“Fatin is a wonderful instructor... I think often of her advice to push myself and take risks in my writing.” - former student
This course is designed for students who are interested in gaining a deeper and more assured grasp of the key building blocks of fiction. The process of writing fiction can be daunting, seemingly mysterious and impenetrable. This course emphasizes fiction as a ‘craft’ to be honed and sharpened through a deep engagement with the individual elements of fiction: plot, character, point of view, setting and style. Over six weeks, we will delve into short story readings, undertake fun creative writing exercises and engage in workshops, focusing on each of the elements of fiction in turn. By the end of the course, participants will have gained a better understanding of how to integrate these key elements more effectively into their our own writing, so as to create compelling, original and expressive fictional works.
- a better grasp of each of the key building blocks of fiction, and how to apply them in your own writing
- in-depth feedback from your instructor and fellow participants on two short works of fiction
- one private Skype conference with the instructor to discuss your writing
- advice and tips on how to approach publishing your work
Week 0: Introductions, writing goals, and scheduling.
Week 1: Plot (short story readings and plot writing prompt). First workshop.
Week 2: Point of view (short story readings and point of view writing prompt). Second workshop.
Week 3: Character (short story readings and character writing prompt). Third workshop.
Week 4: Setting (short story readings and setting writing prompt). Fourth workshop.
Week 5: Style (short story readings and style writing prompt). Fifth workshop.
Week 6: Publishing your work: publications to approach, query letters, and agents.
Fatin Abbas’ novel, Ghost Season, is forthcoming from W.W. Nortonn. Her fiction has appeared in Freeman’s: The Best New Writing on Arrival, The Warwick Review, and Friction. Her non-fiction writing and essays have appeared in The Nation, Le Monde Diplomatique, and openDemocracy, among other venues. She is the recipient of a Miles Morland Foundation Writing Scholarship, a Bernard Cohen Short Story Prize, and a Miriam Weinberg Richter Award. She has taught creative writing to undergraduate and graduate students at Manhattanville College.
“[Fatin Abbas] moves swiftly in and out of four or five different characters points of view like it was nothing, like it was what she was for. It reminded me instantly of the narrative poise of Chimamanda Adichie in “Half of a Yellow Sun,” the way her steady hand with interior lives allows her to take a big wide angle shot of her country with the whole tale.”
“Fatin Abbas offers a compelling debut with “On a Morning”…which explores the fragility of the space between conflict and calm.”
“Fatin is an inspiring instructor. She sought to bring out the best writer in all of us, focusing on each of our strengths and showing us how to use different devices and structures to give form to our stories. She was generous with her feedback and throughout each session offered insightful and helpful critiques, all while instilling confidence in our abilities. I would definitely take a class with her again.”
“Fatin is a wonderful instructor. Her class challenged me as a writer and a thinker, by introducing me to written works that varied in style, structure, and scope. I think often of her advice to push myself and take risks in my writing.”