GLS 542: Creative Nonfiction: Memoir and Truth Telling
Instructor: Ashley Hudson
In every type of creative nonfiction writing, there is one overarching goal: to capture the truth. But there are countless ways to actually do this, and every writer must find his or her own method, tailoring stylistic choices to the needs of each unique story. For this course, we will study several forms of truth telling—including profile, memoir, reportage, and essay—and share the everyday stories unfolding in our minds, homes, and communities.
I believe that most of the nonfiction stories that touch us, teach us, and stay with us are not works of genius; they result from taking stylistic risks and trying again. That’s what we’ll be doing. Along with studying works of nonfiction, students will write and share several short manuscripts throughout the semester, creating an evolving portfolio of work.
We will read nonfiction selections from collections such as The Art of the Personal Essay, The Fourth Genre: Contemporary Writers of/on Creative Nonfiction, and The Best American Essays series. We will also study prominent nonfiction literary journals that are publishing the newest approaches to the genre. These journals include River Teeth, Creative Nonfiction, and Fourth Genre: Explorations in Nonfiction
Assignments may include a reading journal, participation in class discussions, several short workshop submissions, and peer critiques for workshops.
Last Update: May 8, 2013