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FICT 138 — Voice in Fiction: Style, Dialogue, and Point of View

Quarter: Summer
Instructor(s): Sarah Stone
Duration: 10 weeks
Format/Location: Live Online
Date(s): Jun 25—Aug 27
Class Recording Available: Yes
Class Meeting Day: Tuesdays
 
Class Meeting Time: 6:30—9:20 pm (PT)
Tuition: $745
   
Refund Deadline: Jun 27
 
Unit(s): 3
   
Enrollment Limit: 21
  
Status: Open
 
Quarter: Summer
Day: Tuesdays
Duration: 10 weeks
Time: 6:30—9:20 pm (PT)
Date(s): Jun 25—Aug 27
Unit(s): 3
Format/Location: Live Online
 
Tuition: $745
 
Refund Deadline: Jun 27
 
Instructor(s): Sarah Stone
 
Enrollment Limit: 21
 
Recording Available: Yes
 
Status: Open
 
Bharati Mukherjee wrote that “‘voice’ is our shorthand for the process of decision-making regarding tone, diction, pacing, texture, withholding, etc. in a given work.” Each writer, and each story or novel, has a particular voice—or sometimes a chorus of voices—that takes a reader deeply into characters’ lives and worlds: setting the tone, revealing the point of view, establishing a guiding presence, and determining meaning. Our decisions about dialogue weave the voice of the piece with the voices of the characters, along with their actions, gestures, and ideas. Together, we will read and discuss novel selections and short stories from Mukherjee, Toni Morrison, George Saunders, Zadie Smith, Italo Calvino, Grace Paley, Justin Torres, Helen Oyeyemi, Alice Munro, and others. Each participant will have the option of sharing up to 5,000 words of fiction for workshop. We will also have in-class writing exercises, with an option to receive light instructor feedback on up to 800 words each week. By the end of the course, you will find new ways to make point of view and style decisions that can transform your fiction and help bring your writer’s voice more vividly, distinctly alive.

SARAH STONE
Author

Sarah Stone is the author of Hungry Ghost Theater, a finalist for the 38th annual Northern California Book Awards, and The True Sources of the Nile. She is the co-author, with Ron Nyren, of Deepening Fiction: A Practical Guide for Intermediate and Advanced Writers. She has written for Korean public television, reported on human rights in Burundi, and looked after orphan chimpanzees at the Jane Goodall Institute. Her work has appeared in Image, Ploughshares, StoryQuarterly, The Millions, Scoundrel Time, The Believer, A Kite in the Wind: Fiction Writers on Their Craft, and elsewhere and was included in the distinguished stories list of The Best American Short Stories 2021. She received an MFA in creative writing from the University of Michigan.

Textbooks for this course:

There are no required textbooks; however, some fee-based online readings may be assigned.