Yearlong in Short Story

with Ramon Isao

Genres: Short Story

In Person

Open to all levels

30 Sessions

Start Date: September 26, 2023
End Date: June 4, 2024
Day of Week: Tuesday
Time: 7:10pm - 9:10pm PT
Capacity: 15 seats
1 seat left!
Member Price: $1314.00
General Price: $1460.00

The short story remains arguably the best medium through which fiction writers hone their craft. In this class, that's precisely our aim. We'll read, write, discuss, and critique short fiction with equal parts rigor and vigor. Ours isn't some dry, lifeless affair—fiction is too good for that. Instead, expect lively exchanges of ideas, stimulating writing prompts, literary experiments, and occasional baked goods. Also, expect mind-blowing readings from George Saunders, Zadie Smith, Carmen Maria Machado, Ottessa Moshfegh, and many more.

Payment plans are available for this class. Please email to get a payment plan started.

Guest speaker: Heather Monley, O. Henry Award-winning short story writer

Syllabus: View sample syllabus here

No class dates: 10/31/2023, 12/19/2023, 12/26/2023, 1/2/2024, 1/9/2024, 4/2/2024, 4/9/2024

Registration dates: 

August 7: Scholarship Donation Day

August 8: Member registration opens at 10:30 am

August 15: General registration opens at 10:30 am

August 21: Last day of Early Bird pricing



Who is this class best suited for? How much writing experience do I need to take this class?

All levels are welcome! In seven years of teaching the class, I've had many students who have never written a story and many students who are more seasoned. The class is structured so that everyone can get plenty out of the experience. It's part of what makes the class interesting.

What will I learn over the course of this yearlong?

Jim Krusoe says that writing has three steps: Play, Look, and Fix. In this class, we'll go over the multitude of methods and practices of writing drafts (play), noticing what could be improved (look), and coming up with a plan of how to make it better (fix)., and figuring out ways to make it even better. Along the way we'll not only study elements of crafting good fiction, but putting those elements into practice, one by one, to make sure you can use them in your own writing.

What's the balance of in-class generative writing, lecture, and workshop?

Almost every week, we'll read one or two stories from classmates for whom we'll write and deliver constructive feedback. We'll often discuss an assigned reading. In addition, we'll go over an element of writing and practice its usage through prompts, and weird literary experiments.

How much time outside of class will I need for this class each week?

I'd say anywhere from 1-4 hours

How much feedback will I receive on my work, peer, or instructor?

You will submit at least 3 full stories for feedback from myself, and your peers, in workshop. Outside of workshop, we will also be sharing work in the form of literary experiments, or "prompts."

Who will we be reading?

As we progress through the class, I'll assign readings that get us talking and that highlight some techniques we can use in our own writing. These will likely include George Saunders, Sandra Cisneros, Carmen Maria Machado, Zadie Smith, Ottessa Moshfegh, Jamaica Kincaid, Donald Barthelme, Bryan Washington, Yukiko Motoya, Percival Everett, and so many more.

Ramon Isao

Ramon Isao

Ramón Isao is a recipient of the Tim McGinness Award for Fiction, as well as fellowships from Artist Trust and Jack Straw Cultural Center. His stories appear in such journals as The Iowa Review, Ninth Letter, Moss, and Hobart, and his screen credits include ZMD and Dead Body. He holds an MFA from Columbia University and serves as Fiction Editor at New Orleans Review.

Most classes are offered at a general and member tuition rates based on instruction hours, with Hugo House members receiving a 10% discount on classes fewer than six sessions.

Early bird discounts are available during the first two weeks of registration and apply to both general and member tuition rates.

To help provide financial accessibility to our class offerings, some classes each quarter are offered with a sliding-scale tuition model, allowing students to pay what they can for the class. For these classes, tuition increments starting at $5 and going up to 125% of the standard pricing will be listed on the page.

Hugo House will only process refund requests that are submitted 5 business days or more before the class start date. To request a refund, log in to your account, go to “My Account,” select the “Orders” tab on the left-hand side, click the appropriate order, and request a refund for your specific class. Administrative fees apply. Please see our full refund policy here.

We do not record classes. However, an exception if a student has specific access needs.

We encourage students to only sign up for classes that fit with their schedule.   

We do not tolerate racist, sexist, homophobic, ableist, transphobic or any other oppressive behaviors, regardless of who commits them. Please check out our full community guidelines by clicking here. If an instance of community guidelines are violated and not resolved within the classroom, students may let us know by filling out the student incident report.

Classes may be cancelled if less than the minimum number of students are enrolled within ten days before the class start date. If Hugo House needs to cancel a class for any reason, students can choose between receiving a full credit toward future classes or full refund.

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