The Desert Nights, Rising Stars
Writers Conference

Conference Schedule 2020

Friday, February 21, 2020, 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.


The Sensory as Inspiration for Story with Jenny Irish

Date(s): Friday, February 21, 2020, 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.
Location: 
Traditions, University Club (view map)
Type(s): 
Generative Workshop, Workshop
Genre and Form(s): Fiction, Short Stories
Tags: Sensory Details, Senses

About the Session

The experience of fiction as truth, as a representation of Truth (with a capital T!), is its singularly most impressive goal. To achieve this, an author must convince through the senses, says Flannery O'Connor in her essay, "Writing Short Fiction." Sensory details are at the core of writer's ability to show versus tell. O'Connor suggests that acquiring the skill of showing versus telling comes from first learning to observe and then recognizing that literal events and physical objects carry thematic (or symbolic) associations that the author may fit into a network of relationships to create greater meaning. All writers have, through their own life experiences, access to unique, specific sensory details. In this generative session, participants will be asked to draw on sensory experiences as a starting place for creative work. All genres are welcome in this session.  

Meet the Presenter(s)

Photograph of Jenny Irish

Jenny Irish lives in Tempe, Arizona, where she is an assistant professor in the Creative Writing Program at Arizona State University. Her work has appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review, Blackbird, Catapult, Colorado Review, Epoch, The Georgia Review, and Ploughshares. She is the author of the hybrid collection, Common Ancestor, and the story collection, I am Faithful.