Course Schedule

The courses below are those offered for the term. (To view the course description, class dates & times, touch on accordion tab by the title.)

  • Homewood Campus

    490.652.06 - Contemporary American Writers

    $2698

    Edward Perlman

    Wednesday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/3 - 12/10

    This course surveys issues and trends in recent fiction and nonfiction, with emphasis on the diverse work and methods of American writers publishing today. Students read and discuss contemporary writing and hear from Writing Seminars faculty or other accomplished writers. This core course focuses on developing skills to read as a writer, and it explores the similarities and differences between factual and nonfactual writing, including the roles of truth, accuracy, and reader expectation. This core course is required for all incoming fiction and nonfiction students and usually must be completed before students in those concentrations enroll in a writing workshop. This course replaces Contemporary Nonfiction as one of two nonfiction core courses.

    Connects with Baltimore students by live video conference; instructor alternates locations.

    490.654.06 - Fiction Techniques

    $2698

    Mark Farrington

    Saturday 10:00 - 12:30; 9/6 - 12/13

    Students examine in depth the elements of fiction, including point of view, plot, character development, and the forms of short stories and the novel. The course also introduces students to the writing process, the techniques of reading as a writer, and the workshop process. Readings usually include short stories, one or more novels, and books or articles on craft. Writing assignments may involve exercises, response writings, and one complete piece, either an original short story or novel chapter. Revisions also may be required. This core course is required for all incoming fiction students as a prerequisite to any workshop. Others may take it as an elective, although the program may limit the number of registrants from outside fiction.

    Requires 4-5 commutes to DC campus; also will link to DC by live video and online. Detailed schedule will be announced. Enrollment priority given to Fiction students.

    490.656.06 - Nonfiction Techniques

    $2698

    Tim Wendel

    Monday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/8 - 12/8

    The intensive reading and writing exercises of this course help students gather information and transform it into clear, creative prose — whether in literary essay and memoir or journalistic forms such as articles, reviews, or opinion. Reporting techniques include interviewing, personal observation, and examining documents. Writing techniques include structure, quotation, detail, word choice, transition, and revision. This core course is required for all incoming Nonfiction students prior to enrolling in a workshop. Students in fiction may consider this course as an elective.

    Course connects with DC students by live video conference. Instructor will alternate locations.

    490.661.01 - Fiction Workshop

    $2698

    Mark Farrington

    Thursday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/4 - 12/11

    Fiction Workshops concentrate on intensive writing and revision, with some required reading. As members of a general workshop, students submit short stories or novel chapters to their instructor and peers for critiques. Typically, two or three stories or chapters are submitted during a semester; revisions are usually required. Workshop participants also submit detailed critiques of their fellow students' writing. We recommend, but do not require, that students take at least one general workshop before progressing to more specialized workshops, and we urge students to take workshops from different instructors. Students may take Fiction Workshop up to three times, although specialized workshops also can count toward the requirement of three workshops for a master's degree. (See Writing the Novel Workshop).

    490.671.01 - Nonfiction Workshop

    $2698

    Melissa Hendricks

    Monday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/8 - 12/8

    These general workshops give students extensive experience in writing and revising their factual work, regardless of topic or form. Submissions are critiqued by peers as well as by the instructor. Students typically submit two to four essays, articles, or book chapters; revisions are required. Reading and writing exercises also may be required. Students may take this workshop up to three times to meet the workshop requirement for a master's degree, although specialized workshops also meet that requirement.

    490.704.06 - Readings in Essay & Memoir

    $2698

    Marita Golden

    Tuesday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/9 - 12/9

    This reading course focuses on essay and memoir both short and long, with the goal of deeper understanding of these popular writing forms. The course is designed for nonfiction and science-medical writing students; others may consider it with an advisor's permission. Only minor writing assignments or exercises are included. Students who want to submit their essays and memoir in a writing workshop should consider 490.693 Writing the Memoir and Personal Essay or regular nonfiction workshop.

    Links with DC students by live video conference; instructor alternates locations.

    490.715.01 - Hybrid Forms: Innovative Writing Across Genres

    $2698

    Danielle Bryant

    Tuesday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/9 - 12/9

    This new cross-concentration elective course introduces students to innovative forms and approaches in non-traditional, cross-genre structures of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and intermedia. The course is designed for students who write, or wish to write, in the growing markets of cutting-edge forms—i.e., hybrid memoir, prose poetry, magic realism, lyric essay, intermedia, temporal prose, and more. The course also will interest students who want to explore inspiring and exciting new paths for their writing, even if they have written only in traditional forms. The course, which includes readings, exercises, and later workshops, is open to students and alumni from any program concentration and may count as a workshop with an advisor’s permission.

    Commute required for 3 class sessions: Course meets 3 times in DC and 3 times in Baltimore. Other 8 sessions will be in interactive online format with no commute required. Detailed schedule will be announced. Students should prepare for 3 weekday commutes to opposite campus.

    490.801.01 - Thesis And Publication

    $2698

    David Everett
    Mark Farrington

    Thursday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/4 - 12/11

    This final course is required for all degree candidates in fiction or nonfiction and is offered only in the fall and spring terms. The two course goals are the completion of a successful thesis and an enriching, challenging capstone experience for the entire program. A creative writing thesis must be of considerable ambition and length — portions of a novel or a nonfiction or science-medical book, or a collection of poems, short stories, essays, or articles. Thesis students should select their best, most revised work from previous program courses; not all program writing will become part of a thesis. Students in this course are required to submit a full thesis draft early in the course; the author spends the term revising this draft. To provide extensive time for revision, thesis students meet as a class only for certain weeks during the term. During those class sessions, students contribute to and edit a class journal project, engage in forward-looking discussions on the writing life, participate in a program-capping roundtable discussion, and rehearse and conduct a public reading. Prerequisite: All other required and elective courses. Students may not take another course during their thesis term without program permission; such a course must be in addition to program requirements. Students enrolling in this course must submit a Thesis Planning Form at least 30 days in advance.

    New thesis course & process described on Writing Program website.

  • Washington DC Center

    490.652.56 - Contemporary American Writers

    $2698

    Edward Perlman

    Wednesday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/3 - 12/10

    This course surveys issues and trends in recent fiction and nonfiction, with emphasis on the diverse work and methods of American writers publishing today. Students read and discuss contemporary writing and hear from Writing Seminars faculty or other accomplished writers. This core course focuses on developing skills to read as a writer, and it explores the similarities and differences between factual and nonfactual writing, including the roles of truth, accuracy, and reader expectation. This core course is required for all incoming fiction and nonfiction students and usually must be completed before students in those concentrations enroll in a writing workshop. This course replaces Contemporary Nonfiction as one of two nonfiction core courses.

    Connects with Baltimore students by live video conference; instructor alternates locations.

    490.654.56 - Fiction Techniques

    $2698

    Mark Farrington

    Saturday 10:00 - 12:30; 9/6 - 12/13

    Students examine in depth the elements of fiction, including point of view, plot, character development, and the forms of short stories and the novel. The course also introduces students to the writing process, the techniques of reading as a writer, and the workshop process. Readings usually include short stories, one or more novels, and books or articles on craft. Writing assignments may involve exercises, response writings, and one complete piece, either an original short story or novel chapter. Revisions also may be required. This core course is required for all incoming fiction students as a prerequisite to any workshop. Others may take it as an elective, although the program may limit the number of registrants from outside fiction.

    Requires 4-5 commutes to Baltimore campus; also connects with Baltimore by live video and online. Detailed schedule will be announced. Enrollment priority given to Fiction students.

    490.656.56 - Nonfiction Techniques

    $2698

    Tim Wendel

    Monday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/8 - 12/8

    The intensive reading and writing exercises of this course help students gather information and transform it into clear, creative prose — whether in literary essay and memoir or journalistic forms such as articles, reviews, or opinion. Reporting techniques include interviewing, personal observation, and examining documents. Writing techniques include structure, quotation, detail, word choice, transition, and revision. This core course is required for all incoming Nonfiction students prior to enrolling in a workshop. Students in fiction may consider this course as an elective.

    Links with Baltimore students by live video conference; instructor will alternate locations.

    490.661.51 - Fiction Workshop

    $2698

    Michelle Brafman

    Monday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/8 - 12/8

    Fiction Workshops concentrate on intensive writing and revision, with some required reading. As members of a general workshop, students submit short stories or novel chapters to their instructor and peers for critiques. Typically, two or three stories or chapters are submitted during a semester; revisions are usually required. Workshop participants also submit detailed critiques of their fellow students' writing. We recommend, but do not require, that students take at least one general workshop before progressing to more specialized workshops, and we urge students to take workshops from different instructors. Students may take Fiction Workshop up to three times, although specialized workshops also can count toward the requirement of three workshops for a master's degree. (See Writing the Novel Workshop).

    490.671.51 - Nonfiction Workshop

    $2698

    Cathy Alter

    Thursday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/4 - 12/11

    These general workshops give students extensive experience in writing and revising their factual work, regardless of topic or form. Submissions are critiqued by peers as well as by the instructor. Students typically submit two to four essays, articles, or book chapters; revisions are required. Reading and writing exercises also may be required. Students may take this workshop up to three times to meet the workshop requirement for a master's degree, although specialized workshops also meet that requirement.

    490.687.51 - The Short Story: Past & Present

    $2698

    Margaret Meyers

    Saturday 10:00 - 12:30; 9/6 - 12/13

    This fiction reading elective begins with a brief review of the history and development of short fiction, moving to analysis of contemporary forms, trends, and practitioners. Featured authors may include Chekhov, Carver, Paley, Barthelme, Munro, and Dixon . The course focuses on intense reading, analysis, and discussion more than writing assignments. Students also may be asked to make class presentations and to review a range of literary journals.

    Saturday course designed to allow commuting from opposite campus.

    490.704.56 - Readings in Essay & Memoir

    $2698

    Marita Golden

    Tuesday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/9 - 12/9

    This reading course focuses on essay and memoir both short and long, with the goal of deeper understanding of these popular writing forms. The course is designed for nonfiction and science-medical writing students; others may consider it with an advisor's permission. Only minor writing assignments or exercises are included. Students who want to submit their essays and memoir in a writing workshop should consider 490.693 Writing the Memoir and Personal Essay or regular nonfiction workshop.

    Links with Baltimore students by live video conference; instructor alternates locations.

    490.715.51 - Hybrid Forms: Innovative Writing Across Genres

    $2698

    Danielle Bryant

    Tuesday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/9 - 12/9

    This new cross-concentration elective course introduces students to innovative forms and approaches in non-traditional, cross-genre structures of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and intermedia. The course is designed for students who write, or wish to write, in the growing markets of cutting-edge forms—i.e., hybrid memoir, prose poetry, magic realism, lyric essay, intermedia, temporal prose, and more. The course also will interest students who want to explore inspiring and exciting new paths for their writing, even if they have written only in traditional forms. The course, which includes readings, exercises, and later workshops, is open to students and alumni from any program concentration and may count as a workshop with an advisor’s permission.

    Commute required for 3 class sessions: Course meets 3 times in DC and 3 times in Baltimore. Other 8 sessions will be in interactive online format with no commute required. Detailed schedule will be announced. Students should prepare for 3 weekday commutes to opposite campus.

    490.801.51 - Thesis And Publication

    $2698

    David Everett
    Mark Farrington

    Wednesday 6:00 - 8:30; 9/3 - 12/10

    This final course is required for all degree candidates in fiction or nonfiction and is offered only in the fall and spring terms. The two course goals are the completion of a successful thesis and an enriching, challenging capstone experience for the entire program. A creative writing thesis must be of considerable ambition and length — portions of a novel or a nonfiction or science-medical book, or a collection of poems, short stories, essays, or articles. Thesis students should select their best, most revised work from previous program courses; not all program writing will become part of a thesis. Students in this course are required to submit a full thesis draft early in the course; the author spends the term revising this draft. To provide extensive time for revision, thesis students meet as a class only for certain weeks during the term. During those class sessions, students contribute to and edit a class journal project, engage in forward-looking discussions on the writing life, participate in a program-capping roundtable discussion, and rehearse and conduct a public reading. Prerequisite: All other required and elective courses. Students may not take another course during their thesis term without program permission; such a course must be in addition to program requirements. Students enrolling in this course must submit a Thesis Planning Form at least 30 days in advance.

    New thesis course & process described on Writing Program website.

  • Online Courses

    490.658.81 - Techniques of Science-Medical Writing

    $2698

    Melissa Hendricks

    Online 9/3 - 12/13

    This core course develops and hones the reporting, creative, and explanatory skills demonstrated by the best science-medical writers. The course features writing assignments and exercises in journalistic and literary writing, plus interviewing, ethics, and the use of scientific journals and databases. In some cases, students may be able to choose from a range of writing topics, including nature, technology, health, space, biology, medicine, or other technical or scientific issues. Science Writing students should complete this course before enrolling in any writing workshop. Enrollment is encouraged by other students interested in this growing professional and creative field.

    Technology fee: $150

    490.674.81 - Science-Medical Writing Workshop

    $2698

    Karen Masterson

    Online 9/3 - 12/13

    In a writing workshop, students receive professional guidance in translating complex scientific or medical knowledge and research into graceful, lucid prose. Students submit individual essays or articles, or parts of a larger work in progress. Writing submissions are critiqued by peers as well as by the instructor, then revised. Students are encouraged but not required to take this course from different instructors. (The three section numbers designate the term in which the workshop is offered. Students earn workshop credit by taking any section number multiple times, or by combining any sections.)

    Technology fee: $150

    490.696.81 - The Nature of Nature

    $2698

    Susan Eisenfeld

    Online 9/3 - 12/13

    This reading course focuses on Mother Nature, human nature, and the nature of the beast. Students analyze books, essays, and articles from writers who tell gripping, true stories about topics ranging from outdoor adventure to personal reflections on illness. Readings include authors such as Richard Selzer, Diane Ackerman, E.O. Wilson, Kay Redfield Jamison and John McPhee.

    Technology fee: $150