How Mastering the Art of Letter Writing Elevates Your Fiction -- Talk and Q&A | Mechanics' Institute

You are here

How Mastering the Art of Letter Writing Elevates Your Fiction -- Talk and Q&A

Saturday, October 26, 2019 - 10:30am to 12:30pm

photo of gina mulligan

In our modern age of text messages, writers overlook the use of letter writing as prose and practice. From masters storytelling in great books like The Color Purple, Dracula, and Dangerous Liaisons, the epistolary format provides a unique and complex way to develop extraordinary writing skills. In this 2-hour talk, we'll examine pacing, conflict, setting, and discuss how you can use letters to gain insight into your characters. At the end of this session you will have a solid foundation and leave with a motivational reading list. Attend the afternoon session if you're ready to workshop one your most critical non-fiction letters, the agent query!


Gina L. Mulligan is a freelance journalist and author of two historical novels Remember the Ladies and From Across the Room, and the non-fiction Dear Friend; Letters of Encouragement, Humor, and Love for Women with Breast Cancer. Through the slush pile three times with her query letters, she's presented at AWP, San Diego State University Writers Conference, University of the Pacific, Gold Country Writers, and the San Francisco Writing for Change Conference. After her own diagnosis, Gina founded Girls Love Mail, a national charity that collects handwritten letters for women with breast cancer. She's been featured on,, The NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, and The Steve Harvey Show.


Members $39
Public $49
Register now ›
4th Floor Board Room
Taryn Edwards - 415-393-0103
Register now by using the form below or calling 415-393-0101.

Future Classes

Sep 18 - 4:00pm

Library Downloads Workshop: eBooks, eMagazines, eAudiobooks
Third Wednesday of the Month

Photograph of Kate Farrell

Sep 21 - 10:30am

What's Your Story? Become an Unforgettable Storyteller
How to create, frame, and tell memorable stories for every occasion

Sep 21 - 11:00am

Free Chess Class for Beginning and Intermediate Kids (ages 6-18)
Instructor: WGM Carla Heredia

Sep 22 - 11:00am

Chess Class for Women
Taught by Lina Krubnik & Sophie Adams