Begins: November 11, 2021 (no class on Thanksgiving)
Instructor: Marissa Levien
Location: Online (weekly video meet-up Thursdays 7-9pm EST)
Fee: $550 (usually $625)
A writing sample is not required (but welcome) for this class. Please fill out an application with your contact info.
Through group discussion of student work plus that of published authors, writers in this workshop will examine the art and craft of speculative and fantastical fiction. We will focus on some of the classic sticking points of writing in this genre: effective worldbuilding, balancing character against plot, maintaining consistent story logic, and making sure all elements of the writing serve the story. This class seeks to dispel the myths of the so-called differences between “genre” fiction and literary fiction: every story one writes, whether it’s a realistic family drama or a saga set on a spaceship, should be built upon good prose, complex characters, empathy and specificity. Fantasy, sci-fi, speculative fiction, or whatever label you choose can and should be well-written literary work, and in this class we will seek to give you the tools do just that.
Marissa Levien received her MFA from Stony Brook University, where she also helped run the Southampton Writers Conference. Her debut novel The World Gives Way was released by Hachette in 2021, earning praise from The New York Times, Vulture, Literary Hub, Publishers Weekly, and a selection as an IndieNext Pick. Her work has been published in Writer’s Digest, Literary Hub, Publisher’s Weekly, Saint Ann’s Review, and Los Angeles Review of Books, among others. She has previously taught workshops for Stony Brook University, John Jermain Workshops, and Harlem Educational Activities Fund.