Clarion West holds several workshops a year, all taught by instructors who work in the fields of science fiction and fantasy.
Summer Six-Week Workshop
Rocket fuel for writers
Every summer, Clarion West holds an intensive six-week workshop geared to help students prepare for professional careers as writers of speculative fiction. Each class is limited to 18 students, and each week features a different a highly regarded author or editor offering a unique perspective on the field. The Clarion West Six-Week Workshop is one of the most respected science fiction and fantasy workshops in the world.
Throughout the year, Clarion West invites acclaimed instructors to teach a one-day class focused on a specific aspect of the writing process. Hosted in Seattle’s University District, these workshops are available to anyone aged 18 or older for a $130 fee. Past instructors have included Nicola Griffith, Cat Rambo, Karen Joy Fowler, Nancy Kress, Kij Johnson, and Nisi Shawl.
New One-Day Workshops
When Worldviews Collide: Character as Conflict
September 18 • Susan Palwick
Conflict is the engine of story, and conflicts arise between and among (and within!) characters. This workshop will begin by discussing how writers create fully rounded fictional characters. From there, you will analyze various aspects of point of view to explore how characters perceive the world and their roles within. Then you will put all of this together to discover how conflict can arise organically—and in fact is often inevitable—simply from putting two or more characters in a room together.
Voice and Diversity
October 9 • Nisi Shawl
As an author you can use voice to make a diverse cast of characters vividly real. In this workshop, you’ll analyze both familiar and unfamiliar speech patterns with lectures, discussion, and selected reading. You will learn firsthand some of the problems inherent in phoneticization and “eye-dialect,” and do exercises to practice alternative techniques for representing nonstandard speech in narrative and dialogue.
Rewriting and Revisioning
November 20 • Cat Rambo
Learning to trust your editing skills makes you more productive when producing early drafts, because you can relax in the knowledge that you can make anything better. Cat’s three-step process will help you make a story its best, as well as giving you an easy method for knowing when a story’s ready to send out.
Integrating Character, Plot, and Worldbuilding
December 4 • David Levine
Many writers are naturals with characters or worldbuilding, but struggle with plot; others have no difficulty plotting but find their characters flat. Hugo-winning writer David D. Levine shows you his process for developing characters, plot, and setting simultaneously and cohesively.