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This course will explore what makes writing funny in a variety of poetic & non-poetic contexts. We will examine formal principles commonly employed by comedians — deadpan, absurdity, premise, surprise, and timing — and consider their analogs in poetry. We’ll think critically about the difference between cheap gag and complex satire. Even those who don’t consider themselves “funny” writers will find value in our exploration of comedic concepts. There will be a balance between writing exercises designed to illustrate basic principles of comedic writing and workshopping of participant work. Attendees are asked to bring in a poem of their own in any style on any subject.
Beginning Fall 2021, we will be adding select in-person classes back to our course catalog. The majority of our classes will still be offered via Zoom.
If a class says IN-PERSON in its title, it will take place in person at our permanent home in Seattle.
If a class says ASYNCHRONOUS in its title, it will take place on Wet Ink, our asynchronous learning platform.
If a class does not have a marker after its title, it will take place via Zoom.
Mark Leidner is the author of Beauty Was the Case that They Gave Me (Factory Hollow Press, 2011) and The Angel in the Dream of Our Hangover (Sator Press, 2011). He lives in Atlanta. His Twitter handle is @markleidner.