December 29, 2020

Say It With Style

                  Say It Like You Mean It

 

A Remote-Learning Experience
for Writers ages 12-15

This Weekly Writing Seminar

Runs Jan 15 – May 7
or Jan 19 – May 11 (2021)

 

What do we talk about when we talk about a “Style” of writing?

Word Choice (or maybe you prefer to call it Diction)

Word Order (or Syntax, literally where you put the words)

Point of View (insider or newb, omniscient or personal)

Attitude (the emotional aspect, which guides the other elements)

 

During “Say It With Style”

You’ll develop your own style by reading other authors, looking for what makes their voices their own.

You’ll write and revise 5 works (fiction, nonfiction, poetry), developing a style all your own.

You’ll participate in weekly sessions via Google Meet,
responding to your peers and getting their feedback on your submissions.

Click Here to Email
Brett Reeves, Educator
to Register for This Course

SIS Projects for Spring 2021

Elizabeth Wong · School of Dramatic Arts · USC

Elizabeth Wong,                                                 “My Struggle to Be an All-American Girl”

  Getting Your Head Right
  Our Not-So Secret Life with Dogs (and Other Creatures)
  Stylists Smackdown
  Offbeat, Alternative, & Experimental
  Getting Personal with the Personal Essay

For each topic, we read other writers to hone our sense of style.

Then we venture forth.

Schedule and Cost

Enrollment is limited to 5 participants per cohort.

Sessions run 60 minutes on Google Meet.

We meet once weekly for 16 weeks.

Cost is $160 prepaid or 4 payments of $40 each.

No books to buy! All texts are supplied digitally by your guide.

Payment Accepted: Cash, Check, PayPal, Venmo, Zelle

 

COHORT 1 meets Fridays from 4-5 PT/6-7 CST (January 15– May 7)


COHORT 2 meets Tuesdays from 11-12 am CST (January 19 – May 11)


*Other Time Slots Are Available By Request. Let Me Know What You Need.*

Click Here to Email
Brett Reeves, Educator
to Register for This Course

 

Our Weekly Activities

The Process

We divide into two groups (AB & CDE).
The groups will submit drafts on alternating weeks.
After each group’s drafts are reviewed, everyone submits a revision.

We begin each topic by reading and discussing master stylists.

That’s because the Number-1 Way to Write Better…
is to Read Better.

So we read, we discuss, we write, we revise.

 

* Our texts are all linked below.

 

Meeting 1
Getting Your Head Right
(Jan 15/19)
Read and discuss writing advice from Kurt Vonnegut and Ann Patchett.
Write an insincere letter of apology.
Define what we mean by Style.

Ann Patchett, Forgiving Yourself
Kurt Vonnegut, What Do You Care About?


Wesley Kizer the One-Eyed Westie (BRE mascot)

 

Meeting 2
Going to the Dogs

Discuss the styles of various writers and stories about their dogs.
We admit there are other animals worthy of our attention,
but for our purposes we focus on dogs to see how their humans
use different styles to express their affection, adulation, and frustrations.

Authors: Patricia B. McConnell, Ann Patchett, Louise Bernikow, Stephen Kuusisto, Margaret Cho 

Dog Is My Co-Pilot (Paperback) – BarkGoods

DUE for Meeting 2
Read selections from Dog is My Co-Pilot. Make notes about each author’s style.
Selections from Dog Is My Co-Pilot

 

 

Meeting 3
Writer’s Workshop

Discuss A-B group’s drafts.

DUE for Meeting 3 (AB group):
Write about a pet or an animal in the wild.
Choose a style to emulate from the authors we read.

 

Meeting 4
Writer’s Workshop

Discuss CDE group’s drafts.

DUE for Meeting 4 (CDE group):
Write about a pet or an animal in the wild.
Choose a style to emulate from the authors we read.

 

Meeting 5
Writer’s Workshop Redux

Review selected revisions of each participant’s Animal text.

DUE for Meeting 5: Revise Animal texts. 

 

Meeting 6
Stylists Smackdown: Hemingway vs Faulkner
Discuss the stylistic divergence of Ernest Hemingway and William Faulkner.
Key Terms: The Iceberg, Stream of Consciousness

DUE for Meeting 6:
Read Hemingway and Faulkner selections.
Read the Stylistic AnWilliam Faulkner's Review of Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea (1952) | Open Culturealysis of each author.
Take notes about what typifies each author’s style.

Hemingway Selection: “The End of Something”
Hemingway’s Style

Faulkner Selection: Absalom, Absalom! Chapter 1
Faulkner’s Style

 

Meeting 7
Writer’s Workshop

Discuss CDE drafts.

DUE for Meeting 7 (CDE group):
Write a story or essay (at least two pages of) in the style of Faulkner or Hemingway.

 

Meeting 8
Writer’s Workshop
Discuss AB drafts.

DUE for Meeting 8 (AB group):
Write a story or essay (at least two pages of) in the style of Faulkner or Hemingway.

 

Meeting 9
Writer’s Workshop Redux

Discuss selected revisions of the Hemingway-Faulkner challenge.

DUE for Meeting 9
Revise your Faulkner or Hemingway text.

 

* No Meetings during Spring Break, March 14-20 * 

 

Meeting 10
Offbeat, Alternative, Experimental
Discuss the stylistic flourishes of selected authors.

DUE for Meeting 10:
Read each selection, making notes about style.
Choose one author and write a brief analysis of the style.

Haruki Murakami, “Cream”

Flannery O’Connor, “Good Country People” (pp. 280-)

Donald Barthelme, “The School”, “The first thing the baby did…”

Guy Davenport, “Pyrrhon of Elis”

Jim Hall, “Maybe Dats Youwr Prwoblem Too”

Terrance Hayes, Selected from American Sonnet for My Past and Future Assassin 

 

Meeting 11
Writer’s Workshop
Discuss AB group drafts.

DUE for Meeting 11 (AB group):
Write something offbeat, alternative, or experimental, emulating one or more of the elements of style from our selection.

 

Meeting 12
Writer’s Workshop
Discuss CDE group drafts.

DUE for Meeting 12 (CDE group):
Write something offbeat, alternative, or experimental, emulating one or more of the elements of style from our selection.

 

Meeting 13
Writer’s Workshop Redux
Discuss offbeat drafts.

DUE for Meeting 13:
Revise offbeat drafts.

 

Meeting 14
Getting Personal
Discuss the stylistic choices of the selected authors.

Due for Meeting 14:
Read the selected essays. Choose one author and write a brief stylistic commentary about the work.

Firoozeh Dumas, “The ‘F Word’  

Elizabeth Wong, “The Struggle to Be an All-American Girl”

David Foster Wallace, “Consider the Lobster”

Bill Clinton, “Place Called Hope”

Dick Gregory, “Shame” 

 

Meeting 15
Writer’s Workshop
Discuss CDE group drafts.

Due for Meeting 15 (CDE group):
Write a personal essay, emulating one or more of the styles from our selection.

 

Meeting 16
Writer’s Workshop
Discuss AB group drafts.

Due for Meeting 16 (AB group):
Write a personal essay, emulating one or more of the styles from our selection.

 

Click Here to Email
Brett Reeves, Educator
to Register for This Course

ABOUT BRETT REEVES

I center my classes around the exchange of ideas, a back-and-forth that requires and rewards participation. My participants tell me they enjoy the boldness of my curriculum choices, the gusto of my presentation, and the understanding they gain. We use and produce multimedia projects, including photos, video, music, and theater in our work together.

I’ve been a writer, editor, and educator for over 30 years. My published work includes journalism, textbooks, academic writing, advertising, historical nonfiction, poetry, and music. I’ve written and recorded my own songs and co-written songs with other artists. As an educator, I specialize in Writing, Literature, and the Liberal Arts. I focus on the participants, who they are and how they can benefit from our time together.

I know that anyone who cares about learning can learn.

During the past few years, I have offered private courses to the Austin homeschooling community and also through Hill Country Academy and Austin Community College.

Wesley Kizer, the One-Eyed Westie