Fine Arts Work Center In Provincetown

24Pearlstreet Workshops

Sandra Beasley Your Voice: Work It, Raise It, Change It Multi-Genre May 8 to May 12, 2017 Tuition: $500 Class Size: 12 Session: spring Level: 1 week asynchronous workshop

We often regard the author’s voice as having an inherent, unchangeable quality. Many writers have invoked the analogy comparing one’s voice to a fingerprint. But one person’s “fingerprint” is another person’s rut, and no author should feel trapped in his or her voice.

In this one-week intensive course we will identify the voice you have, and explore ways to flex, amplify, and shift that voice on the page. This class is applicable to all genres, from fiction to nonfiction to poetry. Using six tenets of craft—point of view, tense-aspect-mood, image, sound, structure, and diction—we will pursue radical revision of existing drafts, and generate new ones. We will study inspiring models of writers with distinctive voices, meaning those who test the bounds of form and expectation.
Following the class, each participant will receive an email with line edits on either 2-3 poems or up to 1,000 words of their choosing, a general critique of their approach to the work, and suggestions for moving forward.


Sandra Beasley is the author of four poetry collections—Made to Explode, Count the Waves, I Was the Jukebox, which won the 2009 Barnard Women Poets Prize, and Theories of Falling—as well as Don’t Kill the Birthday Girl: Tales from an Allergic Life, a disability memoir and cultural history of food allergies. She served as the editor for Vinegar and Char: Verse from the Southern Foodways Alliance. Honors for her work include the 2019 Munster Literature Centre’s John Montague International Poetry Fellowship, a 2015 NEA fellowship, and five DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities fellowships. She lives in Washington, D.C.