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Where is the border between fiction and memoir, and how and when do we cross over? We’ve become accustomed to thinking there’s a firm distinction between these genres, but the reality is, there’s a lot of room for letting the imagination run wild in our “true” stories, or for bringing in real events, characters, and emotions into our fiction. We’ll look at your story or novel chapter together, so you’ll get to hear how it lands on readers, and we’ll spend time looking at some of the points of craft (character description, dialogue, pacing, etc.). Each session will include generative writing exercises designed to unlock your imagination and help you find new roads through the borderlands.

Header image by ELG21

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Instructor: Sarah Van Arsdale

Sarah Van Arsdale’s fifth book, The Catamount, a narrative poem with her watercolor illustrations, was published by Nomadic Press in May 2020. She is the author of four books of fiction: Toward Amnesia, Grand Isle, In Case of Emergency, Break Glass, and Blue, which won the 2002 Peter Taylor Prize for the novel. Her poetry and essays have been widely published in literary magazines. She also teaches in the low-residency MFA program at Antioch University. She holds an MFA in creative writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts.