Applications to the class are now closed. Thanks to everyone who registered.

Patrick Ryan

Online Class
Character: A Craft Intensive with Patrick Ryan
March 14th - 20th, 2018

Price: $90
Previous From Character to Story students and Members* : $75

In Character: A Craft Intensive with Patrick Ryan, you’ll focus on characters: how to create them, how to deepen them, and how to use them to drive the story. Some writers start with character, others develop them as they go. However you approach your writing, this class will give you the tools you need to improve your characters and guide you towards writing fleshed-out, people-driven stories.

Over the course of seven days, you’ll delve into physical description, build dynamic settings, sharpen your dialogue skills, play with point-of-view, explore motivation, and navigate story arc. The methods taught—both in the craft talks and in group discussions on the online message board—will be ones that you can put to use long after the class ends.

This is a repeat of the class From Character to Story, which we ran in 2016. Those retaking the class are eligible for the member discount.

About Patrick Ryan:
Patrick Ryan is the author of the short story collection The Dream Life of Astronauts (named one of the Best Books of 2016 by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Refinery 29, LitHub, and Electric Literature, and long-listed for The Story Prize) and the linked story collection Send Me, as well as three novels for young adults. His work has appeared in The Best American Short Stories, Tin House, Crazyhorse, The Yale Review, One Story, The Iowa Review, and Tales of Two Cities, among other magazines and anthologies. The former associate editor of Granta, he is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts in Fiction and is the editor-in-chief of One Story. For more info, please visit

When can I register for this class?
Registration is open now through March 14th.
How does the class work?
Lessons will be posted at 1am Eastern Time. Each lesson will comprise tips, techniques, examples, and a writing assignment. The class also includes a discussion board where participants can interact with one another and with Patrick.
Can I take the class on my phone?
Unfortunately, no. You’ll need a tablet or a computer to access all class materials.
Is participation on the discussion board required?
No, it’s optional; participants are welcome to jump into the conversation or sit back and observe.
Is there homework?
Yes. The class is built around generative writing exercises. These will not be evaluated by the instructor, but participants are welcome to share their work on the designated discussion board.
How much time will the class take?
Plan to spend about forty-five minutes per day reviewing the lessons and completing the exercises, plus however much time you choose to spend on the discussion board.
What if I want to take the class, but the dates don’t work for me?
The class is designed for participants to proceed at their own pace, on their own schedule, so if you miss a day or three, no problem. All class materials will be accessible online until April 20th. Please note, however, that Patrick will only be available on the discussion board from March 14th to March 20th.
What if I can’t wait to get started?
The discussion board will open on Tuesday, March 13th, two days before the first exercise is assigned, so that participants can meet, mingle, and familiarize themselves with the learning platform in advance.

Member Discount: In order to qualify for our member discount, you must be a member at the time of registration. Please note that the discount is for our members only. Members commit to annual donations and receive benefits that allow them to participate in the organization in more meaningful ways. Not all One Story subscribers are members. If you’d like to find out more about becoming a member, you can do so here.

Refund Policy: One Story class payment is non-refundable after the class’s start date. For questions about the refund policy, or if you are unable to take the class after you have registered, please write .

If you have any questions, please contact .