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For a while it seemed the unlikable narrator no longer needed defending. Apparently, however, many readers and writers do not agree. They don’t like narrators who are sexist, racist, or homophobic. They don’t like a narrator who doesn’t fulfill his or her own potential, complains too much, is too angry, or treats their mother badly. It is not a writer’s job to make sure the narrator isn’t offensive; the writer must have love and have empathy for their characters—that is the only task. In this class, we will read prose with “unlikable” narrators by Denis Johnson, Susan Steinberg, and Bret Easton Ellis, among others, and participants will be invited to write from the perspective of their own unlikable narrators.
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.
Mary Miller is the author of a story collection, Big World, and a novel, The Last Days of California.