Multiple Viewpoints with Suzy Vitello

Navigate the various options related to point of view in this 10-day intensive under the guidance of Suzy Vitello, den mother of Portland's hottest writing group.

Your Instructor: Suzy Vitello, den mother of Portland's hottest writing group

Where: Online — Available everywhere!

When: This class is not currently enrolling. To be notified when it is offered again, Click Here

Enrollment: 25 students

Price: $175

Class Description

It's time to look at your writing from a different viewpoint.

Modeled on Suzy Vitello's hit class, Say It Like You Mean It: 10 Days to Better Dialogue, we're excited to bring you a brand new intensive from the den mother of Portland's hottest writing group. 

In this ten-day intensive, Suzy will help you:

  • Navigate point of view options and give you a decision-making tool kit to use for your next project.
  • Squeeze the maximum from your chosen POV strategy to apply to your current project or projects.
  • Give you clear guidance on what the various narrative options buy you, as well as their limitations.

You'll also get a writing assignment, so you can use your new muscles and get peer feedback. Five assignments will be chosen randomly for critique by Suzy, and another three people will be chosen for a chance to submit up to 10 pages of (double-spaced) prose to Suzy for critique after the workshop concludes.

And, as an added bonus, you’ll get POV wisdom from authors like Chuck Palahniuk, Lidia Yuknavitch, Monica Drake and Chelsea Cain!

What This Class Covers

Day 1: Why “head hopping” doesn’t work

Ah, the omniscient, all-knowing third-person narrator. Zipping in and out of heads, sampling thoughts and feelings willy-nilly. Once upon a time most narratives were crafted using this narrative strategy. Not anymore. Lecture one spells out why.

Day 2: Close third, multiple points of view

Lecture two breaks down this popular POV stance. It can be a very satisfying narrative option, but there are caveats. We’ll examine a passage of prose closely, and discuss this narrative decision and the resulting readers’ experience.

Day 3: Close third, single point of view

In this lecture, we’ll visit some examples of close third single POV for an understanding of what this narrative stance buys you, and what the potential drawbacks are.

Day 4: Second person point of view

Contrary to popular assumption, Jay McInerney did not invent this form. We’ll look at several examples of second-person narrative and discuss how to approach this form to maximize its effectiveness.

Day 5: First person point of view

Is it overused? Is it the default? Does it sound too self-conscious? This lecture will offer a few tricks to help you explore the full realm of possibilities with this popular narrative option.

Day 6: POV tips from "the group"

Various members of Portland’s hottest writing group will offer their wisdom on POV. An exclusive array of POV secrets from Chuck Palahniuk’s critique group. Also, this list will offer a strategy for deciding which narrative option to use.

Day 7: Submit your assignment!

Craft a scene with at least two characters in it. Write the scene twice, using two different point-of-view options with the following parameters:

  • Keep the cumulative page count on the assignment to 7 pages or less (double-spaced)
  • The characters should be engrossed in some sort of activity
  • Include at least 3 exchanges of dialogue

Day 8: Peer reviews!

Fellow students will contribute comments on assignments as they are submitted.

Day 9: Conference call and selection of winners!

Suzy will take questions from students on a conference call, and the winners of the eight critiques will be selected.

Day 10: Wrap up and Q & A

Suzy will post line-by-line edits and notes on the randomly chosen “winning” five assignments, and follow up on any remaining questions.

Goals Of This Class

  • Navigate point of view options
  • Give you a decision-making tool kit to use for your next project
  • Squeeze the maximum from your chosen POV strategy
  • Give you clear guidance on what the various narrative options buy you, as well as their limitations
  • Learn tips and tricks from Portland's hottest writing group, which includes authors like Chuck Palahniuk, Lidia Yuknavitch, Monica Drake and Chelsea Cain
  • Win a chance for critiques from Suzy

Additional Info

A sharp-edged satire of contemporary motherhood from the comic novelist of cult favorite Clown Girl, The Stud Book is the latest book from Monica Drake.

All students are automatically entered in a lottery, where one winner, selected at random, will receive their own personalized copy of The Stud Book.

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