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I’M TEACHING A WRITING CLASS! YOU SHOULD ENROLL!

Really excited to announce that I’ll be teaching a class on crafting magical realism/fabulist fiction through Litreactor in a few months! Here’s the class description, and please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. Looking forward to working with a great group of writers, so I’d love to have you enroll, which you can do here. 

Class Description

Humanize the fantastic…

…and in the process learn more about yourself and your characters. That’s part of the sly wonder of magical realism.

When creating a magical realism story, writers don’t invent new worlds, but instead reveal the fascinating aspects of the one they inhabit. Always wanted to try your hand at writing magical realism, but unsure where to start? Want to reset a myth in our current political climate and see what happens? Have an idea about that mythical creature immersed in the mundane that just won’t let you go? Now’s the time to give it a shot.

Along with your instructor you’ll explore the literary subgenre of magical realism. There’s a lot of talk about what this particular style can accomplish, and of what it should be, and you’ll explore those ideas. It’s one of the most exciting subgenres of fiction, and once you’ve settled on your story ideas, you’ll get down to those gritty essentials necessary to any story – voice, tone, plot, cause and effect, character growth. Because even if you’ve got a chain-smoking minotaur in your tale, the reader still has to care about the thing, right?

Participants may have a short story or novel excerpt already prepared when enrolling, though it’s strongly suggested that they write and expand on a piece as the class progresses. Each week will include handouts, a short lecture, suggested readings, and writing assignments that will be critiqued by your instructor and your peers. There will be opportunities to pose questions and engage in discussions with both Keith and your fellow classmates.

THE MAGIC IN THE MUNDANE is taught by Keith Rosson, author of the novels THE MERCY OF THE TIDE (2017) and SMOKE CITY (2018). His short fiction has appeared in Cream City Review, PANK, Phantom Drift, December, and more. He’s been longlisted for the Bram Stoker Award, and was a finalist for the New American Fiction Prize, as well as the Birdwhistle Prize for Short Fiction. He will be your guide along the magical path of endless storytelling possibilities.

What This Class Covers

WEEK 1 – REAL WORLD, MYTH MADE REAL

Magical realism portrays fantastical events in an otherwise realistic tone. As simple as that sounds, there’s a myriad of ways to tackle it, and some key ways to potentially rob your story of excitement and interest – and we’ll discuss all of that. Magical realism often brings fables, folk tales, and myths into contemporary, real-world settings, and in this first class, we’ll also begin brainstorming about potential combinations of the real-world/fantastical elements that make up the bedrock of the magical realism genre. After that, we’ll get to writing, because that’s why we’re here.

*There will be a handout and short lecture, suggested reading, and writing assignment for this class.

WEEK 2 – PRACTICING INDIFFERENCE

The hallmark of magical realism is its pedestrian acceptance of the fantastic as a part of everyday life. The fantastic can, at times, even be a hindrance. Within magical realism, the marvelous becomes everyday and commonplace. At this point we’ll have a number of story ideas and synopses to draw from, and will begin writing our stories. We’ll also have a writing assignment to kick-start potential story structures, and then we’ll get writing!

*There will be a handout and short lecture, suggested reading, and writing assignment for this class.

WEEK 3 – EVEN MAGIC TAKES WORK

At this point, we’ll have a significant start on our stories and will have submitted them for constructive critique from fellow classmates and the instructor. Apart from maintaining adherence to the key elements of magical realism, we’ll be focusing this session on the elements inherent within any piece of fiction, regardless of genre – voice, tone, pacing, dialogue, character development, etc.

*There will be a handout and short lecture, suggested reading, and writing assignment for this class.

WEEK 4 – VOILA!

For our final class, we’ll be reviewing the key points of what we’ve learned about magical realism, and writing as a whole. We’ll be critiquing pieces once more, polishing them up, and asking any questions that might have lingered or not been answered throughout the session. Ideally, students will have a complete story ready to submit to journals after completion of this session.

*There will be a handout and short lecture, suggested reading, and writing assignment for this class.

Goals Of This Class

• Learn about the many facets of magical realism and how it intersects with literary fiction
• Develop an understanding of how magical realism reflects our everyday lives, and how to use that in your fiction
• Leave class with a deeper understanding of the key elements of writing short fiction, regardless of genre
• Get your work critiqued by your peers and a published, acclaimed author

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