Workshops

Brattleboro Literary Festival / Marlboro College Writing Workshops

 The Brattleboro Literary Festival, in collaboration with Marlboro College, is pleased to announce that it will offer  writing workshops for 2013 featuring two writers from out West. Colorado author Pam Houston will lead a workshop on Concision in Writing.  Montana fiction author David Abrahms will lead a workshop on Sense of Place. One of the 2012 participants said, “I have been to other workshops, but this is the first one where I had that “ah-ha” moment. I feel like a door has been opened into a piece of writing that I had set aside out of frustration..”

The Workshops will take place on Friday October 4, between 1:00 and 4:45 p.m. in at the Marlboro Graduate Center in Brattleboro, VT.

David Abrams ~ Take Us There! Making Place Work for Your Story (NOTE: THIS WORKSHOP IS NOW FULL)

Ever finish reading a story and find the setting indelibly marked on your imagination? Think: Hemingway, Cather, O’Connor, and Joyce. Not only do you visualize the landscape, hear the sounds, and smell the atmosphere, but you are also left with the emotional impact that the sense of place renders on the characters. You feel as though you’ve traveled. Whether your story is set in a bungalow or a high-rise, on the sea or the prairie, or perhaps takes place in alternate universe, learn how to craft place to add strength and dimension to your work. Practice how to show the heart of environment without falling prey to overwrought sentiments and empty description. Submit up to 1,000 words of your finest prose highlighting the sense of place in your story. Participants will have the opportunity to read each others pages before the day of the workshop. Come prepared to make constructive comments and ask thoughtful questions pertaining to each of the submissions. Friday, October 4, 2013, 1:00-4:45 pm at the Marlboro Graduate Center.

David Abrams is the author of Fobbit, a comedy about the Iraq War which Publishers Weekly called “an instant classic” and named a Top 10 Pick for Literary Fiction in Fall 2012.  It was also a New York Times Notable Book of 2012, an Indie Next pick, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection and a Montana Honor Book.  One of his stories also appears in Fire and Forget, an anthology of short fiction about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.  His short stories have appeared in Esquire, Narrative, Salon, Salamander, Connecticut Review, The Greensboro Review, Consequence, and many other publications. He earned a BA in English from the University of Oregon and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Alaska-Fairbanks.  He retired from active-duty after serving in the U.S. Army for 20 years, a career which took him to Alaska, Texas, Georgia, the Pentagon, and Iraq.  He now lives in Butte, Montana with his wife.  His blog, The Quivering Pen, can be found at: www.davidabramsbooks.blogspot.com  Visit his website at: www.davidabramsbooks.com

 

Pam Houston – Concision Rocks!! (NOTE: THIS WORKSHOP IS NOW FULL)

What can you include in 1,000 words?  The whole world, if you are   skillful. Labeled sudden, brief, micro, flash, postcard and short shorts, these beauties are filling the literary gap between the short story and the prose poem.  I love them because they insist the writer pay a poet’s attention to language as well as a storyteller’s attention to narrative arc. During this afternoon workshop, we will focus on word economy and structure in the short form. You will be amazed at how much you don’t have to tell after all!  Since honing skills in concision serves all prose, this workshop is intended to both look at your brief works from start to finish and provide writers with skills that will apply to stories of varying lengths back at home. (I always say, anything good can be made better by cutting 20% out of it.)  The shorts you turn in will also give us occasion to talk about metaphor, lyricism, dialogue, tense and point of view choices, and beginnings and endings. Please submit stories no longer than 1,000 words or a series of three stories fewer than 300 words each. For longer stories, only the first 1,000 words will be read and cPam Houstononsidered, but valuable attention will paid to the prose. Participants will have the opportunity to read each others pages before the day of the workshop. Come prepared to make constructive comments and ask thoughtful questions pertaining to each of the submissions. Friday, October 4, 2013, 1:00-4:45 pm at the Marlboro Graduate Center.

 Pam Houston’s most recent book is Contents May Have Shifted, published in 2012, by W.W. Norton. She is also the author of two collections of linked short stories, Cowboys Are My Weakness and Waltzing the Cat, the novel, Sight Hound, and a collection of essays called A Little More About Me, all published by W.W. Norton. Her stories have been selected for volumes of Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Awards, The Pushcart Prize, and Best American Short Stories of the Century. She is the winner of the Western States Book Award, the WILLA award for contemporary fiction, and The Evil Companions Literary Award and multiple teaching awards. She is the Director of Creative Writing at U.C. Davis and teaches in The Pacific University low residency MFA program, and at writer’s conferences around the country and the world. She lives on a ranch at 9,000 feet in Colorado near the headwaters of the Rio Grande.

Registration: The fee for each workshop is $75. Space will be limited to 12 students in each class to ensure a quality experience. To submit your payment and work for review, please visit: https://marlborocollege.submittable.com/submit

If you have any additional questions, please email Workshop Director Jodi Paloni at jpaloni@myfairpoint.net or Amanda Whiting, Marlboro College Registrar Office Assistant, awhiting@marlboro.edu.