This class will introduce to the building blocks and chief concerns of writing creative nonfiction through exercises, readings, and group discussion.
In Inventing the Truth: The Art and Craft of Memoir, William Zinnser writes that “Good memoirs are a careful act of construction. We like to think that an interesting life will simply fall into place on the page. It won’t…Memoir writers must manufacture a text, imposing narrative order on a jumble of half-remembered events.” So, too, for shorter works about real life, such as personal essays. In this workshop, we’ll explore the ways in which techniques of narrative craft can be harnessed to impose order, or shape compelling stories out of real-life material. We’ll read examples of creative nonfiction including personal essays, narrative reportage, memoir excerpts, and flash creative nonfiction, and we’ll draft new works of our own. This class is for you if you love writing from your own life, are working on or towards a memoir, want to explore the many joys and diverse structures available to you in the personal essay, or just know you have some great true material to put down in writing.
When does this class meet?
This class meets on Thursday evenings from 7:00 - 9:00pm on March 19 - May 14, with the exception of April 9.
About the Teacher:
Susannah is a fiction writer, freelance writer, teacher, editor, and native Nashvillian. In 2009, after many years away from her hometown, she returned to put down roots with her family in East Nashville. Since then she has been an adjunct faculty member at Watkins College of Art, Design & Film, and has taught a series of fiction workshops independently, aka the beta-version of The Porch. Previously, Susannah taught creative writing at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, at Gallery 37's after-school arts program in Chicago, and in several other youth and community workshop settings. Her first novel, "This Will Go Down on Your Permanent Record," was published in 2008 by Featherproof Books, an independent publisher based in Chicago.
Susannah was the recipient of the Tennessee Arts Commission’s Individual Artist Fellowship in Fiction for 2013. She has been awarded the Tennessee Williams Scholarship to the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, as well as residencies at the Ragdale Foundation, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Hambidge Center for Creative Arts and Sciences. Her work has appeared in publications such as The Oxford American, The Sun, Quarterly West, Corium, Redux, Hobart, Five Chapters, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, Pindeldyboz.com, Wigleaf, Quick Fiction, Chapter 16, and others. She earned her BA with Highest Honors in Creative Writing from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and holds an MFA in Writing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
About the Hosting Organization:
The Porch fosters the artistic and professional development of writers and promotes a vibrant and diverse literary culture in Nashville through educational, inspiring, and community building opportunities and events for adults and youth.
Registration is now SOLD OUT.
Questions about this class? Contact Susannah Felts at firstname.lastname@example.org.