Spring Craft Intensive: Zeyn Joukhadar


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Editor's Note

Tension in Fiction with Zeyn Joukhadar
Sunday, April 23rd
8 AM PST – 11 AM PST  / 11 AM – 2 PM EST

If a story is perpetual movement, and structure is a means of organizing that movement, then tension is the fuel that gets us where we want to go. In this online craft intensive for writers of both short and long-form fiction, we will talk about controlling the flow of information in our narrative and how this creates pace and contributes to keeping the tension high throughout our work. We will discuss how tension is influenced by an understanding of (and is made possible by) character development, the flow of time, point of view, and the juxtaposition of multiple story threads. We’ll explore the pros and cons of various techniques to enhance and sustain tension, including circularity, symbol, use of B story and supporting characters, as well as nonlinear structures and fragmentation, using generative exercises to help us practice these techniques and explore how to employ them effectively in our own fiction.

BIO: Zeyn Joukhadar is the author of the Lambda Literary and Stonewall Book Award-winning novel The Thirty Names of Night and the Middle East Book Award-winning novel The Map of Salt and Stars. His work has appeared in Salon, The Paris Review, [PANK], and elsewhere, has been included in anthologies such as Kink, This Arab Is Queer, and others, and has been twice nominated for the Pushcart Prize. Joukhadar guest edited Mizna’s 2020 Queer + Trans Voices issue, serves on the board of the Radius of Arab American Writers (RAWI), and mentors emerging writers of color with the Periplus Collective.