In this online writing workshop, we’ll write short passages of prose that explore the mystery of the everyday. We will work in a mode that we could call flash memoir, vignette, or micro-essay. These short pieces could become the basis for a longer work (essay/memoir), or remain stand alone "flash" pieces. Alternately, you could see them as writing practice, as a way to loosen up and access your creativity. We will also explore the (blurry) lines between prose poem, flash fiction, and micro-essay, reading examples from each of these genres and dipping into them at will. Some of the writers we may read as models include Lydia Davis, Lynda Barry, Paul Auster, Malena Morling, Tomas Transtromer, Jessica Mesman Griffith, Sherman Alexie.
One of the aims of this course will be exploration of the element of the absurd, surreal, or wondrous that exists in our everyday experience. We will spend much of our time in a mode of play and discovery, even when writing on serious subjects. You’ll post some of your responses to writing exercises for the whole group to see. You will receive feedback from me along the way, and at the end of the course, I will read a portfolio of work or an essay based on your vignettes from each student.