celebrating Black women writers

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The Black Woman Writer’s Toolbox | 4-Week Online Fiction Seminar

Muli Amaye Saturdays, Feb. 17-March 9
9a-11:30a ET
6a-8:30a PT
8a-10:30a CT
4 class sessions

By signing up for a class, you agree to our refund policy and code of conduct here.

“We write for the same reason that we walk, talk, climb mountains or swim the oceans – because we can. We have some impulse within us that makes us want to explain ourselves to other human beings.” – Maya Angelou

Writing Black is different. There are layers for us to peel back to be confident in our production of fully rounded, flawed, wonderful characters.

How do we write ourselves on the page? Which parts of us do we show, which do we hide? Have we slipped into stereotypes of what the world says we should be?

In The Black Woman Writer’s Toolbox, begin the journey of discovering your power on the page. Looking at different aspects of what makes up a story, we will explore how to create characters that live and breathe, produce a setting that tastes like grandma’s cooking, and mold words toward the sounds we want them to make on the page, with all the color of carnival and the sharpness of diamonds.

Each week will focus in-depth on one or two aspects of writing, digging deep into what makes your writing unique, through writing exercises, reading, sharing, and questioning.

When we write ourselves, we have to undo the years of representation that do not speak to our truths. We have to draw our characters to the center of the page and allow them to grow, fail, be fully rounded, wonderful, or even a scoundrel. On our own terms. Just like the camera doesn’t always pick up the subtle shades in our skin and show us in all our glory, the words we use in our stories have to be given the right lighting and the correct filters.

Throughout this four-week course, we will grow together in a supportive, non-judgmental space. From producing characters and writing setting, to thinking about point of view and voice, you will learn organically through practice. You will write, read, listen, and share, leaving with an understanding of how to better shape your stories into being.

Open to beginning and intermediate Black women writers.

All class meetings will be held via Zoom. The link to join your Zoom classroom will be provided on the morning of your class. Please check spam folders if you do not receive an email confirmation upon registration. For more information on how to download or use Zoom, please click here.

Meet Your Instructor:
Muli Amaye

Muli Amaye is a novelist and short story writer and sometime poet. She is the coordinator of the MFA Creative Writing at The University of The West Indies, Trinidad. She gained a PhD at Lancaster University, UK in creative writing. In addition to university teaching, she has ten years of experience working in the community with various writing projects. Her interests center around women, memory, migration, diaspora, and belonging. She has numerous short stories published in anthologies and her debut novel, A House With No Angels, is published by Crocus Press, 2019.

Course Takeaways

  • How to develop character
  • Using the right language for setting
  • How to be bold with storytelling
  • How to develop voice
  • The importance of sentence length and structure 

Course Expectations

  • Students will come ready to write and to read their work. We will undertake a variety of exercises that can be used to develop our writing during the course and beyond.

Course Skeleton

  • Week 1: Senses, Sentences, and Setting
  • Week 2: Characterisation
  • Week 3: Showing vs Telling
  • Week 4: Structure and Plot