Do you enjoy stories that immerse you in place so you can smell the sea air or that describe an object so acutely you can feel it in your hand?
Finding a poetic cadence, adding sensory detail, or distilling profound meaning in just a few select words can raise your writing to another level that sets it apart from mere plot driven storytelling. I will offer you techniques to incorporate lyrical writing into your prose that doesn’t take away from the story itself, doesn’t bog it down with unnecessary detail but instead adds depth and nuance to every aspect, including character, theme, place—the opportunities are endless! We’ll work from generative prompts in class; you may bring samples from current works in progress that you’d like to enhance with lyricism, and we’ll look at some of my favorite lyrical passages as inspiration.
Marcel Proust famously employs lyricism in this excerpt from Remembrance of Things Past:
“She sent out for one of those short, plump little cakes called ‘petites madeleines,’ which look as though they had been moulded in the fluted scallop of a pilgrim’s shell. And soon, mechanically, weary after a dull day with the prospect of a depressing morrow, I raised to my lips a spoonful of the tea in which I had soaked a morsel of the cake. No sooner had the warm liquid, and the crumbs with it, touched my palate, a shudder ran through my whole body, and I stopped, intent upon the extraordinary changes that were taking place.”
Workshopping and sharing will be important components of this two-day class, and you will leave with a plethora of ideas and tools to apply to your future writings.
Georgina Key is an award-winning author and artist whose debut novel, Shiny Bits In Between (Balance of Seven Press, 2020), was a recipient of the Kops-Fetherling Phoenix award for Best New Voice of 2020. Her poems have appeared in various journals, and she is currently working on her second novel based in part on memories of her childhood in England. Georgina currently lives in Texas where she received her M.A. in English from Stephen F. Austin University. She has taught writing for over 30 years and founded Silver Rocket, a literary zine celebrating children’s voices. Visit the author’s website, Instagram, or Facebook shiny bits in between for excerpts, news and updates.
Artwork by Be Creative Mary. Visit her website.