Monday, December 4

Home/Monday, December 4

Books will be sold today.

8:00am: Breakfast

 

9:00am – 10:30am

Guest Faculty Lecture: Allison Hedge Coke (P)

Room: Salon 4

Verse-play & Docupoetics: The wild ride of literary activism with diminished didacticism, a how-to talk. Two of the most successful literary avenues to suit a call for cause are the verse-play and docupoetry. While making malleable work from the stuff of life, research, witness, and experience open up phenomenal possibilities.

9:00am – 10:30am

Guest Faculty Lecture: Emily Ziff Griffin (F)

Room: Salon 6

Self/Centered: The study and practice of personal, resonant narrative storytelling. All creative work my best personal. This does not mean that all creative work must be literal—great artistry is not the play-by-play narration of “what happened” to us. Rather, it is the synthesis of that narrative with existential inquiry, ever-evolving self-awareness, honesty, vulnerability, intellect, and, I would argue, a willingness to invite in a little bit of magic. Great artistry involves a fearless journey to the essence of our experience, of our very selves, and then a translation of that essence into work that connects it to the bigger picture of human life. My first novel is rooted in my personal experience: my father died of AIDS when I was a teenager. But I did not write a book set in the ‘90s about a girl with a gay father who gets sick and eventually passes away. I wrote a book about a girl in an alternate present whose father is struck by a mysterious, terrifying virus which threatens the entire world, who herself is a genius coder, lives with a vexing condition that makes her emotions manifest through her physical senses, and sets out on a journey to save her dad only to uncover a deeper truth about the disease and perhaps more importantly, herself. There are villains and plots and a sexy love story. There are thrilling metaphysical and spiritual questions posed. It is so much bigger than anything I actually lived, and yet by connecting to the emotional authenticity and accuracy of my own experience, I was free to weave a narrative that is way more exciting and even ultimately truer to my lived experience than my own story. The question then becomes how do we make that connection? How do we learn the language of both the personal and the universal fluently enough to interweave the two for the entertainment (and enlightenment) of our audience? In this workshop we will begin by creating a sacred, embodied state through meditation. From there we will work through the following exercise to create building blocks for personal, emotional truth.

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 10:30am – 12:00pm

Faculty Lecture: Stephen Graham Jones (F)

WHAT IF YOUR DIALOGUE WASN’T TERRIBLE? We all know how to speak and carry on conversation, but once we introduce tag lines and and contracts with the reader and all the pitfalls and pratfalls involved with staging a conversation on the page, writing compelling, efficient dialogue can get tricky. In here we’ll run through how to do it less wrong. There may not be a single right way, but there are a lot of problems we can identify, and some workarounds to make your dialogue in fiction less terrible. We won’t be doing any writing exercises. We might have some dialogue.

Room: Salon 4

 10:30am – 12:00pm

Faculty Lecture: Bill Rabkin (S)

Writing Dystopian Worlds In Dystopian Times. 1984 is a hit on Broadway, Gilead’s Handmaids are stars in streaming, and in the theaters we can choose between Bladerunner’s Los Angeles or the Planet of the Apes. Basically the world is turning into hell, and audiences are just as eager to visit as writers are to lead them there. We create dystopian societies to shine a light on real issues troubling us today and to turn social problems into mass entertainment. But for every harrowing depiction of a hideous future that demands our attention, there’s always an Elysium or Battlefield Earth that draws nothing but snickers. What’s the difference – and how do we build worlds that seem real and terrifying? This lecture will examine the creation of the dystopian worlds that command our attention, from The Handmaid’s Tale’s Gilead to The Hunger Games’ Panem to Children of Men’s dying England and Mad Max’s outback wasteland. And it will look at failed dystopias to find out why audiences rejected them. What are the elements that make even the craziest of these societies ring true? What makes audiences want to immerse themselves in their misery? And what are the mistakes that make a dystopian world look silly instead of scary?

Room: Salon 6

10:30am – 12:00pm

Guest Presentation: Maggie Gover Director, Graduate Professional Development at UCR will tell you all about Grad Slam…which is a fun (and profitable!) competition where grad students from throughout the UC system talk about their graduate theses in a competition-event (which you should win).  Maggie will also talk about public speaking.

Room: Salon 3

12:00pm – 1:00pm: Lunch

1:15pm – 4:15pm: Main Genre Workshops

Classes will be held in the Las Flores Conference Center
Map: http://www.rancholaspalmas.com/resort-map

Salons 1, 2 and 8 are located in the main conference and meeting area
Map: http://www.rancholaspalmas.com/resort-map

 

4:30pm

Graduate Student Lecture: Tanisha Williams (S)

Room: Salon 4

Faith-Based Filmmakers Approach to Modern Topics, Their Protagonist and the Use Of Common Themes That Lead to Their Success. Though ‘faith-based films’ carry a general connotation of a movie safe for the family and well received among Christians, its definition in practice falls along a sliding scale. The box office success of faith-based films in recent years, has broken barriers and broadened the traditional movie-going audience to attract an audience beyond the pews.  In this genre, there is a built in audience due to one’s belief system. How do these filmmakers attract, maintain and expand this audience for mainstream success?

8:00pm

Evening Program: Student Readings in R Bar (coordinated by TAs)

Room: R Bar (main lobby)