Fiction Workshop: Magical Realism (with Jenny Bitner)


Jenny Bitner

Jenny Bitner

Contact: jennybit@yahoo.com

Number of sessions: 6

Time: 6:30 pm – 9:00 pm

Dates: Mondays, July 6, 13, 20, 27, August 3, 10

Course fee: $385

Why is so much of contemporary literature playing with the boundaries of what is real and fantasy? Maybe because our own world often borders on the surreal.  Speculative fiction, magical realism, slipstream, fabulist—there are many names for the forms of writing that blend the imaginary and real world. In this class we will read from this genre (authors such as George Saunders, Aimee Bender, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Franz Kafka, Margaret Atwood) and write our own stories with elements of the surreal.

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Said and Unsaid: Dialogue in Fiction and Memoir (with Laurie Ann Doyle)


Laurie Ann Doyle

Laurie Ann Doyle

Contact: doyle.l@berkeley.edu

Number of sessions: 1

Time: 10:00 am–4:00 pm (includes break for lunch)

Date: Sunday, May 17

Course fee: $75

Is dialogue meant to reveal or conceal? In this interactive one-day workshop, you learn dialogue actually accomplishes both, revealing your characters by what is said and not said in fiction and memoir. We’ll read work by masters of dialogue, examining how artfully crafted speech, gesture, and silence helps you not only develop character, but generate tension, subtext, and move the plot forward. You’ll learn how to take full advantage of your characters’ expressive tics, favorite phrases, and complete withdrawal to build an immersive world for the reader.

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