Fiction Innovation Laboratory with Grace Krilanovich

In this two week workshop with Grace Krilanovich, expand your idea of what you can do with fiction—and learn nuts-and-bolts tools for getting that fiction down on paper.

Your Instructor: Grace Krilanovich, author of 'The Orange Eats Creeps'

Where: Online — Available everywhere!

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

Enrollment: 16 students

Price: $199

Class Description

How do you start? 

As writers we struggle with what to say that hasn’t already been said, how to approach the dreaded blank screen, and how to find our way through the near-limitless number of possibilities for what can happen in a piece of fiction.

In this class you'll generate ideas using techniques championed by the literary avant garde and other “experimental” writers. Then you'll work toward making these ideas coalesce into an innovative piece of fiction.

This is about innovation

Paradoxical as it may sound, when it comes to writing, constraints really can set you free. So, with that in mind, you'll be doing writing exercises drawn from the traditions of Oulipo and the Surrealists. You'll make cut-ups, used to illustrious effect by William Burroughs and Brion Gysin. You'll look at hybrid forms and genre mash-ups to embolden ourselves in our own work.

This two-week workshop is led by Grace Krilanovich, author of the critically-acclaimed The Orange Eats Creeps. And it's her belief that this class will expand your idea of what you can do with fiction—and provide a nuts and bolts approach to putting it down on paper. 

What This Class Covers

Week One

I. Introduction to the historical tradition of “experimental writing.”

II. Why “experiment”? / How to use this class.

III. Writing strategies, techniques, games:

     A. Surrealist games: Question & Answers, Exquisite Corpse, Substitution, homemade MadLibs

     B. Oulipo: Writing by constraints. 

          1. Examples: Homophonic Translation, Definitional Literature, selections from Christian Bök’s Eunoia. 

     C. Brion Gysin’s Cut-Up method. 

          1. Example: William S. Burroughs’ The Soft Machine.

Assignment: Student picks 2 or 3 techniques from those introduced in lecture as a text generating exercise. Then, student will begin to shape and appropriate text as they see fit (or simply edit for clarity). 

Week Two

Lecture: On establishing an everyday writing practice that incorporates play, text generating devices and other innovative strategies. How to apply text from “games” to a work of fiction—to build a story, to generate plot ideas, inject an unusual voice to your story, etc.

Assignment: Apply strategy (or strategies) of choice to a new piece of fiction, including a brief note explaining your process. 

Goals Of This Class

  • Learn techniques championed by the literary avant garde
  • Make these ideas coalesce into an innovative piece of fiction
  • Write new, exciting, original work
  • Get that work critique by a critically-acclaimed author
  • Expand your idea of what you can do with fiction
  • Learn the nuts and bolts approach to putting your work down on paper
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