Bulletin

Creative Writing


College of Humanities
Dean: Nancy McDermid

Department of Creative Writing
HUM 380
415-338-1891
Chair: Frances Mayes

Undergraduate Advisers: Mayes, Langton
Graduate Coordinator: M. Carter
Graduate Advisers: Conboy, Giles, Kim

Faculty
Professors—Langton, Litwak, Mayes

Associate Professors—Carter, Giles, King

Assistant Professor—Conboy, Kim

Lecturers—Bailiff, Burke, Catacalos, Gluck, Harper, Shurin

Programs
B.A. in English: Concentration in Creative Writing

M.A. in English: Concentration in Creative Writing

M.F.A. in Creative Writing


Program Scope
The Department of Creative Writing offers undergraduate and graduate programs. The three degree programs emphasize the primary importance of the study and practice of imaginative writing in the genres of poetry, fiction, playwriting, and nonfiction. All three degree programs combine an intense workshop requirement and a variety of special topic creative process classes with requirements in the English Department. The core literature classes assure that students will continue to absorb and be trained in a study of the best literature of the past. In Creative Writing classes, students work with an active, publishing faculty. They learn by vigorous practice; by focused studies of craft; and by extensive reading, analysis, and discussion of their own work, as well as that of published authors.

The undergraduate major combines the academic specifications of the traditional English major with the experiential needs of the writing student. Students who enter this program should do so only under the strongly held assumption that they have abilities as writers that may be fostered and trained by such a discipline as is described here. It is hoped that this combined program of writing and literature will lead students to a cohesive study and discipline that combines breadth with intensity.

Accordingly, some greater latitude of choice in literature courses is allowed in the creative writing major. Students' studies will lead them to a degree in English with a creative writing emphasis. Ample guidance of the creative writing advisers helps insure that students will not be deprived of a sense of the history of literature. In this regard they will continue to be fully qualified as potential graduate students in English as well as prepared should they wish to continue as M.A. or M.F.A. candidates in a creative writing program.

The two graduate programs differ in scope. Both programs are distinguished by innovative classes. Both include seminars, opportunities for community projects, and a thesis. Students may apply for admission to either the Master of Arts in English with Concentration in Creative Writing (30 units) or the Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing (54 units). A student who applies for, but is not accepted into, the M.F.A. program may be considered for admission to the M.A. program if he or she has so indicated. In no case will a student be admitted to both programs.

The Master of Arts in English with Concentration in Creative Writing serves a double purpose: to extend and broaden the student's familiarity with literature, and to provide the help of a faculty of professional writers and critics in developing the student's own potential as a professional writer. The Creative Writing Department has a strong core faculty and invites several visiting faculty each semester.

The Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing is regarded as the terminal degree in the field. It is a smaller program than the Master of Arts in English with Concentration in Creative Writing. The Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing offers extended experience in small seminars and in individual instruction with faculty. It also develops the student's understanding of the history and theory of literature, and incorporates correlative patterns of study in elective areas such as other cultures, other arts, technical studies, and/or the teaching of writing.

Career Outlook
Our career goal is to train and encourage writers of poetry, fiction, plays, and nonfiction. Many celebrated and distinguished writers are graduates of the department. In the job market, good writers are hard to find. The skills developed in Creative Writing translate well into corporate editing, publishing, and arts organization positions.

BACHELOR OF ARTS IN ENGLISH: CONCENTRATION IN CREATIVE WRITING

Courses for this program are listed in alphabetical sequence (see Creative Writing discipline in the "Announcement of Courses" section).

						Units
Courses in the Creative Writing Area selected 
from the following:				12
	CW 301	Fundamentals of Creative 
		Writing (prerequisite to all 
		writing courses)
	CW 403	Short Story Writing*
	CW 404	Poetry Writing*
	CW 405	Playwriting*
	CW 609	Directed Writing*
	CW 600	Special Problems In Writing**
Courses in the Creative Process Area selected 
from the following:				 6
	CW 510	Creative Process**
	CW 520	Writers on Writing
	CW 550	Poetry Center Workshop
Course in the Craft Area selected from the 
following					 3
	CW 511	Craft of Poetry
	CW 512	Craft of Fiction
	CW 513	Craft of Playwriting
Courses in the Literature Area, one course to 
be selected from each of the following groups:	12
American Literature Sequence
	ENG 527	American Literature, 1860-1914
	ENG 528	American Literature, 1914-1960
	ENG 529	American Literature, 1960-Present
The "Age of" Sequence
	ENG 501	Age of Chaucer
	ENG 509	Age of Humanism
	ENG 510	Age of Wit
	ENG 514	Age of the Romantics
	ENG 516	Age of the Victorians
	ENG 526	Age of American Renaissance
The Genre Sequence
	ENG 550	The Rise of the Novel
	ENG 551	Nineteenth Century English Novel
	ENG 552	Modern British Novel
	ENG 553	Classic American Novel
	ENG 554	Modern American Novel
	ENG 555	The Short Story
	ENG 556	Modern American Poetry
	ENG 570	Medieval and Renaissance Drama
	ENG 571	The Tragedy of Blood, 
		The Comedy of Humors
	ENG 572	English Drama: Restoration 
		and 18th Century
	ENG 573	American Drama
	ENG 574	Modern British Drama
	WCL 450	Greek and Roman Drama
	WCL 465	Modern Greek Poetry
	WCL 495	Short Fiction
The Individual Authors Sequence
	ENG 580	Individual Authors
	ENG 581	Chaucer: Canterbury Tales
	ENG 583	Shakespeare: Representative Plays
	ENG 584	Shakespeare: Selected Plays
	WCL 425	Individual Authors
Courses to be taken as electives on advisement 
from English, World and Comparative Literature, 
or other departments which adviser agrees would 
benefit the student's development as a writer	 6
		Total for major			39
*May be taken for three semesters of credit.
**Repeatable for credit when topics vary.

MASTER OF ARTS IN ENGLISH: CONCENTRATION IN CREATIVE WRITING

General Information
The Master of Arts in English with a Concentration in Creative Writing is offered in conjunction with the Department of English and emphasizes the importance of the study and practice of writing. This is a longstanding program. Students are carefully chosen by the Creative Writing faculty on the basis of submitted manuscripts. The student considering this program should be advised of the rigorous nature of its requirements and disciplines.

Admission to the Program
Students interested in this program must submit a meaningful sample of their writing (twenty-five pages of fiction, fifteen to twenty poems, or a full-length stage play or two short plays) along with the Creative Writing Department application form. Submissions should be sent to the secretary, Creative Writing Office, by January 15 for the Fall semester. Students accepted into the program with an undergraduate major that is not English are accepted conditionally. Such students, in consultation with the graduate coordinator, must make up undergraduate course deficiencies (up to twelve units) in addition to the requirements.

Written English Proficiency Requirement
Level One: the writing proficiency of the student is monitored on a continuing basis as each course in the program is completed. Level Two: satisfactory completion of CW 893.

Courses for this program are listed in alphabetical sequence (see Creative Writing discipline in the "Announcement of Courses" section). Selected upper division courses offered by the department may be used for the master's degree upon approval of a departmental adviser. Enrollment is not required in the semester of graduation.

Program
						Units
Writing courses selected from the following:	 9
	CW 709	Projects in Creative Writing*
	CW 803	Advanced Short Story Writing*
	CW 804	Advanced Poetry Writing*
	CW 805	Advanced Playwriting*
	CW 807	Developing the Novel*
	CW 808	Novel Writing*
CW 810	Seminar in the Creative Process**	 6
Upper division or graduate literature courses 
in the English or World and Comparative 
Literature Departments, to be selected on 
advisement					 9
CW 896	Directed Reading of Selected Authors	 3
CW 893	Written M.A. Creative Project		 3
		Minimum total			30
*May be repeated for credit with faculty approval and in accordance with the restrictions identified in the course descriptions.
**Repeatable for credit when topics vary. CW 825 and/or CW 830 may be substituted, once each.

MASTER OF FINE ARTS IN CREATIVE WRITING

Admission to the Program
Students interested in this program must submit a meaningful sample of their writing (twenty-five pages of fiction, fifteen to twenty poems, or a full-length stage play or two short plays), and two letters of recommendation along with the Creative Writing Department application form. Submissions should be sent to the secretary, Creative Writing Office, by January 15 for the Fall semester. Students accepted in the program with an undergraduate major that is not English are accepted conditionally, as are students with an undergraduate English major who did not achieve a 3.0 grade point average within the major. Such students, in consultation with the graduate coordinator, must make up undergraduate course deficiencies, which will be required in addition to the 54 units for the M.F.A.

Applicants from graduate programs in Creative Writing or English with Concentration in Creative Writing, or holders of M.A. degrees in these fields, may be eligible to transfer up to twenty-four units to the M.F.A. program, on review and recommendation of the Creative Writing Admissions Committee, and approval of the Admissions Office. For further clarification, contact Creative Writing Department.

Students in the Master of Arts in English with Concentration in Creative Writing at San Francisco State who wish to transfer to the M.F.A. program are required to apply for admission and are subject to the same admission standards as are all other applicants. Those admitted into the M.F.A. program must file a Request for Advancement to Classified Graduate or Credential Standing (for use by continuing graduate students only) with the Registrar's Office.

Written English Proficiency Requirement
Level One: the writing proficiency of the student is monitored on a continuing basis as each course in the program is completed. Level Two: satisfactory completion of CW 893.

Courses for this program are listed in alphabetical sequence (see Creative Writing discipline in the "Announcement of Courses" section). Selected upper division courses offered by the department may be used for the degree upon approval of a department adviser. Enrollment is not required in the semester of graduation.

Priority is given to classified M.F.A. students accepted in the genre of the course.

Program
						Units
Writing courses selected from the following and 
including at least six units at the M.F.A. 
level (CW 809, 853, 854, or 855)		18
	CW 803	Advanced Short Story Writing*
	CW 804	Advanced Poetry Writing*
	CW 805	Advanced Playwriting*
	CW 807	Developing the Novel*
	CW 808	Novel Writing*
	CW 809	Projects in Directed Writing 
		for M.F.A. Students*
	CW 853	M.F.A. Workshop in Fiction*
	CW 854	M.F.A. Workshop in Poetry*
	CW 855	M.F.A. Workshop in Playwriting*
Creative Process courses			 6
	CW 860	Teaching Creative Writing
	CW 866	Craft of Translation
	CW 875	Community Projects in Literature
	CW 880	Craft and Process Tutorial in 
		Fiction*
	CW 881	Craft and Process Tutorial in 
		Poetry*
	CW 882	Craft and Process Tutorial in 
		Playwriting*
Literature courses or Graduate Creative Process 
courses						12
	For students planning a culminating 
	project in playwriting, the following 
	courses in Theatre Arts are acceptable: 
	TH A 460, 711, 740
	Courses numbered 400 level and above may 
	be chosen as follows: literature courses 
	in the English Department, World and 
	Comparative Literature, or in other 
	departments with the consent of the 
	M.F.A. adviser. Graduate process courses 
	include CW 810*, 825, 830, 860, 866, 
	880*, 881*, 882*.
Correlative courses related to the candidate's 
interests and planned with the approval of the 
M.F.A. adviser. Sequences and patterns are 
especially appropriate. (CW 860 is an option 
in this sequence.)				12
CW 893	Written M.F.A. Creative Work		 6
		Minimum total			54
*May be repeated for credit with faculty approval and in accordance with the restrictions identified in the course descriptions.


Bulletin 1994-96 Table of Contents, SFSU Home Page

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