START DATE: Monday, January 7, 2019
START DATE: Sunday, February 3, 2019
DURATION: 4 weeks
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Great story has a memorable sense of place. In this four-week course you will discover why setting and description are the keys to making your story come alive for the reader. Writers will explore how to describe the worlds of their stories in concrete physical detail to create sensory, subjective environments. You will learn why setting must be authentic for the reader and why setting is so important for building author credibility. This course offers the opportunity to produce a short story or novel opening (up to 2,000 words).
Thank you for this class and for your very valuable feedback on the two drafts I sent you. Your class rekindled the fire that I felt was beginning to fizzle out in my writing. ~ Clare Hart
Thanks for a great class! I’m so glad I signed up—turns out that I still have a brain and you made me use it. :) I appreciate your advice as well as the thought-provoking lessons you provided . . . In that short amount of time I feel more confident going forward with my writing . . . I wish you the very best, and thank you again for sharing your knowledge! ~ Andrea H.
Gila Green’s class was my first online writing class. I was impressed with the quality of the material Gila provided and her weekly lessons were clear and easy to understand. She also provided enough flexibility in her lessons to tailor the class to the individual needs of her students. I always felt open to ask questions or linger over lessons and critiques that I felt I needed more time to comprehend and work through. I look forward to learning from her again. ~ Donna Kortes
Gila had a very straightforward way of explaining by giving examples in our own work, and pinpointing a subject for clarity. She was very encouraging and her critiques were always thoughtful and constructive. She pushed me to dig deeper and work harder and I believe it shows in my writing. If I am ever fortunate enough to make it in this business, I will definitely name Gila as one of the reasons for my success. ~ Barbara Florenza
WEEKS AT A GLANCE:
Week 1: Authentic Settings: Characters come from setting, not the other way around.
Your character is a product of where she lives and when. In week one we will read a variety of excerpts that reflect characters as products of their times.
Assignment: Read the three assigned short stories, respond to at least one discussion question, complete two brief writing exercises, submit one of the exercises to the instructor.
Week 2: Locate the Reader
From the macro to the micro setting, the writer must be the ultimate tour guide. This week we will examine your story on a micro level and continue to zoom out until we have a picture of the wider world of your story.
Assignment: Read the two assigned short stories, respond to at least one discussion question, complete at least one of the writing exercises, submit this story-in-progress to the instructor (700-word limit). Provide feedback on short participant assignments.
Week 3: Vivid Relevant Description
It doesn’t matter if you’ve really visited the world of your story or not, the reader must believe you’re the expert. The nighttime sounds are not the same in a big city as they are in the country. Different places have different weather patterns, diction, and local customs. Today we’ll focus on the sensory and explore the tasted, touched, smelled, heard and seen.
Assignment: Read the two assigned short stories, respond to at least one discussion question, complete the writing exercise. Provide feedback on short participant assignments.
Week 4: Credibility and Research
Different times, imaginary worlds, historical, futuristic, how does this affect your setting? Fictional settings take more work, but real settings mean you have to get your facts straight.
Assignment: Read the three assigned short stories, respond to at least one discussion question, complete two brief writing exercises, submit your final draft to the instructor of up to 2,000 words. Comment on participant drafts.
Materials needed: All written materials in the form of lectures, ebooks, story links, etc. are provided by the instructor.
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR: Canadian Gila Green is an Israeli-based writer and editor. She is the author of Passport Control (S&H Publishing), and a novel-in-stories, White Zion (Cervena Barva Press, April 2019). Her first novel is King of the Class. She is working on an eco-young adult series for release September 2019 with an independent eco press in Australia. Gila has published dozens of short stories in literary magazines. Please visit: www.gilagreenwrites.com
COST: $150, which includes email support and feedback from your instructor, weekly assignments and critiques.