All enrichment classes are taught by students and alumnx in VCFA’s MFA in Writing & Publishing program. Please note that all classes are 18+ unless specifically included in the class description.


 

The Personal Essay: Introspection in the Time of Covid

Made it through 2020? It’s time for a close examination of the self through the personal essay. In this class, MFA candidate Hassan A.J. explores the art of writing the personal essay, studying its basic elements, while closely examining the transformation brought on by introspection in the time of Covid. From the work of Jia Tolentino, Joan Didion, Virginia Woolf, and F. Scott Fitzgerald, learn the tools that can help you assemble the truth on the page.

  • Saturday, February 27, from 1–4 pm EST
  • VCFA Online Zoom Class
  • Instructor: Hassan A.J.

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Questions? Email [email protected].

We offer a sliding scale tuition to make our classes as accessible as possible. We suggest:

$10 if you’re making ends meet
$20 if you’re financially stable
$30 if you’re financially flourishing

About the instructor:

Hassan A.J. is an MFA candidate at the Vermont College of Fine Arts. He is a fiction writer & editor, an alum of the Yale Writers’ Workshop & the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown. His work appeared in Montage, Words for Charity, & Tale Time Podcast. He is a winner of the 2019 Wilder Fiction Prize. A.J.’s current focus is historical fiction and the art of reimagining.

 


Spell of the Evocative: Setting in Fiction

In this workshop, we will explore the role of setting in fiction narratives. Through close-reading and generative writing exercises, we will investigate touchstones of setting, such as tone, mood, atmosphere, to discuss the evocative nature of space. By illuminating setting, we will conjure our own story sites, and, in doing so, create immersive, meaningful, as well as memorable places.

  • Saturday, March 27, from 1–4 pm EDT
  • VCFA Online Zoom Class
  • Instuctor: Valentyn Smith

REGISTER »

Questions? Email [email protected].

We offer a sliding scale tuition to make our classes as accessible as possible. We suggest:

$10 if you’re making ends meet
$20 if you’re financially stable
$30 if you’re financially flourishing

About the instructor:
Valentyn Smith is a Brooklynite living in Vermont, where she dreams up strange stories. She has an MFA in Writing & Publishing (fiction) from VCFA. Her forthcoming work may be read at IseleMagazine.com.

 


Leaving Europe Behind: Writing (Indigenous) Urban Fantasy for the Americas

Whether you call it by its original name, or by new names like Contemporary Fantasy or Modern Gothic, Urban Fantasy is a genre that is fun to read and to write. Join MFA candidate and enrolled Delaware Tribal member Darla Hitchcock as she investigates the masters of the genre to discern what makes for a compelling story. (Excerpts from Charles de Lint, Neil Gaiman, Holly Black, and N.K. Jemison will be examined.) The discussion will then turn to various native mythologies and folklore. You will be shown how you might respectfully use elements of these stories in your own writing, enabling you to go beyond the traditional eurocentric folklore. Better-known beings such as Coyote and Crow will be considered, but there will be special emphasis on the various tribal stories of the Little People, aboriginal America’s own version of faeries and elves. Games and prompts will start your creative juices flowing, and you should expect to come out of the class with one to three pages of your own distinctly American urban Fantasy.

  • Sunday, April 17, from 1–4 pm EDT
  • VCFA Online Zoom Class
  • Instructor: Darla Hitchcock

REGISTER »

Questions? Email [email protected].

The price for the series package is based on a sliding scale. If you are in a position to give more and feel comfortable doing so, then great! If not, no worries!

We offer a sliding scale tuition to make our classes as accessible as possible. We suggest:

$10 if you’re making ends meet
$20 if you’re financially stable
$30 if you’re financially flourishing

About the instructor:
Darla Hitchcock is a certified late bloomer working on a new career at an age when most people think of retirement. As an undergrad she lived in a ramshackle vintage Airstream, in a dilapidated metal barn, on an unkempt pig farm in Petaluma, California. She spent her there time laughing at the baby piggies, muttering at the flies, and cursing the mud. She also fit writing in there somewhere. She now lives in Vermont, in a real building (without wheels), and is an MFA candidate in Writing & Publishing at Vermont College of Fine Arts.

 


Magic & Tech: Elements of Science Fiction and Fantasy

Speculative fiction allows readers to imagine worlds where things that don’t seem possible in our current moment are not only possible but commonplace occurrences. It asks us to consider not only the world as it is but as it might be, as it could become. It entertains, cautions, inspires, makes us wonder and hope, and helps us recognize when we have lost our way. Fantastic elements, like magic or technology, are the backbone of science fiction and fantasy (SFF) stories, but thoughtless introduction of said elements risks destroying the very universe they are creating! This workshop will delve into the do’s and don’t’s of worldbuilding, with a focus on craft techniques. The goal is to help writers integrate SFF elements into their story universes. The class will include exercises to generate believable and consistent magic/science systems.

  • Saturday, May 1, from 1–4 pm EDT
  • VCFA Online Zoom Class
  • Instructors: Dexter Loken and M.K. Martin

REGISTER »

Questions? Email [email protected].

We offer a sliding scale tuition to make our classes as accessible as possible. We suggest:

$10 if you’re making ends meet
$20 if you’re financially stable
$30 if you’re financially flourishing

About the instructors:
Dexter Loken is a nomad currently hunkered down in California to weather the pandemic. While living in Tanzania, he transitioned from mathematics to writing science fiction and fantasy. His essay, “The Hard Science of Sci-Fi,” appears in the online portion of the literary magazine Hunger Mountain, where he is an assistant editor. He has a certificate in publishing from the Vermont College of Fine Arts and is continuing at the same university for an MFA. His life experiences have led to writing, and he hopes to use them to bolster the ranks of the writing community.

M. K. Martin is a Minnesota-born and raised author and editor. Her novel Survivors’ Club was published in 2017. Her short stories appear in literary journals including 0-Dark-Thirty, Wanderlust, Barnstorm, and Hunger Mountain, and in several anthologies. Currently, she is an MFA candidate in the Writing & Publishing program at Vermont College of Fine Arts. Between Minnesota and Vermont, Martin was an exchange student in Paraguay, joined the Army, got deployed to Afghanistan and to Iraq, got a BA in Linguistics from the University of Oregon, and developed a deep love of tea.

 


VCFA Community Enrichment Classes Cancellation Policy

If you cancel 4 or more days before the class starts, you will receive a full refund. If you cancel after that timeframe, no refund or credit will be issued. On rare occasions, due to unforeseen circumstances, VCFA may need to cancel a community class. In this case, you will receive a full refund.