Natalie Bakopoulos

Natalie Bakopoulos is the author of the forthcoming novel Scorpionfish (Tin House, 2020) and the novel The Green Shore (Simon & Schuster, 2012). Her work has appeared in Tin House, VQR, The Iowa Review, The New York Times, Granta, Ploughshares, O. Henry Prize Stories, and various other publicationsShe received her MFA from the University of Michigan, has received fellowships from the Sozopol Fiction Seminars and from the Camargo, Can Cab, and MacDowell foundations. She was a 2015 Fulbright fellow in Athens and is currently an assistant professor at Wayne State University in Detroit.

Fiction Workshop

“Every work of literature has both a situation and a story. The situation is the context of circumstance, sometimes the plot; the story is the emotional experience that preoccupies the writer: the insight, the wisdom, the thing one has come to say”
—Vivian Gornick, from The Situation and the Story

“Narration is an act of translation. We aren’t recording a story, we’re creating it; and a defining element of the creation is the language we use, and our arrangement of it.” —Peter Turchi, from “You and I Know, Order is Everything”

“…when I’m talking about point of view I am really talking about perception of detail, and when I’m talking about perception of detail I am really talking about character, and when I am talking about character I am really talking about the real….”
—James Wood, from How Fiction Works

This workshop is open to writers of fiction and nonfiction. Our focus will be primarily on student work and the issues that arise from it, such as narration, voice, the development of emotional and dramatic stakes, building of character, the production of concrete, specific language, the choices of point of view and perspective, questions of pacing and structure, and so on. In short, we’ll be exploring how to tell a good story, regardless of genre. We will explore the ways that all storytelling is about verisimilitude or its subversion and the way narration is indeed an act of translation. Writers of all levels are welcome.