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ENG 322

Creative Writing II: Nonfiction Topics

This course will explore a specific genre of nonfiction in depth. Class will operate as an advanced writing workshop that uses master works as models and inspiration. Offerings might include profiles, travel writing, personal essays, reviews, memoir, nature writing or literary nonfiction. Prerequisite: ENG 149.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
ENG 149 1 course

Fall Semester information

Samuel Autman

322A: Nonfiction Topics: The Memoir Essay

"Memoir, obviously, has to do with memory, and though that might mean writing about an event in one's childhood, it is well worth remembering that you are by no means so limited," writes Dinty Moore in Crafting The Personal Essay. His definition serves as an apt description for this course. In it students will write four personal essays to be read and critiqued by peers with an eye toward improvement. Openness to discovering what the story is about is key to writing successful personal essays. (Students can expect to pay between $20 and $25 for photocopying fees. There is no book.)


Spring Semester information

Gregory Schwipps

322A: Nonfiction Topics: Nature Writing

Creative nonfiction, like fiction or poetry, is a type of creative writing. As such, it uses the tools of the creative writer: figurative language (similes, metaphors), dialogue, flashbacks, scenes, frames - in short, tools that increase the dramatic effect of a piece of writing. In this class, you will write memoirs, articles, travel essays, profiles, and query letters. Not every Introduction to Creative Writing course covers creative nonfiction, so we will read quite a bit to gain a sense of the genre and its possibilities. Class discussions over the reading material should provide insight into your own writing options. But, as a writing course, much of our class time will be spent workshopping the written work of your peers. Not everything you write will be workshopped; some projects you will want to keep fairly private. However, we will utilize the workshop for two of the five projects. Because this is a Nature Writing course, you are asked to connect your written pieces to the natural world in some manner.


Fall Semester information

Samuel Autman

322A: Tps:Reading and Writing Queer Memoir

In our framework "Queer" serves as an umbrella term for sexual and gender minorities that are neither heterosexual or nor cisgender, and harkens back to its pejorative references from the 19th and 20th centuries. "Memoirs" are personal written narratives. In this class students will read queer texts from the 18th, 19th and 20th century with an eye on writing their own memoir essay. Participants need not identify as queer but should come with a hunger and openness to read and write in a nonfiction workshop context. Intro to Creative Writing or a demonstrated equivalent is required.