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  • Seminar
  • Online: Zoom
  • Adult (18+)

Capture the Profound: Magical Realism Workshop

Apply for Scholarship
  • $85.00 Non-Member
  • $75.00 Member

Class Description

Sometimes, the conventions of realism limit how we can express the nuances of character emotions and interiority in our stories: we simply cannot access the complexities of the human psyche exclusively through human means.

In this class, we’ll use magical realism to capture The Profound. By piercing the veil between reality and the spirit realm, we can access our characters’ subconsciousness and our story’s subliminal meaning.

We’ll explore how we can employ ghosts, apparitions, dwende, and other mystical beings to guide us (and our readers) to the underlying truths within our stories. Through in-class readings including Carmen Maria Machado’s “Horror Story” and “Haunt,” we’ll surface craft techniques for incorporating magicalism into realist prose. Then, through writing exercises, we’ll play with stretching the bounds of reality in order to capture the emotions that feel “beyond human,” like grief, love, and lovelessness.

Join us to start a new short story; attain a fresh approach to that scene in your memoir that you just cannot get right; gain inspiration for the final essay in your collection; or experiment with magical realism for the first time. All prose writers welcome!

Scholarships Format/Location

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

This class will take place using Zoom videoconferencing. Please visit the Resources tab to access the video-conference link.

Zoom Participation:

Students are not required to turn their camera on, but are encouraged to participate any way they feel comfortable through functions such as the live chat, emoji reactions, and unmuting the microphone. Learn more about using Zoom here.

Zoom Accessibility:

We ask that instructors enable closed captioning and send a transcript of the session after class. You can also enable closed captioning at any time during the meeting. If your instructor forgets to send the transcript, just send ’em an email!