The short story: character, setting, voice – WebWorkshop – with Catherine Chidgey

10am to 12.30pm, Wednesday, 2 September.

This workshop guides you through a range of bespoke writing exercises in order to generate the raw material for a short story. First you will identify a character and begin to flesh them out through consideration of a central desire as well as a problem or obstacle they must face. You will then create a three-dimensional setting in which to place your character. Finally, you will be encouraged to find your character’s authentic voice by placing them in a dialogue.

Catherine Chidgey is a multiple award-winner whose novels have attracted international acclaim. ‘In a Fishbone Church’ won Best First Book at both the New Zealand Book Awards and the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize (South-East Asia and South Pacific region). It also won the Betty Trask Award (UK), and was longlisted for the Orange Prize. ‘Golden Deeds’ was a Best Book in the LA Times Book Review and a Notable Book in the New York Times Book Review. ‘The Wish Child’ won the 2017 Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize – the country’s richest writing prize. Radio New Zealand called it ‘a brilliant, brilliant novel…a masterpiece’, and The Times (UK) ‘a remarkable book with a stunningly original twist’. Other honours include the Katherine Mansfield Short Story Award, the $60,000 Prize in Modern Letters, the Janet Frame Fiction Prize and a shortlisting for the 2020 Commonwealth Short Story Prize. Catherine released her first children’s book, ‘Jiffy, Cat Detective’ in 2019. She teaches creative writing at the University of Waikato, where she initiated the Sargeson Prize in 2019 – the country’s richest short story prize. Her sixth novel, ‘Remote Sympathy’, is due out in October.

WEBWORKSHOP ATTENDANCE FEE: NZSA Members – $30. (Non-members – $60)

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NZSA WebWorkshops are hosted on Zoom. Zoom is free to download