5 Tuesdays, August 16 – September 20, 7-9:30pm Berkeley
Skip August 23
$215 members/$245 others
In this beginner’s course, you’ll be introduced to creative nonfiction (i.e., personal essays/memoirs), fiction, and poetry. Ben will give you writing prompts to spark your imagination and to draw out stories. In fun and instructive exercises, you’ll explore craft basics such as developing compelling characters and creating believable dialogue.
In addition to doing your own writing, you’ll read excerpts from writers like Kate Braverman, Mary Karr, and Raymond Carver. “Sometimes we’ll read for the gut-level response and later think about why we reacted the way we did,” says Ben. “Other times we’ll focus on an aspect of craft, such as pacing or descriptive language, and think about how to use that in our own writing. Discussions and sharing of your own writing will also be an important part of this class. By the end of the course you’ll have the tools to develop a creative piece in any genre of your choosing.”
Ben Jackson has taught creative writing to students from the second grade up to the college level. His work has appeared in New England Review, The Southern Review, Hudson Review, Prairie Schooner, Iowa Review, and elsewhere. His awards include the 2015 Robinson Jeffers Tor House Prize for Poetry as well as residencies from Vermont Studio Center, Jentel Artist Residency Program, and Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts. A graduate of Warren Wilson College’s MFA Program for Writers, he is the director of The Writing Salon.