Material culture can be defined narrowly as any assemblage of artifacts in the archaeological record, but in this workshop it is intended to mean the relationship between people and the physical objects used in life by those people and their culture(s). Social space refers to the ways in which people interact in social spaces and with their lived environment.

In this workshop, writers will work through a series of written exercises intended to show how changing the parameters of the material culture and social space in fictional events (for example, a person walks into a room) can dramatically alter our perception of a setting and characters. Details of setting and interaction provide an excellent foundation for rich, vivid, and efficient worldbuilding.


This workshop is available to anyone aged 18 or older for a $55 fee.

Unless otherwise stated, all times listed are US Pacific Time.

We offer a limited number of scholarships for each class to Black and Indigenous writers and writers from other marginalized backgrounds on a first come, first served basis. Please email us at workshop@clarionwest.org with a one-paragraph statement about your scholarship interest and/or need. Please include the name of the class you would like to apply the scholarship to.

By participating in any Clarion West activity, you are agreeing to our Code of Conduct, the Clarion West Harassment Policy, and our Zoom Guidelines.

Clarion West will refund all class fees if the request is made 30 days prior to the class date. Refund requests made within 30 days of the class will be honored if we can fill the seat. Any exceptions are subject to approval by our workshop staff.