Come break the rules with me! (in a class. on Sunday. with Cat Rambo.)

Consider this your invitation: start (or continue) to Break the Rules with me in less than three days! After Daylight Savings Time is over and the clock falls back, I hope you’ll spend some time with Cat Rambo, me and your writing this Sunday, November 5th at 9:30am PST 

Breaking the RulesBreak the Rules!

Tell, don’t show. Dump your information. Write in second person. Write in passive voice. Use adverbs. To heck with suspense.

Rules mark what’s difficult, not what’s impossible. There’s a whole range of exciting storytelling possibilities beyond them. Not every story needs to be in second person, but when it’s the right voice for the right story, it can be magic. The right information dump, written perfectly, can become a dazzling gymnastic feat of beauty, fascination and horror.

“Break the Rules!” will teach you inspirations and techniques for rowing upstream of common knowledge. You can break any rule–if you do it right.

Register by mailing Cat Rambo at cat AT catrambo.com and specifying whether you would prefer to pay by Paypal or by check.

The cost for a single session live workshop is $99 for new students; $79 for students who have formerly taken a class with Cat (or Rachel). Classes are taught via Google Hangouts; all you need is a computer with a microphone and reliable Internet connection, but a webcam is suggested.

(At least a few secrets: If you register for this class, you’ll be able to learn from all of the other storytellers going first. If sign up for my newsletter, you can learn about when I’m teaching next. If you support my Patreon, you can learn what and where I’m writing first.)

Old Stories Into New: Come Take My Class on Retellings!

Hey! Come take my class on retellings!

October 7, 2017 at 9:30am PST.

(Secret: If you join my newsletter, or sign up for my Patreon at $1 or more a month, you’ll get discounts.)

Old Stories x800 Retellings graphic instagram

(It used to be called Retellings and Retaleings.)

Authors constantly draw on the stories that have preceded them, particularly folklore, mythology, and fables. What are the best methods for approaching such material and what are the possible pitfall? How does one achieve originality when working with such familiar stories? Lecture, in-class exercise, and discussion will build your proficiency when working with such stories.

Register by mailing Cat at cat AT catrambo.com and specifying whether you would prefer to pay by Paypal or by check. The cost for a single session live workshop is $99 for new students; $79 for students who have formerly taken a class with Cat (or me!). Classes are taught via Google Hangouts; all you need is a computer with a microphone and reliable Internet connection, but a webcam is suggested.

Can’t make it on the 7th? I have an on-demand version of Retelling and Re-Taleing: Old Stories Into New available online.

Speculative Poetry Class tomorrow!

Come take my first ever speculative poetry class tomorrow!

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Poetry requires intense linguistic control. Every word matters. Whether you’re a poet who wants to create fantastical verses, or a prose writer who wants to learn the finely tuned narrative power that poetry can teach, you’ll find something in this class.

Over the course of a few brief lectures, peppered with plenty of writing exercises, we’ll discuss some common forms of speculative poetry, and the challenges they represent. I’ll also send you home with market listings, and lists great authors, poems, and books to pick up to continue your journey.

The class is September 16, 9:30-11:30, with $20 off for anyone enrolling.

Hope to see you there!

Retelling and Retaleing: Take a class with me and Cat Rambo!

Take an online class from me and Cat Rambo! May 21, 9:30-11:30 AM, Pacific Time.

Personally, I love retellings. As a kid, I had a collection of picture books retelling the Cinderella story in a dozen different settings. SFWA president Cat Rambo and I are teaching a class on the subject.

Retellings graphic business card

Authors constantly draw on the stories that have preceded them, particularly folklore, mythology, and fables. What are the best methods for approaching such material and what are the possible pitfalls? How does one achieve originality when working with such familiar stories? Lecture, in-class exercise, and discussion will build your proficiency when working with such stories. 

Retellings are one of writing’s basic tools. We’ve been collectively dabbling with Greek mythology, and Shakespearean plays, and oral folklore (and urban legends and a hundred other things) for centuries.

To a certain extent, all fiction is retelling. It’s all in conversation with past writing and storytelling. A retelling is conscious of its place in that conversation–whether that’s “This is Rapunzel, but my way” or a slantwise satire of Narnia.

If you’re curious about our retellings, here are a couple from Cat and me.

From me:
Alice in Wonderland: “Tea Time
Dr. Who: “The Girl Who Waited (for the Guidance Counselor to Get to His Point

And from the amazing Cat Rambo:
Charlotte’s Web: “Magnificent Pigs
The Little Mermaid: “Foam on the Water

Sign up at kittywumpus.net!

Cat Rambo and I teaching a class on Nov 8

Interested in writing retellings? Cat Rambo and I are teaching a class together: retellings and re-taleings.

Authors constantly draw on the stories that have preceded them, particularly folklore, mythology, and fables. What are the best methods for approaching such material and what are the possible pitfall? How does one achieve originality when working with such familiar stories? Lecture, in-class exercise, and discussion will build your proficiency when working with such stories.

Cat Rambo has been a friend of mine since 2005 when she and I, along with many other fabulous people, went to Clarion West together. She’s a Nebula nominated author  with an established short story career whose first novel just came out. She’s also the current president of SFWA.

The class is at 9:30 am pacific time on November 8, taught online. It’s $99, 10% of for former students.

(Check out Cat’s other classes, too!)