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Ploi Pirapokin: Speculative Fiction: A Magical class for the (Un)Real

Authorphoto3Five Saturdays, Feb. 27-March 26, 2-4:30 pm     Berkeley
$215 members/$245 others     Cancellation/Refund Policy

I was attracted to science fiction because it was so wide open. I was able to do anything and there were no walls to hem you in, and there was no human condition that you were stopped from examining. — Octavia Butler

“The act of writing fiction is lying; you write about people who never existed and events that never happened,” says Ploi. “Whether it’s science fiction or fantasy or mystery stories or high-brow art, all those things are essentially untrue. But it has to have a truth at the core of it all.”

In this class, you will kick-start your imagination with the help of visualization and acting exercises, Oulipo writing prompts, and other creative techniques. “We’ll take a leap beyond the ordinary with examples on how to craft an engaging alternate reality, flesh out an enthralling character or dream up an unforgettable storyline,” says Ploi.

At the end of five weeks, you’ll have a better grip on how to apply creative writing techniques designed to help you think outside the box to create your own speculative fiction story. “This will be a supportive space to see how you use narrative prose to push beyond ordinary reality into a zone where the familiar becomes strange, and the strange familiar,” says Ploi. “Reality is frequently inaccurate. Why not accurately depict that?”

Ploi Pirapokin’s work is featured in the Bellingham Review, the East Bay Review, the Griffith Review, HYPHEN Magazine, Asia Literary Review, the Queen of Statue Square: New Short Fiction from Hong Kong, and Transfer Magazine. Winner of the 2014 Leo Litwak award in fiction, a 2015 Finalist for the Summer Literary Seminar Unified Literary contest, she has also received fellowships from the Ragdale Foundation, the New York Mills Regional Cultural Center, the Brush Creek Foundation, Kundiman, the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley and Writers on Writing Workshop at Tomales Bay. She holds a Masters of Fine Arts in fiction from San Francisco State University where she has taught as an adjunct professor in the creative writing department.


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