Novel Workshop for Manuscripts in Progress: Going the Distance

Writing a novel is challenging. Like setting off on a long-distance road trip, it can be lonely and psychologically taxing, although it can also be thrilling. Sometimes the best strategy when working on a first draft is to get some miles beneath your wheels, put your pedal to the metal, and discover what your story is actually about. Whether you are stuck at chapter two, lost in the middle, or could use accountability and guidance, this course is designed to help you on your journey by providing the inspiration and structure needed to draft the next 50-100 pages of your manuscript. Generative exercises, weekly deadlines, and feedback focusing on possibilities and patterns—rather than problems—will inspire you to keep moving forward. Every week, students will have the space to submit five to 10 pages, either inspired by a loose prompt or self-directed, for feedback from workshop groups of three and instructor comments. Weekly lectures on craft topics such as drama and improbability, raising the stakes, making scenes, and deepening point of view will enable you to bring new energy into your writing process and keep your momentum going as you near your final destination.

Stephanie Reents
Former Stegner Fellow, Stanford

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Online, instructor-led
Jan 16 - Mar 22, 2024
Stanford Continuing Studies