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Session II Classes: Fall Conference 2007

Saturday, November 17, 11:00 am-12:30 pm

FICTION - Short Story Writing, with Louise Hawes.
While a novelist relies on the accretion of details over days, years, perhaps lifetimes, most short fiction packs its punch into a few telling details and revealing moments. How is this feat of compression accomplished? How can you suggest, within the space of a few pages, the arc of a life, a whole person, a day that changes us forever? The author of two collections of short fiction and stories that have appeared in half a dozen anthologies and literary journals will discuss what makes a powerful short, how to shape your story, and the recent expansion of the short fiction market. Bring the first page of your story for an in-class critique.

PLAYWRITING - Writing the One-Act Play: From Pitch to Staging, with Samm-Art Williams.
Playwright Samm-Art Williams will take aspiring and working playwrights through the process of conceiving, writing, and refining the one-act play. From pitch to outline to first and second drafts, he will cover plot development, dialogue, characters, narration, and staging. Come prepared to discuss issues in your own work and ask questions about this form of theatrical writing.

PUBLISHING - Step Away from the Desk: What to Expect from a Publisher, with Ed Southern.
Writers write, but authors do all sorts of other jobs. Once you've signed your first book deal, you need to understand what's going to be expected of you, and what you can expect from your publisher. Will they send you on a tour? Will they set up interviews? Will they advertise? Will they get you on Oprah? This class will be led by a publisher and author who has more than 12 years' experience in the book business.

WRITING MARATHON - Writing by Heart, with Marjorie Hudson.
Working from prompts from great literature and from memory, we'll generate stories of love and courage from childhood and teen years, a rich source of both memoir and fiction material. Class participants will be invited to share a table with Hudson at lunch and get her personal advice about writing, publishing, and the writer's life.

POETRY - Translating Emotion into Poetry, with Joseph Bathanti.
This session will explore how poems, through narrative conventions, dramatic situation, and the strategic use of imagery, can make the emotions we use when composing poetry accessible to our readers. We'll examine how to write about sentiment without falling prey to sentimentality. Handouts illustrating these techniques will be provided and we'll engage in some in-class writing.


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