Stealing From the Masters: Using Existing Models to Craft Short Fiction (with Lindsey Crittenden)

Lindsey Crittenden

Lindsey Crittenden



SATURDAYS, APRIL 8 & 15  |  “Good artists borrow, great artists steal.”

This two-day course will explore the implications of this statement for anyone interested in fiction writing.  (And no, we’re not talking about plagiarism.) You’ll find practical solutions and inspiration by looking at such models as newspaper headlines, fairy tales and myth, short-story classics, and non-narrative forms such as recipes and to-do lists.  You’ll examine stories such as David Foster Wallace’s “Good People” and Nathan Englander’s “What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank” with an eye to what their writers have “stolen” and how they’ve made their tributes fresh.  We’ll analyze elements of craft and voice as ways to navigate the risks of parody and imitation. Using prompts, students will do legitimate “stealing” and will finish the two sessions with a first draft of new story and concrete plans for going further. This workshop is suitable for writers who’ve never written fiction as well as those looking for new creative approaches to a familiar genre.

Lindsey Crittenden is the author of an award-winning short-fiction collection, The View From Below, and a memoir, The Water Will Hold You (“exquisitely written,” Publishers’ Weekly starred review).  Her short stories and essays have appeared in The New York Times, Glimmer Train, Arroyo Literary Review, Best American Spiritual Writing, Pisgah Review, Quarterly West, and other publications. An Honored Instructor at UC Berkeley Extension, she has taught and helped develop creative writing curriculum for more than 15 years.


Number of sessions: 2

Time: 10:30 pm – 4:30 pm

Dates:  Saturdays, April 8 & 15

Course fee: $275


Price Qty
Class Registration $275.00 (USD)  

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