Monday, February 27, 2012

Online Course: So Not Chick Lit: Writing Novels About Women's Lives

Want to let you know that registration for my online class, So Not Chick Lit: Writing Novels About Women's Lives, for Stanford Continuing Studies Online Writer's Studio is open now! This is a fun and informative class for all levels of writers and, since it's online, you can take it from anywhere in the world!

Here's some info from the description:

Since women buy the most books and make up the majority of book groups, it’s no wonder that publishers are always looking for well-written “women’s fiction.” But what exactly is women’s fiction? In this course, we define it as novels by and for women that explore women’s lives and issues, often focusing on, but not limited to relationships between mothers and daughters, siblings, friends, spouses, and so on, and those that showcase female protagonists. Through lectures, specific examples from current novels, and extensive feedback on your own work, you’ll learn techniques that will enable you to write successful women’s fiction in fresh, unclichéd ways, while still maintaining accessibility and appeal. We will especially look at developing a strong voice, how to use humor effectively (when appropriate), and ways to avoid preachiness and pretension.
In this course we’ll be doing close readings of three terrific books about women’s lives, The Year of Fog by Michelle Richmond, The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown, and Good Grief  by Lolly Winston, as well as looking at excerpts from some other fine novels. We’ll analyze the author’s voice, which includes attributes such as diction (the words the writer chooses), syntax (how she arranges and groups the words), structure (the order of how she presents events), and tone (the attitude toward the characters, subject and events of the novel). You’ll also discover choices you can make about point of view and past or present tense.

We’ll also be reading and discussing topics from an excellent book on craft, The Modern Library Writer’s Workshop: A Guide to the Craft of Fiction, a book I think you’ll find to be a handy reference and inspiration not only now, but long after this course is over.

If you're interested, please check it out here. Class starts April 9!

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