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Master Class: Building Characters

In life, some of us have more tolerance for “characters” than others, but in literature, bland or implausible characters never cut it. In this master class we will focus on the creation and development of credible characters with depth – both major characters, the ones that lead the dramatic action and carry the story, and the minor ones, which W. D. Wetherell called a “litmus test in coming to a shorthand evaluation of a person's writing talent,” since “good writers always use minor characters well; bad writers use them hardly at all, or settle for stereotypes, a quick dose of satiric venom.”

Instructor: Evan Fallenberg is author of the novels Light Fell (Soho Press), When We Danced on Water (HarperCollins) and The Parting Gift (Other Press) and a translator of Hebrew literature. His work has won or been shortlisted for numerous awards, including an American Library Association Award, the Edmund White Award and the PEN Translation Prize. He teaches at Bar-Ilan University and, formerly, at Vermont College of Fine Arts and City University of Hong Kong.


Details: Master Class: Building Characters takes place Saturday February 11 from 9am-12pm at Lake Erie Ink.

Prerequisites: None

Genre: Fiction

Level: All levels

Format: Craft talk with Q&A.

Location: Lake Erie Ink (2843 Washington Blvd, Cleveland Heights, OH 44118)

Size: Limited to 30 participants (including scholarships).

Suggested Sequence: Follow this class with a generative fiction writing workshop or feedback course.

Scholarships: Two scholarship spots are available for this class for writers in Northeast Ohio. Apply by December 1.

Cancellations & Refunds: Cancel at least 48 hours in advance of the first class meeting to receive a full refund. Email

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