What Happens Next? (Studies in Plot)


Mondays, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
June 6 through August 1
(eight classes, no class on July 4)

The beautiful word, “mythos,” from Aristotle’s Poetics, is usually translated as “plot,” a four-letter word that makes writers buck and shiver. This class will examine the act of creating what Peter Brooks calls “the principle of interconnectedness and intention.” We will study diverse plot structures, such as Joseph Campbell’s hero’s journey and metafiction, and the effect on plot of craft elements such as storyline pacing, dialogue, flashback, suspense, and juxtaposition of scenes. All this will be done to divine within our own stories possibilities of plot: a process that can unhinge our rigid belief that certain stories must be told in certain ways, and lead us to new revision and new texts. Work will consist of readings, writing experiments (in-class and at home), and discussion.

What our students say about Elizabeth Rollins

Elizabeth’s class was two hours of warmth, passion, and uncommon uncovering of the mind and how it works or doesn’t work when writing.

Elizabeth lights up the life of an aspiring writer, making you feel as if writing could be your most supernatural power.

This class exceeded my expectations. I was prepared for a good experience, but not one that was life-changing and writing-changing.

Elizabeth Rollins is one of the best, if not THE best, writing instructors I’ve ever had. Her level of attention to each individual student and their writing is unparalled. She is also a master at leading class discussions, involving all participants, and creating a safe space in which to learn.

Elizabeth’s class provided an opportunity to generate new work and to talk about reading and writing in a productive and enjoyable way.
Sign me up for any class Elizabeth teaches. She is terrific.

$200 + $5 course material fee
Arizona Board of Regents