Creative Writing - Fiction

Course Number: WR 241
Transcript Title: Creative Writing - Fiction
Created: September 1, 2012
Updated: June 7, 2017
Total Credits: 4
Lecture Hours: 40
Lecture / Lab Hours: 0
Lab Hours: 0
Satisfies Cultural Literacy requirement: No
Satisfies General Education requirement: Yes
Grading options: A-F (default), P-NP, audit
Repeats available for credit: 0

Prerequisite / Concurrent

Course Description

Focuses on writing short fiction for class discussion and analysis in a workshop setting. Explores the techniques, styles, and structures of the writings of established authors, as well as the creative writing process from development of an idea to revision of a manuscript. Prerequisite/concurrent: WR 121. Audit available.

Intended Outcomes

Upon successful completion students should be able to:

  1. Read and analyze established authors in order to become familiar with the elements of fiction (eg. plot, dialogue, character, point of view, setting, tone, style, voice).
  2. Write original fiction that effectively uses the elements of the craft, leading to the development and revision of at least one complete short story.
  3. Effectively edit own original fiction based on knowledge gained from close and analytical reading of peer fiction.
  4. Lead a workshop of a peer’s short story.

Alignment with Institutional Core Learning Outcomes

In-depth 1. Communicate effectively using appropriate reading, writing, listening, and speaking skills. (Communication)


2. Creatively solve problems by using relevant methods of research, personal reflection, reasoning, and evaluation of information. (Critical thinking and Problem-Solving)
3. Extract, interpret, evaluate, communicate, and apply quantitative information and methods to solve problems, evaluate claims, and support decisions in their academic, professional and private lives. (Quantitative Literacy)


4. Appreciate cultural diversity and constructively address issues that arise out of cultural differences in the workplace and community. (Cultural Awareness)


5. Recognize the consequences of human activity upon our social and natural world. (Community and Environmental Responsibility)

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Assessment may include informal responses to study questions; evaluation of small- and full-group discussion; in-class and out-of-class writing; writing fiction pieces, as well as other types of more informal writing; presentation by individuals and groups; short and long quizzes; close reading exercises using support/evidence; writing exercises which include evaluation of various interpretations of a text and their relative validity. Both instructor and peer evaluation will be incorporated in the assessment process. 

May include student critiques of student work, in-class and out-of-class writing, close reading exercises, instructor conferences. Students missing a week's worth of class may not expect an A; those missing two weeks’ worth may not pass the course.

Course Activities and Design

This course includes lecture, but consists mostly of round-table workshops in which student work will be evaluated by the entire class in a critique session led by the instructor. Students will come prepared to critique the work by responding to it during this discussion, as well as submitting written responses. Students will also read a variety of published fiction and essays on producing fiction, and they will complete both in-class and out-of-class written exercises. Students will lead at least one workshop of a peer’s story.

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

  • Plot
  • Character
  • Scene
  • Narrative voice
  • Point of view
  • First person
  • Second person
  • Third person
  • Dialogue
  • Conflict
  • Setting
  • Tone/Language
  • Text
  • Subtext
  • Figurative Language
  • Genres
  • Pacing
  • Revision
  • Purpose
  • Protagonist
  • Imagery
  • Theme
  • Writing as a process
  • Denouement
  • Flashback
  • Irony
  • Allusion
  • Symbol
  • Close reading
  • Analysis
  • Contextualization
  • Artistic convention
  • Multiple interpretation
  • Audience
  • Objective Correlative
  • Metafiction