Creative Writing Workshop with Lars Iyer: “Without Authority: The Solitude of Writing”

We are pleased to announce that Lars Iyer will be teaching a writing workshop online entitled “Without Authority: The Solitude of Writing” on October 21, 2020 at the European Graduate School.

Lars Iyer
“Without Authority: The Solitude of Writing”
October 21, 2020

Course Description: Creative writing courses place emphasis on the craft of writing. To write well is to acquire a selection of skills – in character-creation, say; in convincing dialogue, or in proficient pacing or narrative build. The notion of craft, important as it is, implies a tradition in which you serve as an apprentice under a master, becoming a master in turn. It implies a source of authority.

But what happens when such authority is wanting? Creative writing becomes a difficult, solitary pursuit. You might feel a vocation as a writer – an imperative to write – but the relationship between such vocation and writerly craft becomes obscure.

As Clarice Lispector observes, ‘One can have vocation and not talent; one can be called and not know how to go’. If we fail to nurture our talents – the craft of writing – it may well be impossible to get going at all. But if we fail to nurture our vocation, which seemed so rich with possibilities, we risk reproducing yesterday’s words.

By way of readings of literature, philosophy and theory, as well as writing exercises and discussion, this workshop explores the way in which we can sustain our relationship to the vocation of writing, even as we develop our talent.

You can apply for free here.