Advanced Fiction: The Storytelling Tradition (online)

ENGL 4510/7510
Section 01
Speer Morgan
Course Description

English 4510 is a writing and publishing workshop for students with serious interest in writing prose fiction.  Both in the editing and publishing and professional world, skills in editing and creativity are in high demand. This class is devoted to imaginative work by class members, although we will also discuss classic and contemporary short stories. The readings will come from a selection of fiction from The Missouri ReviewBest American Short Stories, and other sources.  

In class we will explore the craft and techniques of writing the short story. Subjects will include recognizing promising material, concept, developing plot, maintaining unity, creating credible characters, establishing point of view, building drama and suspense, using language effectively, and establishing a personal voice.  The course will be flexible and accord with the students’ current work and goals.

This is a writing workshop for students with serious interest in prose fiction. Students are expected to be competent at prose writing.

Text: A sampling of stories from the beginning of the modern short story to the present day, all available online through links, which are included in the syllabus and on Canvas.

Each class will consider two stories from the readings, and most classes will also include discussion of at least two pieces by students in the class.