You have to start somewhere.
This class is for anyone who got dry mouth reading the above sentence.
Whether you’re starting a short story or a novel, your first question should always be the same—why am I choosing to begin here? Over the course of eight weeks, we’ll explore that first question and others that often bog down writers at the beginning of every new project.
What information do you want your reader to know immediately, what are you okay with them knowing later, and how do you build up trust so they’re not just okay waiting, but happy to, willing to follow your voice anywhere? These are just some of the questions we’ll ask about your first lines and first pages as we address point of view, character, plot structure, pacing, and voice throughout the course of this workshop.
The class will follow the workshop model (all levels welcome and no prior workshop experience is required). There will be short outside readings and several in-class prompts along with two submissions of original work (if submitting novel excerpts, should be from the beginning.) By the end of the course, beyond having detailed feedback from both your classmates and myself, you’ll be equipped with the tools to begin any future projects with confidence.
Class meetings will be held over video chat, using Zoom accessed from your private class page. While you can use Zoom from your browser, we recommend downloading the desktop client so you have access to all platform features.
- Feedback from fellow students and instructors
- One on one 30 minute phone call or Zoom with instructor to discuss work and goals beyond the class
- Prompts to pull you out of writing slumps down the road
- 10% discount on all future Catapult classes
- Submit two original stories. Suggested page count of 15 - 25 per submission.
- Read and provide written and in class feedback on two of your peers’ stories per week
- Be prepared to complete in class readings / writing assignments
Week 1: Introductions
Week 2: Picking POV
Week 3: First lines
Week 4: Time, Setting, The Six Senses
Week 5: Non-traditional narratives
Week 6: Lyrical V.S. Spare
Week 7: Reader Questions
Week 8: Submission and Publication
"Fresh, funny, bittersweet...This book delivers humor, humanity and hubris."
"Pizza Girl is luminous, brooding, and, frankly, awe-inspiring. It's a joy to spend time in Frazier's world, an experience that only illuminates our own. The novel that teaches you something about yourself is a rare thing, and Frazier has given us a gift."
"In fearless, propulsive prose, Jean Kyoung Frazier perfectly captures the listless ache of a grieving, aimless teen on the cusp of terrifying responsibility. A sublime ode to obsessive outcasts and lovable screw-ups everywhere, Pizza Girl is irresistible and bold, brutal and sweet, with an ending that will thrash your heart."