This six-session workshop will meet weekly on Wednesdays, 6:30-8:30 PM ET via Zoom, from January 17- February 21.
Short stories are like small dogs — they pack a lot of energy and personality into their small forms and are superbly suited to burrowing down after one particular goal. Short stories are also an excellent way to hone your writing skills and explore a new genre or character — and they can also get your writing noticed by new readers.
In this class, we will work on recognizing what makes a viable short story idea and then move on to guided exercises focused on setting the scene, character development, dialogue, foreshadowing, and that elusive thing called voice. We will also work on critique and editing skills, learning how to recognize what is working in a story and what is not working as well as it could; how unwriting is often as important as writing; and how to deliver critique in a way that helps rather than bruises the recipient.
The class will include short outside readings but students are encouraged to read as much short fiction as they can.
NB: This class will be taught on Zoom and will be capped at 15 students. Registrants will receive the Zoom link to the email address they use to register. It will arrive immediately after registration so please check your spam folder if you do not receive it. It will also be sent the day before class as a reminder. Please review the course policies page before registering for any classes. Please email email@example.com with any questions.
Week 1 – The Short Story Idea: Starting with Endings; Reversals and Twists; The Three Flavors of Epiphanies (Bitter, Sweet, and Bittersweet) and what yoga instructors can teach us about delivering a workshop critique
Week 2 – Characters, Character Arcs, and Character Interactions
Week 3 – Plotting, Pantsing, and Plotzing. Settings and Scenes
Week 4 – Dialogue: The Said and the Unsaid; Scene Actions and Activity
Week 5 – Foreshadowing, or, How to Make it Look Like You Knew The Ending All Along
Week 6 – Editing yourself: Diagnosing issues with character arc, scene action and dialogue; getting more specific in the second draft; the fine art of unwriting.
Alisa Kwitney is the critically acclaimed author of numerous novels and graphic novels and a former DC Comics staff editor with the Vertigo imprint. While at Vertigo, she worked with Neil Gaiman as assistant editor on The Sandman comic book series and went on to become full editor of the spin-off titles The Dreaming and Lucifer, and to write the Eisner-nominated mini-series Destiny: A Chronicle of Deaths Foretold and the non-fiction title Sandman: The King of Dreams. More recently, Alisa worked with Neil as book doula on the Norse Book of Mythology. She currently co-hosts Endless: A Sandman Podcast. Alisa’s novels have made the The New York Times New and Noteworthy in Paperback list and Barnes and Noble’s Discover Great New Writers program. She has an MFA from Columbia University and has taught writing at Fordham University and McDaniel and Manhattanville Colleges. She hosted the Woodstock Bookfest’s Evening with Neil Gaiman this year, and her latest book is G.I.L.T., a graphic novel, from AHOY Comics.
Event Location and Ticket Information
Date: Wednesday, February 21, 2024
Times: 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm