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Date(s): Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Location: Piper Writers House, 450 E Tyler Mall, Tempe, AZ 85281
Type(s): Presentation, Workshop
Genre and Form(s): Fiction
The purpose of all written stories is simple; they must cull the core of humanity in ways other mediums cannot. Language is a living mirror that requires the musculature of imagination to sustain the image. Short-short stories aim to reach the emotional and thematic depths of our species under extreme conditions: compression. This course will explore classic and contemporary flash fiction and engage in the techniques through exercise and discussion. The best literature pulls against itself and is one of contradicting functions, a Janus head that sees the past, the future, and still exists in the present. Flash/sudden/micro fiction attacks an idea with the goal of pushing the forces of good narrative and characterization into the tightest of spaces, where a traditional story is a seed and the short-short story is the oil.
Works by Venita Blackburn have appeared in American Short Fiction, the Georgia Review, Pleiades, Madison Review, Bat City Review, Nashville Review, Smoke Long Quarterly, Café Irreal, Santa Monica Review, Faultline, Devil’s Lake Review, Nat.Brut., Bellevue Literary Review, audio download through Bound Off, and others. She was awarded a Bread Loaf Fellowship in 2014 and three Pushcart prize nominations. In 2016 she received the Prairie Schooner book prize in fiction 2016, which will result in the publication of her collected stories, Black Jesus and Other Superheroes, in 2017. Her home town is Compton, California, but she now lives and teaches in Phoenix, Arizona. She earned her MFA from Arizona State University in 2008, and is finishing a new novel, Guts.