Vu Tran: The False Mystery of Finding Your Voice

  • April 22, 2021
  • 9:30 AM - 12:00 PM
  • Remote



Remote (OCWW may add a live event with separate registration)

What exactly is a writer’s “voice”? Is it a unique prose style or formal approach, a distinct tone or atmosphere in the writing, a set of thematic concerns that frames a particular point of view on the world? And what does it mean to “find” one's voice? How does one actually do that? This craft talk will address these questions by first dispensing with the notion of originality in a literary voice, or that there is any mystery or magic in its development. We will look at it as nothing more—and nothing less—than the process of writing sentences that you truly believe in, which involves something even more difficult: understanding who you think you are, who you want to be, and who you might inevitably and irrevocably be.

BIO: Vu Tran's first novel, Dragonfish, was a NY Times Notable Book and a San Francisco Chronicle Best Books of the Year. His short fiction has appeared in the O. Henry Prize Stories, the Best American Mystery StoriesPloughshares, and other publications.  He is the winner of a Whiting Writers’ Award and an NEA Fellowship, and has also been a fellow at Bread Loaf, Sewanee, Yaddo, and the MacDowell Colony. Born in Vietnam and raised in Oklahoma, Vu received his MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and his PhD from the Black Mountain Institute in Las Vegas. He is a criticism columnist for the Virginia Quarterly Review, and is currently an Assistant Professor of Practice in English & Creative Writing at the University of Chicago, where he directs the undergraduate program.

We offer free student memberships at a discounted rate of $5.00 per session. You must send verification of your student status. Please contact Claudia Katz at for details.

9-9:30 Registration  

9:30-12 Program

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620 Lincoln Ave., Winnetka, IL 60093

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