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“What’s so important about setting?” Writers Workshop
February 10 @ 10:30 am - 12:30 pm
What’s so important about setting?
Are you curious about world building? Do your characters inhabit living rooms in the future, or trek miles at the turn of the century? Setting connects readers to a narrative and is part of the allure that transports them from one place to another, but setting is so much more than the streets our characters walk down, the oceans they swim. In this Reading like a Writer we’ll use short stories and novel excerpts to examine setting and explore how writers use it to establish the worlds in which their protagonists live, foreshadow plot, create mood and tone, and reveal psychological traits. We’ll work on a passage of our own to see how different approaches to setting can add various layers to our work. This session is good for beginning and established writers who want to develop revision strategies to make their fictional worlds breathe.
Jennifer Jacobson is the Director of the Juniper Summer Writing Institute and the Juniper Institute for Young Writers. She is also the Associate Director of the MFA for Poets and Writers at UMass Amherst. She founded the non-profit organization When Children Save the Day to unite language arts and social action. Her work has been honored with a Creative Teaching Fellowship from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the National Storytelling Network’s Brimstone Award for transformative community projects, along with support from the Solidago Foundation and the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts. Her short story “Heat” received an honorable mention from Glimmer Train, and “Trouble and Bones” was a Tennessee Williams Festival’s Fiction contest finalist. Jennifer teaches creative writing at Smith College’s Young Women’s Writing Workshop, and with Voices From Inside, created the Family Storybook Project curriculum for incarcerated women and their children.