This popular introductory workshop offers an exciting introduction to the basic elements of poetry and fiction, with in-class writing, take-home reading and writing assignments, and substantive discussions of craft. The course is structured as a workshop, which means that students receive feedback from their instructor and their fellow writers in a roundtable setting, and should be prepared to offer their classmates responses to their work. 4 points.
CRWRI-UA.815 Creative Writing: Introduction to Fiction & Poetry
Section 001, MW: 9:30 AM - 10:45 AM, Razmig Bedirian Provisional Syllabus
Section 002, MW: 12:30 PM - 1:45 PM, Brittany Shutts Provisional Syllabus
Section 003, MW: 8 AM - 9:15 AM, Megan Swenson Provisional Syllabus
Section 004, MW: 11 AM - 12:15 PM, Jessica Rizkallah Provisional Syllabus
Section 005, MW: 2 PM - 3:15 PM, Andrea Boerem Provisional Syllabus
Section 006, TR: 12:30 PM - 1:45 PM, Felice Arenas Provisional Syllabus
Section 007, TR: 12:30 PM - 1:45 PM, Phillip West Provisional Syllabus
Section 008, MW: 9:30 AM - 10:45 AM, T.J. Smith Provisional Syllabus
Section 009, MW: 12:30 PM - 1:45 PM, Daniel Murage Provisional Syllabus
Section 010, TR: 9:30 AM - 10:45 AM, Ethan Loewi Provisional Syllabus
Section 011, MW: 12:30 PM - 1:45 PM, Alexandra Zukerman Provisional Syllabus
Section 012, TR: 12:30 PM - 1:45 PM, Isabel Kaplan Provisional Syllabus
Section 013, TR: 8 AM - 9:15 AM, Marney Rathbun Provisional Syllabus
Section 014, MW: 11 AM - 12:15 PM, Andrew DeRado Provisional Syllabus
Section 015, TR: 3:30 PM - 4:45 PM, Jessica Ramirez Provisional Syllabus
Section 016, MW: 2 PM - 3:15 PM, Samantha Facciolo Provisional Syllabus
Section 017, MW: 9:30 AM - 10:45 AM, Aria Aber Provisional Syllabus
Section 018, MW: 4:55 PM- 6:10 PM, Angelo Nikolpoulos Provisional Syllabus
Section 019, TR: 12:30 PM - 1:45 PM, Adham Mahmoud Provisional Syllabus
Section 021, TR 12:30PM-1:45PM, Dario Diofebi Provisional Syllabus
Section 023, MW: 12:30 PM - 1:45 PM, Alisson Wood Provisional Syllabus
Section 024, MW: 2 PM - 3:15 PM, Wilson Ding Provisional Syllabus
Click here for information about the Creative Writing Program's course offerings abroad at NYU's Accra, Buenos Aires, London, and Sydney sites.
The intermediate workshops offer budding prose writers and poets an opportunity to continue their pursuit of writing through workshops that focus on a specific genre. The workshops also integrate in-depth craft discussions and extensive outside reading to deepen students’ understanding of the genre and broaden their knowledge of the evolution of literary forms and techniques.
Prerequisite for fiction: CRWRI-UA 815, OR CRWRI-UA 9815, OR CRWRI-UA.816, OR CRWRI-UA 818/819, OR CRWRI-UA 9818/9819, OR CRWRI-UA 9828/9829, OR CRWRI-UA 860, OR COSEM-UA 118 or equivalent. Prerequisite for poetry: CRWRI-UA 815, OR CRWRI-UA 9815, OR CRWRI-UA.817, OR CRWRI-UA 818/819, OR CRWRI-UA 9818/9819, OR CRWRI-UA 9828/9829, OR CRWRI-UA.870, OR FRSEM-UA 388 or equivalent. Prerequisite for creative nonfiction: CRWRI-UA 815, OR CRWRI-UA 9815, OR CRWRI-UA 818/819, OR CRWRI-UA 9818/9819, OR CRWRI-UA 9828/9829, OR CRWRI-UA 825, OR CRWRI-UA.880 or equivalent. 4 points.
CRWRI-UA.816.001 Intermediate Fiction Workshop
Sharon Mesmer, T 3:30pm-6:15pm
Is it possible to write, as Clarice Lispector suggests, both "squalidly and structurally"? I say yes. Both ends of the trajectory are possible ... and necessary, really, in order to produce surprisingly inventive writing. In this workshop, we will explore and exploit the fertile (oftentimes untouched) mud of our imaginations through a series of five writing exercises paired with model texts, each utilizing a different prose form into which even the muddiest, most inchoate and problematic ideas, images and language can be flowed. (Occasionally I will use my own work to show you how I approached these forms . . . I never give assignments that I myself haven't tried!) We will discuss the visible and invisible architectures of these model texts, and how you can deploy those architectures for your own purposes. Are you an absolute beginner? an uncertain experimenter? a bitter literary world veteran? Doesn't matter. The assignments + model texts can be used by anyone at any level of proficiency. Additionally, having a varied mix of voices is important, as Bitter Literary World Veteran can always learn something from Absolute Beginner about (as Jack Kerouac said) being "submissive to everything, open, listening." Together we'll read, write, discuss, dissect, experiment and create. Our objectives? 1.) To read, learn about, and be inspired by, the writings of others, including our fellow classmates; and 2.) to produce five fully alive pieces of prose that you would feel confident submitting to magazines (if that's your goal) or just proud to have written.
CRWRI-UA.816.002 Intermediate Fiction Workshop
Darin Strauss, R 3:30pm-6:15pm
CRWRI-UA.816.003 Intermediate Fiction Workshop
Irini Spanidou , M 6:20pm-9:05pm
The focus of this course is the discovery, encouragement and development of the students’ individual voice and style. The aim is not to force a piece of writing into formulaic “perfection” but to facilitate its clarity and momentum, thereby allowing substance to determine form. Whatever works is right: a short story or novel that fulfills its intentions justifies its means. The first seven weeks of the semester I will assign exercises dealing with different elements that make up a story; the last part of the semester, the class will run like a regular fiction workshop. Students will have to complete two stories or chapters from a novel.
CRWRI-UA.816.004 Intermediate Fiction Workshop
Said Sayrafiezadeh, R 4:55pm-7:40pm
This intermediate fiction workshop will be a combination of writing, reading, discussion and analysis. It will be conducted seminar style and roundtable discussion will be its primary class component. By looking at examples of contemporary fiction, we’ll work to develop essential skills and strategies for storytelling. Foremost will be the writing of several original literary fiction pieces during the term (approximately 2000 words each) based on specific parameters that I will assign. The emphasis here is on narrative prose, which precludes the use of poems, screenplays, lyrics, letters, etc. The emphasis is also on “literary fiction,” meaning we will not be dealing with genre stories, such as horror, mystery and fantasy. Together we will examine how you and your classmates utilize elements like character, arc, dialogue, pace. We’ll also expand into the murkier realms of voice, tension, humor, sentimentality and cliché. Our class discussions will include fundamental writerly concerns regarding process, discipline and distraction, as well as how to be published, how to find an agent, how to deal with an editor. In addition to your own work we will be reading a weekly selection of published writing. Keep in mind, that we will read these as writers reading writers, examining their strengths and weaknesses, and may come to regard them as inspiring accomplishments or cautionary tales—or both. There will be several (non-writing) outside assignments, as well as in-class analysis of various art forms, including poetry, screenwriting, film, opera and whatever else might help us learn how to tell stories.
CRWRI-UA.816.005 Intermediate Fiction Workshop
Eliza Minot, T 6:20pm-9:05pm
This workshop will focus on voice. Through reading one another’s work and thoughtfully responding to it, consistently writing new pages, and absorbing and discussing varied outside readings, we'll attempt to join up with the voice within us that is the most effective, clear, and engaging. All writers have their varying issues. While one writer might be struggling with character development, another might be hung up on pacing problems, while someone else is overly lyrical to the point of distraction or is grappling with having absolutely nothing to say. In this workshop we'll learn from each other what we, both as writers and as readers, respond to. We will encourage one another to write as freely as possible to get the words on the page, and then, from there, we will begin to discover where it is, specifically, we would like to be heading. Past readings have included Katherine Mansfield, Denis Johnson, Lydia Davis, Junot Diaz, Vladimir Nabokov, and ZZ Packer.
CRWRI-UA.816.006 Intermediate Fiction Workshop
Marie-Helene Bertino, M 11:00am-1:45pm
Welcome to Intermediate Fiction. This class will explore the craft of fiction in three different ways. The first will be brief talks that address a different element of craft in each class. The second will be by reading and dissecting (like writers) a broad range of contemporary fiction, from Etgar Keret to Yoko Ogawa to Raymond Carver to to James Baldwin to Aimee Bender to Toni Morrison. The third and most important component of the class will be workshopping student work with this question in mind: Where do I think this writer/story is trying to go? We will tailor our critiques toward the idea of helping the writer get there. We will have surprise guests by professional writers. We will eschew the idea that there is one way to write fiction. We will seek out the joy in our work and the work of others and will cultivate our personal, idiosyncratic voices. We will probably eat cookies during the last class.
CRWRI-UA.816.007 Intermediate Fiction Workshop
Nicole Dennis-Benn, M 4:55pm-7:40pm Syllabus
“Create a world for your characters to move around in; if not you cannot fully conjure them.” – Toni Morrison
Characters are essential to the story; so is setting. Setting provides a world for the story to take place. But more than that, setting reveals a lot about the characters—who they are; their culture and the social circumstances that shape them and affect the decisions they make. Through reading, writing, and discussion, we will explore methods to use the physical environment as a characterization tool, which will undoubtedly make the story richer and more memorable. During this workshop, each student will workshop twice. Following their in-class critiques, students will meet with the instructor for individual conference. We'll discuss at least two (2) selected works to aid our discussions on technique/craft in relation to shaping your story. Excerpts of other books and stories will be listed as we go along to better aid your individual storytelling process. Authors considered may include Toni Morrison, Chimamanda Adichie, Zadie Smith, Jacqueline Woodson, Elizabeth Strout, and NoViolet Bulawayo, to name a few. Secondly, prompts will be given at the beginning of the workshop to get your creative juices flowing.
CRWRI-UA.816.008 Intermediate Fiction Workshop
Charles Bock, F, 11am-1:45pm
Class is divided into short lectures, exercises, and workshop. Lots of time will be spent on technical stuff, how characters work, the way in which a story develops, language, structure, etc. We'll build from the basics. The first half of the class will be spent with a lecture and then some sort of exercise based on the lecture. Then workshops for the second half of the class. Workshops are structured so every student will comment on a story, and participation is a big part of a class. We care about improving stories and why they work and how they can be improved; we care about supporting our fellow students in their creative ventures and being daring and moving into uncharted narrative territories. There are weekly reading assignments that you are responsible for. When you come out from the other side of this thrilling little amusement park ride, the matter inside your fused together skull is going to have a better understanding of how fiction works. This class is recommended for inspired and motivated students.
CRWRI-UA.817.002 Intermediate Poetry Workshop
Geoffrey Nutter M, 4:55pm-7:40pm
Surprising, disorienting, beautiful, lyrical, dream-like, fantastic, difficult, intense—a poem exists in a strange realm of ambiguity and can be all of these things at once. And poets in 14th century England, 10th century China, or 18th century Japan used the same raw materials as poets in 21st century America: dreams, strong or ambivalent emotions, the natural world, experience in its many forms, and language. In this class we will look with fresh eyes at some of the most amazing poems of the past, present, and future, asking not what they mean, but rather how they mean and what they do. We will also discuss the kinds of things that poems are uniquely capable of doing—those things that make poetry exceptional in the world of the creative arts. In other words, we will approach the reading of poems as writers of poems. Focused and rigorous discussions of our fellow students’ poems will further help us hone our craft.
CRWRI-UA.817.003 Intermediate Poetry Workshop
Robert Fitterman, T, 3:30pm-6:15pm
Today, contemporary poetry is reaching to articulate its place among a new digital language that is often defined by new media art, net art, and new writing experiments that mirror the language-based technologies of the day. In other words, poetry is advancing to keep up with the times, and these advances occur through many types of expressions, including the innovations of new poetic forms and strategies: e.g. can your texting thread be a poem? can you make a love poem out of online dating site messages? In this class, we will study some of these new poetry strategies and use contemporary and historic models to propel writing experiments, such as: sampling, procedural writing, mixed media, visual (concrete) texts, collaboration, erasure, constraint, etc. The course also requires that you present your writing 2-3 times during the semester, participate in a collaborative project, and turn in a small "book" of your writing at the end of the term.
CRWRI-UA.817.004 Intermediate Poetry Workshop
Jean Gallagher, M, 11:00am-1:45pm
CRWRI-UA.817.005 Intermediate Poetry Workshop
Meghan O'Rourke, M, 9:30am-12:15pm
"If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry," Emily Dickinson famously wrote, trying to describe what a poem is. What is a poem? What makes a poem thrill you—or not? What are the unique qualities of poetry and what techniques can help make a poem the best poem it could be? This workshop is for intermediate poets. Students will write weekly or bi-weekly poems, and spend a lot of time paying attention to how a poem works – the way pattern and sound and the relationship between line and sentence conspire to create extraordinary effects. The class will focus on exploration of texture and music in poems – how can these intangible qualities transform prose into poetry - and close reading. We’ll spend a lot of time talking about how a poem is structured in order to reflect back at the writer what we see: What do the poem’s different elements suggest about how it can be revised? Are the music, syntax, and structure serving the poem? What are the writer’s most singular qualities? Etc. Because reading is essential to good writing, we’ll be reading a wide array of contemporary and classic poets, from Sappho, Christopher Smart, and Dickinson to Ashbery, Cathy Park Hong, and Danez Smith. The coursework consists of attending class, submitting poems every other week, performing all the required reading, and coming prepared to discuss the work of your peers in a thoughtful, respectful, and gracious manner. Verbal participation in class is expected, as is punctual attendance. Workshop isn’t workshop without your active voices.
CRWRI-UA.825.001 Intermediate Creative Nonfiction Workshop
Charles Taylor, R 4:55pm-7:40pm
CRWRI-UA.825.002 Intermediate Creative Nonfiction Workshop
Clifford Thompson , W 3:30pm-6:15pm
In this course students will read and discuss published essays that fall into three categories: "People You Know," in which writers evoke figures from their lives; "Trouble," or essays that describe predicaments the writers faced; and "The Personal in the Critical/Journalistic (PCJ)," or works that combine discussion of the writers' personal lives with discussions of well-known outside subjects (a famous movie or 9/11, for example). The published essays we discuss will be grouped in the order given above. As we conclude each grouping, students will turn in a personal essay, at least 1,500 words in length, related to that particular topic. (Three such essays in all.) In addition, each week at least two students will have pieces workshopped. Workshopped pieces do not have to fit in any of the three categories, but any workshopped piece may be revised and submitted as one of the three category essays. Workshopped pieces will also be at least 1,500 words. Each student will be workshopped twice. Finally, each week students will participate in an in-class exercise. The published writers whose work we discuss will include James Baldwin, Maxine Hong Kingston, Joan Didion, Truman Capote, and Roxane Gay.
Advanced workshops provide emerging writers with the opportunity to hone their individual voice and experiment with different aesthetical strategies in a genre-specific workshop taught by an eminent writer in the field. The workshops focus on innovative revision techniques, the development of a sustainable writing process, and the broadening of students’ literary knowledge of classical and contemporary masters. Each advanced workshop has a distinct emphasis and area of exploration—students are advised to pay close attention to the course descriptions, which are available online prior to registration.
Prerequisite for fiction: CRWRI-UA 816, OR CRWRI-UA 818, OR CRWRI-UA 9818, OR CRWRI-UA 9828, OR CRWRI-UA 820, OR CRWRI-UA 860 or equivalent. Prerequisite for poetry: CRWRI-UA 817, OR CRWRI-UA 819, OR CRWRI-UA 9819, OR CRWRI-UA 9829, OR CRWRI-UA 830, OR CRWRI-UA 870 or equivalent. Prerequisite for creative nonfiction: CRWRI-UA 825, OR CRWRI-UA 850, OR CRWRI-UA 880 or equivalent. 4 points.
CRWRI-UA.820.001 Advanced Fiction Workshop
Marcelle Clements, T 2:00pm-4:45pm
CRWRI-UA.820.002 Advanced Fiction Workshop
Charles Wachtel, M 11:00am-1:45pm
CRWRI-UA.820.003 Advanced Fiction Workshop
Ann Hood, M 3:30pm-6:15pm
CRWRI-UA.830.001 Advanced Poetry Workshop
Elaine Equi, F, 2:00pm-4:45pm
The goal of this course is to help you approach your writing in a more expansive way and to make you more prolific. This semester we'll draw on a variety of styles spanning from the engaging immediacy of performance poetry, to the startling juxtapositions of experimental writing. In the process, we'll touch on Surrealism, Objectivism, and The New York School for inspiration and techniques. I'm hoping that as a result, you'll gain a clearer sense of your own voice and interests, as well as a number of exciting ways to develop new work in the future. Weekly writing assignments will be a mix of traditional and invented forms. Possible topics include serial poems, ekphrastic poems, fables, lists, documentary and interview poems, poems about pop culture, the supernatural, and more. Critiques will focus on recognizing your strengths, creative strategies for revision, and preparing your work for publication. You can expect to write one poem per week, do an oral presentation, and keep a journal.
CRWRI-UA.830.002 Advanced Poetry Workshop
Catherine Barnett, W, 8:00am-10:45am
CRWRI-UA.830.003 Advanced Poetry Workshop
Matt Rohrer, M, 11:00am-1:45pm
This course is designed to plunge students head-first into the world of contemporary poetry. Besides workshopping each others’ poems, students will read a different book of contemporary poetry each week. We will discuss the book as writers, not literature students; we’ll want to figure out what each poet is doing, how he or she does it, and how we can do that. Writing exercises derived from the readings will help us get into the poets’ heads. Each week students will write a poem based on or totally ripping off the book assigned for that week. These poems, and the discussion thereof, will help us generate our discussions each week. This is an advanced course, and students will be expected to do all of the reading, participate in the discussions, and generally contribute towards that elusive thing which is a workshop environment that is constructive and critical and ultimately generative for everyone.
CRWRI-UA.850.001 Advanced Creative Nonfiction Workshop
Marcelle Clements, R 2:00pm-4:45pm
These advanced workshops and craft seminars—taught by acclaimed poets and prose writers—are open to select NYU undergraduates. Master classes are limited to 12 students and provide intensive mentoring and guidance for serious and talented undergraduate writers. Each Master Class has a distinct emphasis and area of exploration—students are advised to pay close attention to the course descriptions, which are available online prior to registration.
Prerequisite for fiction: CRWRI-UA 815, OR CRWRI-UA 9815, OR CRWRI-UA 816, OR CRWRI-UA 818/819, OR CRWRI-UA 9818/9819, OR CRWRI-UA 9828/9829, OR CRWRI-UA 820, OR CRWRI-UA 860 or equivalent. Prerequisite for poetry: CRWRI-UA 815, OR CRWRI-UA 9815, OR CRWRI-UA 817, OR CRWRI-UA 818/819, OR CRWRI-UA 9818/9819, OR CRWRI-UA 9828/9829, OR CRWRI-UA 830, OR CRWRI-UA 870, OR FRSEM-388, or equivalent. Prerequisite for creative nonfiction:CRWRI-UA 815, OR CRWRI-UA 9815, OR CRWRI-UA 818/819, OR CRWRI-UA 9818/9819, OR CRWRI-UA 9828/9829, OR CRWRI-UA 825, OR CRWRI-UA 850, OR CRWRI-UA 880 or equivalent. Recommended prerequisite: CRWRI-UA 820 (for fiction), CRWRI-UA 830 (for poetry), or CRWRI-UA 850 (for creative nonfiction). Application required. 4 points.
CRWRI-UA.860.001 Master Class in Fiction
CRWRI-UA.870.001 Master Class in Poetry
CRWRI-UA.870.002 Master Class in Poetry
CRWRI-UA.880.001 Master Class in Creative Nonfiction