Scott Nadelson brings short story writing to a new level

Author Scott Nadelson recently led the first workshop in the annual Professional Writers Series called “Mastering the Short Story.” Washington State University Vancouver’s Professional Writers Series is a series of lectures that brings professional writers from various genres to campus. The writers help guests improve their writing skills and techniques, as well as talk about their professional writing careers.

Cory Blystone, a student on campus, introduced the speaker. “His fiction reads as non-fiction and his fiction reads as true,” said Blystone.

Nadelson is a published author and is living the life of a middle class writer. Nadelson said he started life wanting to be a rock star and when his dreams died from a lack of musical talent, he started writing poetry. In a happy accident, Nadelson signed up for a fiction class rather than a poetry class, and the mistake led him to where he is today.

Nadelson said that writers should be inspired by other writers. His literary inspirations are Flannery O’Connor, William Faulkner and James Joyce. He also said that writers take time to write, practice writing and fail at writing. “You don’t get better by not doing,” Nadelson said.

Hawthorne Books is the publishing company that first published Nadelson, and they have now published four of his books. Nadelson’s most recent book is called “Between You and Me.” It is a novel built out of smaller pieces, using his strengths as a short story writer to culminate in a larger whole.

At the event, Nadelson invited the audience to participate in a writing exercise. The audience was instructed to write a scene in which a character gets pulled into a place they do not belong. Part way through, Nadelson told the assembled writers to make their characters realize something about the scene that they were not expecting, either good or bad.

After a short question and answer period, the first presentation of the Professional Writers’ series concluded. Howard Aaron, an English professor at WSU Vancouver, coordinates the Professional Writers Series. He contacts the authors and brings them to campus for his class.

For students, this means college credit can be obtained by signing up for Aaron’s English 499 course. For students not in English 499, the events are free and open to the public. The next presentation is Feb. 9, and is titled “Getting Personal: Memoirs and Essays.” The presentations take place from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Multimedia Building, room 6.

For more information about Scott Nadelson visit http://scottnadelson.com.

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