What is a short story? And how is it mechanically similar to or different from a novel and other modes of narrative? What are its limits and possibilities? And when should you choose the short story as a vehicle for a given narrative over anything else? In this workshop, we’ll discuss the basics of short stories and how to write them with focus on four specific models. We’ll discuss point of view, subjectivity, stakes, character development, and negative space among other topics to help you maximize your space and energy on the page and develop clear character arcs from the beginning of the work to the end. We’ll discuss short stories from writers such as Colson Whitehead, Carmen Maria Machado, Ayşegül Savaş, and Yiyun Li, among others. In-class exercises will focus on writing characters based on the opposite of you, recognizing the stakes in character, and balancing story and plot to create a more cohesive narrative which can be applied to short fiction but also novels and memoirs.
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About the instructor
DANIEL PEÑA is the author of the novel Bang from Arte Publico Press, a Pushcart Prize winning writer, and an Assistant Professor at the University of Houston-Downtown. His writing can be seen in NBC News, the Guardian, and VICE, among other outlets. He’s a regular contributor to the Ploughshares blog, where he covers Latinx literature.
By registering for an Inprint Writers Workshop you are agreeing to Inprint’s registration policies. Remember to sign up for the waiting list if the workshop you would like to take is full. To see the full Fall 2019 workshop schedule click here.