Undergraduate Creative Writing Courses

Fall 2022

ENGL 20000-01-03
Introduction to Creative Writing
Zoe Darsee
TR 5:05-6:20
Section 01 - Seniors
Section 02 - Unallocated
Section 03 - Freshmen

This course will introduce you to the practice of writing creatively through an exploration of poetry, fiction, and theatre with an emphasis on hybrid or cross-genre works. If language is the material of writing -  and myth its history - we will read with an attention to how this material is utilized, sculpted, or broken. By engaging with a range of perspectives, aesthetics and media across cultures and languages, Intro to Creative Writing will assist you in discovering your aesthetic inclinations as you build a writing practice that is rooted in a global approach to reading, investigation and play. You will practice the art of accumulation and receptivity by writing in-class, to each other, and on your own. You will learn to workshop each other’s writing in the spirit of collaboration and support. By the end of this course, you will emerge with a short portfolio of revised work. Writers to be read may include Ovid, Vi Khi Nao, Jena Osman, Yi Sang, Amos Tutuola, Borges, Fred Moten, Yoko Tawada, Leslie Scalapino, Cecilia Vicuña, August Strindberg and Friederike Mayröcker, among others.

 

ENGL 20000-04-06
Introduction to Creative Writing
Kalie Pead
MW 5:05-6:20
Section 04 - Seniors
Section 05 - Unallocated
Section 06 - Freshmen

We live in a world of storytelling. Whether it’s ranting to a friend about our latest misadventures or trying to navigate the DMV we are essentially functioning by storytelling. How can we harness the language of the day to day to create evocative narratives? What transforms the mundane into stories that transform us? This course introduces students to multiple forms of creative writing, from poetry to creative nonfiction and screenwriting. The aim of this course is to give breadth to your understanding of what is defined as creative writing. We will focus less on what writing is, and more on the possibility of what it can be. By the end of the course students will have a revised portfolio of at least 3 pieces of writing.



ENGL 20000-07-09
Introduction to Creative Writing
Arman Chowdury
TR 2:00-3:15
Section 07 - Seniors
Section 08 - Unallocated
Section 09 - Freshmen

In this introductory seminar, you will read fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction published within the last two decades, and you will cultivate a portfolio of original writing in more than one genre throughout the course of the semester. We will survey exciting literature from the United States and other parts of the world, with an emphasis on works that challenge accepted forms and styles. We will ask: What makes a story “good” or “bad”? What makes a poem “successful” or “unsuccessful”? What forces set these expectations and inform our tastes? And, more importantly perhaps: How do I come up with my own rules for good and bad, success and failure? How do I teach myself to write my own literature? To complement our spirited discussions, and achieve our ambitious goals, we will also talk about craft. We will examine the tools we have at our disposal as writers. You will develop your own definitions of craft elements - such as tone, plot, setting, rhythm, and syntax, etc. - and use them to revise your work, as well as critique your peers’, in meaningful ways. By the end of the course, you will acquire fundamental skills to become better writers and readers.

 

ENGL 20001-01-03
Introduction to Fiction Writing
Angela Lorang
TR 9:30-10:45
Section 01 - Seniors
Section 02 - Unallocated
Section 03 - Freshmen

We will be reading contemporary short stories from the past decade including works by NoViolet Bulawayo, C Pam Zhang, Perceval Everett, as well as stories from the late 19th century and early-mid 20th including Anton Chekhov, Flannery O’Connor, Langston Hughes.

This creative writing course will be grounded in learning and practicing story craft anchored in the short story form. Classes will consist of close readings of short stories, lectures, in-class writing and sharing, and workshopping each other’s work. Students will learn to identify and explain how writers are using elements of craft (plot, character, setting, point of view, diction, etc.) to convey or confuse meaning. Students will practice employing these tools in their own works, as well as in workshopping others’ works. Students will leave class with a polished portfolio of two pieces with a short craft essay for each and a working journal full of exercises and notes on craft. 



ENGL 20001-04-06
Introduction to Fiction Writing
Woori Kim
TR 5:05-6:20
Section 04 - Seniors
Section 05 - Unallocated
Section 06 - Freshmen

 This course aims to provide an introduction to fiction writing, focusing on how authors build plots and employ subtexts. We will read short stories and novels written by various writers, and analyze these works together, through which students will be able to develop their crafts. Students are expected to participate in and lead discussion, and provide feedback on peers’ works. Students will leave the course not only with an understanding of fiction writing, but also with self-portraits of themselves as writers who are aware of their own voices. 

To give you a sense of what we will be reading over the course of the semester, selections will include: stories by Yi Sang, Edgar Allan Poe, Henry James, Kate Chopin, Katherine Mansfield, Jhumpa Lahiri, and C Pam Zhang. 



ENGL 20002-04-06
Introduction to Poetry Writing
Johannes Gorannson
TR 12:30-1:45
Section 04 - Seniors
Section 05 - Unallocated
Section 06 - Freshmen

This course will introduce you to contemporary poetry in a variety of media and formats and from an array of lively, diverse voices. Through in- and out-of-class assignments you'll learn how poets draft and revise; you'll practice techniques, genres and forms; and you'll generate a poetry portfolio of your own. Class format will include discussion, in-class activities, and opportunities for feedback on student work. Please see the English Department website for an individualized description for each section of this course.

 

ENGL 20002-10-12
Introduction to Poetry Writing
Kristyn Garza
TR 3:30-4:45
Section 10 - Seniors
Section 11 - Unallocated
Section 12  - Freshmen

This course will provide an introduction to writing and critiquing poetry, an exposure to and appreciation for a variety of poetic styles, and a means with which you can strengthen your relationship with language, making you a sharper reader of craft and poetic techniques.

As a citizen in our poetic community, you will become an eager reader of your peers' poems and you will use our workshops as a way of generously helping others hone their craft and improve their writing—which will then help you sharpen your own writing abilities.

Students will be expected to write, workshop, and revise their own poems during the course of the semester.

By combining texts that are both creative and critical, this course will help you cultivate your own thoughts about poetry, its function, its abilities, and assist in your discovery of  its place in our larger societal community and within your own life.
 


ENGL 20008-01-03
Introduction to Creative Nonfiction 
Lance Carroll
MW 3:30-4:45
Section 01 - Seniors
Section 02 - Unallocated
Section 03 - Freshmen

How does a writer transmute observation, research, and experience into an engaging narrative? This course will introduce the practice of creative nonfiction through reading, writing, and workshop. We will read work by Joan Didion, John McPhee, Zadie Smith, David Foster Wallace, Guy Davenport, Maggie Nelson, Susan Sontag, Ta-Nahesi Coates, and one long-form piece that we will select together. We will write literary journalism, cultural criticism, personal essays, and memoir. There will be opportunities to explore more experimental forms such as the lyric essay and hybrid genres for those who wish. We will learn techniques for the compassionate critique of our writing and that of our peers while navigating the process of revision and editing to produce the best work of which we are capable.



ENGL 30851
Poetry Writing
Johannes Goransson
MW 11:00-12:15

In this class, we are going to write poetry, think about poetry and talk about poetry from a number of different perspectives. We're going to read modern, contemporary and not-so-contemporary poetry, as well as works that move across genres (prose poetry, poetic films), media (print, photography, the Internet, the desert of the real), and languages and cultures. We will consider what poetry means in this spectacular age, but we will also explore more pragmatic concerns: where does one find out about poets? Where does one publish poems? Where does one discuss new poetry? In addition to weekly writing exercises, we will engage in three longer projects allowing the students to develop and work on their own particular lines of aesthetic inquiry.

 

ENGL 30853
Fiction Writing 
Azareen Van der Vliet Oloomi
MW 12:30-1:45

This course will give us a chance to "look under the hood" of storytelling and the writing of fiction. We will read a diverse array of contemporary writers and discuss a wide range of techniques and considerations that characterize fiction in order to develop both our own writing and our individual aesthetic interests, ideas, and styles. As an introduction to fiction writing, no prior knowledge of or experience with craft, tradition, or texts is necessary. What will be required is engaged participation, robust discussion, and weekly writing exercises, as well as two larger projects consisting of an essay about the state of fiction and a story portfolio consisting of four substantially revised short stories which will be due by semester's end.

 

ENGL 30859
Fiction Writing: Trauma, Disaster, Memory, and Resilience (For Our Times) 
Xavier Navarro Aquino
MW 3:30-4:45

In her book, The Art of Death: Writing the Final Story, Edwidge Danticat states that “we are all living dyingly.” The concept of death and/or dying is part of our collective and shared experience. It presents us with the larger possibilities on how to live, how to experience, how to persevere, and how to change. In this course we will examine the politics of trauma, disaster, and memory. We will read across genres in fiction, essays, and poetry in order to write work that contemplates memory as a locus for resilience. We will look at how writers are grappling with some of the more pressing issues of our time i.e., climate change, natural disaster, femicide, colonialism, war, among others. Students will write prose that looks to redress what it means to “live dyingly.”  



ENGL 40850
Advanced Fiction Writing 
Dionne Bremyer
MW 9:30-10:45

This is an intensive course in the writing and craft of short fiction. This class assumes that students already have a solid understanding of and practice in basic fiction writing, and that they are serious and active writers of fiction. This course will provide an opportunity for writers to refine their voice and experiment with different aesthetic strategies. Additionally this course will focus on various forms of fiction and narrative techniques and consider the formation of a literary community.

Our focus in this class will be on, primarily, the contemporary short story in creation, execution, revision and publishing.  Students will develop skills as active readers and writers while paying attention not only to craft and form, but also to thematic content amplified by them.  This is primarily a workshop class, but active reading produces good writing.

 

ENGL 40852
Advanced Fiction Writing II
Dionne Bremyer
MW 9:30-10:45

This course is intended for students who have already taken Advanced Fiction Writing and who are seriously interested in writing fiction.

This is an intensive course in the writing and craft of short fiction. This class assumes that students already have a solid understanding of and practice in basic fiction writing, and that they are serious and active writers of fiction. This course will provide an opportunity for writers to refine their voice and experiment with different aesthetic strategies. Additionally this course will focus on various forms of fiction and narrative techniques and consider the formation of a literary community.

Our focus in this class will be on, primarily, the contemporary short story in creation, execution, revision and publishing.  Students will develop skills as active readers and writers while paying attention not only to craft and form, but also to thematic content amplified by them.  This is primarily a workshop class, but active reading produces good writing.



ENGL 40855
Advanced Fiction Writing III
Dionne Bremyer
MW 9:30-10:45

This course is intended for students who have already taken Advanced Fiction Writing and who are seriously interested in writing fiction.

This is an intensive course in the writing and craft of short fiction. This class assumes that students already have a solid understanding of and practice in basic fiction writing, and that they are serious and active writers of fiction. This course will provide an opportunity for writers to refine their voice and experiment with different aesthetic strategies. Additionally this course will focus on various forms of fiction and narrative techniques and consider the formation of a literary community.

Our focus in this class will be on, primarily, the contemporary short story in creation, execution, revision and publishing.  Students will develop skills as active readers and writers while paying attention not only to craft and form, but also to thematic content amplified by them.  This is primarily a workshop class, but active reading produces good writing.