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Contrary to popular belief, writing funny doesn’t mean sacrificing depth. On the contrary, for most literary writers, the comic impulse is inextricably linked to tragedy. It’s not a conscious effort to entertain the reader so much as an unconscious effort to face some tragic moment or realization. In this informal class, suitable for both fiction and nonfiction writers, we’ll look at the work of Lorrie Moore, George Saunders, and others in an effort to learn how you can be funny and break hearts while doing it.
Steve Almond is the author of ten books of fiction and non-fiction, including the New York Times bestsellers Candyfreak and Against Football. His forthcoming book is William Stoner and the Battle for the Inner Life. Steve's short stories have appeared in the Best American Short Stories and Pushcart Prize anthologies. His essays have appeared in the New York Times Magazine and elsewhere. For many years, he hosted the Dear Sugars podcast with Cheryl Strayed.