Historical Slant: Researching and Writing History Across Genres - Remote!

6 Tuesdays from 10:30am-1:30pm (EST), starting June 15th.
Remote! (Live Zoom Meetings)
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Level: For Everyone
Adult (18+)
12 seats max
Only 2 spots left!

This class is for writers working on short stories, novels, poems, plays, or hybrid genre works that explore history. What makes writing set in the past work for readers? How do you figure out what you need to know to make your story or setting feel authentic, and what does “authentic” even mean? Is it possible to be more “experimental” than “accurate” when approaching the past? How do you help your characters, or the diction of your poem, sound right for the moment in time you’re working with? What does it mean to engage with academic, popular, public, or “official” works of history in your imaginative work? How do you go about conducting historical research that’s right for your project, and how do you avoid pitfalls, rabbit holes, and anachronism?

Instructor is a historian, poet, drama scholar, and writer, and will guide and advise. We will read diverse examples of history-based literature together (authors include Kate Atkinson, Rita Dove, Susan Howe, Tony Kushner, Michael Ondaatje, Kevin Young and others), and the instructor will also recommend specific works of literature and history for students to explore based on their projects and interests. We will generate new work in response to prompts and exercises, and workshop writing in progress.

Class works best for writers with a defined project underway, but can also be useful to those just beginning to explore. 

This class will be hosted using live Zoom meetings! You will be able to participate in class via Zoom videoconference from wherever you’re most comfortable. All you’ll need is a laptop or a phone! About 15 minutes before your class is scheduled to begin, you'll receive an email from your instructor with a link to join the class meeting via Zoom–no need to download anything or sign up for Zoom in advance! If you have questions about remote learning, please feel free to reach out to [email protected] for more information.

For a glimpse at how remote learning works, look no further than the deep Zoom discussion of writing and literature below:

Scholarship Information

Thanks to the excellent literary citizenship of our donors, scholarships are available for all GrubStreet classes. To apply, click the gray "APPLY FOR SCHOLARSHIP" button. In order to be considered for a scholarship, you must complete your application at least one week before the start date of a class. Please await our scholarship committee's decision before registering for the class. We cannot hold spots in classes, so the sooner you apply, the better. Scholarships cannot be applied retroactively.

For more more detailed information about GrubStreet scholarships, including how to contribute to scholarship funds for other students, click here.

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Katherine Hollander
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Previous Students Say

  • "Generative"
  • "Diverse Reading Assignments"
  • "Inundated with Great Info"


  • Craft Lessons
  • In-Class Writing
  • Instructor Feedback
  • Workshop
  • Revision Assignments
  • Lecture
  • Class Discussion
  • Reading Homework
  • Writing Homework


  • The Novel
  • Short Fiction

Commitment Level



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