Emotion vs Feeling in Fiction

Emotion vs Feeling in Fiction

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In the “real” world we often consider emotions and feelings much the same thing. In fiction, however, emotions and feelings relate to distinct experiences and evoke different reactions from readers. In this workshop, award-winning author and teacher David Corbett will guide participants on how to distinguish emotion from feeling, how to root each in character, how to reveal each on the page, and how to deepen the reader’s experience accordingly.


David Corbett is the author of six novels, which have been nominated for numerous awards, including the Edgar. His second novel, Done for a Dime, was a New York Times Notable Book, and Patrick Anderson of the Washington Post described it as “one of the three or four best American crime novels I have ever read.” Corbett’s short fiction has twice been selected for Best American Mystery Stories, and a collaborative novel for which he contributed a chapter—Culprits—will be adapted for TV by the producers of Killing Eve for Disney+ in the U.K. His non-fiction has appeared in the New York Times, Narrative, Writer’s Digest and other outlets. He has written two writing guides, The Art of Character (“A writer’s bible”) and The Compass of Character; and he is a monthly contributor to Writer Unboxed, an award-winning blog dedicated to the craft and business of fiction.

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