Short Story II

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Whether your bent is the short story or the novel, comedy or tragedy, mystery, romance, or suspense, certain elements of story writing are universal. We’ll examine such craft elements as character, plot, conflict, point of view, voice, pacing, description, dialogue, setting, and so on, with an emphasis on the importance of substance and structure to a story. The basic format of the class will be a workshop, but we’ll also include exercises and an occasional reading. Participants should have a work-in-progress that will be completed by the end of the class.

About Con Lehane

Con Lehane is the author of six mystery novels. The latest, Murder Off the Page, the third in The 42nd Street Library Mystery series from Minotaur Books, came out in November. He’s had stories in Alfred Hitchcock and Ellery Queen mystery magazines and is the author of the Brian McNulty bartender mysteries.

Teaching Style: Con's teaching style is student-centered and participatory. He believes it's not always easy to develop the voice and craft you need to convey the story you want to write. But it’s absolutely impossible to do it if you don’t start writing—an unwritten manuscript can't be improved, a written one, however rudimentary, can be improved. Be prepared to do a lot of writing and not much sitting back listening. Expect nudges in the direction of some tried-and-true approaches to mystery and suspense writing, much encouragement, and some surprises at what you may come up with.

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