One hears it trumpeted at every writers’ conference, in every seminar and workshop, in every creative writing class: The fundamental question for every individual—whether a fictional character or one from real life—reduces to this: What does she want?
In this day-long master workshop, award-winning author and teacher David Corbett, employing techniques explored in his forthcoming book, The Compass of Character, will guide students through various strategies for creating complex motivation for compelling characters.
True, desire compels action. But desire possesses various levels and cross-currents, working in harmony and discord.
These techniques, intrinsic to understanding the portrayal of human behavior on the page, will prove beneficial to writers of both fiction and non-fiction—anyone hoping to convey human interaction in narrative form.
Together we will investigate the four key elements of longing. Using this groundwork, the class will learn how to explore the individual’s past to discover what transformative moments have shaped the habitual behavior—the “pathological maneuvers” and “persistent virtues”—that define their approach to life at the story’s outset.
From there, the class will explore how the need to act presents internal, external, and interpersonal struggles, which together force the individual to challenge the assumptions and behavior that have guided them up to this point in their lives. Those challenges, step by step through the narrative, will oblige introspection and offer the opportunity for personal transformation, whether that opportunity is embraced or not.
Finally, the class will explore the many occasions when Desire and Yearning go astray, the manner in which individuals mistake or misunderstand what they genuinely want, or when they find themselves longing not for a dream of life, but a nightmare.
Full Day: Conference Attendees $80
General Public $125