Writing and Other Afflictions

"If it was easy, everyone would do it." –Jimmy Dugan, "A League of Their Own"

Continuing Studies

I’ll be taking the “Fiction for Experienced Writers” class in Stanford’s Continuing Studies program in the winter term. It promises to be pretty interesting. If you don’t want to click the link above, here’s the summary: “Focusing intently on issues of structure, characterization, and point of view, we will direct our energies toward the creation of polished, seamless narratives and the further development of our own individual styles. In addition to reading and constructively commenting on one another’s work, we will continue to read published fiction from authors who both exemplify and challenge traditional concepts of storytelling. Finally, we will attempt to demystify—as much as possible—the process of bringing our work to the outside world, and students will actively explore places in the literary market where their work (as well as that of their classmates) might find placement.

So needless to say, I’m looking forward to it. Some friends of mine are taking Carl Yorke’s “Writing For The Movies” class, which examines movie structure and is a terrific class even for novelists. Movies follow a pretty standard structure which is also a good one to keep in mind as a basic story structure for your prose. Carl knows his storytelling inside and out, and is not just a good teacher, he’s a great guy besides (though he’ll deny that). If you’re interested in movies at all, or in story structure, I can’t recommend his classes highly enough.

Anyone else taking another Stanford CS class this winter? Anyone else taking one of the two above?

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