Every day we slaughter our finest impulses. That is why we get a heartache when we read those lines written by the hand of a master and recognize them as our own, as the tender shoots which we stifled because we lacked the faith to believe in our own powers, our own criterion of truth and beauty. –– Henry Miller
“A writer should never leave a workshop feeling crestfallen or defeated. It takes a great deal of courage to begin writing at all, and it can at times feel like a lonely journey,” says David Hill. “A successful workshop is one in which every participant walks away with a better understanding of the elements of storytelling, feeling energized and eager to continue.
In this workshop, you’ll explore the possibilities for delving deeper into your material. What’s lurking beneath the surface, just waiting to be unearthed? During workshopping sessions, you may choose to submit existing drafts or drafts generated in this class.
“In our discussions,” says David, “we’ll try not to stifle one another by pointing out weaknesses, but rather to encourage by pointing out strengths. The goal is to preserve faith in our own powers as writers and human beings, while at the same time honing our craft via thoughtful, engaged feedback, and moving forward into that ever-challenging process of revision.”
Each week, in addition to workshopping, students will read short pieces of published fiction to see how other writers have used particular tools of the trade. You’ll also have the chance to do some in-class writing exercises, “which may at times arise out of work shared during workshopping,” says David, “and which could also be incorporated into whatever you’re currently working on.”
David William Hill holds an Education Specialist teaching credential in California and an MFA in fiction from San Francisco State University. He has taught writing at San Francisco State, Academy of Art University, and City University of Hong Kong. His stories have appeared in several journals, including [PANK], Chicago Quarterly Review, Hobart, Arroyo Literary Review, J Journal: New Writing on Justice, Cha: An Asian Literary Journal, Cimarron Review, and Catamaran Literary Reader, among others, and he has been a finalist for both a Glimmer Train prize and the Montana Prize in Fiction. He also served as assistant editor for two oral history books from Voice of Witness, Underground America: Narratives of Undocumented Lives (McSweeney’s, 2008) and Invisible Hands: Voices from the Global Economy (McSweeney’s, 2014.) Several of his former students achieved their first publications with work generated in his courses.