Special Topics Writing Workshop (ENW 5000/Minimum 1 credit) This mixed-genre writing workshop centers on themes selected in response to cultural, political, or historical events of special interest in the moment. The intention is to encourage students to read broadly and write on a particular topic that demands artistic response. Students read and discuss poetry and prose related to a topic determined by the instructor. Writing assignments will reflect the style of selected readings to encourage close study of craft, and will also support participants in developing their own ideas on the topic. Participants will produce one complete prose work or group of poems as a result of this intensive course of study.
Screenwriting Workshop I (ENW 5003/Minimum 3 credits) Students are introduced to the craft of visual story-telling, exploring character, dialogue, plot setting and tone. Students view movies weekly and read extensively in professional film scripts. Each week student writing is discussed in a workshop format. The semester project is the completion of the "First Act" of a feature screenplay, approximately thirty pages of writing, as well as an accompanying outline of the entire screenplay. May be used as an elective for the film concentration.
Screenwriting Workshop II (ENW 5012/Minimum 3 credits) Students continue to practice the craft of visual storytelling, exploring character, dialogue, plot, setting, and tone. Students view movies weekly and read extensively in professional film scripts. Each week student writing is discussed in a workshop format. The semester project is the completion of the "second act" of a feature screenplay, approximately thirty pages of writing, as well as an accompanying outline of the entire screenplay.
Master Class (ENW 5100/1-3 credits) The Master Class combines two or more of an evolving assortment of craft topics into one course, giving students intensive study in an area of writing for which no semester-long course is available. Master Class segments are taught by experts in each area, and topics include but are not limited to reviewing and criticism; voice; humor; profiles and interviewing; and writing in the digital age. This course may be offered for 1 to 3 credits.
Foundations in Graduate Creative Writing (ENW 5110/Minimum 3 credits) This course could be called "Great Attention to Detail in Poetry, Fiction and Drama." In it, students explore the many aspects of writing, focusing attention on particular tasks, and discovering answers to such questions as: How do we build our work from notes to drafts to completed pieces of work? How do we write believable characters? How do we bring the language of color, climate, or the intimacies of mood to our work? What images, objects, or symbols help support the ideas of our writing? How do we find the source in ourselves from which to write poetry? How do we know when a piece of work is finished? Copies of the readings will be provided by the instructor.
Advanced Seminar in Creative Writing (ENW 5130/Minimum 3 credits) This course examines the history and theories of creative writing, with particular attention to both community-based creative writing and the post-WWII period of graduate creative writing initiated by the advent of the first program in the field, the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Students will read several historical and theoretical texts that describe and critique this historical development. They will also be introduced to a wide variety of models through which the creative writing workshop model has been used in K12 schools, community centers, workplaces, prisons, and other public and private spaces. Students will also study the fundamentals of critical pedagogy as it pertains to creative writing.
Summer Writers' Workshop (ENW 5200/Minimum 2 credits) Manhattanville's Writers Week program offers the opportunity to spend an intensive week of writing, and working closely with some of the country's finest writers and teachers of writing. Participants at all stages of development (novice to experienced) sign up for one of five workshops that meet all morning. Participants also have private conferences with their workshop leaders.
Fiction Workshop (ENW 5210/Minimum 3 credits) Students study language, tone, structure, dialogue, and point of view in order to get at how to create compelling, empathetic characters on the page. We examine extensively the ways exemplary stories connect with readers. The semester's work consists largely of reading and exercises, with some workshopping of student writing. Students are to be thoroughly familiar with the assigned readings and are expected to have useful and insightful responses to relevant issues of craft. The final requirement for the class is a short story (most likely between 8 and 30 pages in length) or a chapter or two of a novel (same page requirements) that has been workshopped at least once.
Poetry Workshop (ENW 5220/Minimum 3 credits) In this workshop, participants will develop their poetic voice and experiment with new methods of approaching the page. Through writing exercises, a range of readings, and study of the diverse offerings of contemporary poetry, students will work to discover ways to imaginatively challenge, re-purpose, and bend the poetic genre to fulfill their creative objectives and forge a distinct aesthetic identity.
Creative Nonfiction Workshop (ENW 5230/Minimum 3 credits) A commitment to fact in all its inconvenience, combined with commitment to achieving a depth of meaning comparable to that found in diction, is the passion of the nonfiction writer. There is no better way to explore this genre than by working in its four principle forms: Memoir, Opinion, Essay and Literary Journalism. In this workshop students will write in each form and we will also analyze the work of masters in each form.
Children's/Young Adults' Workshop (ENW 5240/Minimum 3 credits) This course considers how writers recapture the child's world with its uniquely heightened senses and near-primal beliefs. As students begin writing the first draft of their novels, they explore such elements as wonder, magic, make-believe, longing, justice, personal growth, and hope. Assigned readings lead to discussions that include: the invisible self, reflective voice, evolution of story, transformation of character, and re-imagining the draft. Students should be prepared to read a book and write a chapter each week.
Cross-Genre Intermedia Workshop (ENW 5250/Minimum 3 credits) Cross-Genre Workshop addresses those spaces where the current literary genres meet and overlap. Students both create and workshop new literary works that test the borders of genre.
Fall Writer's Weekend (ENW 5400/Minimum 2 credits) Fall Writers' Workshop gives MFA students an opportunity to study intensely with a renowned visiting professor in a weekend writers' retreat-style class.
Independent Study (ENW 5595/Minimum 1 credit, maximum 3 credits)
Internship (ENW 5597/Minimum 3 credits) This course is designed to offer graduate credit to students wishing to pursue a significant internship opportunity in creative writing, publishing, teaching, or a related field.
Topics In Grad Creative Writ (ENW 5850/Minimum 3 credits) Please consult graduate program website for information on upcoming ENW 5850: Topics sections.
Thesis Project (ENW 5900/Minimum 3 credits) Students who have completed all program requirements register to work with the seminar director/mentor to plan and execute a final piece of work. The final project consists of an original piece of writing in either poetry or prose with at least a part of the project being new work. The final project shall be of a length determined by the director. The final project seminar is offered in both the fall and spring semesters and is graded on a pass/fail basis. No grade will be given until the final project is evaluated. Students may be given an additional semester to complete their work if their project can not be completed in one semester.
Editorial and Production Workshop (ENW 5045/Minimum 3 credits) Students will apply to their own work the editorial knowledge and skills gained in evaluating (blind) submissions for Inkwell literary journal and other sample work, in terms of revising, editing, and ultimately getting pieces published. Several individual conferences will be scheduled throughout the revision process. In addition, students will gain a thorough understanding of producing a literary journal, from editorial through production and marketing phases. Texts: A Piece of Work: Five Writers Discuss Their Revisions, Jay Woodruff, ed., and Deep Revisions by Meredith Sue Willis.
Writing for Tweens and Young Adults (ENW 5078/Minimum 3 credits) Writing Literature for Tweens and Young Adults is designed to give writers who are exploring the young adult genre a concentrated writing experience in the mid-to-older reader segments of the genre. The course will help writers recapture the young person's world with its uniquely heightened awareness and seminal experiences, and to explore a variety of "places" to look for a story.
Research for Writers Cross-Genre (ENW 5260/Minimum 3 credits) Creative writing demands introspection and increasingly deeper exploration of our personal concerns, interests, and artistic goals. This course seeks to balance that inner gaze with materials from other perspectives. By seeking data, records, and other materials in stored sources, by using interviews and personal sources, and by exploring new physical locations, students will expand their awareness of the matters they choose to write about and discover how subjective and objective realities interact and inform each other. This course does not seek to limit the definition of research to academic or journalistic modes, but rather, its intention is to widen students' perception of what research is and how it can enlarge one's creative universe.