focusing on interior monologue, characters’ perceptions, creating motivations, and more.→ READ MORE
MONDAYS, JANUARY 22 —FEBRUARY 26 | Storytellers—whether they are novelists, memoirists, or narrative journalists—know that characters are key to any great yarn. Yet developing characters is harder than you might think. Especially minor ones, where few words must make an impression. But even when we have paragraphs—or an entire book— to capture character, we don’t always hit the nail on the head. Connie Hale, who has made the profile her preferred form, uses readings, in-class exercises, and writing prompts to help you draw people on the page—and draw out important themes. The class will move from short sketches to longer work, which will be workshopped in class.→ READ MORE
TUESDAYS, JANUARY 30 —MARCH 6 | What happens when we approach writing like an experiment? Our minds are open, our writing is deep, and there is no room for writers’ block or cliché ideas. Burroughs used cut-up writing, Anais Nin made her diary her art, and now novels are being written in tweets and texts. Each week we will explore different experimental styles from surrealism to postmodernism and do exercises to loosen our minds and push us in new directions with our writing. With daily writing prompts and in-class exercises, this class is great for beginning writers or experienced writers wanting to push their writing in new directions.→ READ MORE
SATURDAYS, FEBRUARY 3 —MARCH 10 | How many times have we written stories that fail to move readers even though the suspense is impeccable, the characters are convincing and every sentence is perfect? Chances are it’s because we’ve failed to create a narrative arc—the dynamic whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. In this five week course, we’ll explore and define the elements of narrative arc, including the use of ambiguity, the leap to improvisation and — perhaps most important –letting yourself be surprised by your own story. We’ll also discuss more subtle aspects of narrative, including pacing, unity and proportion.→ READ MORE
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 24 | “Flat” writing hands off lifeless information in a two-dimensional exchange between reader and writer. Three-dimensional writing places the reader in a charged space of heightened experience, renewed perspective, and active meaning-making. How is that three-dimensionality created, and what do you do when you find your language stuck in 2-D? This combination lecture and workshop for writers of fiction and literary nonfiction examines specific strategies for three-dimensionality drawn from contemporary writers like Sheila Heti, Jo Ann Beard, and Maggie Nelson, and classics by Marguerite Duras and Bruno Schulz. We will try out new techniques and tricks—but ultimately what you will achieve is a shift in consciousness that will help make your writing spacious and transporting.→ READ MORE