Tamara Guirado teaches Creating Complex Characters

Date: Sunday, August 26, 2012 Time: 10 am to 2 pm Number of sessions: 1-ONE DAY CLASS! Members: $60 Nonmembers: $72 Location: The Inkspot, 710 13th St, Ste 210, San Diego, CA 92101

This class has been canceled. If you have registered and paid, you will be reimbursed the full amount. You will receive an email with details. Thank you and we apologize for the inconvenience.

Creating Complex Characters

Do you have moments where it feels as if your characters are wooden cliché monsters stumbling across the page?  How do we write compelling, layered, characters that live and breathe?  Should we patch together Frankensteins from parts of our friends and relatives or cut from whole cloth?  In this seminar we will discuss techniques for crafting complex, lifelike characters with rich inner landscapes, distinctive tics, speech, desires, secrets and fears.  We will explore direct and indirect methods of character development, the “ tripod method,”and other techniques of master inkslingers like Flannery O’Conner, Jerzy Kosinksi, Vikram Seth and Mary Gaitskill. This is an exercise-based seminar and most of class time will be spent hands-on building characters and reading aloud what we come up with. 

Bring a pen and notebook (or computer) 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/