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Writing Crisis: Crafting the Literature of Turbulent Times, with Roberto Lovato (via Zoom), Oct. 29

October 29, 2020 @ 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm PDT


THURSDAYS, OCT. 29 — NOV. 11  |  Living in times marked by relentless and intersecting crises, the serious writer must ask, “Where is the literature that responds to this astonishing moment?” Our goal for this class is to answer the question by crafting our own, by writing crisis. This introduction to the art of writing the prose of crisis—memoir, journalism, different genres of fiction and science fiction—(and poetry if there’s interest) will begin by looking at the crisis in literature that has created the vacuum that we will fill with our own work, including one piece we will polish in the course of our sessions. The course will include the following:

  • Close readings of writing that exemplifies the art of writing crisis, analyzing the choices—structure, tropes, imagery, language, characterization—that these writers make.
  • Taking our lead from classic and contemporary writers of crisis, we will engage in generative writing exercises designed to apply what we’re learning.
  • Worshops / sharing works-in-progress with other participants and the instructor.

Each writer in the class will leave with a writing crisis toolkit developed by the instructor. You will also leave the course looking at writing and at crisis in a different way. You will leave with an enhanced ability to respond to this unprecedented historical moment with the words and stories it demands.

This course is open to students of all levels.

This class will meet on Zoom. Registered students, please contact the instructor directly for Zoom details.

Note that this class meets two Thursdays (Oct. 29 & Nov. 5) and one Wednesday (Nov. 11).

Roberto Lovato makes a living as an educator, journalist, and writer based at The Writers Grotto. He recently authored Unforgetting: A Memoir of Family, Migration, Gangs and Revolution in the Americas (Harper Collins). A recipient of a reporting grant from the Pulitzer Center, Lovato has reported on war, violence, and terrorism in Mexico, Venezuela, El Salvador, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Paris, and the United States. Until 2015, Lovato was a fellow at U.C. Berkeley’s Latinx Research Center and recently finished a teaching stint at UCLA. His essays and reports from around the world have appeared in numerous publications including Guernica Magazine, the Associated Press, the Boston GlobeThe Millions, Foreign Policy magazine, the Guardian, the Los Angeles Times, Der Spiegel, La Opinion, and other national and international publications.

Contact: robvato@gmail.com

Number of sessions: 3

Dates: Thursdays, October 29; November 5, and Wednesday, Nov. 11

Time: 6:00 – 9:00 pm Pacific time

Course fee: Early-bird discount: $225 through October 21; $250 thereafter


The Writers Grotto
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