Creative Writing

BFA Course Descriptions

*Note: for day & time information, please go to SeaNet and search for courses.
Click here for the 2016-17 undergraduate catalogue course descriptions. (includes pre-/co-requisite requirements for each course).

Spring 2017


CRW 201: INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING
Text: Show & Tell 6th ed.
Introduction to the principles and techniques of creative writing, aimed at developing the creative process. Includes lectures, reading, and writing exercises in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. Partially satisfies University Studies II: Approaches and Perspectives/Aesthetic, Interpretive, and Literary Perspectives.

CRW 201-006: INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING, STORY N
Text: Show& Tell 6th ed.
Introduction to the principles and techniques of creative writing, aimed at developing the creative process. Includes lectures, reading, and writing exercises in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. Partially satisfies University Studies II: Approaches and Perspectives/Aesthetic, Interpretive, and Literary Perspectives.

CRW 201-007: INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING, BARBER K
This course will introduce students to three creative writing genres: poetry, creative nonfiction, and fiction. Students will read published works in each genre and be expected to discuss assigned readings. Each student will submit an original work for each genre to be workshopped by the class. Coursework will include weekly readings and responses, creative exercises, quizzes, workshop pieces, critiques of peers' work, and a final portfolio. 

CRW 201-008: INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING, CANLE B
Text: Show & Tell (6th Ed.)
This course will be a contemporary introduction to the field of Creative Writing. While we will cover the three main genres of poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction, we will also look at some works which blend or bend the genres. About all published material covered will be from contemporary writers, giving students an idea of the literary realm as it is currently, and how the evolution of language and technology influence literature. Coursework will include the regular submission of creative works which we will peer workshop throughout the semester. This is an attendance and participation based class. All students will be expected to attend and engage in every class. 

CRW 201-009: INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING, DIDIER E
Text: Show& Tell 6th ed.
Introduction to the principles and techniques of creative writing, aimed at developing the creative process. Includes lectures, reading, and writing exercises in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. Partially satisfies University Studies II: Approaches and Perspectives/Aesthetic, Interpretive, and Literary Perspectives.

CRW 201-010: INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING, ALLEN A
Text: Show & Tell (6th Ed.)
This course will serve as a general introduction to writing as an art form in fiction, poetry, and creative-nonfiction. Students will spend the majority of their time writing & discussing one another's work in a workshop-style format as we begin an exploration of these three branches of literature. You will be expected to arrive not only prepared to discuss your peers' work to the best level of your ability; but willing to drop some level of cynical apprehension and engage with writing as not merely a site of specific literary interest but more at once a creative practice as old as humanity with customs & methods unique to each culture, and an opportunity for a personal artistic journey over the course of the semester. Ideally, you'll have the chance to make some informed forays into turning your stories, heritage, place, hobbies or obsessions, travel, fears, dreams, memories, any or all of it-- into something you can share, and enjoy the rare chance for an audience of engaged readers. This course should make you more fun to talk to at parties, and improve your writing across the board. Students can expect to complete one major assignment in each of the three genres, as well as regular shorter exercises. Expect to dedicate at least a few hours a week responding to peer work and keeping up with additional readings posted online. 

CRW 201-011: INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING, LUNDIN M
Text: Show & Tell, 6th Edition, various handouts, student work
In this course students will be introduced to the three major genres of creative writing: poetry, nonfiction, and fiction, and the basic principles and terminology required to not only successfully discuss published work, but their own work as well. This is a discussion-based, creative course that requires students to actively engage with texts by using their own experiences as compass. Coursework will include weekly reading and writing prompts, and responses to student work.

CRW 201-012: INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING, THOMAS J
In this class, we will begin to study the forms of three literary genres—fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction—so as to better our understanding of them as writers and readers. We will also read and write experimental literature, from erasure and cut-up poetry to literature incorporating visual art. This class will be an interactive workshop, in which we read extensively and write intensively. You will be expected to write creatively and analytically, and contribute heavily in class discussions, as well as read extensively in each of the three genres. This class will require weekly discussion questions, regular creative submissions, and a final portfolio of revised work at the end of the semester.

CRW 201-013: INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING, BUCHANAN L
Text: Show & Tell 6thEd.
Introduction to the principles and techniques of creative writing in the three major genres: poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. Coursework is aimed at exploring and developing the student's creative process through readings, class discussions, short writing exercises, and longer finished pieces. Students will read from a variety of contemporary published writers and participate in discussions about these readings, as well in workshops of their peers' writing. The class concludes with a final portfolio of revised creative work from the semester. This course partially satisfies University Studies II: Approaches and Perspectives/Aesthetic, Interpretive, and Literary Perspectives.

CRW 201-014 & -017 [ONLINE]: INTRODUCTION TO CREATIVE WRITING, ROHRER J
This online course will introduce students to the three main genres of creative writing: fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. Students will read published works and craft essays in each genre and will respond to readings with weekly journal entries and short creative assignments. As an online student, journals will me the main mode of communicating about, analyzing, and exploring these texts. Students will also participate in group-based creative workshop exercises in each genre which allows peer participation even in the online realm. This course requires active participation in all journal and creative assignments as well as written interaction with each published text and a final portfolio.

CRW 203-001: EVOLUTION OF CREATIVE WRITING, KROUSE L
Texts: A Raisin in the Sun, Lorraine Hansberry. The Glass Menagerie, Tennessee Williams. The Picture of Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde. 1984, George Orwell. Touchstone Anthology of Contemporary Creative Nonfiction, Lex Williford (Editor).
French author Andre Maurois once said, “Writing is a difficult trade which must be learned slowly by reading great authors; by trying at the outset to imitate them; by daring then to be original and by destroying one’s first productions.” Put simply, to write well, you need to read. A lot. This class will speed through centuries, covering the evolution of creative writing in poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. Coursework will involve weekly reading and writing prompts, analytical essays, and original creative writing which will be workshopped. 


CRW 204-001: RESEARCH FOR CREATIVE WRITERS, STAFF


CRW 207-001: FICTION WRITING, STORY N
Text: Making Shapely Fiction by Jerome Stern and the Scribner Anthology of Contemporary Short Fiction ed. Michael Martone
In this course students will closely examine and discuss both published contemporary short fiction and the writing of their peers. Lectures will cover elements of fictional craft and creativity as a process. Students will complete weekly writing exercises, reading quizzes, and two full-length short stories, one of which they will revise. By the end of the semester, students will have a firmer grasp of how fiction works in general, and a deeper insight into their own process. 

CRW 207-002: FICTION WRITING, DIDIER E
Text: Making Shapely Fiction by Jerome Stern and the Scribner Anthology of Contemporary Short Fiction ed. Michael Martone
In this course students will learn to speak the language of a fiction writer. We will closely examine and discuss both published short fiction and peer work in an intelligent and meaningful way. Lectures will cover narrative theory, creativity as a process, and what student work means to the world beyond the walls of the classroom. Students will complete weekly writing exercises, reading quizzes, and a final portfolio of their work in the class. Through close examination of other work, students will train themselves to better turn a critical eye on their own work.

CRW 208-001: POETRY WRITING, ALLEN A
This course seeks to provide early creative writing students with their first semester-long workshop in poetry. To do so, we'll spend the initial stages of our work together "practicing" on the rich heritage of poetry before us, discussing a range of readings across time and cultures with attention to the usual concerns of a student of literature: How do we read or speak of it? What does it mean? How is it a poem?  -- but also! As artists while on the page whether putting words down or reading: what form(s) or technique(s) does it employ? Do I like or dislike the piece? And if so, how do I articulate that preference when it comes to my own writing? How might I plunder the prior strategies for inspiration or guidance? From there, we turn our focus largely to one another's poetry, with students preparing work for group discussion on a weekly basis, in addition to thoughtful written responses. Graded work will include craft essays and a revised final portfolio.

CRW 208-002: POETRY WRITING, THOMAS J
This course will serve as an introduction to the poetic form. We will read poems across different historical and cultural landscapes, and we will write poems with difference. In this class, we will focus on the poetic line and image. We will learn what a poem is (everything, of course) and what it is not (nothing, of course). We will focus on the act of reading poetry as the integral mode of becoming a poet. We will learn to read as a writer reads, but also, to write as a reader—a reader who is aware of the textual landscape which has preceded her, and thus, ultimately betters her writing potential. This class will require in-class discussion, extensive reading, a final analytic paper, and a portfolio of revised poems.

CRW 209-001: CREATIVE NONFICTION, LUNDIN M
Texts: The Best Creative Nonfiction, Volume 1, edited by Lee Gutkind
Emily Dickinson tells us to "tell the truth, but tell it slant." In this introductory course, we will explore how writers interpret their own truths and how form informs content. Through various readings and exercises, students will begin to find their voice on the page and in the classroom. Coursework will include weekly readings and prompts in a variety of styles including personal essays, memoir, and lyric essays, as well as workshop discussions and responses to student work.

CRW 209-002: CREATIVE NONFICTION, BUCHANAN L
Texts: On Writing Well by William Zinsser and Touchstone Anthology of Contemporary Creative Nonfiction, Ed. By Williford and Martone
How can nonfiction be creative? How can creativity help us to talk about the truth? As a genre, creative nonfiction is often described as "true stories, well told" and this is what we will focus on in this class: telling our stories, and telling them well. Students will learn the distinctive features of creative nonfiction as a genre and read and write in its many different forms, including the personal essay, the lyric essay, and memoir. This is an introductory, discussion-based class in which students will read and write extensively in in-class exercises and homework assignments. Students will all read and discuss each other's work via the workshop.

CRW 302-001: FORMS OF CREATIVE NONFICTION—READING FOR CRAFT, SIEGEL R
This course is an exploration of the major forms of creative nonfiction: the essay; the memoir; and reportage. We will read, write about and discuss examples of these forms with an eye to issues of craft, looking at how they are put together and how they work. The ultimate aim is to learn how to read like a writer.

CRW 303-001: FORMS OF POETRY—READING FOR CRAFT, WHITE M
In this course we’ll read, discuss, and practice writing forms such as the sonnet, the villanelle, the sestina, the pantoum, and the ghazal. We’ll also explore oral traditions like hiphop, rap, and slam both on the page and out loud. Students will keep a reading journal and participate in workshop sessions and individual in-class presentations. Grade will be based 50% on a final writing portfolio and 50% on participation.

CRW 306-001: FORMS OF FICTION—READING FOR CRAFT, FURIA P
A study of the historical development of forms of fiction—epic, romance, novel, short story—with an emphasis on such aspects of narrative form as scene and summary, point of view, and structure. Authors included are Homer, Chaucer, Jane Austen, Poe, Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Parker.


CRW 307-001: INTERMEDIATE FICTION WRITING, STAFF


CRW 318-001: SCREENWRITING I: INTRODUCTION, MONAHAN D
(FST 318) Prerequisite or co-requisite: FST 201; or prerequisite: PCRW, CRW and CRW 207, CRW 208 or CRW 209; or permission of instructor. Theory and practice of screenwriting with an emphasis on the fundamentals of narrative structure. Students write original scripts, including a short screenplay for possible use in FST 495.

CRW 318-002: SCREENWRITING I: INTRODUCTION, BUTTINO L
(FST 318) Prerequisite or co-requisite: FST 201; or prerequisite: PCRW, CRW and CRW 207, CRW 208 or CRW 209; or permission of instructor. Theory and practice of screenwriting with an emphasis on the fundamentals of narrative structure. Students write original scripts, including a short screenplay for possible use in FST 495.

CRW 320-003: POETRY WORKSHOP, COX M
A craft workshop.  Student poets critique and encourage each other's work, emphasizing extensive revision.   Journal consists of responses to reading assignments in modern and contemporary poetry and poetics, as well as numerous process exercises. Students will choose a poet to study in depth.  Individualized reading lists and handouts on Blackboard. Prose writing students are welcome.

CRW 320-004: CREATIVE NONFICTION WORKSHOP—WRITING THE OUTSIDER, CHAI M
This class provides students with opportunities to practice various elements of craft in the exploration of various forms of creative nonfiction. As our theme we will examine how established authors have tackled the task of “writing the outsider,” that is, exploring perspectives that may not be well represented, if at all, in the mainstream media now or in the past. What does it mean to feel like an outsider, whether because of race, socioeconomic class, gender, sexual orientation, physical ability, religion, identity (ethnic/national/regional), historical marginalization, or other factors? How does one write to express a truth that may not always be recognized by one’s peers while creating empathy in the reader? How does one center this material to allow the reader access to this perspective?

CRW 322-001: EDITING FOR PUBLICATION, BASS T
Required texts: The New Well-Tempered Sentence, by Karen Elizabeth Gordon, and Polishing Your Prose, by Steven M. and Victor L. Cahn. [Recommended but not required: On Writing Well, by William Zinsser.] CRW and PCRW majors only. Prerequisite: CRW 207, 208, or 209. This course will focus on student strategies for editing their own creative writing for precision and clarity. It is not a traditional copyediting course. We will emphasize developing and applying skills in self-editing for grammar, mechanics, spelling, manuscript formatting, style, and other fundamentals crucial to effective, polished writing in the creative writing profession. Students will complete exercises and write/edit work using a series of prompts and assignments. Several exams and homework assignments will make up the grade. An attendance policy will be enforced. [Note: This course is required for the BFA degree and the Certificate in Publishing.]

CRW 323-001: BOOKBUILDING, LaBONTE R
This course offers hands-on training in the basics of effective graphic design and typography for book publishing. Students will become proficient in the Adobe Creative Suite-InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator-while completing a progressively complex series of projects, culminating in a finished chapbook of their own work. The course also incorporates a survey history of publishing, with a focus on current trends and the future of the book. Students should be prepared for a rigorous, fast-paced course that requires lab work outside of class hours. [Note: Bookbuilding counts toward the BFA degree and the 12-hour Certificate in Publishing.]

CRW 324-001: THE EDITORIAL PROCESS FROM ACQUISITION TO PUBLICATION, STAPLES B
This course is an overview of the editorial process as writing travels from submission to publication. Students will explore the process of acquiring books and manuscripts from an editorial perspective, substantive editing and working with a writer to develop a manuscript, the process of fact-checking a manuscript, the copy editorial process, and editorial and typographical concerns through the proofreading stage. Students will receive an overview of a variety of editorial roles, and practice executing them toward refining their own editorial knowledge and skills.

CRW 325-001: LITERARY MAGAZINE: Chautauqua, DE GRAMONT M
This course is designed to give students a practical magazine publishing experience. Students will read and respond to submissions, work on editing projects, search for possible cover art, and assist with design work. In addition to the work required to build the next issue of Chautauqua, students will have the opportunity to work on marketing and sales projects. We will work in teams – with each group presenting regular updates on their projects and work. Course may be repeated for credit.

CRW 407-001: ADVANCED FICTION WRITING, LEE R
In this course, students will complete various writing exercises in the first month and then workshop longer narratives throughout the rest of the semester.  Emphasis will be placed on writing strong, believable, forceful characters, and setting them in motion.  
Writers will produce a portfolio which consists of short exercises, a completed story and a revision.

CRW 418-001: SCREENWRITING II: FEATURE FILM, HACKLER C
(FST 418) Prerequisites: FST 318 (CRW 318) or consent of instructor. The craft of screenwriting applied to the feature form. Students plan a feature-length screenplay, and write, workshop, and complete the first act.

CRW 460-001: PUBLISHING PRACTICUM, STAPLES B
Students must have been accepted into the Certificate in Publishing program in order to receive permission to enroll in the Publishing Practicum.
Prerequisites: CRW 321, 322, 323
Up to five interns support the work of The Publishing Laboratory, with responsibility for editing, designing, and producing the senior BFA anthology in conjunction with CRW 496, the senior seminar. Practicum students work 9 hours weekly in the Lab (including a 2-hour meeting), under faculty supervision. Completion of CRW 321, 322, and 323, with a minimum grade of B in 321 and 322, is a prerequisite for the Practicum. Participants are selected by permission of instructor; a brief application is required. Working hours are scheduled at each student's convenience during standard Pub Lab hours. May be repeated once for credit.
[Note: This course counts toward the BFA degree and the 12-hour Certificate in Publishing.]

CRW 460-002: PUBLISHING PRACTICUM: LOOKOUT BOOKS, SMITH E
[Prerequisites: Students must have been accepted into the Certificate in Publishing program and must have completed both CRW 323 and 460-001. Permission of instructor is required. Please write Emily Smith for permission to register for this course.]
Want to gain experience working for an independent press? A select group of undergraduate students helps with the daily work of the department's literary imprint, Lookout Books (www.lookout.org). The practical course functions as an internship and provides hands-on experience in our daily operations. Interns assist with the writing of press releases and other promotional materials; research sales and marketing leads; mail review copies and press kits; update our database of review outlets and bookstores; design, produce, and mail promotional materials; assist with maintenance of our website and social media outlets; and attend weekly staff meetings. Practicum students work 9 hours weekly in the Lab (including a 3-hour staff meeting), under faculty supervision. Participants are selected by permission of instructor on the basis of excellent performance in previous publishing courses and demonstrated interest in the field. CRW 460 may be repeated once for credit. [Note: This course counts toward the BFA degree and the 12-hour Certificate in Publishing.]


CRW 496-001: SENIOR SEMINAR IN WRITING, COX M


CRW 496-002: SENIOR SEMINAR IN WRITING, STAFF


CRW 496-003: SENIOR SEMINAR IN WRITING, BASS T

 

BFA Course Descriptions Archive