5/3 & 5/10: Urban Wildlife: Writing to Co-Exist
5/8-5/29: Magical Realism
A note about our rates: Over the past several years, Frequency has decreased tuition costs to students. You will see that some of our classes are offered for sliding scale rates. We also offer need-based scholarships on a rolling basis. We offer these options in support of our goal of making writing classes available to all who wish to take them. By paying more when you are able to do so, you actively and directly support Frequency as well as your fellow community members. Thank you!
“Realism is a kind of premeditated literature that offers too static and exclusive a vision of reality . . . but disproportion is a part of our reality, too. Our reality is in itself all out of proportion.” – Gabriel García Márquez
This four-week course will explore the literature and craft of reading and writing magical realism, an international narrative style in which the miraculous coexists with the quotidian, and magic is employed in the service of truth. Students will learn about the origins and contemporary trends of magical realism and its use to express cultural collisions, experiences of marginalization, and differing perspectives on how, and by whom, reality is defined.
Readings will be drawn from both historic and cutting edge bodies of international literature, including classics by Franz Kafka, Jorge Luis Borges, and Gabriel García Márquez up through Toni Morrison, Louise Erdrich, and Isabel Allende. Students will practice craft techniques and generate original stories inspired by readings, visual art, in-class exercises, weekly assignments, and creative journaling.
Creature Conserve is grounded in the belief that science provides the guidelines for how to save rare animals and live in balance with urban ones. But we need art to motivate us to understand and follow them. This workshop is grounded in the practice of this belief, by bringing the science of urban wildlife to interested writers who may use this science to create new writing that is relevant to their community and the creatures living there.
What happens when fiction writers and poets learn the science behind healthy co-existence with wildlife? How does the art of writing change to accommodate information one would normally find in technical papers and conferences attended by biologists and ecologists who work in conservation?
This workshop will draw on the usual suspects – voice, point of view, time, character, and narrative strategies to create urgent and compelling work – but with a twist. Around the clock and in every season, wild animals, both native and introduced – invertebrates, fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and non-human mammals – share urban space with people. Human-led expansion creates new homes for some animals even as it displaces others. Science (biology, ecology) can provide us with guidelines for how to save rare animals and live in balance with urban ones, but we need motivation to follow them.
This workshop will encourage and inspire you to generate new material through in-class writing exercises informed by exploring the latest in scientific discoveries about urban animals. Open to writers interested in all genres.
Course Texts will include scientific articles, poetry, and prose on the question of co-existing with urban species.