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Haunted Houses: a Generative Fiction 6-Week Zoom Workshop, Join List For Next Class
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Haunted Houses: a Generative Fiction 6-Week Zoom Workshop, Join List For Next Class

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Class Starts July 7th, 2022

Class will meet weekly on Thursdays via Zoom, 7PM - 9PM EST

Any questions about this class? Use the Chat Button (lower left) to talk with us.

Taught by Elinam Agbo, the 2021-2023 Kenyon Review Fellow in Prose. Read her work in American Short Fiction, PEN America Debut Short Stories and Nimrod. Elinam is a graduate of the Clarion Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers’ Workshop, holds an MFA from the University of Michigan’s Helen Zell Writers’ Program, and is co-founder of MQR Mixtape, an online imprint of Michigan Quarterly Review. Her work has received recognition and support from Aspen Words and the Hurston/Wright Foundation. 

In this generative fiction workshop, we will approach the haunted house as a site of psychological horror and defamiliarization. We will go beyond the familiar cobwebbed Halloween house and explore other iterations of the trope: the house as a witness, a portal, a gossip, an agent of its own demise.

Alongside weekly writing exercises and prompts, we will discuss the tools and techniques that can allow us to effectively navigate, inhabit, and populate our own “houses.”

To acquire these tools, we will read and discuss short stories by Daisy Johnson, Mariana Enriquez, Helen Oyeyemi, Angela Carter, Kelly Link, Hiromi Kawakami, and others. Then we will practice using these skills in our own work.


  • Practice reading as a writer
  • Learn how to see the uncanny in the mundane
  • Learn how to recreate a "house" in fiction
  • Develop the language to articulate your writing goals clearly


    This is the workshop where I cemented my voice. From the diverse readings to discussion and prompts, Elinam Agbo created a workshop that elevated my understanding of how memory and setting took place within my story. I looked forward to this workshop every week because I was always challenged to think about my writing in a different way, thus making the current version of my draft the best I've ever had! I'm so glad I took the leap and signed up!” –Jazmine C., Detroit, MI 

    Elinam’s class was an illuminating experience. The prompts, stories, and exercises she provided were clear and accessible, but also challenged students to go beyond their storytelling comfort zones. She was an engaging instructor who connected with students from all kinds of reading and writing backgrounds. Through her class, I learned how to probe at the strange margins of our daily life to discover stories waiting to be written, and I generated a number of new ideas that I’m very excited about.” –Annie C., Chicago, IL

    "I took the Memory and Setting workshop as my first ever writing workshop. Elinam chose a rich selection of weekly readings. What I really enjoyed was how Elinam taught us to break down pieces to their rhetorical devices and styles, in order to see what works and what we can borrow from that. Elinam is great at seeing your vision and then helping you find the tools to get there. At the end of the eight weeks, I had gotten much better at editing. I would definitely take another one of Elinam's workshops!" –Joy W., New York, NY

    Elinam’s course broke me out of my writing gloom pretty much instantly. Her syllabus prompted lively discussion and also opened my writing back up. The class encouraged me to be daring again. Elinam introduced me to stories that I have often returned to since and might never have known without her. She also provided us with wonderfully creative prompts, my favorite: write a love story in under 200 words. She understands the alchemy of a good prompt: a constraint that leads you somewhere unexpected, causes you to leave self-consciousness behind. But what was most remarkable about Elinam’s class was the compassionate and rigorous learning environment she created. Even on Zoom, during a global pandemic, in the lead up to the election, this was by far the most welcoming, generous, and inspiring workshop experience I have ever had. She built community extraordinarily well, despite the challenges, at first through ice breakers, and then simply natural, comfortable conversation. In the very first week, Elinam guided us in developing detailed community norms that set the tone for the rest of our time together. She set an example by approaching our work with curiosity and precision. The written feedback I received from her on the two pieces I workshopped was careful and empathetic; she saw to the heart of my project and helped me envision a version of it that would connect with readers, that would move beyond a messy manuscript I had written for myself into something another human might actually enjoy.” –Sofia G., Brooklyn, NY

    "Before I took Elinam's workshop, I did not believe I could write fiction. During our first session, Elinam asked us to share the story of how we became writers, and I remembered my earliest memory related to writing: as a child, I told my brother stories my dad copied into my baby book. The wall I had erected within myself, the story I had told myself about myself for so long, began to crumble. In the weeks after, I read the stories Elinam assigned and fell in love with every single one. These stories expanded my sense of what "fiction" is and could be, and they so genuinely thrilled me that after I read, I could not help but pick up my pen and write. So began my short story, and when I shared an excerpt of it in our workshop, I was terrified--but Elinam has a magical way of making every writer feel comfortable and seen, and I emerged from the workshop thoroughly invigorated, with a more grounded sense of how the story could evolve. Truly, Elinam's workshop opened up a new world of possibility in me. Her sage advice, deep seeing, and heartfelt encouragement make her an exceptional writing teacher and workshop facilitator. I can't recommend her workshop enough!" --Sora B., Ann Arbor, MI

    You can pay for the course in full or use Affirm or Shop Pay to pay over time with equal Monthly Payments. Both options are available at checkout.


    This class meets weekly via Zoom on Thursdays at 7PM EST. As a generative workshop, our goal for this workshop is to generate new material and complete a draft of a short story in the span of six weeks.

    • Instructor: Elinam Agbo

    • Starts July 7th, 2022

    • Course is fully ONLINE and meets weekly via Zoom.

    Contact us HERE if you have any questions about this class.

    Elinam Agbo was born in Ghana and grew up in Kansas. Her writing has appeared and is forthcoming in Apogee Journal, The Bare Life Review, American Short Fiction, Nimrod, PEN America Best Debut Short Stories 2018, and elsewhere. A graduate of the Helen Zell Writers’ Program and the 2019 Clarion Writers' Science Fiction & Fantasy Workshop, she co-founded MQR Mixtape, an online imprint of Michigan Quarterly Review. Her work has received recognition and support from Aspen Words, the Clarion Foundation, and the Hurston/Wright Foundation, among others. She is currently the 2021-2023 Kenyon Review Fellow in Prose. 

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