Course Catalog

Narrative Time: Balancing Pace and Plot

The relationship between time and story structure is complicated. If your time span is too short, your pacing can feel rushed, while if it’s too long you can lose tension, stakes, and momentum. We’ll examine how to get time on your (narrative) side. We’ll dissect how time interacts with structure, character, and thematics in classics such as White Noise and Under the Volcano, and do generative exercises that grow out of our findings. It’s an excursion into an essential yet largely overlooked element of the storyteller’s art.


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.

Instructor: Michael Shilling

Class Type: 6 Sessions

Start Date: 09/15/2014

End Date: 10/20/2014

Days of the Week: Monday

Time: 7:10 PM – 9:10 PM PDT

Minimum Class Size: 5

Maximum Class Size: 15

$220.50 Member Price:
Become a member >

$245.00 General Price:

Class has begun, registration is closed.

Michael Shilling

Michael Shilling is the author of Rock Bottom, a novel published by Little, Brown. The musical adaptation of the book was staged in 2014 by the Landless Theater Company. His stories have appeared in The Sun, Fugue, and Other Voices.

See current classes >