New Class!
Elements of Craft

Writing Provocative Stories

Friday, December 4th, from 10:00am-5:00pm
Remote (Live Zoom Meetings)
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Level: For Everyone
Adult (18+)
This class is full

Great writing should make you uncomfortable. Not because the content is always graphic or shocking, but because the writer is painfully honest, confronting the failures, dark impulses, and moral ambiguities that we spend much of our day-to-day lives avoiding. Whether it’s a story of personal trauma, lust, criminality, or racial tensions, such themes can stir reflection and recognition in readers and create space for new dialogues. In this six-hour seminar, we’ll explore this kind of bold, challenging writing, examine what makes a provocative piece of nonfiction or fiction succeed, and consider the pitfalls of writing stories that touch nerves. To drive discussion, we’ll read daring work by authors such as Roxane Gay, Miranda July, Kristin Dombek, and Philip Connors. And we’ll do in-class exercises to push our writing into territory that is similarly candid and unafraid. No previously written work required; just come to class ready to read and write.

Part of GrubStreet's Elements of Craft series, dedicated to exploring craft issues on a deeper level. For more on this series' offerings, click here.

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Dorian Fox
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Previous Students Say

  • "Supportive Environment"
  • "Inspired Me to Write More"


  • Generate New Work
  • Craft Lessons
  • In-Class Writing
  • Instructor Feedback
  • Workshop
  • Lecture
  • In-Class Reading
  • Class Discussion
  • Concept Development


  • Short Fiction
  • Personal Essay
  • Nonfiction

Commitment Level



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