Mary Kuryla

Instructor Biography:

MFA, Pushcart Prize-winning author and screenwriter whose short stories have appeared in Epoch, Copper Nickel, Alaska Quarterly Review, Witness, New Orleans Review, The Greensboro Review, and Brooklyn Review, among many others. Ms. Kuryla is the author of three children’s books published by HarperCollins, and won the 2015 Glimmer Train Very Short Fiction Prize.

Instructor Statement:

The only thing worth writing about, William Faulkner said in his Nobel Prize acceptance speech, was “the problems of the human heart in conflict with itself.” Faulkner believed that a divided self is the essence of the human condition. I’d like to suggest that it is within this very division that the writer has the best shot at finding his or her voice. Since human consciousness is said to be the hallmark of the literary voice, what better place to draw from than our own inner workings? In addition to igniting the energizing conflict in our own voice, we will explore how the problems of the heart in conflict can also be made to occur at the level of plot, character, POV, form, style, language, and process. In other words, every detail of the story can be put to work for you. Writing stories requires a bold vulnerability, a generosity to oneself and others, and a touch of madness. As Amadeus Mozart proclaimed, “Let the performance be insane!”

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