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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Anne Beaufort
TCXG 484
Tacoma Campus

Writing Creative Non-fiction

Examines the craft of the emerging genre of creative non-fiction. Combines intensive study of published work with a workshop in which students critique each other's work. It is recommended that students complete at least one other writing or literature course before enrolling.

Class description

We will writing both personal essays, shorts, and feature articles. We will read and analyze a lot of creative non-fiction too, so that you become familiar with the genre. And, you'll be submitting your work to newspapers or magazines. There is a significant work load. If you're looking for an easy elective, this is not the course for you. If you want to challenge your writing skills and grow personally, this course will enable you to do both. It's a good course if you're thinking you want a career in journalism or public relations, or if you want to explore your life experiences through writing.

The class requires homework for every session--reading, analyzing readings, and writing. While it is not required to write about yourself, many students find that the genre of creative non-fiction allows revisiting of past experiences and exploring their significance. Other options for subject matter include profiles, researched feature articles, nature writing, etc. And you will be sharing your writing in class so that you can hear how your writing affects an audience and get feedback on ways to make it stronger.

Student learning goals

draft writing that demonstrates a facility with various techniques and approaches employed in creative non-fiction: for example, scene setting, character development, dialogue, appropriate use of outside sources, alternative structures (braided, segmented, etc.)

recognize the tradition of nonfiction writing and demonstrate an understanding of contemporary approaches to the craft of creative nonfiction

effectively manage the writing process from research, through drafting, through revision, incorporating peer and instructor feedback as appropriate

provide constructive feedback on others’ work as a result of 1) a developing sense of genre expectations and 2) learning to respond with honesty and diplomacy

General method of instruction

small group workshopping of essays, class discussion, in-class freewriting

Recommended preparation

at least one previous college level writing course is recommended. this course does not cover grammar. you should have the basics of clear writing mastered before taking this class

Class assignments and grading

memoir, profile, feature article, nature/philosophical essay, etc. For samples of this type of writing, see the creative non-fiction published in Tahoma West (the UWT literary magazine) or check out the website Brevity.com

fulfillment of genre requirements and assignment requirements as well as constructive participation in the classroom activities


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Anne Beaufort
Date: 11/03/2009