In very short creative nonfiction, commonly referred to as “flash,” even the smallest moment or image taken from real life can resonate powerfully, creating deep meaning and emotional impact for the reader. Innovative structures and careful editing combine with rich images and attentive language to create written work that is deeply memorable though incredibly brief. The process of writing flash can strengthen your longer prose, too: When you write in a condensed form, you’re learning to mine and sculpt your material deeply and thoughtfully. This six-week workshop is geared toward writers who have been working and reading in this compressed form, or who have been writing longer-form creative nonfiction and are eager to experiment with telegraphing their subjects in flash forms. We’ll read examples of flash creative nonfiction and workshop pieces of no more than 1000 words each. We’ll also explore outlets for publication of this type of work. of which there are many. You’ll read and provide feedback on your peers’ work and receive written feedback from the instructor.
Susannah Felts, co-founder of The Porch, is a fiction writer, freelance writer, teacher, editor, and native Nashvillian. In 2009, after many years away from her hometown, she returned to put down roots with her family in East Nashville. Previously, Susannah taught creative writing at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Watkins College of Art, Design & Film, and in several other youth and community settings. Her first novel, This Will Go Down on Your Permanent Record, was published in 2008 by Featherproof Books.
Susannah was the recipient of the Tennessee Arts Commission’s Individual Artist Fellowship in Fiction for 2013. She has been awarded the Tennessee Williams Scholarship to the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, as well as residencies at the Ragdale Foundation, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Hambidge Center for Creative Arts and Sciences. Her work has appeared in publications such as The Oxford American, Literary Hub, Longreads, StorySouth, The Sun, Quarterly West, Hobart, Five Chapters, Wigleaf, Quick Fiction, and others. She earned her BA with Highest Honors in Creative Writing from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and holds an MFA in Writing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Susannah is also a contributing writer for Chapter 16, Humanities Tennessee’s site devoted to literary culture.
Susannah was knowledgeable, kind, and empathetic. She always equipped us with suggestions that could move our work forward.
Susannah Felts was such an encouraging and inspiring leader. Her gentleness in critique and honesty in praise made all the difference.
Susannah really personified empathy. From the first class, I felt challenged and accepted.