Peter Orner

Five Things I've Learned About

The Art of Re-Reading (and Re-Re-Reading)

in conversation with Yvette Benavides

LIVE: Sunday, April 75:00pm pacific / 8:00pm eastern

Join Peter Orner and Yvette Benavides for a live, two-hour class and discover the Five Things We’ve Learned about the joys of returning to their favorite stories and short-story writers. We’ll look again at the works of three great masters, and at the ways that re-experiencing a familiar story shapes both the art we encounter and the art we create.

Online Event Details

  • 120 minutes

Price

  • Single Ticket Price - $60.00
Add to Calendar 04/07/2024 05:00 PM 04/07/2024 06:00 PM America/Los_Angeles Peter Orner | The Art of Re-Reading (and Re-Re-Reading)

Join Peter Orner and Yvette Benavides for a live, two-hour class and discover the Five Things We’ve Learned about the joys of returning to their favorite stories and short-story writers. We’ll look again at the works of three great masters, and at the ways that re-experiencing a familiar story shapes both the art we encounter and the art we create.

https://myfivethings.com/class/the-art-of-re-reading-and-re-re-reading/

Join me and Yvette Benavides for a live, two-hour class and discover the Five Things We’ve Learned about the joys of returning to our favorite stories and short-story writers. We’ll look again at the works of three great masters, and at the ways that re-experiencing a familiar story shapes both the art we encounter and the art we create.

I’m back with my third (what?), yes, third class for My Five Things…I’m a little shocked the good people at My Five Things are having back in the first place. I’m a happy three timer. I do come fairly cheap. Maybe they are having some financial trouble? Anyway. What’s that line of Paul Simon’s on “Graceland”? Who am I to blow against the wind?

Therefore, to honor this unprecedented occasion: I want this third class to be something special, something different. I did one on how to write by not writing, and another on paragraphs. Paragraphs? (I guess you had to have been there.) This time I’ve decided to cut to the chase and do a Five Things on my absolute first love: RE-READING and RE-RE READING.

You know how as a kid you wanted to hear the same book over and over and over and your parents were like no, no, please not Are You My Mother?. (Maybe you are this parent or have been this parent in the first place.) What do you think was going on there? It wasn’t because you as a kid wanted to know what happened in the story, right? You knew what happened. Doesn’t it have something to do with the pure ecstasy of knowing a story already? And doesn’t knowing a story already, in some strange way, allow you to re-experience additional times in entirely new ways?

Nowadays when I think of re-reading, I think of stories. I think of certain stories dear to my own heart, stories I’ve read countless times and still I can’t get to the bottom of their power.

And because re-reading stories is so close to my heart and soul, I’ve asked a fellow lover of stories, Yvette Benavides, to join me. Yvette and I co-host a podcast for Texas Public Radio called The Lonely Voice. On this show, we geek out about some of the greatest stories we know and broadcast out to story lovers in Texas and beyond. 

Now: Yvette and I have teamed up with Five Things I’ve Learned to bring you an on-line class on re-reading featuring three of our very favorite writers and three of our very favorite stories. We’ll be re-reading the short story masters: Alice Munro (“The Children Stay”), Edna O’Brien (“The Doll”), and Gina Berriault (“The Infinite Passion of Expectation”) with an eye toward what five or six or seventeen things we’ve gleaned from the process of re-examining stories that have become as familiar to us as our own memories. These stories teach us a hell of a lot about: writing, reading, and sweet Jesus life itself. We’ll reach back to the very beginning and examine how this time-honored and beautifully child-like impulse to re-experience a story can and does impact our own art.

Please join us for a closer look at three marvelous writers and three utterly unforgettable stories…

– Peter Orner

Peter Orner

Peter Orner is the author of the novels The Second Coming of Mavala Shikongo and Love and Shame and Love and the story collections Esther StoriesLast Car Over the Sagamore Bridge, and Maggie Brown & Others. His previous collection of essays, Am I Alone Here?: Notes on Living to Read and Reading to Live, was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism. Peter’s inspiring and unconventional memoir, Still No Word from You: Notes in the Margin won the 2023 Pen/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay. A three-time winner of the Pushcart Prize, Orner's work has appeared in Best American Short StoriesThe New York TimesThe New YorkerThe Atlantic MonthlyThe Paris ReviewGrantaMcSweeney'sThe Believer and many other publications. He has been awarded the Rome Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a two-year Lannan Foundation Literary Fellowship, as well as a Fulbright to Namibia. He's the Director of Creative Writing at Dartmouth College and lives with his family in Norwich, Vermont where he’s also a volunteer firefighter with the Norwich Fire Department. 

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