Off Campus Writers' Workshop - OCWW

Rachel Swearingen - Cultivating Mystery and Delight in Fiction

  • April 27, 2023
  • 9:30 AM - 12:00 PM
  • ONSITE - 620 Lincoln Avenue, Winnetka, IL /REMOTE

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No surprise for the writer, no surprise for the reader, or so the adage goes. Easier said than done. The process of drafting is filled with uncertainty that can cause us to reach for easy solutions that later ring false. 

In this course we will explore what it means to give our work our courageous attention, and how to open our creations to more risk and delight. By turning toward the mysteries inherent in our early ideas and drafts, we can strike our best material sooner, and write our most original, authentic stories. 

Rachel Swearingen is the author of the story collection How to Walk on Water and Other Stories, which received the New American Press Fiction Prize, and was named the 2021 Chicago Writers Association Book of the Year, and a New York Times Book Review “New and Noteworthy Selection.”

Her stories and essays have appeared in Electric Lit, VICE, The Missouri Review, Kenyon Review, Off Assignment, Agni, American Short Fiction, and elsewhere. Her writing has won the Missouri Review Jeffrey E. Smith Editors’ Prize in Fiction, a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award, and the Mississippi Review Prize in Fiction. In 2019, the Guild Literary Complex named her one of 30 Writers to Watch. She lives in Chicago and teaches in Cornell College’s low-residency MFA program.

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