Locus Bay Area Writers Workshop: Writing Master Class with Andy Duncan, July 2019

July 21, 2019, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
At Locus Magazine HQ
Preservation Park, downtown Oakland
(near the 12th St BART) $150.00
“Whatever the topic, all of Duncan’s fictions are united by an evocative, playful, and deeply accomplished storytelling style. Highly recommended for fans of Kelly Link or other slipstream writers, and for any reader looking to lose themselves in an engaging and fun reading experience.” ― Booklist (starred review)


Since his 1996 debut in the World Fantasy Award-winning Tor anthology Starlight 1, with a magic-realist Appalachian novelette titled “Liza and the Crazy Water Man”, Andy Duncan has been known for genre-mixing stories that present as tall tales, local legends, oral histories, or monologues told in the voice of someone rocking on a veranda or holding down one end of a bar. He’s also known for doing performative public readings that emphasize the orality of his stories. In this workshop, you’ll learn some practical techniques for crafting vivid character voices through observation and empathy, enabling those characters to talk to one another on the page and even conveying them all to live audiences through your voice.

Andy Duncan’s speculative-fiction honors for his short stories, novelettes, and novellas include a Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award, a Nebula Award, and three World Fantasy Awards, the most recent for Wakulla Springs, a novella co-written with Ellen Klages. His latest book, a 2019 Locus Award finalist, is An Agent of Utopia: New and Selected Stories from Small Beer Press; its title story is a Locus and Nebula Award finalist. His novelette “Charlie Tells Another One” – another nest of tall tales! – will be in the September/October 2019 issue of Asimov’s. Other recent stories include “Mr. Percy’s Shortcut” in the Parvus Press anthology If This Goes On, edited by Cat Rambo; “Joe Diabo’s Farewell” in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction; “The Devil’s Whatever” in the Bantam anthology The Book of Magic, edited by Gardner Dozois; and “New Frontiers of the Mind” in Analog.

Duncan also is a veteran actor in community and campus theater, his favorite roles including Mr. Applegate (a.k.a. the Devil) in Damn Yankees; Ensign Pulver in Mister Roberts; Charlie Cowell, anvil salesman, in The Music Man; Judge Taylor in To Kill a Mockingbird (twice, a decade apart); and, most recently, Dr. Lyman in Bus Stop. His most convincing campus performance so far, however, has been as a member of the writing faculty at Frostburg State University in the mountains of western Maryland, where his rank come August will be full professor. This summer, moreover, he will teach at the Clarion workshop for the fourth time; he also has taught twice at his alma mater, Clarion West. His fiction bibliography can be found at

“Andy Duncan is the best storyteller of our generation. Every page is breathtaking, down-to-earth magical.” ― Ellen Klages

“Andy Duncan is one of the most hilarious and poignant writers of short stories that we have. He effortlessly forges dreamlike and nightmarish tales with wit and wisdom that rivals Mark Twain.” ― Christopher Barzak, author of Wonders of the Invisible World

“Duncan will get you to bust a a gut laughing. He’ll make you teary, and put a shiver up your spine. But most importantly, his stories ask questions you might not know how to answer, and leave you looking inside yourself long after you’ve read the last line of his singing prose.” ― Lara Elena Donnelly, author of Amberlough

Locus Writers Workshops

Locus Magazine is excited to bring master classes with award-winning authors to the Bay Area. These classes began with the writing workshops in Seattle around the Locus Awards Weekend for the past few years. Past instructors include Charlie Jane Anders, Christopher Barzak, Gail Carriger, Daryl Gregory, Stephen Graham Jones, Nancy Kress, Yoon Ha Lee, Paul Park, Kim Stanley Robinson, Carrie Vaughn, and Connie Willis.

Thinking of attending? Please do. We support diversity! We encourage people of color, women, people with disabilities, older people, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people to apply. We welcome people of any gender identity or expression, ethnicity, race, sexual orientation, age, size, nationality, religion, culture, education level, and self-identification.

Additional questions? Please e-mail Locus.