Department of English

CRW 315F • Intro To Writing Fiction

35630
Meets MW 11:30AM-1:00PM PAR 310
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CRW 325F • Fiction Writing

35645 • Pipkin, John
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM PAR 302
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CRW 325F  l Fiction Writing

Instructor:  Pipkin, J

Unique #:  35645

Semester:  Fall 2021

Cross-lists:  n/a

 

Prerequisites:  One of the following: C L 315, E 303D (or 603B), (316K,) 316L, 316M, 316N, 316P, or T C 303D (or 603B).

Description:  This is an entry-level course in the writing of narrative fiction, with a focus on realism and the short story form.  The first step in developing your writing craft is to learn how to read as a writer, so substantial emphasis will be placed on reading and discussing short stories.  Classes will consist of a combination of lecture, in-class writing, discussion, and workshop participation.  Students will be required to analyze the structure and craft of the short stories assigned.  Learning how to identify the fundamental elements and narrative techniques in these stories will help you to employ these techniques in your own work.  The first half of the semester will focus on the basic technical elements of narrative fiction, such as:  structure, narration, point of view, character development, motivation, plotting, pacing, tension, setting, and dialogue.  During the second half of the semester, we will workshop student writing, with emphasis on the writing process and strategies for effective revision.  The workshop sessions will also focus on how to write useful critiques for feedback, as well as how to develop editing skills so that you can continue to grow as a writer beyond this class.  After your work is discussed in workshop, you should be prepared to use the ideas discussed in the critiques to revise and improve the original draft.  Participation in workshop is an essential part of this class, so students must come prepared to discuss the works under consideration, and also be ready to read their own work in class.

Texts:  Handouts and short-stories will be provided in class.

Requirements & Grading:  Two writing assignments: 35% each; class participation, quizzes, workshop discussion: 30%.  No final exam.  Papers are due in hard copy, in class, on the dates indicated.  Late or electronic submissions will not be accepted.  Attendance is required.


CRW 325F • Fiction Writing

35650 • Unferth, Deborah
Meets MW 1:00PM-2:30PM PAR 210
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CRW 325F  l  Fiction Writing 

Instructor:  Unferth, D

Unique:  35650

Semester:  Fall 2021

Cross-lists:  n/a

 

Prerequisites:  One of the following: C L 315, E 303D (or 603B), (316K,) 316L, 316M, 316N, 316P, or T C 303D (or 603B).

Description:  Our ambition is to create a literary community where we write fiction and explore together the mechanics of its craft.  We will focus on techniques, everything from intriguing first sentences to breathless endings.  We will spend time on description, setting, dialogue, character, and conflict.  We will open the semester with short exercises, some of which we will discuss in class.  Then students will write two complete short stories for workshop.  Throughout the semester we will read stories by 20th and 21st century writers and focus on how these writers make use of plot, form, voice, and style.

Through story workshops, generative exercises, discussion of published work, and individual conferences, students write new work and read the work of others always with an eye toward inciting fresh ways of thinking about fiction.  Students should emerge from the class with a solid grounding in narrative.

Texts:  reading packet.

Requirements and Grading:  Short story 1: 30%; Short story 2: 30%; Exercises: 10%; Attendance and participation (includes responses to student work): 30%.


CRW 330 • Literature For Writers

35665 • Heinzelman, Kurt
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM CAL 200
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CRW 330  l  Literature for Writers 

Instructor:  Heinzelman, K

Unique #:  35665

Semester:  Fall 2021

Cross-lists:  n/a

 

Prerequisites:  One of the following: CRW 325 (or E 325), 325F (or E 325F), 325M, 325P (or E 325P).

Description:  The official name of this course is “Literature for Writers,” but I would prefer to call it “Reading Like a Writer,” which is also the title of a wonderful book by an author with the wholly appropriate name of Francine Prose.  Her book is subtitled: “A Guide for People Who Love Books And For Those Who Want to Write Them.”  I recommend this text highly to all prospective students.

The texts that we will be “reading as writers” will be composed in both prose and verse, for the simple reason that prose writers can learn much about rhythm, figurative language, and structure from reading lyrics, just as poets can learn much about narrative, character, and timing from reading fiction.

Some of the literary works will focus on poetic or narrative forms; others will be thematic—e.g., writing about place or about art (the technical term for the latter is ekphrasis); and still others will introduce comparative analyses—e.g., of why one translation is “better” than another.

Requirements & Grading:  In the first half of the course we will discuss what “reading like a writer” means, and there will be periodic weekly written reports.  The rest of the semester will be about texts generated by students who will identify and report on, in both oral and written forms, stories and poems that demonstrate what they think can be learned about craft by reading closely those texts.  Let me emphasize that this is a reading/writing course, not a creative-writing workshop.

Two absences permitted without penalty.  Grading Scale:  Final essay and oral report = 60%; Class participation and weekly reports = 40%.


CRW 330 • Literature For Writers

35669 • Berry, Betsy
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM PAR 105
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CRW 330  l  Literature for Writers

Instructor:  Berry, B

Unique #:  35669

Semester:  Fall 2021

Cross-lists:  n/a

 

Prerequisites:  One of the following: CRW 325 (or E 325), 325F (or E 325F), 325M, 325P (or E 325P).

Description:  “Literature for Writers” is a fledgling course, though new courses are frequently the perfect opportunity in which to create unique and vibrant writing.  CRW 330, originally created for graduate creative writers, is only in its second semester at the undergraduate level, so we are all getting in on the ground floor of what I plan to be a memorable course.  The class will introduce to creative writers literary readings that inspire, motivate, and encourage the best from one’s own work.  Sportswriter Red Smith famously quipped “Writing’s easy.  You just sit down at the typewriter and open a vein.”  But focused assignments and professional advice on what to write and how to do so can make the job easier, ideally resulting in solid, memorable results.  Thoughtful direction, motivation, and imaginative prompts that seek imaginative responses are tools of the trade that I will use to encourage the best writing from my students, forging a strong foundation for the future of your craft, what I like to call the writing life.

We will look with a careful eye at several successful writers whose prose offers highly “teachable” literature.  We will focus on such strategies as point of view, voice, place, atmosphere, author imitation, character names and development, and of course plot.  We will neither study nor be writing sci-fi, fantasy (gothic or otherwise), or YA (as in Young Adult).

Texts:  We will most likely be using a textbook by the aptly named Francine Prose, Reading for Writers: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them.  (I might also be using various writing examples and suggestions from Janet Burroway’s Imaginative Writing: The Elements of Craft, but this text will not be required.)  We will also be reading Australian writer Kate Jennings’ novel Snake, a unique novel in its plot and telling, probably like nothing you have ever read.  We will read from master stylist Ernest Hemingway’s first story collection, In Our Time, published when Hemingway was 27.  We will also be reading a memoir, which is what I am working on in my own writing at present, so I won’t have a final choice in that important category until nearer the beginning of our course.  I will post required course texts on Canvas when they are available.

Requirements & Grading:  There will be weekly writing briefs, written responses to both the readings and my own writing assignment concoctions (which I try to make challenging, fun, and rewarding).  One piece of writing will be initiated early and revised through the semester.  Specifics will be outlined on the course syllabus, presently a work in progress.


CRW 340F • Short Story Workshop

35670 • Pipkin, John
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM PAR 302
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CRW 340F  l  Short Story Workshop

Instructor:  Pipkin, J

Unique #:  35670

Semester:  Fall 2021

Cross-lists:  n/a

 

Prerequisites:  CRW 325F (or E 325F), or 325M.

Description:  This is an intermediate course in fiction writing, designed for students who have already taken Fiction Writing (325F or 325M) and have a serious interest in writing fiction.  Since the class is primarily a workshop, we will discuss student work for the majority of the semester.  The workshops are intended to improve writing skills as well as reading and critiquing skills, so all students are expected to actively participate in the workshop discussions.  All work must be original, written for this class and not for another class taken earlier or concurrently.

Texts:  This course will follow the workshop format, but we will also read some published stories for discussion of craft.  Additional stories and handouts will be provided in class or posted on Canvas.

Requirements & Grading:  You are required to write two short stories (each 8-15 pages) that will be discussed in a workshop setting and later revised.  For all student work discussed in class, you will be responsible for writing detailed critiques (1-2 pages).

Grading:  1st story 30%; 2nd story 30%; in-class participation 20%; written critiques 20%.  Attendance is mandatory.  More than three absences will negatively affect the final grade.


CRW 340F • Short Story Workshop

35675 • Lasalle, Peter
Meets MW 2:30PM-4:00PM BEN 1.106
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CRW 340F  l  Short Story Workshop

Instructor:  LaSalle, P

Unique #:  35675

Semester:  Fall 2021

Cross-lists:  n/a

 

Prerequisites:  CRW 325F (or E 325F), or 325M.

Description:  This is an intermediate fiction-writing course.

The student will be responsible for two complete short stories, 10-15 pages each.

Student work will be examined in class with workshop discussion, and the student will meet with the instructor in conference to discuss projects and progress.

There will also be discussion of some larger ideas concerning theory and technique of fiction writing, reading from an anthology of short stories, and a project involving reading and reporting on literary magazines.

Requirements & Grading:  The grade will be a matter, essentially, of the quality of the written work (90%); in-class quizzes and class participation will also be figured in (10%).

This is a writing course with no final exam.


CRW 355F • Advanced Fiction Workshop

35685 • Casares, Oscar
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM PAR 302
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CRW 355F  l  Advanced Fiction Workshop

Instructor:  Cásares, O

Unique #:  35685

Semester:  Fall 2021

Cross-lists:  n/a

 

Prerequisites:  CRW 340F (or E 341).

Description:  This is the final fiction workshop available to students earning their Creative Writing Certificate.  Students will write two original short stories for our workshops or individual conferences, and then revise one of these stories.  Original, in this case, means work produced exclusively for this course and not previously discussed in another class.  Along with the workshop stories, students will read and discuss published work assigned by the professor.

Class Policies:  Students will submit hardcopies of their stories on two due dates.  Stories need to be double-spaced and page-numbered.  One of your two stories may be revised substantially and resubmitted.

Each story needs to be at least 8 pages and no longer than 20 pages in length.  Since the focus of this course is literary fiction, your work, regardless of the subject matter, will need to have fully developed characters and be more than simply plot driven.

WORKSHOP: To prepare for our workshop, students will write a one-page critique, double-spaced, for every story we discuss.  Please email me and the student whose work we’re discussing a PDF of your critique.  Critiques need to arrive in my inbox before class to receive credit for the assignment.  No exceptions.  You are responsible for these critiques even if you are absent from class.  These critiques will make up a significant part of your final grade.

ATTENDANCE: You may miss only two classes without it negatively affecting your final grade.  Arriving late for more than four classes will also lower your grade.  Students are required to be present for their own workshop.  Attending every class and contributing to our discussion will help your grade.

GRADING: Your final grade will be based on your 2 short stories and revision, critiques, and participation in class.

2 STORIES/REVISION: 60%; CRITIQUES: 20%; and CLASS PARTICIPATION: 20%.


CRW 355F • Advanced Fiction Workshop

35700 • Lasalle, Peter
Meets MW 4:00PM-5:30PM CAL 419
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CRW 355F  l  Advanced Fiction Workshop

Instructor:  La Salle, P

Unique #:  35700

Semester:  Fall 2021

Cross-lists:  n/a

 

Prerequisites:  CRW 340F (or E 341).

Description:  This is a course for advanced students in fiction writing; the student will write a total of 30-40 pages of original fiction during the semester.

There will be two dates on which work is due, and on each the student will turn in either a complete short story or an installment from a longer work; if the student is working on a longer project (a novella, for instance), approval must be given by the instructor ahead of time.

Student work will be examined in class with workshop discussion, and the student will meet with the instructor in individual conferences to discuss projects and progress.

There will also be discussion of some larger ideas concerning theory and technique of fiction writing, reading from an anthology of short stories, and a project involving reading and reporting on literary magazines.

Requirements & Grading:  90 percent on writing; 10 per cent on in-class participation and quizzes.

The grade will be a matter, essentially, of the quality of the written work.  This is a writing course with no final exam.


CRW 355F • Advanced Fiction Workshop

35690 • Harvey, Jonathan
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM PAR 214
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CRW 355F  l  Advanced Fiction Workshop

Instructor:  Harvey, J (aka Edward Carey)

Unique #:  35690

Semester:  Fall 2019

Cross-lists:  n/a

 

Prerequisites:  CRW 340F (or E 341).

Description:  We will discuss, criticize, and write short fiction.  Students will read each other’s work with rigor and generosity. Students will write three original stories for class.

Class Policies:  Stories will be submitted via e-mail to your fellow students the morning your story is due.  Make sure your work is double-spaced and page-numbered.

Stories should be at least 8 pages and no longer than 25.  No novel excerpts, please.  All work must be original—both your own work, and written for this class.  Please do not recycle work written for other courses.

Please do not write stories with characters invented by other authors.  And, of course, do not submit work written by other people, even substantially rewritten.  For the purposes of this class, I also ask that you do not allow other people to edit your work.  For additional information on Academic Integrity, see http://deanofstudents.utexas.edu/sjs/acadint.php.

A workshop class is a community, if you do not show up to discuss your colleagues work, there’s no reason for them to read yours with any attention.  Much of what you will learn about fiction will be from each other—you will see how actual readers interpret and respond to your work.  If you miss the day of your own workshop you may receive an F for the assignment.

You may miss two classes without it affecting the final grade in your class.  You will fail the class after four absences.  Perfect attendance will improve your grade.  Please let me know ahead of time if you know you will miss a class for any reason.

Please be on time to class.  More than four late arrivals will affect your final grade.

Laptops are not allowed to be open and on during class.  Please bring in hard copies of all notes you may need to consult.

All work must be original—that is both your own work, and written for this class.  Please do not recycle work written for other courses.  Do not submit work written by other people, even substantially rewritten.  That includes characters and scenarios: please, no fan fiction or alternate versions of other people’s published work.  If you have any questions, please talk to me.  For additional information on Academic Integrity, see http://deanofstudents.utexas.edu/sjs/acadint.php.

FOR WORKSHOP:  you are required to read the other students’ work and to type at least two paragraphs of respectful critical response.  Please bring in two copies of your critiques, one for the author, and one for me in hard copy.  If I don’t have a hard copy of your student critiques, they will be marked as missing.  You are responsible for critiques even if you are absent for the workshop.

GRADING:  Your final grade will be based on both your written work in the class, and also your participation.  You will receive letter grades on written assignments.

EXTRA CREDIT:  You may earn extra credit by attending readings by authors on campus or at local bookstores and writing a one-page response.  If you are unsure of whether a writer qualifies or not, please ask me.

The breakdown of grading follows:  FIRST STORY, 20%; SECOND STORY: 20%; THIRD STORY: 20%; REVISION: 10%; WRITTEN COMMENTS ON OTHER STUDENTS’ WORK: 15%; CLASS PARTICIPATION: 15%.


CRW 355F • Advanced Fiction Workshop

35695 • Unferth, Deborah
Meets MW 2:30PM-4:00PM PAR 305
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CRW 355F  l  Advanced Fiction Workshop

Instructor:  Unferth, D

Unique #:  35695

Semester:  Fall 2021

Cross-lists:  n/a

 

Prerequisites:  CRW 340F (or E 341).

Description:  This is an advanced course in fiction writing for students working toward the creative writing certificate.  Students will write two original stories of 12-25 pages each and one revision.  They will also write extensive comments (1-2 pages) on their classmates’ stories.  We will read published stories with an eye to study craft.  All work must be original, written for this class, not for another class taken earlier or concurrently.

Policies:  You may miss two classes without penalty.  After that your grade will begin to drop.  

Readings:  Published stories will be uploaded onto Canvas or handed out in class.

Requirements & Grading:  First story 25%; second story 25%; revision 10%; comments on classmates’ work 25%; participation and attendance 15%.


CRW 355P • Advanced Poetry Workshop

35705 • Bennett, Chad
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM CAL 200
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CRW 355P  l  Advanced Poetry Workshop

Instructor:  Bennett, C

Unique #:  35705

Semester:  Fall 2021

Cross-lists:  n/a

 

Prerequisites:  CRW 340P (or E 341L).

Description:  In this course you will continue to develop and reflect on your own distinctive writing practice within a community of fellow poets.  As we focus primarily on workshop discussion of student poems, we will also explore poetry and poetics in the context of shared readings in contemporary poetry, occasional writing exercises, and individual notebook reflections that identify, gather, and test out potential material for poems and examine the contours of a life in poetry. 

Requirements & Grading:  Requirements include one poem per week, sometimes in response to assigned exercises (15%); a poet’s notebook (15%); mandatory, regular attendance and active participation in class workshops and discussions, including written feedback on peers’ poems (30%); and a final portfolio of selected, revised poems accompanied by a statement of poetics (40%).