Narrative Voice: The Power of Point of View in Your Fiction

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Taught by Joe Pfister

Joe Pfister is a writer, teacher, and Tecmo Super Bowl enthusiast living in Windsor Terrace. His fiction has appeared in such publications as PANKNew World WritingJuked, and decomP, among others. He is a graduate of the MFA Writing program at Sarah Lawrence College and currently serves as an online instructor for The Eckleburg Workshops, annual juror for The Scholastic Writing Awards, and fiction editor of The Boiler Journal.  

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One of the most important—and, perhaps, overlooked—decisions facing a writer when they first set out to tell a story is deciding how to tell it. Should the story be told in first person or third? Whose voice are we hearing? Why?

In this two-hour class, we will explore the pros and cons of first-, second-, and third-person narration, the power of perspective, and how to find a truly unique, original voice for your next story. We will also take an in-depth look at how point of view and voice can operate and enhance your own work by studying the short fiction of Jeffrey Eugenides, Lorrie Moore, Kevin Barry, Stuart Dybek, Ottessa Moshfegh, and Kelly Link.

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