09/08 Get Your Characters in Trouble with Tamara Guirado

Date: Sunday, September 8, 2013 Time: 2:30pm to 6:30pm Number of sessions: 1 -- One day class! Members: $60 Nonmembers: $72 Location: The NEW Ink Spot, NTC at Liberty Station, 2730 Historic Decatur Rd., Barracks 16, Suite 202, San Diego, CA 92106

Get Your Characters in Trouble–writing conflict-fueled scenes!

Conflict is fundamental to fiction.  Nothing moves forward without it—story is conflict. 

We know conflict when we see it—two dogs, one bone—but as writers, we tend to be better behaved than characters (or dogs).  Sometimes it’s difficult to get our characters into the fancy kind of trouble that makes fiction explode.

This fun, exercise-based class will focus specifically on getting your characters into hot water and creating high-conflict scenes.

Borrowing techniques from the screenwriter and playwright’s toolbox, we’ll learn how to develop discord between characters, exploit power dynamics, and ratchet up the tension.

 You will leave with tools to develop your work immediately. Bring a pen and be prepared to write!


TAMARA AVILA GUIRADO was born close enough to Disneyland to see the fireworks. Her short story “Dog Children” was included in Best New American Voices 2005 and her short story “Above Asmara” won a Robie McCauley Award from StoryQuarterly and was subsequently included as a Special Mention in the 2009 Pushcart Prize Anthology.  She was awarded a Wallace Stegner Fiction Fellowship at Stanford University, a Carl Djerassi Fiction Fellowship at the University of Wisconsin, and a Sacatar Foundation Fellowship in Bahia, Brazil. She has taught fiction and creative nonfiction for over ten years in universities, caves, and seedy motels. She holds an M.F.A. from Mills College in Oakland, CA.  http://writersninja.com/

PLEASE NOTE: It is best to register early to help our instructors prepare and ensure the class does not get cancelled or shifted to another date and time.  We evaluate registration numbers between 7 and 3 days before a class start to decide about whether to keep or reschedule it.  By registering 7 days or more in advance, you help us help our participants and instructors in many ways.