We focus on the unique world-view that beats inside each type of writing of the imaginary, including Irrealism, Surrealism, Absurdism, Bizarro, Slipstream, New Wave Fabulism, The Weird, Magical Realism, Fairy Tale, Fable, Literary Fiction, Fantasy, SF, and Horror. "Fabulist" is not used in a purist sense here, but for want of a better term to sum up literature that bleeds into unreality. Otherwise, class employs precise usage of the labels, which is useful not only when choosing and recommending work you like to read, but more crucially, when writing, and marketing your own. Submitting a Fairy Tale to a magazine asking for Weird, a Surrealist story when an anthology asks for Magical Realism, or a New Wave Fabulist book when a publisher asks for Fantasy is a faux pas that could turn an editor away from your future submissions.
The course provides an overview of the genres' implications about reality, and their core tropes, which you then use to generate fresh prose in inventive ways. After an intensive study of appealing narrative structure and prose, we have 6 writing exercises that help you learn deeply by doing. Finally, you write a complete story in any of the styles you chose, with thorough feedback from the other students and Instructor.