How do we turn “what happened” into a story? How do we shift through the sheer wealth of anecdote in a lived life and give it narrative purpose? Is “the truth” enough? In a confidential environment, we will examine what makes a story. This is a vigorous memoir workshop in which we will devote laser focus to the tools and techniques of good writing in the service of the story. Students should expect to write frequently in class and to complete daily writing assignments, as well as to read their colleagues’ work closely. Open to all levels, the class will help you refine work you have or find a beginning and meaningful way in to your story.
Registered students should submit a memoir excerpt or piece of personal creative nonfiction no longer than 1,200 words prior to the start of class to Susanna at email@example.com by May 28.
Susanna Sonnenberg is the author of two memoirs, Her Last Death and She Matters: A Life in Friendships, both New York Times bestsellers. She has been on the summer faculty of the Fine Arts Work Center since 2017. She lives in Missoula, Montana, where she teaches online and hikes with her dog Mazie.