Beginnings, Middles, Endings Workshop in Paris

Beginnings, Middles, Endings; The Story of Narrative with Irish writer Claire Keegan
Centre Culturel, Paris. February 23 & 24, 2019
Tuition Euro 350
To reserve, contact ckfictionclinic@yahoo.com

During these two days we will consider the structure of a narrative using the translation of a French novel and three short stories.

Participants will be asked to read and carefully consider the following:

1. “The Silent Men” and “The Adulterous Woman”; from Exile and the Kingdom by Albert Camus, translated by Justin O’Brien.

2. “The Legend of Saint Julian the Hospitalier”; from Three Tales by Gustave Flaubert.

3. A Woman’s Life by Guy de Maupassant.

4. We will also watch scenes of the film based on A Woman’s Life, and discuss what a scene is and how it reveals character.

BEGINNING: How and where do stories begin? How does an author make the incision in time and develop rising tension? How is a reader drawn into the narrative? Why do readers sometimes not get past the first page and put the book down? At what point does the beginning end and the middle begin? And why?

MIDDLE: If the beginning and the ending are the extremities, then the middle is the trunk of the story. We will look at why most manuscripts, if they fail structurally, tend to fall and waver in the middle. And we’ll examine the relationship between the beginning and the middle, how and why one feeds off the other. All participants will be asked to consider and reconsider what the middle is, how it functions in the text — and why it sometimes fails. We will discuss the texts with a view to deciding where the middle ends and the ending begins.

END: How do we conclude? Are endings natural — or an artifice? Isn’t life and learning ongoing — until it isn’t? The focus will be placed on falling action, resolution, redemption, emotional consequences and inevitability.

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Co Wexford workshop September 22 & 23

September 22 & 23, 2018
9.30am-5pm both days
Tuition Euro 325
Amber Springs Hotel, Gorey, Co Wexford

To book contact ckfictionclinic@yahoo.com

Claire Keegan, internationally acclaimed author and teacher of creative writing, will run a two day fiction workshop in Tullow, Co Carlow. This weekend will concentrate on works-in-progress submitted by the participants.

Manuscripts (novel excerpt or short story of up to 3,000 words) are due on or before September 12, distributed to every participant, and read with care by all.

Keegan will spend between 3-5 hours on each text before the workshop begins, and will then examine and discuss every text with the group during the weekend.

Discussion will include the structure of a narrative, paragraph structure, time, tension, drama, melodrama, statement,description, suggestion, conflict, character, humour, point of view, place, time and setting.

The aim, always, is to help each author with the next draft. The weekend will be of particular interest to those who write, teach, read or edit fiction — but anyone with an interest in how fiction works,improving their prose and/or helping others to do so, is welcome to attend. While most participants like to submit a manuscript, this is not a requirement.

A World of Your Own: A Fiction Workshop with Wayne Price

August 11 & 12, 2018
9.45am-6pm both days
Tuition Euro 300
Teach Bhride, Tullow, Co Carlow

Over two days, writer and teacher of creative writing Wayne Price will lead six fiction workshops focused on the many uses of place in stories, and the ways in which successful stories open up distinctive worlds of their own for both writer and reader. Through a mix of close textual study, lively discussion and practical workshopping these sessions will explore the vital importance of understanding stories not as ‘thematic’, or ‘plotted’, even if they might sometimes make use of these aspects, but primarily as different kinds of spaces for the writer’s and reader’s imaginations to inhabit. Arguably, all the lasting life of a great story comes from this ‘inhabitable’ quality, and by examining outstanding examples of such stories, divided roughly into four different kinds of imaginative space, we will work towards opening up and developing such possibilities in our own work.

The final afternoon session of each day will be led by Professor Alison Lumsden, internationally renowned expert on 19th century Scottish fiction. She will discuss the work of Robert Louis Stevenson, revered by writers such as Borges and Nabokov but all too often neglected and misunderstood by academics. These relaxed discussions will centre on Stevenson’s essays on fiction, so many of which echo the themes of the workshops, and some of his best short stories.

Wayne Price is the author of Furnace, a collection of stories nominated for the Saltire First Book of the Year in 2012, Mercy Seat, a novel and Fossil Record, a collection of poems awarded a Laureate’s Choice in 2015. He has been a major prize-winner of, and been nominated for, many international awards including the William Trevor/Elizabeth Bowen, the Bridport, Manchester International and Raymond Carver Short Story Prizes. He teaches literature and creative writing at the University of Aberdeen.

Alison Lumsden is the author of Walter Scott and the Limits of Language as well as more than fifty articles and book chapters on 19th and 20th century Scottish literature. She has also published short stories and is the General Editor of the Edinburgh Edition of Walter Scott’s poetry. She has lectured and presented keynote papers at many universities and conferences around the world and has been Professor of Scottish Literature at the University of Aberdeen since 2012.

Furnace is a heraldic collection […] of both incandescent restraint and dynamic range […] namely some of the best short stories written anywhere in recent years.’ Alan Warner

‘…masterful command of a notoriously tricky form […] Wayne Price is a writer of uncommon gifts.’ The Scotsman

London workshop October 20 & 21

October 20 & 21, 2018
9.45am-6pm both days
Tuition £380
Goldsmiths, University of London

To book contact ckfictionclinic@yahoo.com

Claire Keegan, internationally acclaimed author and teacher of creative writing, will run a two day fiction workshop in London. This weekend will concentrate on works-in-progress submitted by the participants.

Manuscripts (novel excerpt or short story of up to 3,000 words) are due on or before October 10, distributed to every participant, and read with care by all.

Keegan will spend between 3-5 hours on each text before the workshop begins, and will then examine and discuss every text with the group during the weekend.

Discussion will include the structure of a narrative, paragraph structure, time, tension, drama, melodrama, statement,description, suggestion, conflict, character, humour, point of view, place, time and setting.

The aim, always, is to help each author with the next draft. The weekend will be of particular interest to those who write, teach, read or edit fiction — but anyone with an interest in how fiction works,improving their prose and/or helping others to do so, is welcome to attend. While most participants like to submit a manuscript, this is not a requirement.

Inverness workshop October 13 & 14

October 13 & 14, 2018
9.45am-6pm both days
Tuition £350
Best Western Hotel, Inverness, Scotland

To book contact Laura Morgan on 01641 541393 or lmmorg4n@gmail.com

Claire Keegan, internationally acclaimed author and teacher of creative writing, will run a two day fiction workshop in Brisbane, Australia. This weekend will concentrate on works-in-progress submitted by the participants.

Manuscripts (novel excerpt or short story of up to 3,000 words) are due on or before October 1, distributed to every participant, and read with care by all.

Keegan will spend between 3-5 hours on each text before the workshop begins, and will then examine and discuss every text with the group during the weekend.

Discussion will include the structure of a narrative, paragraph structure, time, tension, drama, melodrama, statement,description, suggestion, conflict, character, humour, point of view, place, time and setting.

The aim, always, is to help each author with the next draft. The weekend will be of particular interest to those who write, teach, read or edit fiction — but anyone with an interest in how fiction works,improving their prose and/or helping others to do so, is welcome to attend. While most participants like to submit a manuscript, this is not a requirement.