Merge the theoretical with the fictional to produce unique forms of hybrid writing.
Your Instructor: Lindsay Lerman (author of 'I'm From Nowhere')
Where: Online — Available everywhere!
When: September 15, 2020 - October 6, 2020
Enrollment: 16 Students
What happens when your writing just won’t stick to one genre?
What happens? What comes of it, what is produced? Something unrecognizable? Something unclassifiable? Let’s move in the direction of hybrid forms together and see.
If you write fiction and you’re drawn to theory—any of the many variations of theory—this class is for you. If you write theory and you’re drawn to fiction, this class is for you. Are you interested in the work of writers like Eve Sedgwick, Anne Carson, Chris Kraus, Charlene Elsby, Maggie Nelson, Reza Negarestani, Michael Taussig, and Steven Dunn—writers who pull in explicit references to philosophy and cultural studies to make their fiction and autofiction neither theory nor fiction, but also both? Are you like Yiyun Li, who writes, “I would like to believe that there are as many alternatives in life as in fiction”?
Each week, we will read and discuss some hybrid writing that reflects a range of approaches and concerns when it comes to messing with form. Each week, we will work on our own hybrid writing, using our readings and our discussions to strengthen, deepen, challenge, or otherwise transform what we’ve written. By the end of the class, students will have a more or less complete, workshopped piece of writing.
This class will feature discussion, lecture, writing, and workshopping. The aim of this class is to provide you with new techniques, new theoretical/intellectual approaches and insights, and new goals.
What This Class Covers
Week 1: The Characters are More than Ideas
Lecture/Discussion Focus: How do we do justice to characters and make them feel real without reducing them to “examples”?
Reading: selections from Nelson’s The Argonauts, Dunn’s Potted Meat, Elsby’s Hexis
Writing Goal: determine character/s that require attention, sketch them, and provide feedback to each other
Week 2: The Ideas are More than Characters
Lecture/Discussion Focus: How do we give the nuance and complication of ideas/theory room to breathe in a story, so that the ideas and the characters are compelling?
Reading: selections from Kraus’s I Love Dick, Negarestani’s Cyclonopedia, Taussig’s Cocaine Museum
Writing Goal: explore ideas that require attention, isolate them, then expand them, and provide feedback to each other
Week 3: Where Do They Meet? How Do They Meet?
Lecture/Discussion Focus: How do ideas and characters meet? What’s the point of trying to make them meet? What are we producing? (each of us) How is it functioning?
Reading: selections from Sedgwick’s Epistemology of the Closet, Anne Boyer’s The Undying, Fleischmann’s Time is a Thing The Body Moves Through
Writing Goal: unite ideas and characters, producing a draft to be shared for another round of feedback
Goals Of This Class
- Interrogate the nature of at least two types of writing: theoretical and fictional
- Produce writing that plays in (and with) multiple forms/genres
- Examine the role of character in hybrid forms
- Expand what can be done with both fiction and theory
LitReactor offers a unique approach to a writing education: You study what you want, when you want, at your own pace. We bring in veteran authors and industry professionals to host classes covering a wide range of topics in an online environment that’s interactive and flexible. You get detailed feedback on your work and take part in discussions in a judgement-free zone. It doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner or an experienced writer, our workshops are about working together to achieve your writing goals.
Where do classes take place?
Entirely online. So, anywhere you have Internet access.
Are there certain times when the whole class needs to "meet" online?
Nope. Our students come from all over the globe. Everything is posted online and accessible 24/7. (We do occasionally schedule phone chats, but try to reach a consensus on timing.)
What does a typical class consist of?
It varies, but nearly all our classes include weekly lectures, homework assignments, peer reviews, critiques from instructors, and discussion forums.
How much experience do you need to take a class?
Beginner or pro, everyone is welcome. We encourage all skill levels.
Got more questions? Click here for an extended FAQ.
And click here to explore a sample class that shows our layout and features.