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Acclaimed author Stephen Rea returns to lead spring Writing Institute

March 16, 2012

Acclaimed author Stephen Rea returns to Loyola University New Orleans this spring to host the Writing Institute, presented by the Walker Percy Center for Writing and Publishing. The writing course, “Writing Well-Crafted Fiction,” will take place on Tuesday evenings, March 20 – May 8, from 7 – 9 p.m. The cost is $250 and the class is open to the public and will be held in Bobet Hall, Room 341.

The course, designed to help aspiring authors improve their fiction writing, will help students with a range of goals, from mastering the basics and perfecting short stories, to getting their novels onto bookstore shelves.

All students will have their work read, edited, discussed and critiqued by the other writers in the class. The program will be flexible, informal and tailored to the interests of the students, no matter their age, writing ability or experience.

According to Rea, who also taught the Writing Institute in the fall, the course is great because it appeals to such a wide variety of people. “There was such a disparate group of people last semester, from girls in their 20s to men in their 70s, and they were from all walks of life—from cooks to lawyers to burlesque dancers,” Rea said. “No genre was off limits, and the students were so willing to take the time to get involved and read and critique each other’s work.”

A native of Northern Ireland who currently resides in New Orleans, Rea was a national newspaper journalist in the United Kingdom. He has covered a range of news stories, from the Gulf War and terrorist attacks in London to the resignation of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

After relocating to New Orleans in 2004, Rea discovered Finn McCool’s, a Mid-City Irish bar with a club soccer team playing in a local league. While displaced to Houston during Hurricane Katrina, he authored “Finn McCool's Football Club,” which follows Rea’s and his team’s struggles during that time.

Attendees are asked to submit a one to 10-page writing sample of fiction or non-fiction, along with their name, profession, e-mail address, local address and phone number, to Annie Goldman at agoldman@loyno.edu.

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