When we talk about hybrid literary genres, what do we mean? This generative workshop will invite participants to climb the branches of genre’s family tree, seeing where hybrids originate and cross-pollinate. We will read and respond to craft essays on and examples of such hybrid forms as the lyric essay, the epistolary, poetic memoir, prose poetry, performative work, short-form nonfiction, flash fiction, and pictures made of words. We’ll explore how cross-genre works blend features from multiple literary parents to create new entities, forms that feel more urgent than ever in today’s increasingly heterogeneous landscape. Writers in any genre seeking to experiment with diverse forms and cross-genre techniques will find this class beneficial.
A founding editor of Rose Metal Press, a publisher of literary work in hybrid genres, and a founding member of Poems While You Wait—a team of poets and their typewriters who compose commissioned poetry on demand—Kathleen Rooney is the co-editor, with Eric Plattner, of Rene Magritte: Selected Writings (University of Minnesota Press, 2016). The author of eight books of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, her second novel, Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk, is forthcoming from St. Martin’s Press in 2017. Her reviews and criticism appear regularly in the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Review of Books, The New York Times, and online at the Poetry Foundation. She lives in Chicago with her husband, the writer Martin Seay.