Online-Only Exclusives

Story Ending Ethology: Endings Beyond Freytagian Resolution or Joycean Epiphany

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Dustin M. Hoffman and Wendell Mayo
We didn’t include cliffhangers or twists in our definitions, because they are what we consider the most common missteps that early writers stumble into because they haven’t found their stories yet. A story isn’t a story without knowing its entirety.
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Writing the Journey: Teaching Storytelling in the Undergraduate Workshop

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Lawrence Coates
Near the beginning of Aspects of the Novel, E. M. Forster states that the fundamental aspect of the novel is that it tells a story. He is a bit regretful about this, because he finds that story is a rather primitive and unlovely thing, designed only to make readers want to know what comes next; indeed, he compares story to a tapeworm.
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Poetry, Thought, and the Teaching Arts: From Workshop to the Poems as Questions Project

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Bruce Bond
Far from banishing the student writer from critical conversation about his or her poem, I like to take notes as the student responds to my questions.
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Mentoring Gender Fluid and Trans Students in Writing Classes

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Glen Retief
“What’s with all these initials?” he asked me, presumably because I was a gay man, although perhaps also because I was a quarter century his junior. “LGBT—Q,A,B,C, D—where will it end?”
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Liberating Narcissism: Twenty-first Century’s “Turn Within” and the Value for Fiction Writers and Fiction Writing Instructors

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Aaron Tillman
Before you read this monumentally important essay on the timely topic of narcissism, I want to acknowledge how thrilling this must be for you, and to say how truly touched I am by your excitement and awe.
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Addressing Structural Racism in Creative Writing Programs

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Kazim Ali
A diverse and inclusive creative writing classroom is vital to the success of that classroom as well as a vital part of addressing larger social and political issues surrounding race. Yet students of color are badly underrepresented in the average creative writing classroom.

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Revising the Question: Thoughts on MFA vs NYC and the Larger Problems of Institutionalized Creative Writing

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Darin Ciccotelli
When the larger cultural elite takes on this thing called the MFA—when it interrogates the rise of creative writing, as it seems to do every couple of years——usually starts by asking The Question. You know the one. You’ve already heard it a hundred times. Saying it at this point feels more like lip-synching.
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An Undergraduate Novel-Writing Course

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Audrey Colombe, Paola Crespo, and Susanna Jones
Undergraduate creative writing curriculum has developed rapidly in the past ten to fifteen years and reflects a growing concern with focused study and distinct (or “measureable”) outcomes.
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Cross-dressing for Workshop: Or, The Uses of Translation in Creative Writing

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Russell Scott Valentino
Isaiah Berlin once famously set out hedgehogs and foxes as categories of thinkers on the basis of a Greek fragment from the poet Archilochus: The fox knows many things but the hedgehog knows one big thing.
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The Multigenre Workshop

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Richard Katrovas
It’s nothing new. Many English departments offer such courses at the entry, undergraduate level.
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Teaching Creative Writing Through Material Culture; or, Zooming In On the Elephant in the Room

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Christine Wiesenthal
To think through things is to recall that “things . . . can be portals,” as Aislinn Hunter notes in her wonderfully strange book of paratexts, Peepshow with Views of the Interior.
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Not as Easy as You Think: Re-evaluating the Workshop Model

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Oindrila Mukherjee
In his book, Teaching Poetry Writing: A Five Canon Approach, Tom C. Hunley says that the workshop method “functions more as a convenience for the instructors than as a vehicle for meeting the needs of students.
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Kurt Brown and What You Can Do for Poetry

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David J. Rothman
During the summer of 1990 I took a break from my graduate studies and spent several weeks in Aspen, helping Kurt Brown to run the 15th Aspen Writers’ Conference.

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Heart to Chart: Helping Students Visualize Our Responses to Their Fiction

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Donald Secreast
At some point in a creative writing class, a teacher must talk to a student in fairly concrete terms about the flaws in his or her writing. I prefer to conduct these serious evaluations as a personal conference in my office.
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Thomas James and Lucien Stryk: “and you / My first live poet”

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Susan Azar Porterfield
Lucie Brock-Broido reintroduced the poetry of Thomas James to the world some thirty years after he committed suicide in 1974, shortly after publishing his first book, Letters to a Stranger (1973).
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How to Put Words in Someone’s Mouth: Teaching the Dramatic Monologue

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Benjamin S. Grossberg
I love teaching the dramatic monologue, those poems in which the speaker is understood as a character distinct from the person of the poet. I love teaching the form because some of my favorite poems are monologues—and because it often occasions breakthroughs in student writing.
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The Early Days of AWP

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Robert Day
In the beginning, at the dawn of the 1970s, there was Verlin and Kay Cassill at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.
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Encountering the Muses: Conversations at the Athens Centre Poetry Workshop, June 2011

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Linda Lappin
Since the early '70s, the Athens Centre has offered an international poetry workshop every summer , hosting some of the greatest names in American and English poetry: Allen Ginsberg, W.H. Auden, James Merrill. Today the Muses Workshop is conducted by Alicia Stallings, an American poet transplanted to Greece, classics scholar, recipient of the Richard Wilbur poetry prize, acclaimed translator from Ancient and Modern Greek, a Guggenheim fellow, and recently a recipient of a MacArthur fellowship.
In June 2011, as protests and riots over the austerity measures proposed in the Greek Parliament echoed through Constitution Square, I spent a week at the Athens Centre, attending Stallings's workshop. While in Athens, I had an opportunity to speak at length with Rosemary Donnelly, one of the founders of the center and current program director; with A.E. Stallings, poetry workshop leader; and with my fellow participants about this challenging workshop.
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Attention Adjuncts: Get Paid to Research Your Novel! (or: How Teaching Comp Saved My Fiction)

Tyler McMahon
Among us writers, there are those stoics who don’t suffer excuses gladly. You know the type. They insist there’s always time to write, even if it’s an hour a day, early in the morning or late at night. After all, isn’t the best art produced under impossible circumstances, despite great odds and after much suffering? Teaching—even a heavy load—beats digging ditches, right?
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Demystifying and Demythifying the Workshop: On the Supposed 'Lore' of Creative Writing Pedagogy

Gerry LaFemina
Having spent a good amount of time looking at the issue of creative writing pedagogy, and reading much of the criticism that emanates from both critical scholars and compositionists, I'm left with some frustrations and also some spaces that just might leave me with enough room to place a pry bar of thought into and wiggle an argument open. Much of what is written about the workshop and its relationship to a "lore" of creative writing pedagogy seems to be itself based on some sort of "lore" against creative writing.
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Toward a Pedagogy of Process for the Creative Writing Classroom

Jenny Dunning
As commonplaces in creative writing go, pushing process is likely second only to "show don't tell." Yet we continue to rely on the writing workshop as the default setting in creative writing pedagogy, despite its inherent emphasis on product and the ongoing critique that dates back to the 1980s. I want to ask what it might mean to truly teach process in creative writing, that is as a goal in itself, as a practice, which I believe is the most appropriate emphasis for the undergraduate introductory creative writing course.
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Creative Writers in the Rare Book Room

Erica Olsen
University rare book libraries are often thought of as repositories for dusty old tomes—more dead poets society than a place for living authors. In fact, many rare book libraries house contemporary materials such as literary manuscripts, small press publications, and artists' books. (Within university library systems, rare books and manuscripts are often called "special collections." Manuscripts and personal papers—such as handwritten or typewritten documents, letters, and diaries, as well as digital files—may also be housed in repositories called archives.
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More than Just Mentorship and Modeling: Creative Writers and Pedagogy

Gerry LaFemina
While student writers are trying to figure out what it means to be a writer, and graduates of MFA programs have to consider what next, there is another broader question that is being asked in the recent discussions about creative writing pedagogy: what does it mean to be a writer in the academy?
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Border Crossings: Crossing Genres in the Classroom

Melissa Kwasny
What is a poem and what is prose?
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Fibbers, Nappers, Hens: Grammar and Grading in the Creative Writing Workshop

Julie Schumacher
Whenever I teach creative writing to undergraduates, I find time at the very beginning of the semester to hand out a chart to clarify any confusion between lie and lay. The students look surprised when they see it. This is a Creative Writing class, not an "English" class. They haven't signed up for a lesson in grammar.
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More Pictures from the Institution: Some Thoughts on the Creative Writing PhD

Amy Schroeder
In a 1996 article in the sadly now-defunct Lingua Franca, Frank Lentricchia declared his career as a literary critic over—and came out of the closet as a lover of books.
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Carnal Knowledge and the Pedagogy of Poetry Performance

Terry Song
When the spotlight came up on the darkened stage at the local music cafe, the air sizzled with expectancy as the young college women took the stage to celebrate the 2003 student literary magazine and perform the poems they had taken care to craft, polishing until their works shimmered and sang. When they stepped up to the mike and opened their mouths to translate the poems from page to the air, they cleared their throats and apologized before reading; they said what a hard act to follow the reader before them was; they shuffled or stammered, spoke too quietly, raced through the poem, swallowed the ends of words, phrases, lines--in essence, dissociated themselves from the work, from their bodies, and unfortunately, from the audience.
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George Hitchcock: Larger Than Life

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Robert McDowell

Before I knew him, before I learned that everything about George loomed large, I saw that physically he was big. George Hitchcock, poet-in-residence at what was then College V, the arts cluster college at the University of California, Santa Cruz, was crossing the college quad the night I worked up the courage to meet him.


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Working Men and Women: Characters & Their Development

Erika Dreifus
Ever notice how much time fiction writers spend focusing on love and love relationships? How many workshop sessions can elapse while the group dissects the plausibility of the lovers' relationship in any given manuscript?
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