Opening Boxes: Stories in Everyday Objects // Webinar

Opening Boxes: Stories in Everyday Objects // Webinar

Everyday objects can be sublime memory triggers and the best kind of grist for the writing mill, no matter the experience level of the writer. The things that surround us can become the central subject of a story or necessary elements of one.

An everyday object can become like a box full of memories you might have thought were lost to the past. Another box nests inside that one. Open it, and there are yet more memories. Some are full of tangential details you might use for another part of the story. There are yet more boxes, more memories, more stories—and the process of discovery continues.

What draws us in to our favorite writing is precisely that focus on the quotidian, a closer examination, a defamiliarization that makes an object both resonant and brand new.

In the webinar, participants will:

  • EXPLORE the ways in which some of our favorite writers also write about what they know—the everyday things we might take for granted.;
  • LEARN about defamiliarization. That is, you will learn to see everyday objects in a fresh light. In this way, you can be more objective in the ways you see and value everyday objects; and
  • DISCOVER your “boxes” and the ways in which everyday objects tell their true story.

The presentation will end with a Q & A

This webinar is for writers who are interested in learning more about the essential elements of creative nonfiction, with an emphasis on the personal essay.

All registrants will receive a recording of the webinar.


Thursday, February 20th, 2020
11 am - 12 pm EST

Advance registration required.
Space is limited.

$12 if registered by 02/11/2020
$15 if registered after 02/11/2020

A copy of Creative Nonfiction #72: “Games” is included in the price of registration. Magazine will be mailed AFTER the webinar.

* Add'l shipping required outside the U.S.


Yvette Benavides teaches creative writing at Our Lady of the Lake University. She is the anthology series editor of EQ: Creative Nonfiction on Social Equity with Trinity University Press. She is a commentator with Texas Public Radio and reviews books for the San Antonio Express News.  Her essay “All in the Cards” appeared in Creative Nonfiction #72 (and was republished on Lit Hub).


Questions? Please call us at 412-404-2975 or email the director of education, Sharla Yates, at yates@creativenonfiction.org.