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June 25, 2011 / Angela Sylvia

MFA: Day Two

This morning was the Got Arc? seminar with Jacqueline Davies. We looked over some novels and picture picture books to see how the story arc and rising action was created, and she taught us a simple way to figure out how to tell our main story in one sentence – also a good way to find out if you have enough tension in the story. In the last hour she pulled out some homemade charts to demonstrate how we can map out the arc in our own work, and see where we might need to cut things out and pick up the pace. This looked really helpful, and a lot of fun, but poor Pat is going to come home to a wall covered in charts…

The afternoon was a seminar on writing about the past with Suzanne Berne. We went over different reasons people might want to write about the past, how that can help the writing. I’m afraid I missed out on some of it, though, since I was having an afternoon dip and kept zoning out…

We organized our workshop times just before dinner; I’ll be going on Wednesday. This is good, since I know which manuscripts I need to reread for tonight. I just have to make my way through one more before I can send myself to bed.

Tomorrow is the first workshop of the residency!

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