Our characters are the heart of our stories. Regardless of the plot, the characters are usually the element of a book that stays longest with your readers; the aspect of the story they will share with others and discuss heatedly in book clubs. Writing characters that stick is an art, an art we will explore in this workshop.
Whether you’re in the midst of your manuscript or just starting out, in this workshop you will develop your main (or a secondary) character through writing about them. We will start with exercises designed to ground your understanding of the character you choose. We will then read a well-regarded short story and participate in a guided discussion of the fundamentals of character-development craft at work in that story and in general. 
In the second half of the workshop, we will take inspiration from the readings and write, responding to prompts designed to help us explore our character’s desires and motivations. If time and interest exist, we will share and discuss some of the newly-generated work, but the main goal of this course is to make new work that will deepen your connection to and writing about your characters. 
Each writer can expect to leave this course with new work and a new or enhanced awareness of essential craft elements of character development that they can use in their current and future woks-in-progress.

NB: This class will be taught on Zoom (Sunday, August 4, 12:30-2:30 PM ET) and will be capped at 20 students. Registrants will receive the Zoom link to the email address they use to register. It will arrive immediately after registration so please check your spam folder if you do not receive it. It will also be sent the day before class as a reminder. Please review the course policies page before registering for any classes. Please email [email protected] with any questions.

Carol Mitchell is the author of the novel What Start Bad a Mornin’ and of 18 books for children, three published by HarperCollins UK. She holds an MFA from George Mason University and is a fellow of the Virginia Center for Creative Arts. Her short stories have appeared in several journals and four of her short stories have been long-listed for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize. She lives and teaches writing in Virginia.