A cool Cat’s school just got even cooler.
In 2011, speculative fiction writer and teacher Cat Rambo moved her Writing F&SF Stories class from the live classroom to a virtual one, via the then-brand-new technology Google Plus Hangouts. A few years later, Rambo has taught literally hundreds of class sessions, and provides her most popular classes in on-demand form.
Now the Rambo Academy for Wayward Writers adds three new teachers to its line-up: Ann Leckie, Rachel Swirsky, and Juliette Wade. Each presents both a live version of the class, limited to eight students and taught via Google Hangouts, as well as an on-demand version.
Swirsky’s class, Old Stories Into New, discusses existing forms and how genre writers draw on the stories that have preceded them–particularly folklore, mythology, and fables, but also beloved literature and media. The class presents the best methods for approaching such material while warning students of the possible pitfalls. Readings, written lectures, and writing exercises from Hugo and Nebula award winning writer Rachel Swirsky teach the student how to keep work original and interesting when playing with familiar stories. A live version will be offered on October 29, 2016; the on-demand version is available here.
Wade’s class, The Power of Words, focuses on the study of linguistics and its relevance to genre writing. Wade shows how linguistics differs from the study of foreign languages, and gives a survey of eight different subfields of linguistics. The class examines principles of language at levels of complexity from the most basic articulation of speech sounds to the way that language is used to participate in public forms of discourse. Wade looks at how each subfield can be used to enhance a writer’s portrayal of characters and societies in a fictional world. Then she takes the discussion to the level of text to consider how principles of linguistics can hone point of view and narrative language in storytelling. A live version will be offered on December 17, 2016.
Leckie’s class, To Space Opera and Beyond, will centers on space opera: its roots as well as its current manifestations as well as how to write it. Topics covered include creating and tracking multiple worlds, characters, and plots, interlocking and interweaving plots, writing storylines stretching across multiple books, and developing engaging and distinct politics, languages, and other cultural institutions. Both live sessions of the class are sold out. The on-demand version will be available in November.
Live classes are co-taught with Cat Rambo; registration details can be found here. One student slot in each live class is reserved for the recipient of a Plunkett scholarship, an applicant whose economic means do not otherwise allow them to take the class. More information about applying for Plunkett scholarships is available on the registration page.
Ann Leckie (http://annleckie.com) is the author of the Hugo, Nebula, and Arthur C. Clarke Award winning novel Ancillary Justice. She has also published short stories in Subterranean Magazine, Strange Horizons, and Realms of Fantasy. Her story “Hesperia and Glory” was reprinted in Science Fiction: The Best of the Year, 2007 Edition edited by Rich Horton. Ann has worked as a waitress, a receptionist, a rodman on a land-surveying crew, and a recording engineer. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri.
Rachel Swirsky’s short fiction has been nominated for the Hugo Award, the Locus Award, the World Fantasy Award, and the Sturgeon Award. She’s twice won the Nebula Award, in 2010 for her novella, “The Lady Who Plucked Red Flowers Beneath the Queen’s Window” and in 2014 for her short story, “If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love.” She graduated from the Iowa Writers Workshop in 2008 and Clarion West in 2005.
Juliette Wade has an M.A. in Linguistics, and her work has appeared in Fantasy and Science Fiction, Clarkesworld, and Analog magazines. She lives in California and runs the “Dive into Worldbuilding!” video series and workshop.
Cat Rambo is a writer/editor/teacher in the Pacific Northwest with 200+ fiction publications and twice that in nonfiction, including a cookbook, a guidebook, game rules, and refrigerator magnets. Her work has been shortlisted for the Nebula, Locus, Compton Crook, Locus, and World Fantasy Award. She is the current president of the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America.
Requests for further information should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.