Start Your Novel: A Generative Fiction Workshop with Rachel Heng


8-week Fiction Workshop — 12 students

Time & Date:
Thursdays, 6:00 — 8:30 pm
January 16th — March 12th*

Austin Bat Cave
1210 Rosewood Ave. (map)

Member Price: $375**

Will 2020 be the year you start writing that novel? Perhaps you’ve never written fiction before, but you have an idea for a story that you can’t stop thinking about. Or you’ve already started writing a draft and are struggling to keep it going. Or you’re a writer of short fiction thinking of diving into a longer project for the first time. If you want to start writing a novel and are looking for practical guidance and a supportive environment, this 8-week long generative workshop will help you explore your idea, develop your characters, outline out your story, and get writing.

The first 4 weeks of the course will be focused on craft lectures, generative exercises and developing a writing practice. Together, we’ll discuss subjects such as world building, voice, character development, dialogue, plot and structure. Expect to be working on in-class writing exercises. At this stage, we’ll also discuss writing routines, how to fit writing around your daily schedule, setting goals and staying motivated. The second 4 weeks of the course will be focused on workshopping. Each participant will workshop once, submitting up to 25 pages of a novel opening or chapter. You’ll receive practical, supportive and detailed feedback on your submissions. Feedback will be geared towards questions, development and next steps rather than ‘fixing’, since novels will be works-in-progress. By the end of the course, students will have written at least a first chapter, created a plan for the rest of their novel, and developed a sustainable writing practice.

*no class March 5th

**applies to Literary Superstar Membership Level only

This class is open to writers at all levels. 

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About the Instructor:

Rachel Heng is the author of the novel, Suicide Club (Henry Holt, 2018), which was featured as a best summer read by outlets such as The Irish TimesELLEGizmodoNYLONThe Rumpus and BustleSuicide Club will be translated into ten languages worldwide and won the Gladstone Library Writer-In-Residence Award 2020. Rachel’s short fiction has received a Pushcart Prize Special Mention and Prairie Schooner‘s Jane Geske Award, and has appeared or is forthcoming in Glimmer TrainGuernicaMcSweeney’s QuarterlyKenyon ReviewBest Singaporean Short Stories Vol. 4 and elsewhere. Her non-fiction has been listed among Best American Essays’ Notable Essays and has been published in The Rumpus, The Telegraph and elsewhere. She has received grants and fellowships from the Vermont Studio Center, Sewanee Writers’ Conference, Kenyon Review Writers’ Workshop, Fine Arts Work Center and the National Arts Council of Singapore. Rachel is currently a James A. Michener Fellow at the Michener Center for Writers, where she is pursuing her MFA in Fiction and Playwriting.

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