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CNF 56 W — Creative Nonfiction: Finding Your Voice, Finding Your Book

Quarter: Fall
Course Format: Online (System Requirements)
Duration: 10 weeks
Date(s): Sep 26—Dec 9
Drop Deadline: Oct 4
Unit(s): 3 Units
Tuition: $850
Limit: 17
Status: Closed
Please Note: No class the week of Thanksgiving
Sep 26—Dec 9
10 weeks
Drop By
Oct 4
3 Units
Please Note: No class the week of Thanksgiving
This course will offer the first steps toward writing your first creative nonfiction book. By exploring the craft of nonfiction, from brainstorming and research to structure and revision, students will leave the course with a project proposal for a longer nonfiction project. We will spend the first five weeks of the class reading and discussing terrific creative nonfiction works. From collections of essays to lyric meditations to research-driven books, we will talk about the range of book-length options available to us as nonfiction writers. At the same time, students will try a bunch of shorter writing assignments to jumpstart their imagination and build their chops. The second half of the course will build on these shorter pieces and conversations. Students will write and workshop longer nonfiction pieces. We will end the course by developing project proposals for a book-length nonfiction project. Along the way, we’ll build a community of supportive and thoughtful readers. Whether you’ve just started writing or have been writing for years, this course will get you on your way to writing your first creative nonfiction book.

Although the time commitment for this course is dependent upon one’s degree of participation, students should plan on investing four to six hours per week in order to participate at a substantial level.

Joshua Rivkin, Former Stegner Fellow, Stanford

Joshua Rivkin’s work appears regularly in The New Yorker, Virginia Quarterly Review, Slate, and The Southern Review. He has taught literature and creative writing at the University of Houston, Stanford University, and USC. He received a fellowship from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown and a Fulbright fellowship to Italy to conduct research for a book about the art and life of Cy Twombly. Rivkin received a PhD in literature and creative writing from USC.

Textbooks for this course:

(Required) Brenda Miller and Suzanne Paola, Tell It Slant (1st or 2nd edition) (ISBN 0072512784)
(Required) Jennifer Percy, Demon Camp (ISBN 1451662068)
(Required) Eula Biss, Notes from No Man's Land (ISBN 1555975186)