Explore ethical issues and practice writing about others - including family.
If you have one, please bring a copy of a memoir that you love. If you don't, don't worry, you'll be provided with one.
Writing honestly about loved ones is one of the trickiest issues we writers navigate. In this workshop we will delve into the nuts and bolts of telling stories that: implicate other people, belong to other people, give away other people's secrets, and challenge other people's notion of what is secret and what is shared, what is private and what is public. The focus for this workshop will be on your projects, whether those are in process or purely speculative. After a short discussion of the ethics involved in using family as fodder, we will practice applying tips and tricks from the pro's to our own writing. Along the way, we will consider motives, indebtedness, emotional complexity, method, and outcomes. In this workshop, I am not going to give you answers or tell you what to do. The purpose of our investigation is for you to learn how to make your own decisions and interrogate your own intentions when you arrive at a fork in the road--which you will whenever you involve other people's stories in your writing.