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Writing the Short Story: Character, Plot, and Conflict


Writing the Short Story: Character, Plot, and Conflict

In this introduction to writing the short story, you will learn the basic elements of good storytelling: character, plot, and conflict. Every class meeting is conducted as a workshop, devoted to the development of the students’ own stories. We will “brainstorm” our way through storytelling snags, figuring out along the way how to strengthen your original idea. What makes a good story? What makes a character worth writing about? How do you transform your story idea into an actual plot? What’s conflict got to do with it? Come to the first class ready to share your idea for a main character plus one or two important things that happen to him/her. Class time will be set aside to work on your story — be sure to bring paper, pen, or tablet.

A 2004 Edgar nominee for Best Short Story and 2014 Agatha nominee for Best First Novel, Shelley Costa Bloomfield is the author of A Killer’s Guide to Good Works, Practical Sins for Cold Climates, Basil Instinct, and You Cannoli Die Once. Shelley’s stories have appeared in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine, Blood on Their Hands,The World’s Finest Mystery and Crime Stories, and Crimewave (UK). Her latest story, Glock, Paper, Scissors, appears in Mystery Writers of America’s new anthology, Odd Partners (Ballantine Books), edited by Anne Perry. She teaches fiction writing at the Cleveland Institute of Art and literature at the Siegal Lifelong Learning Institute. Learn more about Shelley at

Writing the Short Story takes place Mon. 4/1, 4/8 & 4/15 from 10a-12p at Siegal Lifelong Learning, 25700 Science Park Drive #100, Beachwood OH 44122 ($60 / 45 for members).

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Map Siegal Lifelong Learning, 25700 Science Park Drive #100, Beachwood OH 44122, Beachwood, United States
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