Caitlin Horrocks is author of the story collection This Is Not Your City. Her stories and essays appear in The New Yorker, The Best American Short Stories, The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories, The Pushcart Prize, The Paris Review, The Atlantic, Tin House, One Story and other journals and anthologies. Her awards include the Plimpton Prize and fellowships to the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and the MacDowell Colony. She is fiction editor of The Kenyon Review and teaches at Grand Valley State University and in the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College. She is currently working on a novel and a second story collection, both forthcoming from Little, Brown.
The Telling Detail: Making Worlds Feel Real
Writing convincing descriptions isn’t about drowning the reader in information, but about finding the exact right words and images to make places and people come alive. We’ll look at examples, discuss how to choose your character and setting details and get them onto the page effectively, and write and share creative exercises.
Hermit Crab Stories
In fiction, we often talk about form only in terms of length: novels and short stories and flash fiction or the elusive novella. We can do better! This workshop will examine the possibilities of “hermit crab stories,” meaning stories that borrow the “shell” of everyday documents like receipts, ledgers, lists, school essays, instruction manuals and many more. We’ll explore how writing within the constraints of borrowed shells can shape a difficult subject, refresh a familiar one, and provide new paths for our creativity. Class will include sample readings, discussion, and creative exercises.