Next Start Date: September 25, 2018 - THIS COURSE IS NOW CLOSED. If you'd like to receive notifications on new dates, please contact us.
Tutor: Suzanne Kamata
Duration: 6 weeks - online writing class
This online writing class is for anyone who is interested in getting started in writing fiction or delving further into writing stories. Each week we will address one aspect of fiction writing, beginning with a brief essay on craft. I will give short weekly writing assignments related to each topic, suggest supplemental reading material, and critique up to 1,000 words of your writing each week. We will discuss some of the fundamental aspects of story-writing, such as plot, character, dialogue, as well as how to come up with ideas in the first place, and how to keep yourself motivated.
Week 1 – Getting started
We will discuss our writing goals and practices, and how to generate ideas for writing.
Week 2 – Story Structure
We will take a look at plot basics and how to construct a story.
Week 3 – Showing vs Telling
One of the most common mistakes of beginning writers is the tendency to tell and not show. What does this mean? And how can it be avoided? When is it better to tell than show? We will look at some examples of showing and telling.
Week 4 – Creating Memorable Characters
We will discuss some of our favorite characters from fiction, as well as how to make our own characters more three-dimensional.
Week 5 – Dialogue
What should your characters say and how should they say it? We’ll discuss the pros and cons of dialect, slang, banter, and chatter, among other things.
Week 6 – Finishing Up
We’ll talk about revision, how to keep yourself motivated, and how to know when your story is finished.
Suzanne Kamata is the award-winning author of four novels – Losing Kei (Leapfrog Press, 2008), Gadget Girl: The Art of Being Invisible (GemmaMedia, 2013), Screaming Divas (Simon Pulse 2014), The Mermaids of Lake Michigan (Wyatt-Mackenzie Publishing, 2017) -- and a short story collection, The Beautiful One Has Come (Wyatt-Mackenzie Publishing, 2011). Her short stories and essays have appeared in many journals and magazines. She has an MFA from the University of British Columbia, and currently serves as Fiction Editor for Kyoto Journal.