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Writing a novel is like trying to find your way out of a forest without a compass. Or maybe it’s like whittling with a butter knife. Or perhaps it’s more like trying to teach yourself heart surgery from a comic book. The point is: it’s hard work. But it’s also immensely rewarding and fun. Yes, fun.


This course will provide beginning and experienced writers with tools and provisions to support them throughout the long journey that is writing a novel. With workshops, short craft lectures, and in-class writing exercises, students will hone their novel writing skills, exploring point of view, character, plot, setting, and the dynamic tension between scene and summary. In addition, students will read and discuss chapters and passages authored by master writers such as J.M. Coetzee, Ann Patchett, Junot Díaz, Jennifer Egan, and Kazuo Ishiguro, in order to gain a better understanding of how the various aspects of the novel work together to create a piece of art. Students will be inspired to consider their work and writing practice in new ways—bending, stretching, and growing as writers as well as readers.

Crossing the Ocean in a Bathtub: 
A Novel Writing Workshop
Dates: 8 Thursdays, January 12-March 2
Time: 7-9 pm 
Instructor: Michael David Lukas
Ages: Adult                                                                  
Genre: Novel 
Price: $495 
Music of the Mind

Michael David Lukas has been a Fulbright Scholar in Turkey, a night-shift proofreader in Tel Aviv, and a fellow at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference in Vermont. Translated into more than a dozen languages, his first novel, The Oracle of Stamboul, was a finalist for the California Book Award, the NCIBA Book of the Year Award, and the Harold U. Ribalow Prize. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Slate, National Geographic Traveler, and Georgia Review. His second novel, The Forty-Third Name of God, about the Jews of Cairo, was recently acquired by Random House.

More about Michael:

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