If you’re like I am, it’s often a single image, moment, sentence, or word that triggers an entire short story. In this workshop, we’ll use several exercises as springboards for stories, developing them in class and on our own. We’ll discuss effective opening lines, the various points of view, mining our lives for material, and those ever-pesky endings. Be prepared to work very hard every day you’re here. You’ll leave with four or five solid story beginnings and one completed story. This course is recommended for people who have taken fiction workshops before, or those who are well-versed in contemporary fiction.
Mark Jude Poirier is the author of two collections of short stories as well as two novels. His books have been New York Times Notable Books of the year, as well as Barnes and Noble Discover and Waterstone’s UK picks. Last year, Scribner published Intro to Alien Invasion, a graphic novel he wrote with Owen King. He has published nearly thirty short stories that have appeared in Tin House, The Iowa Review, Conjunctions, Crazyhorse, BOMB, The Southern Review, The American Scholar, Epoch, and many other journals and anthologies. In addition, films he has written have played at Sundance, The Toronto International Film Festival, MoMA, and the American Film Festival in Deauville. Mark is a graduate of Georgetown, Stanford, Johns Hopkins, and the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, and currently holds a Briggs-Copeland Lectureship at Harvard.