Often when we sit down to write, we focus on story decisions (what’s going to happen, to whom, and why), yet there is another set of choices ever looming, namely who’s telling the story, in what order, with what level of detail, and at what speed of revelation. These discourse decisions concern what to show and what to tell and lead to complex and revelatory scenes, inducing what John Gardner called “the fictive dream,” a trance-like state in which the reader begins to experience the piece of writing as if it’s actually happening before their eyes.
In this class, we will examine the work of Julie Orringer, Denis Johnson, and Jo Ann Beard—authors who have mastered the art of discourse—and then practice what we’ve learned by making discourse decisions of our own. Come with a burning desire to improve your work, and leave with the skills to drop your readers down into the fictive dream.
Use code EARLYBIRD at checkout for 20% off through December 8!
Trey Adams is a fiction writer from the foothills of eastern Tennessee. He received his BA in English from University of Tennessee and his MFA in Creative Writing from the Stonecoast low-residency program. His work has most recently appeared in Gone Lawn, The Shore, and Whitefish Review.
"Trey provided great practical exercises, good feedback, and excellent context!"
"Trey is so very articulate, kind, and well-informed."