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Motive & Mischief: Writing Unforgettable Characters

Dates: Saturday, September 28
Time: 10 am - 3 pm (with one-hour lunch break) 
Instructor: Katharine Dion
Ages: Adult 
Genre: Fiction
Price: $150          

Writing fiction provides an exhilarating opportunity to explore who we are without having to write about ourselves. What we typically don’t invite into our lives—unmanageable desire, irresponsibility, deception, outright villainy—is most welcome in fiction. There’s freedom in letting these forces into the creative process and they enliven the stories we tell.


In this one day workshop, we’ll explore how to develop characters that are, in Chekhov’s words, “just as complicated and just as simple” as people in real life, paying attention to how desire and wayward impulses compel characters to say and do things we may not advise as citizens but can be curious about as writers. 


Each student will receive feedback on writing generated in response to in-class exercises and come away with characters they can continue to write about in short stories or a novel. 

Katy Dion_edited.jpg

Katharine Dion is the author of the novel The Dependents, which has been translated into four languages. The San Francisco Chronicle called The Dependents “a gorgeously meditative debut about how unfully we live our lives or know ourselves and our loved ones.”


Katharine is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she was awarded the Iowa Arts Fellowship. She is also a MacDowell Fellow and the recipient of a grant from the Elizabeth George Foundation. She was born Oakland and lives in Emeryville, California. 

More about Katharine:

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