Skip to Content

Welcome!

If this is your first time on our new site, please !

Log-In

Forgot your password?

Don't have a Grub profile?

Enter your email and we'll send you directions on setting (or resetting) your password.

Submit

Wait, I remembered! Let me .

Enter your email, a password, and your name. We'll send you an activation link in an email.

Create your account here. Later you can fill out your full profile.

Sign-Up

Nevermind. I just need to .

  • Workshop
  • Online: Zoom
  • Intermediate

So You Want To Write A Morally Dubious Protagonist? - Remote!

No Longer Enrolling

  • $225.00 Non-Member
  • $215.00 Member

Class Description

This generative 4-week class deals in sketching protagonists who make dubious moral choices and observations about the world they inhabit. We will learn the ways a writer can ""nod"" at the reader to indicate an awareness of its subject's shortcomings—whether it be zealousness, vanity, sexism, classism, etc— without compromising character. We will also study how elements of craft (dialog, setting, and beats) help writers indicate authorial awareness as their characters go about their bad business.

Writers will sketch four characters from in-class prompts, as well as dip their toes into scene writing. We will consider some of the following topics: What makes a story (un)ethical, and what role does political correctness play in the story? How can a (xenophobe, ableist, agist, etc) first person protagonist narrate a story without the whole story becoming problematic? Does it get any better in the third person? What are a writer's responsibilities when writing a protagonist whose ethical compass is going to seed? Why tell a story from that point of view at all?

We'll read works from authors including, but not limited to: Akhil Sharma, Zadie Smith, Padgett Powell, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Junot Díaz, Brock Clarke, Aimee Bender, and Joy Williams.

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.

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!