Date(s) - Thu 11th Jan - Thu 8th Feb, 2024
7:00pm - 9:00pm
The possibilities of short fiction
Join award-winning bilingual writer Yan Ge to dive into stories from all over the world and explore the possibilities of short fiction.
As part of this course, you will also be invited to attend an online Guest Reader event with short story writer and novelist, Leone Ross.
Every piece of short fiction consists of at least two stories: the story written and the story untold and fundamentally, it is the latter that determines if the fiction stirs us – unsettles as much as provokes. In this four-week short fiction course, we will read stories from all over the world and enquire into different ways of storytelling. We will learn the nitty-gritty of the craft while contemplating the quintessence and boundaries of short fiction as a form. This will be a small and energising workshop and a salubrious space shared by writers at various points in their careers.
Moniack in a Month: Short Fiction includes:
- a short introductory welcome session
- four stimulating online workshops
- one 30-minute tutorial
- a Guest Reader event
- A final ceilidh session – sharing of work
- Contact and support from your community of writers via Google Classroom (optional)
- Support from your Moniack Mhor host
Workshop 1 – Characterisation
What makes a character convincing and what makes them compelling? What do they look like and how do they sound? We are going to consider different aspects of characters in this workshop.
Workshop 2 – Narrative Traditions
In this workshop, we will investigate different narrative traditions, probe the three modes of fiction, and re-examine the notions of showing and telling.
Workshop 3 – Voices
A story is made of voices – the narrative voice and the voices of the characters. In order to find the voices, we need to first listen to what the story wants.
Workshop 4 – Peculiarity and Specificity
Strange things happen in short fiction. But how do we negotiate between the strange and the familiar and what do we do to beguile the reader so they buy into the most peculiar tale?
Guest Reader Event
In an hour-long event that will also be open to the public, award-winning short story writer and novelist Leone Ross will read from her work and be in conversation with Yan Ge and our online audience.
Week 1 Thursday 11 Jan 6.30–9.00pm Welcome Session and Workshop 1
Week 2 Thursday 18 Jan 7.00–9.00pm Workshop 2
Week 3 Tuesday 23 Jan 8.00–9.00pm Guest Reader Event
Week 3 Thursday 25 Jan 7.00–9.00pm Workshop 3
Week 4 Thursday 1 Feb 7.00–9.00pm Workshop 4
Week 4 Thursday 8 Feb 7.00–9.00pm Ceilidh
Your one-to-one tutorial with Yan will be scheduled when the course starts.
Yan Ge was born in Sichuan, China in 1984. She is a fiction writer in both Chinese and English, and is the author of 14 books in Chinese, including six novels. She has received numerous awards and was named by People’s Literature magazine as one of 20 future literature masters in China. Her work has been translated into 11 languages, including English, French and German. The latest English translation of her novel, Strange Beasts of China, was one of the New York Times Notable Books of 2021.
Yan’s English writing has appeared in the New York Times, the Irish Times, TLS, Granta, The Stinging Fly and elsewhere. She has an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia where she was the recipient of the UEA International Award 2018/19. Her English language debut short story collection Elsewhere was published by Faber in the UK and Scribner in the USA in summer 2023 and was named a New Yorker book of the year. Yan lives in Norwich with her husband and son.
Leone Ross is a novelist, short story writer and editor. Her fiction has been nominated for the Women’s Prize, the Goldsmiths award, the RSL Ondaatje award, and the Edge Hill Prize, among others. In 2022, she won the Manchester Prize for Fiction for her short story, ‘When We Went Gallivanting’. The Guardian has praised her ‘searing empathy’ and the Times Literary Supplement called her ‘a pointilliste, a master of detail…’ Ross has taught creative writing for 20 years, up to PhD level. Her third novel, This One Sky Day aka Popisho was published in 2021 (Faber & Faber). She is the editor of Glimpse: A Black British Anthology of Speculative Fiction (2022, Peepal Tree Press).
The full fee for this online course is £325. A deposit of £100 is required to secure your place, which is non-refundable after a 14-day cooling-off period. The balance payment of £225 is due four weeks before the course begins.
All workshops include a short break. Moniack Mhor staff will be on hand to support you during your course.
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