Seeing the Forest in the Trees: The Challenges and Rewards of Shaping a Memoir-in-Essays
Rebecca McClanahan will discuss the challenges and rewards of shaping her new book, In the Key of New York City: A Memoir in Essays (Red Hen Press, May 19, 2020) and offers suggestions to writers working in this form.
The writer of a memoir composed of separate, stand-alone essays faces challenges that the writer of a single-arc narrative memoir does not. Although each essay can and should stand alone, each must also relate to the other essays in significant ways so that that whole becomes greater than the sum of its parts. The reader, in effect, needs to see the forest, not only the separate trees.
Wednesdays@Lit events are free and open to the public. No registration required, just drop by. Wine and light snacks will be served. Seating is limited; doors will open at 6:15. Reception and book signing follows the reading.
Rebecca McClanahan’s eleventh book, In the Key of New York City: A Memoir in Essays, is forthcoming in 2020. Her work has appeared in Best American Essays, Best American Poetry, Georgia Review, Gettysburg Review, Boulevard, The Sun, and numerous anthologies. Recipient of the Glasgow Award in Nonfiction, the Wood Prize from Poetry Magazine, two Pushcart Prizes, and the Carter Prize for the Essay, she teaches in the MFA programs of Rainier Writing Workshop and Queens University and in the Kenyon Review Writers Workshop. She can be reached at RebeccaMcClanahanWriter.com.
This event is part of our free monthly Wednesdays@Lit series.