This intimate fiction master class led by acclaimed novelist Naomi Jackson is for writers looking to take their craft to the next level, and who are serious about preparing for the next step in their writing careers—whether that's applying for MFAs, querying literary agents, or submitting work for publication. The focus will be on critique and revision. To that end, each student will workshop twice and will meet once with Naomi for an individual conference to discuss their goals and progress.
*no class June 15th
-intensive peer and instructor critiques on two fiction submissions
-one personal conference with the instructor to discuss your writing style, goals, and areas for improvement
-access to a nurturing community of writers and readers
-practical advice about taking the next step as a professional writer - from applying to MFAs to preparing work for submission to agents and publishers
-more confidence as a writer, on and off the page!
Naomi Jackson is author of The Star Side of Bird Hill, published by Penguin Press in June 2015, nominated for an NAACP Image Award and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, and longlisted for the National Book Critics Circle’s John Leonard Prize, the Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize, and the International Dublin Literary Award. It was named an Honor Book for Fiction by the Black Caucus of the American Library Association and the winner of Late Night Library's 2016 Debut-litzer Prize. First Lady of New York City Chirlane McCray selected the novel for the City's 2016 Gracie Book Club.
“Recalling Toni Morrison’s LOVE, this work will appeal to fans of African American and literary fiction.”
“Once in a while, you’ll stumble onto a book like this, one so poetic in its descriptions and so alive with lovable, frustrating, painfully real characters, that your emotional response to it becomes almost physical...Jackson’s exquisite prose is a marvel too. STAR SIDE is a gem of a book.”
“An engrossing and poignant coming-of-age story populated with engaging, well-drawn characters.”
“THE STAR SIDE OF BIRD HILL reads as if we’re let in on a sometimes wonderful, sometimes thrilling, sometimes terrible secret. It’s the unwritten history of women without men, of girls in conflict with themselves and the damage—and healing that can come from the same place: Family.”
“Naomi Jackson has written a tender novel exploring the complexities of motherhood and childhood. THE STAR SIDE OF BIRD HILL holds together opposing elements—the book is quiet in the telling, but the story being told is sharp and vibrant. It is as much a story of the fears of childhood as it is a story about welcoming old age with optimism. A book that knows death and discovery. A book laced with pain but shimmering with hope. With care, the narrative addresses huge issues such as mental illness, mortality, sexuality and, at its very core, what it means to love another person as they are.”
“Naomi Jackson packs a hell of a lot of love and death and magic into this wonderful debut. THE STAR SIDE OF BIRD HILL travels between Barbados and Brooklyn telling the story of a family, and a people, who move between worlds and worldviews. But really this is the story of one young girl named Phaedra who is trying her best in a world that doesn’t always see the best in her. There are touches of Jamaica Kincaid and J.D. Salinger here, but Naomi Jackson is an artist all her own.”