Creating Fiction from Your Life Experience

Course Dates: 
6 weeks: January 10, 17, 24, 31 February 7, 14, 2018
Wednesdays, 9-11 a.m.
Bruce Spang
Course Catalogs: 
2018 Winter

Writers must know how to transform life’s experience into stories. Everyone has stories hidden inside, wanting to find their fictional form. We will explore the basic “moves” that writers use to create an exciting story. We’ll learn how to plot a story, use engaging dialogue, ferret out motivation, paint lively characters and use different points of view. Using our own life experiences as a jumping off point, we’ll change what actually happened into what makes great fiction. Recommended text: The Best American Short Stories 2016 by Junot Díaz and Heidi Pitlor, editors, ISBN-13: 978-0544582897.

Course Outline

Types of Absolutes

Week One

Week Two

Week Three

Week Four

Week Five

Week Six

Bruce Spang ( is a former poet laureate of Portland, Maine, and author of seven books of poetry and one novel—The Deception of the Thrush. He works as an editor of Smokey Blue Arts and Literary Review. Having worked as a college and high school teacher of literature and creative writing, Bruce enjoys working with writers to hone their skills and gain more confidence in the craft of writing.