Writing & Revising Personal Essays Using Music Zoom Seminar, Saturday, November 4th, 2023
Live Seminar Via Zoom Saturday, November 4th, 2023
The class will meet 10:00AM - 11:30AM ET
Any questions about this class? Use the Chat Button (lower left) to talk with us.
Led by Laura Dzubay, who holds degrees from the University of Michigan and Indiana University, where she won the AWP Intro Prize and served as fiction editor for Indiana Review. Her stories and essays are published or forthcoming in Electric Literature, Blue Earth Review, Hobart, Mid-American Review, and the upcoming anthology A Flame Called Indiana: An Anthology of Contemporary Hoosier Writing (IU Press 2023).
Get to know Laura in our Meet the Teaching Artist series.
The seminar uses the idea of the musical bridge to prompt questions of how to craft "bridges" in our own writing, and how to use this idea to seek out the emotional core of a personal essay.
This session will use musical examples to help us interrogate what we want out of the experience of writing a personal essay, what scares us about writing personal essays, and how to use this combination of desire and fear to access new depths in our thinking that we may not have expected.
The bridge in a piece of music often serves as a point of emotional escalation or heightened tension. We’ll examine some examples of successful or innovative bridges, and we’ll use these to investigate the questions of what makes a really good bridge work, and how we might set ourselves up with the ability to find, or create, these moments of tension in our pieces of creative nonfiction.
It’s often difficult in creative nonfiction to determine what it would take for an essay to feel “complete” in the way that we want, or to succinctly define or pinpoint our personal relationships with the things we’ve been grappling with. We’ll look at some of the architecture often used in music to try to discover new paths into doing this in our writing.
- This seminar will include group discussion and brainstorms, as well as personal reflective exercises focused on both the drafting and revision processes.
- In addition to what they come up with during class, students will leave with concrete prompts and exercises they can use to brainstorm new paths forward in their works of creative nonfiction, whether they’re drafting new pieces or searching for ways to revise or to build out pieces they’ve already been working on.
- Laura will also recommend further reading on the subject and resources that students can refer to in the future.
This seminar will give an overview of how to use music to access deeper levels of reflection within an essay, as well as specific examples and reflective exercises to help writers apply this thinking more personally to their own work.
"I loved this class. The creative writing topics felt more approachable when looked at through the lens of Taylor Swift songs. I could honestly see expanding this to 7 (maybe even 8 weeks). There was a lot of awesome content!" -Lizz H.
"This was a great class! The thoughtful way Laura was able to weave in Taylor Swift's lyrics and storytelling with novel writing concepts is what I found most valuable." -Jade E.
ONLINE COURSE STRUCTURE:
Live Seminar Via Zoom on Saturday, November 4th, 2023.
- Instructor: Laura Dzubay
- Class Starts Saturday, November 4th, 2023
- The class will meet via Zoom 10:00AM - 11:30AM ET
Instructor Laura Dzubay holds degrees from the University of Michigan and Indiana University, where she won the AWP Intro Prize and served as fiction editor for Indiana Review. Her stories and essays are published or forthcoming in Electric Literature, Blue Earth Review, Hobart, Mid-American Review, and the upcoming anthology A Flame Called Indiana: An Anthology of Contemporary Hoosier Writing (IU Press 2023).