In this class for fiction writers with prior workshop experience, students will craft two short stories and discuss outside works as we parse the mechanics of fiction, and what exactly makes a story. Through reading one another's work and studying the craft of writers like Jamaica Kincaid, Valeria Luiselli, Haruki Murakami, Juan Martinez, Amelia Gray, Rachel Khong, and Alejandro Zambra, we'll leave these weeks a little further along in our understanding of how to make a narrative stick. We've all got a plethora of tools at our disposal to share our stories—in this course, you'll hone yours just a little bit sharper. By the end of the course, every writer will have two workshopped stories (or excerpts from longer works) and a more nuanced understanding of how to craft compelling and effective short stories.
- peer and instructor critiques on two short pieces
- greater familiarity with writers of literary fiction
- next steps on revising submitted fiction
Week 1: Introductions
Week 2: Beginnings, Self and Peer Editing, Readings
Week 3: Form and Structure, Weight, Readings
Week 4: Tension, Climaxes, Readings,
Week 5: Denouements, Themes, Readings
Week 6: Fooling Around, Submitting Your Work, Review
Bryan Washington is the author of Lot, with fiction and essays appearing in the New York Times, the New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, BuzzFeed, Vulture, The Paris Review, Boston Review, Tin House, One Story, Bon Appétit, MUNCHIES, American Short Fiction, GQ, FADER, The Awl, Hazlitt, and Catapult. He’s the recipient of an O. Henry Award, and he lives in Houston.