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

Elements of Craft: Self as Antihero

No Longer Enrolling

  • $65.00 Non-Member
  • $55.00 Member

Class Description

Everyone loves a literary hero. But the most interesting fictional characters aren’t the heroes. They are, like most of us, deeply complex and contradictory—loving yet spiteful, magnanimous yet selfish. One need think only of Scarlett O’Hara, Holden Caulfield, or Jay Gatsby to conjure examples of characters who act despicably yet elicit our compassion: the antiheroes. In creative nonfiction, the stakes are especially high. How do we expose unseemly or “weak” aspects of our own personality and still remain likeable? Do we risk losing our readers by overinflating our heroic qualities or, conversely, overstating our flaws? In this workshop, we will dissect several essays by Nora Ephron, David Sedaris, and Steve Almond, who have written prolifically about their core insecurities as well as their miserable failures and contemptible habits. Yet we clamor for more. How do they do it? Through discussion and in-class exercises, we will rattle the cage surrounding our own flaws and vulnerabilities with the goal of creating powerful, accessible first-person prose.

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. 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!

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!