As might be expected in a course which complements the existing seminars in the writing of fiction and poetry, the Seminar in Writing Nonfiction will principally be a workshop course centered on the drafting and revision of student writing. Creative nonfiction is a blanket term which covers such subsidiary forms as the personal essay, the memoir, the nature essay, the science essay, the critical essay, the social issue essay, the travel essay, and literary reportage. Students will read from a collection of contemporary nonfiction and additional readings to illustrate the field, and a representative selection of genre anthologies and collections by individual authors will be available on reserve for students to consult during the semester. Part of the intention of these readings is to familiarize students with contemporary practices.
Beyond introducing students to contemporary creative nonfiction, the course will focus on nonfiction work-in-progress, some of it in one or more of the subgenres above, most of it self-selected by students themselves. The workshop approach will require oral readings of work-in-progress, sharing manuscripts, and development of collaborative critical approaches to nonfiction work. The course will conclude with a workshop on preparing presentation texts and submitting nonfiction to periodicals.
The course will require the following work of its students:
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