Winter Craft Intensive: Megan Kamalei Kakimoto


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Editor's Note

Writing into the Mythic and Modern: Contemporizing Ancestral Stories with Megan Kamalei Kakimoto
Saturday, February 24th 
12 PM  – 3 PM PST / 3 – 6 PM EST

For writers working with inherited or ancestral stories, the material can feel like both an incredible gift and an overwhelming burden. How does one honor the past while making space for contemporary concerns and interests? How do we write into those blurred lines, embracing the mythology, folklore, superstitions, and cultural histories we’ve inherited, while affording our passions and obsessions space on the page? I enjoy considering our ancestral stories in conversation with our contemporary ones, and this craft intensive will explore exactly that, as we discuss the responsibility of carrying forth these tales while inviting into the conversation both imagination as well as our own writerly obsessions. Through close examination of fiction by writers who are also working with ancestral tales, we will study their craft choices surrounding plot, point of view, character, and details, and we will take comfort in the company of artmakers communing with voices of the past. Because that’s exactly the work in which we are engaged—sharing in the never-ending conversations with our ancestors and our communities to keep these stories alive for generations to come.

This craft intensive will include close readings, group discussions, and generative writing exercises participants can use to produce new work or engage with (and maybe resee) their existing works in progress. Together, we will learn to write our way into existing mythologies, driven by the ideas, interests, and characters we simply can’t shake.

The scholarship for this intensive has already been awarded.

BIO: Megan Kamalei Kakimoto is the Japanese and Kanaka Maoli author of the story collection Every Drop Is a Man’s Nightmare (Bloomsbury 2023), a USA Today national bestseller. Her work has appeared in The Guardian, Granta, Joyland, and elsewhere. She has been a finalist for the Keene Prize for Literature and has received support from the Rona Jaffe Foundation and the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. She received her MFA from the Michener Center for Writers and is a Visiting Faculty in Fiction at Antioch University Los Angeles. A Fiction Editor for No Tokens journal, she lives in Honolulu.