Pennwriters – Writing Fantasy and Science Fiction with Barbara Mountjoy (AKA Alana Lorens and Lyndi Alexander)
Discussion of different types of sci fi (hard sci fi, space opera, etc) and fantasy, high fantasy, urban fantasy, etc. Writing assignment will be to sketch out a rough outline of the piece students will be working on for the class, using the above guidelines, whether a short story or novel beginning.
Discussion of tropes and how to avoid them. Drawing characters. Power Point presentation on world-building. Lessons from AVATAR on how to shortcut some world-building by using similar concepts that people already know. Writing assignment will be to continue to embellish the outline with interesting characters, situations and oddities of the world they are creating.
Watching Firefly episode “Out of Gas,” an exercise in learning how to insert small details so that it doesn’t look like heroes are God-moding when they can suddenly do everything at the climax. Writing exercise will be to analyze piece for possible placement of such details.
Sharing the works we’ve done over the month, feedback offered, “pickles of praise” as well as whatever participants request. Discussion of what might be done to expand this piece into something longer, and encouragement offered!