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The Love Story: A Writing Workshop with Vu Tran

  • Iowa Writer's House 332 East Davenport Street Iowa City, IA, 52245 United States (map)

When: Friday, April 21st, 6:00pm - 7:00pm (workshop kickoff)
Saturday, April 22nd, 1O:00am-3:30pm (lunch break 12:00-1:30pm)
Sunday, April 23rd, 10:00am-3:30pm (lunch break 12:00-1:30pm)

Where: The Iowa Writers' House, 332 E Davenport St

Fee: $245


About the Workshop

This workshop will examine the ways we write about love in fiction: romantic love, familial love, unconventional love, etc.  Our basis will be the notion that love is ultimately self-knowledge, which lies at the core of all great fiction, and like self-knowledge it involves an endless and inexhaustible act of seeking.  We will read and discuss short stories—by writers like Annie Proulx, Raymond Carver, and Anton Chekov—that are centered on the topic of love, this act of seeking, and try to not only define what a "love story" is and can be, but also explore the many other things we end up writing about when we write about love.  Then we'll do some exercises to help us find the best ways to write compellingly, convincingly, and unsentimentally about deeply sentimental things.  Although we’ll be focusing on fiction, the ideas inherent in our discussions will be of benefit to writers of nonfiction and poetry.     

About the Instructor

Vu Tran's first novel is Dragonfish, a 2015 NY Times Notable Book.  He is the winner of a Whiting Award, and his short stories have appeared in publications like the O. Henry Prize Stories and the Best American Mystery Stories.  Born in Vietnam and raised in Oklahoma, Vu received his MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and his PhD from the Black Mountain Institute at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Practice in English and Creative Writing at the University of Chicago.

Everyone has a story to tell. If you are financially unable to attend this workshop, scholarships are available through our generous partners and donors. 


Helping another person attend a workshop is helping them achieve their dreams. Thank you for making our world a better place.


Earlier Event: April 18
Rainbow Room Write-In
Later Event: April 25
Violet Realm Write-In