Fiction | Master Class

1-Day Master Class: The Craft of Short Fiction

"I can say with confidence that Kathleen Alcott is the sharpest reader I have ever had, and I've studied with some amazing writers at a prestigious MFA program. She is dedicated, serious, and extremely intelligent. Not only did taking her class substantially improve my writing, it honed my discipline, broadened my knowledge of how to read critically as a writer, and it expanded my contacts. Take Kathleen's class and let her transform the way you approach your own work." - former Catapult student

In this intensive one-day course for writers with prior workshop experience, we will conduct close readings of published short fiction that complement interactive lectures on topics including figurative language, approaches to the sentence, experimentation with fictive time, and the objective correlative. In addition to readings and talks, students will conduct in-class writing assignments related to the covered material. Writers will emerge with the beginnings of several new pieces of fiction, as well as a new framework for thinking about their own work. The course will conclude with a one-hour Q & A and reception. 

Kathleen Alcott

Born in 1988 in northern California, Kathleen Alcott is the author of the novels Infinite Home and The Dangers of Proximal Alphabets. Her short fiction, criticism, memoir, and food writing have appeared in outlets including The New York Times, The Guardian, thenewyorker.com, The Los Angeles Review of Books, ZYZZYVA, and The Coffin Factory. Her short story “Saturation” was listed as notable by The Best American Short Fiction 2014, and her most recent novel was a Kirkus Prize nominee. She lives in New York City, where she has taught at Columbia University, The Center for Fiction and Catapult.

Testimonials

"Kathleen Alcott is part sculptor and part fire-breather—not only are these characters intricately carved but they stand up, walk right off the page and beckon us into a story that is both vivid and welcoming."

Ramona Ausubel author of NO ONE IS HERE EXCEPT ALL OF US and A GUIDE TO BEING BORN

"Vibrant, inventive, expansive. Kathleen Alcott has peered through the walls of an everyday apartment building and transformed the private lives of its tenants into pure poetry. INFINITE HOME is as much a story of those neighbors we may only know in passing, as it is a commentary on the beauty and misfortune of our modern age."

Said Sayrafiezadeh author of BRIEF ENCOUNTERS WITH THE ENEMY

"INFINITE HOME is Kathleen Alcott at her lyrical best. In her arresting new novel, she explores the boundaries of family and fraternity, with a Brooklyn brownstone as the nexus of the occupants' interlocking worlds."

Nathan Englander author of WHAT WE TALK ABOUT WHEN WE TALK ABOUT ANNE FRANK

"A stunningly sensitive exploration of how families are made and unmade, and how the search for one's place in the world can come to define a life. Kathleen Alcott writes characters so achingly real, they will take up permanent residence in your imagination. This novel is the evidence of a wondrous talent at work."

Laura van den Berg author of THE ISLE OF YOUTH and FIND ME

"Quietly wonderful... Alcott displays a deft hand with every one of her odd and startingly real characters.... The voices in this book speak volumes. A luminous second novel from a first-class storyteller."

KIRKUS REVIEWS starred review

"Her approach to each member of the workshop's writing was distinct and thoughtful; she read each of our work with our individual goals in mind, while adeptly diagnosing crutches that held us back, and pointing us toward ways that we could expand our skills and our project."

former student

"I always felt that she got to the core of my stories, and helped me work harder and challenge myself without ever being negative. I walked away from her class a better reader and a better editor of my own work."

former student