Begins Monday, July 31st, 2023
Any questions about this class? Use the Chat Button (lower left) to talk with us.
Taught by Jenny Bhatt, whose debut story collection, EACH OF US KILLERS
, made The Millions' Most Anticipated Debuts, Lit Hub's Most Anticipated Debuts
, & Electric Literature's Most Anticipated Debuts
. Jenny's story, "Return to India," is included in The Best American Mystery and Suspense 2021
. Read Jenny's short story at Electric Literature
, recommended and introduced by Elizabeth McCracken.
Magical realism (or magic realism or marvelous realism; take your pick) is a difficult term to define. Most writers and critics agree that it is about narrative modes that bring two contradictory elements—the magical and the real—together in ways that allow us to explore alternate realities.
In this six-week workshop, we’ll discuss the history and practice of writing magical realism, key identifying elements that set it apart from other narrative modes, and some of the major writers of this literary movement like Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Angela Carter, Salman Rushdie, Toni Morrison, Haruki Murakami, Isabel Allende, et al. We’ll also look at examples from cultures beyond Latin America, Europe, and the US.
This is a reading- and writing-intensive workshop. Students will read stories or novel excerpts and practice the craft of magical realism through a variety of exercises to learn how to bring together the ordinary and the extraordinary, use cultural context through mythology and history, reverse-engineer a popular story to create our own version, consider sources of inspiration like magically real film and artwork for writing prompts, and more.
STUDENTS LOVE JENNY:
"I for one have thoroughly enjoyed this class, the reading, the homework, the workshopping/critiquing. It's been such a nice, challenging addition to this month. I feel I've developed a better command over the basic tenets of MR, and I definitely feel like my flash fiction game has benefited from the weekly writing assignments! Thank You for leading us through the last 4 weeks, Jenny, and thanks to everyone for making the time commitment to writing and reading!" -N.R.
"Everything about this class exceeded my expectations: the readings, the assignments, critiquing classmates' work, but especially Jenny's feedback. It was stellar, the best writing class I've taken." -Jody H.
"This has been a great class! Everyone's critiques have been wonderful. I was worried that people might not really take the time to give thoughtful critiques, but you all have (and then some). I also really enjoyed reading everyone's writing - there has been some really great writing here and I feel like I learned a lot from reading your work and feedback on your work." -K.F.
"Jenny's prompts and feedback were insightful, precise and invaluable! She gave me many tips which I could already transfer into work outside of the course. Next, the feedback of my classmates was very helpful, especially when a topic was repeated, indicating there was something to fix." -Menasheh F.
"I loved the example articles, the opportunity to share my readings, receive critiques (Jenny's were long, in-depth and very helpful for future development of pieces), and read others' writing. Jenny's suggestions of where to submit and how to find places to submit writing are invaluable." -Francesca R.
"I found the Instructor and Group critiques most valuable as well as the assigned stories chosen for the course. I have a much better understanding of Magical Realism now. I would recommend this class to other writers because of Jenny's encouragement, feedback, and knowledge, all invaluable." -Virginia B.
"The combination of thought-provoking essays and stories and the range of prompts has given me a lot to work with. I fully intend to go back and use the prompts I didn't already use to generate more stories. This has been a great class." -Linda M.
"This workshop has been great at exposing magical realism. I hadn't really thought I would be able to attempt writing in this genre, but through the excellent material and feedback you provided, am now hopeful." Srilatha R.
"Jenny's Magical Realism workshop exceeded my expectations. I found her individualized feedback the most valuable. I would highly recommend this workshop!" - C. Tran
"I loved Jenny's Magical Realism workshop. I found her feedback especially valuable. I would recommend this class to anyone interested in writing Magical Realism!" -Michelle W.
"This course has a very positive influence on my understanding of how to create a story based on a magical element. This is a great course." -Eugen H.
"The class was fantastic, but I was not surprised. Jenny is a fabulous teacher. The care with which Jenny built the course so that each lesson and assignment propelled us forward." E.B.
"Jenny's prompts and feedback were insightful, precise and invaluable! She gave me many tips which I could already transfer into work outside of the course. Next, the feedback of my classmates was very helpful, especially when a topic was repeated, indicating there was something to fix." M.F.
"The reading materials (fiction and non-fiction) and Jenny's feedback were invaluable." G.S.