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CW 107 W — Writing through Struggle

Quarter: Winter
Course Format: Flex Online (About Formats)
Duration: 5 weeks
Date(s): Feb 20—Mar 22
Refund Deadline: Feb 23
Unit: 1
Grade Restriction: No letter grade
Tuition: $390
Instructor(s): Caroline Goodwin
Limit: 100
Class Recording Available: Yes
Status: Open
ACCESS THE SYLLABUS » (subject to change)
Flex Online(About Formats)
Feb 20—Mar 22
5 weeks
Refund Date
Feb 23
1 Unit
Grade Restriction
No letter grade
Caroline Goodwin
ACCESS THE SYLLABUS » (subject to change)
Today's world can be a challenging place to navigate, with so much conflict all around us on a daily basis. The practice of creative writing, however, can provide us with the opportunity to create meaning through language and community and can often act as a healing force in our lives. Whether we are stressed by the current political climate or by a more individual difficulty or loss, the simple act of writing through struggle can bring purpose and satisfaction. To understand how other writers have brought their own lives to the page, we will read brief samples of literary art, from contemporary blogs and short stories to Romantic poetry. Each weekday, students will receive a writing prompt and will set a goal of freewriting to the prompt for a minimum of 30 minutes, then make a brief comment to one other student in the class. The prompts will challenge us to explore and expand our personal truths into the three major genres of writing: creative nonfiction, fiction, and poetry. The goal will be simply to express ourselves, without worrying about the ultimate form of our creativity. Students will complete this course with a strong writing practice in place, a community of supportive fellow writers who are tackling their own struggles, and a sense of where to go next.

Because of the high enrollment capacity of the course, students will offer a single line of constructive feedback to one fellow student per prompt. Students may submit one piece per week for very light instructor feedback and encouragement. Online sessions will include breakout rooms for sharing our work.

Former Stegner Fellow, Stanford

Caroline Goodwin attended Stanford as a Wallace Stegner Fellow in poetry in 1999. Her most recent books are Madrigals, Matanuska, and Old Snow, White Sun. Her essay "The Money Place" was listed as a notable essay of 2021 in The Best American Essays, and her essay "A Widow's Guide to OKCupid" was runner-up in the Barry Lopez Creative Nonfiction contest at Cutthroat Journal in 2019. From 2014 to 2016 she served as the first poet laureate of San Mateo County, California. Goodwin recieved an MFA from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.

Textbooks for this course:

There are no required textbooks; however, some fee-based online readings may be assigned.