University of Iowa

The Art of Metaphor

Weekend June 22 to June 23 2019

From Melville’s white whale to Walker’s color purple. Woolf’s lighthouse to Carver’s cathedral. Basho’s pond. Frost’s forked path. Naipaul’s river bend. Macdonald’s hawk. Whitehead’s underground railroad. We all recognize the precision and poignancy of these metaphors. Those crystalline choices their creators made to deeply and simultaneously etch into our minds both image and meaning.


As writers, how can we bring that kind of consciousness into the ongoing process of our own work? How can we make a single image signify and resonate throughout our narratives, poems, essays? How can we start recognizing potential metaphors in both our working drafts and our everyday lives? Through varied exercises and readings, this weekend intensive offers a vibrant study and practice of this often overlooked though highly resonant element of our craft. We’ll generate scads of new material, and capitalize on the opportunity to share and receive some immediate feedback. This class is open and useful to writers of all genres and levels.


In this workshop we will generate new writing through guided exercises and prompts.                 

All Genres
Short Story