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Off Campus Writers' Workshop - OCWW

Abby Geni - First Chapter-Remote Session

  • May 28, 2020
  • 9:30 AM - 12:00 PM
  • Remote


Registration is closed

Remote Session

The first chapter of any book has to do a thousand things at once: interest and engage the reader, kick off the plot, introduce the characters, set the tone, and establish the world of the story. In this class, award-winning author Abby Geni will share her insights about the daunting task of writing a powerful, compelling first chapter. We will talk about inciting incidents, strong first sentences and paragraphs, the idea of stasis and intrusion, the onset of tension, and the nature of voice. We will talk, too, about the revision process and how to know when your first chapter is done.

Abby Geni is the Chicago-based author of the novels The Wildlands and The Lightkeepers, as well as a short story collection, The Last Animal. Her books have been translated into seven languages and have won the Barnes & Noble Discover Award and the Chicago Review of Books Awards, among other honors. Her latest novel, The Wildlands, was named one of the best books of 2018 by Kirkus and Buzzfeed and was a finalist for the L.A. Times Book Prize. Geni is a core faculty member at StoryStudio Chicago and recently served as Visiting Associate Professor of Fiction at the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Her website is

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