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All Levels. Writing in first-person may seem easy, but it presents its own challenges. The trick is to write a narrating “I” that has a distinctive voice but that is also inviting, trustworthy, and expansive—an “I” that makes room for the reader, elicits trust, and expands the world beyond the voice and experience of the individual narrator. Close readings of excerpts will yield nine techniques for creating a fluid, multi-dimensional “I,” and we’ll practice these techniques (“I” exercises) in class.
Mary Lane Potter is the author of A Woman of Salt: A Novel (2001 Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers selection) and Strangers and Sojourners: Stories from the Lowcountry. She was awarded a Washington State Arts Commission/Artist Trust Fellowship and MacDowell and Hedgebrook residencies.
Potter’s nonfiction has appeared in River Teeth, Witness, Tiferet, Spiritus, SUFI Journal, Leaping Clear, Feminist Studies in Religion, SIGNS, Women’s Studies Quarterly, Minerva Rising, Hevria, and others. She’s currently completing a book of essays on the body/spirit tangle.