Creative Writing Course Outline

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Access is provided to computers, laser printer, and other production equipment. This course is an honors seminar for students who wish to write fiction and to do so with an awareness of fiction's role in culture.

Students will study the relationship between cultural events and literary conventions: connections, for example, between World War II and Hemingway's concise sentences, the birth of jazz and the language of the beatniks, Existentialism and Ralph Ellison's view of character, or the systematic repression of Native American languages and Joy Harjo's fluid syntax.

Through writing practice and reflection, the course explores contemporary developments in a range of genres, introducing students to issues, techniques and contexts of contemporary writing.

The course aims to develop skills in creative writing practices, in critical reading and analysis and in research practices relevant to creative writers.

Students study short stories by authors such as Bharati Mukherjee and Edgar Allan Poe, learning how to create believable characters and develop setting and plot.

Likewise, students read poetry by canonical greats such as W. Yeats and Emily Dickinson as well as contemporary writers such as Pablo Neruda, Sherman Alexie, and Alice Notley.Creative Writing is an English elective course that focuses on the exploration of short fiction and poetry, culminating in a written portfolio that includes one revised short story and three to five polished poems.Students draft, revise, and polish fiction and poetry through writing exercises, developing familiarity with literary terms and facility with the writing process as they study elements of creative writing.Assignments will enable students to express and develop their creative skills.This course is designed to guide students in creative writing through experience in three genres: short story, poetry, and creative non-fiction.It covers ways to begin and develop a sustained and reflective writing practice, including revision and editing.The course consists of a series of exercises designed to develop essential aspects of the creative writer's craft and a selection of connected readings in a range of approaches, styles and techniques.Students will write, select, and edit manuscripts in the genres of poetry, short fiction, and creative non-fiction.They will also assist in converting accepted manuscripts onto computer discs and in promoting the college literary magazine through various fund raising and advertising activities.Students will write and critically examine essays such as the memoir, autobiography, reflective, and philosophical that have a literary, stylistic component.The class will also emphasize multi-cultural, multi-generational, mythological, and ecological topics.

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