Welcoming Fictionalization into Experience: 5 Questions for Nan Cuba

“Authors like Chekhov, Austen, Mansfield, Dickens, Faulkner never studied writing in an academic program. Nobel Laureate Doris Lessing quit school at the age of thirteen. These masters learned craft by analyzing the work of celebrated authors. My advice is to read widely like they did, and notice craft features: word choice, a sentence’s musical replication of a character’s action, the convincing accuracy of an idiosyncratic voice, the tension and pacing of a scene, the symbiotic nature of the story’s elements. When you love something you’ve read, figure out why.” -Nan Cuba

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Working with Memory in Memoir: 5 Questions for Rachel Starnes

“I’m hoping what people come away with this time is a bit of grace and forgiveness for how complicated memory really is, and how clever our brains can be with telling us we’ve got the whole truth, when what we’ve got is really a fraction that changes shape. We’re conditioned in this culture to believe that facts will reveal the ‘Truth,’ but I think where memoir really gets interesting is where it allows for slippage, makes room for other interpretations, and invites the reader into the struggle of making meaning from experience rather than telling us the ‘One Right Way’ to see what happened.” -Rachel Starnes

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The Importance of Character in Memoir: 5 Questions for Charlotte Gullick

“I try to practice gratitude: if I’m feeling down or disempowered about my writing because of rejections or not being as good as I want to be on the page, I ask myself to consider what I can be grateful for in my writing life – and writing this out usually shifts the negative feelings into something that has agency and power. The act of writing moves me out of the passive place of being at the mercy of my feelings.” -Charlotte Gullick

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Beginning a Memoir: 5 Questions for Jessica Wilbanks

“It’s incredibly helpful to give yourself permission as a writer to simply generate material–and then, at the right moment, when you’ve done the necessary work to get the story on paper, switch over to a more architectural mode and focus primarily on structure.” -Jessica Wilbanks

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Marketing and Publicity: 5 Questions for Katharine Duckett

“After this class, you’ll have a tool box of marketing and publicity skills that you can use throughout your career. These tools are applicable across genres, and are important to have at your disposal whether you’re working with a large publishing team or publishing as an indie author: they’ll help you become adept, empowered, and ready to adapt your marketing and publicity approach to any new publishing project.” -Katharine Duckett

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