3420 Fall Course Calendar

Intermediate Fiction Writing 
by Lee Ann Mortensen, Professor at Utah Valley University

 

Updated 12/8/17 4:51 PM - subject to change

 

  M W M W M W M W M W
August 21 23 28 30            
September 4 6 11 13 18 20 25 27    
October 2 4 9 11 16 18 23 25 30  
November 1 6 8 13 15 20 22 27 29  
December

4

6 11

13

Fri15

18

20      

 

Due Dates

Discussions, Readings, & Exercises--subject to change

Lecture Notes Link--subject to change

Aug. 21

Course Introduction, and The Necessities of Fiction

Readings Due Before Class:

--Purchase Texts and materials!
--Syllabus
--Get used to using Canvas to turn in your work, get grades, and get announcements. Use this Web Calendar for readings' and assignments' deadlines and details.

 

Assignments due before class:

  • Be a committed writer!
  • E.mail me your phone from your most used E.mail account: mortenle@uvu.edu. My email is the best way to ask me questions about assignments, or let me know if there are mistakes I need to correct.

 

Lecture Notes Day 1

Pleasure and Bliss--Barthes

vocab--metafiction

Aug. 23 

The Aesthetics of Fiction

Readings Due Before Class:

--Letters: Busch, Abbott, Bausch, Baxter
--Best 1999--Kenison's and Tan's Introductions; Bass "The Hermit's Story" and Contributor's Note; Dobyns "Kansas" (always read the contributor's notes at the back of the anthology starting on p. 377)
--What If: Cisneros "Eleven" p. 316+ (the video of this is also in the Video folder of Canvas Files)
--Handout (online): Skim over my Prose Vocabulary sheet


Assignments due before class
:

  • Journal 1: observation/description of an "interesting" story you've heard or seen; or a bit of language/dialogue you hear or see; or some prose descriptions of people/objects/settings around you; or some deep philosophical issues you are intensely engaged with (things you could bring into your fiction writing).  You should be doing 3 or more entries each week.  This isn't something you will turn in, but must be able to show me evidence of for the Midterm and Final. Sometimes I will ask you to post a favorite journal entry to Canvas discussions. You may focus on an exercise from What If? (like the one on p. 14 of the 3rd edition dealing with how to begin a story).
  • Email me from your most used email.


Announcements:

  • FYI--some of today's readings are available in Canvas Files.
  • Don't forget to email me questions about the syllabus if you have them.

Lee's Lecture Notes:

Day 2 Lecture Notes

Ex. 1 Apprentice story

Vocab--the fantastic


Aug.
28

The So-called "Basics"?

Readings Due Before Class:

--Letters: Beattie
--Best '99: Proulx "Bunchgrass Edge..."
--Wallace: "Little Expressionless Animals"
--Handout on Youtube: Charlie Rose interview of David Foster Wallace

Assignments due before class:

  • Reading Reaction 1: A 600 word "writerly" reaction to one of the readings above (which bit of advice from Letters seems applicable to the story, and why?; or why do you like or hate the story or certain parts or moves in the story?; what do you think specific parts of it teach you about writing fiction? what stylistic choices in the story strike you and why?  are you a language hag or a plot hag?).  Be sure to include some specific textual evidence (short quotes) to illustrate what you are trying to analyze. Click here for a sample reaction (scroll down to the second reaction). For example, you can react to the multiple narrative voices in Bass's "The Hermit's Story," or discuss one of Tan's concepts of fantasy with Dobyns' "Kansas." You should upload this to Canvas discussions.
  • Exercise 1 due 11:59pm to Canvas (min 900 words): Apprentice Story DRAFT ready to share by posting to Canvas Assignments: you can brainstorm/freewrite in journal some of your obsessions, events or stories or people or voices you can't get out of your head (Baxter), or things that have happened to you that perplex you, or things that happen to others (this world or another).  You should also experiment (apprentice) by placing these personal fetish obsessions/subject-matter into the FORM, Style, or postmodern strategy of one of the stories we've read thus far (Wallace--play with some revisionist history or pop culture clashing/merging with character's identities; or play with the tension between dramatized scenes and reported scenes; Dobyns--pick a pivotal memory, then write it, then rewrite it with different outcomes (like the movie Run Lola Run); Bass--tell a story about someone who once told you a story (stories within stories); or write with a Proulx--like obsession with place/setting or a continuously shifting plot focus as you see in "Bunchgrass", or where there is something uncanny or marvelous like a talking tractor; Cisneros "Eleven" on Canvas Files--pick someone you know, or any voice other than yours, and write a monologue for them/it).

 

Announcements:

  • Don't forget to collect observations, characters, dialogue etc. in your writerly journals.
 

Lee's Lecture Notes:

Day 3 Lecture Notes

Wallace creeps me out and makes me feel envy

Annie Dillard's “Total Eclipse” is full of metaphors...


Aug. 30

Truth and Fiction and Formal Elements

Readings Due Before Class:

--Letters: Bradbury, Bradley, Brown, Burroway
--Best '99 and Englander "The Tumblers"
--Handout: Kesey's "Martin"

 

Assignments due before class:

  • Reply to two RR 1's in Canvas discussions (these can be short but specific, thoughtful 50-100 word replies to your peers' reactions to "The Hermits Story" or "Kansas"). What do you agree with or disagree with in their reactions?  What thoughts did you have that were different? What new idea did they give you about writing or analyzing or synthesizing?

 

Announcements:

  • Are you collecting good observations, quotes, story ideas, character descriptions etc. in your Journals?

 

Lee's Lecture Notes:

Day 4 Lecture Notes

 

Sep. 4 Labor Day Holiday  

Sep. 6

Details, and Element Fixations

Readings Due Before Class:

--Best 99: Diaz "The Sun, The Moon, The Stars"; and Harrar "The 5:22" (what is uncanny or marvelous?) 
--Wallace:
"Luckily the Account Representative Knew CPR" and "Everything is Green"
--Handout (online here): Raymon Carver's minimalist sudden fiction "Why Don't You Dance?"
--Le Petite Zine (choose two very short stories)
--Handout (Canvas Files): Flash44to65.pdf, some flash fiction stories in Canvas under Files.
--Handout (Canvas Files): imagenotebookwhatif.pdf, the image notebook exercise from What If.

Assignments due before class:

  • Ex. 2 Do Not Mention--due by 11:59pm--may work on this In Class, but if not, you can just choose one of Gardner's prompts below and start writing: Freewrite for 20+ minutes to Gardner's "Part 1--Describe a building as seen by a parent whose son has just been killed in a war. Do not mention the son, war, death, or the parent doing the seeing. Part 2--describe the same building...as seen by a happy lover. Do not mention love or the loved one." How did (or will) you solve some of these problems? What kind of fleshly detail did you start building? There are variations on this in Canvas Files gardnerdonotmention.pdf. Post to Canvas Discussions (cut and paste is best; attach only PDF's).
  • Journal 2--"Image Notebook" due before class: Melanie Rae Thon (see ImageNotebookWhatif.pdf under Canvas Files) discusses how some writers write concrete, sensory descriptions about the things they see, taste, hear, touch, and smell.  She talks about how we are especially sensitive in our observations when we are disoriented, like we would be as we travel (or when we arrive somewhere new).  Choose something that really stands out from today's or this weekend's interactions and describe it with sensory details--use metaphors or similes too if those work for you and if they are sensory. We discussed Proulx's  this rich language in  Bunchgrass--like when she describes Ottaline's hand guilded with safron (302). We started this in class. Upload to Canvas discussions.
 

Lee's Lecture Notes:

Do not mention

Lecture Notes Day 5

Edelstein Flash Fiction...mostly exposition

A short Pixar movie: Paperman

Look at Exposition in dialogue with Wallace p. 30

You can comment on drafts with New Critical techniques and elements--close read POV, narration, plot, character, imagery, symbolism--and is everything working toward a universal human theme?

 

 

??will bring 21 copies of a fiction draft for workshop. Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here.

Sep. 11

Internal Logic, Character, and workshopping

Readings Due Before Class:


--Get and start reading Touchstones or Warp n Weave from the English Dept. CB 407 (the newest or the cheapest one is fine; look at poetry with some of the techniques you've been learning; start thinking about what makes a story compelling or not)
--Letters: Carver,Delbanco, Dubus, Durban
--Handout: Workshopping Fiction

 

Assignments due before class:

  • Reading Reaction 2: 600 words for any two stories read since the last RR (due at 11:59pm tonight; do 2 stories so that you can create more comparison/contrast tension).  What do you learn about narrative? Bliss vs. pleasure? What do you learn about violations of expectations? What do you learn about dramatizing scenes? Or pacing? Or narrative voice? Click here for a few good sample reactions.  Upload this to Canvas discussions. Click here for a sample that shows some "criticism" of Rick Bass. Scan over the reactions and make comments on two.
  • Exercise 3--550 word story: a story draft that is 550 words that is titled one day of the week (like "Wednesday," or "Sundays" depending on which has more emotional depth, or which would give you a different kind of repetition or routine). See What If 1st handout in Canvas Files (WiFforms213to239.pdf). See What If 3rd ed. p. 179+. Post this to Canvas Discussions.
  • Exercise 4--1000 word story: the start of a 1000 word flash fiction of your own choosing or do something from What If (like the person, place, or song exercise old edition WIfbeginnings p. 15; What If 3rd p. 23+; or you can write a flash fiction for one of the characters in your own Journal or a guided journal we've done). Post this to Canvas Discussions!

Lee's Lecture Notes:

Day 6 Lecture Notes

The men of Chelm--a fantasy? A fairy tale?

 

Choose a well done TV Series to watch this semester for craft choices (and help working on longer pieces):

  • Breaking Bad (character and plot twists that actually surprise)
  • Freaks and Geeks (there's only one season; realism and character, not so dramatic in plot, yet still interesting)
  • My So Called Life (character based)
  • House of Cards (American version; first season has a lot of character; plot pull)
  • Atypical (new on Netflix; autistic central character)
  • Mad Men (more realism, character-based, a period piece from the 60's, but with some plot twisting)
  • Nurse Jackie (a shorter format piece; character-based sometimes with The Fantastic, but mostly a realism piece; plot still matters)
  • Maude from the 70's--well written comedic dialogue
  • Sons of Anarchy (character-based in the first 3 seasons, though plot pull is also strong)
  • True Detective 1st Season only (character based, but also has a plot)
  • Firefly (a past student mentioned wanting to watch this...any opinions?)
  • ??
  • Your Suggestions

--Peer stories: read and comment on ?? stories in a writerly fashion. Carefully, thoughtfully read and write comments on their drafts based on their craft choices working or seemingly not working. Craft issues include as much as you can like pacing, dialogue, fleshing of characters, voice, POV, time shifts, description, narration, exposition, maximalist vs. minimalist style, cliches that get in the way etc. (critique, interpret, give advice, praise--see the Workshopping page for more ideas); use some of language about texts of bliss; write down as many detailed reactions as you can, and be ready to talk about, and defend, these reactions in class. Your peers will grade your comments at midterms, so participation is important. Readers please write comments ON the page and be ready to discuss those comments during class--don't hand them back until we are done with the oral workshop in class (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here!).

?? will bring 21 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX). Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here.

 

Sep. 12 Tues. at 1pm

creative writing event

Annie Smith, MLS
Reference/Instruction Librarian
Fulton Library
Utah Valley University

******************
The Fall 2017 Roots of Knowledge Speaker Series kicks off on Tuesday, September 12 at 1:00pm in the Bingham Gallery, Fulton Library.  Rob Carney, Professor, English and Literature, College of Humanities and Social Sciences will present “Roots of Knowledge, Branches of Stories.”

Presentation Description:  The UVU Roots of Knowledge installation is a mural, but is also a way to tell our human story. Meaning, knowledge is rooted in storytelling. Professor Rob Carney will talk about that, recite some original stories, and--since this year marks the 500th anniversary of the Reformation--nail his own new 95 Theses to the library air.

Refreshments will be served.

 

You can attend this as one of your Outside Readings for a 600 word Reaction. Rob usually reads prose poetry.

 

Mythoi and narratology

Sep. 13

UVU Freshperson Reading book, The Boys in the Boat, a straightforward and inspiring creative non-fiction book all Freshperson's may have picked up already, will have a discussion on Sep. 13th at 7pm in President Holland's campus home. RSVP--success@uvu.edu

 

 

Sep. 13

Transparent Realism, Workshopping, and Publishing

Readings Due Before Class:

--Best 99--Divakaruni: "Mrs. Dutta..."
--Bring Letters to a Fiction Writer every day...
--Keep reading in Touchstones or Warp n Weave (the latest issue can be purchased in the English Dept.; you can also get older issues).
--Handout: Lee's Comment Guide
--Peer stories: read and comment on ?? story in a writerly fashion. Carefully, thoughtfully read and write comments on their drafts based on their craft choices working or seemingly not working. Craft issues include as much as you can like pacing, dialogue, fleshing of characters, voice, POV, time shifts, description, narration, exposition, maximalist vs. minimalist style, cliches that get in the way etc. (critique, interpret, give advice, praise--see the Workshopping page for more ideas, or use advice ideas from Letters to a Fiction Writer); use some of language about texts of bliss; write down as many detailed reactions as you can, and be ready to talk about, and defend, these reactions in class. Lee may collect your comments so she can check them off (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here! Readers please write comments ON the page and be ready to discuss those comments during class--don't hand them back until we are done with the oral workshop in class).


Assignments due before class
:

  • Reply to two Ex. 3's or 4's, flash fictions in Canvas Discussions. Why do you like it? What works? What problems does it still have? Where do you want more? Less? What about imagery or sensory detail? What about Freytag's Triangle? What would you do with the draft if it were yours? Refer to elements from the workshop sheet, or from our discussions, or from Busch's letters to help you focus your comments. Groups may be assigned, but if not, choose 4 people to respond to.
  • Justin, Jade, Spencer will bring 15 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here.
 

Lee's Lecture Notes:

Day 7 Lecture Notes

Journal: What If p. 20+...after a given line, free associate lines that come out of the first without stopping...(a new writing style for some of you)

 

New Criticism--when you workshop, think about words--is this a more minimalist piece? Does it need more ambiguity or multiplicities of meanings?

Mythoi:

Of Summer=tragedy like King Lear

Of Winter=irony or satire--more common today--antiheros come to some kind of end, but the circumstances are puzzling (thus closure is not as common with literary or art fiction like this)

Political Satire is a smaller form of parody seen daily on Trevor Noah's The Daily Show on Facebook, or Steven Colbert's Late Show on CBS.

 

Sep. 18

WORKSHOPPING

Readings Due Before Class:

--Peer stories: read and comment on Justin, Jade, Spencer story in a writerly fashion. Carefully, thoughtfully read and write comments on their drafts based on their craft choices working or seemingly not working. Craft issues include as much as you can like pacing, dialogue, fleshing of characters, voice, POV, time shifts, description, narration, exposition, maximalist vs. minimalist style, cliches that get in the way etc. (critique, interpret, give advice, praise--see the Workshopping page for more ideas, or use advice ideas from Letters to a Fiction Writer); use some of language about texts of bliss; write down as many detailed reactions as you can, and be ready to talk about, and defend, these reactions in class. Lee may collect your comments so she can check them off (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here! Readers please write comments ON the page and be ready to discuss those comments during class--don't hand them back until we are done with the oral workshop in class).
--Letters: Foote, Gardner (bring this book daily)
--If needed--Handout: Workshopping Fiction
--Bring Touchstones or Warp n Weave
--Read any 2 stories and any 2 advice columns in "Flash Fiction Online"

 

Assignments due before class:

  • Whitney, Jami, Christy will bring 15 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced, 6000 words MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here.

 

Announcements

  • Bring commented on peer stories even if you have to print them yourselves!

Lee's Lecture Notes:

Keep your workshop comments until those authors we read for today have been workshopped.

 

Day 8 Lecture Notes

Journal: keep writing in it...we will also try What If exercises each week or two...

 

Authors--for your workshop, be sure you load your draft under Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here! or Poetry Workshop Drafts!

?? ???????????Creative Writing Club opening social tonight! 6:30pm room LA228??  
Sep. 20

WORKSHOPPING

Readings Due Before Class:

--Peer stories: read and comment on Whitney, Jami, Christy's stories in a writerly fashion. Carefully, thoughtfully read and write comments on their drafts based on their craft choices working or seemingly not working. Craft issues include as much as you can like pacing, dialogue, fleshing of characters, voice, POV, time shifts, description, narration, exposition, maximalist vs. minimalist style, cliches that get in the way etc. (critique, interpret, give advice, praise--see the Workshopping page for more ideas, or use advice ideas from Letters to a Fiction Writer); use some of language about texts of bliss; write down as many detailed reactions as you can, and be ready to talk about, and defend, these reactions in class. Lee may collect your comments so she can check them off (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here! Readers please write comments ON the page and be ready to discuss those comments during class--don't hand them back until we are done with the oral workshop in class).
--Bring Letters to a Fiction Writer
--Bring Touchstones or Warp n Weave!
--Wallace: read the first 3rd of "Lyndon," an historical fiction

Assignments due before class:

  • Myke, Kenzie, Kenechi will bring 15 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here.

Lee's Lecture Notes:
1. Publishing
?

Lecture Notes Day 9

 

Touchstones or Warp n Weave--you teach us!

 

Authors--for your workshop, be sure you load your draft under Canvas Discussions Poetry Workshop Drafts! or Workshop 1 Drafts Here!

Sep. 25

 

Workshopping

Readings due Before Class:

--Peer Stories: bring comments on Myke, Kenzie, Kenechi's stories (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here!).
--Wallace: read the second 3rd of "Lyndon"
--Touchstones or Warp n Weave: bring it

Assignments Due Before Class:

  • Journal 3: Reminder to keep journaling on your own. What do you think your writing needs most? Do some of the workshop sheet questions for Author help you revise?  More character work?  More plot work?  More imagery?  Choose an exercise from What If that can help you think more about any of your writerly issues (or choose something that can help you come up with a new story).
  • Sharon, Christina, Rebecca will bring 15 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here.

Lee's Lecture Notes

 

Lecture Notes Day 10

 

Touchstones or Warp n Weave--you teach us!

Sep. 27

Workshopping, and Postmodernism

Readings:

--Peer Stories: Sharon, Christina, Rebecca --bring comments on their stories (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here!).
--Handout: Some Postmodern Laundry Lists.
--Handout (on web): Postmodernism by Mary Klages

 

Assignments Due Before Class:

  • Melissa, Travis, Deirdre will bring 15 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here.

 

Announcements:

  • ANNOUNCEMENT: Please keep track of how you might grade each of your peers in their workshop comments to you!!
  • If you miss a workshop day, you are responsible for making comments on the workshop drafts and handing them in to Lee (and she will give them to the authors).
  • FYI Be working on a story or hybrid story you might want to workshop next (this could be your pomo story, a regional story, or whatever else you want us to comment on)

 

 

Lecture Notes Day 11

Who will share something from Touchstones or Warp n Weave?

Sep. 29

Warp & Weave submissions due by noon via email: warp.weave@gmail.com

Or Facebook: search warp & weave

 
Oct. 2 no class-- lee sick--calendar will move up one day  

Oct.  4

Workshopping, and Postmodernism

Readings:

--Peer Stories: bring comments on Melissa, Travis, Deirdre stories (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here!).
--Best 99: Moore's "Real Estate"
--Handouts: Hassan's pomo list
--Handout (on web): Postmodernism by Mary Klages (this link works!)
--Wallace: "Lyndon" (a postmodern fiction)--finish
--If you miss a workshop day, you are responsible for making comments on the workshop drafts and handing them back to the author who will grade your comments.

Assignments Due Before Class:

  • Workshop 1 Revision: revisions for Lee are due two weeks after the last workshop. Include my purple workshop comments with the revision. Upload your revision to Canvas Assignments Workshop 1 Drafts Here which is where I'll put the grade.
  • In Class?--Ex. 5 on Character: What If? pp. 31-55--we will choose one for in class, or you can choose two to help you flesh two or more of your characters thus far.

Announcements:

  • FYI Be working on a piece you might want to workshop next (this could be your pomo story, a regional story, or whatever else you want us to comment on)

POV--3rd limited

 

characterization--what can you do to flesh unique beings in your worlds?

help them speak differently from each other...

help them have unique and interesting or harmful neuroses--characters can often be at war with themselves as much as any

What if? p. 31-55

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lee's Lecture Notes:

Lecture Notes Day 12

 

Who will share something from Touchstones or Warp n Weave?

Lyndon

Real Estate

 

 

 

 

?? will bring 21 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here.

Oct. 9

Workshopping, and Postmodernism

Readings:

--Peer Stories: ?? --bring comments on their stories (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here!).
--Bring Wallace--Lee will ask for specific responses to character transparency vs. opacity in "Lyndon" and "Real Estate" --Bring Best 99.
--Handout: Read the Outside Reading Reaction #1 (just read it--see the 18th for more info)
--Handout (on web): Barthelme's hard core pomo story "The History of Capitalism"
--Handout (on web): Read/Scroll over this hypertext fiction on the web, "Sand Loves"


Assignments Due Before Class
:

  • Ex. 5 on Character (may do some in class) due by 11:59pm: What If? pp. 31-55--choose two exersizes to help you flesh two or more of your characters thus far. Also see Letters p. 147. There are also character questions you can try here from Proust. Do as many characters as you want, then mix and match until you find some surprising combinations. Upload to Canvas Assignments.

 

Announcements:

  • FYI Be working on a piece you might want to workshop next (this could be your pomo story, a regional story, or whatever else you want us to comment on)
  • ?? first students' workshop 1 revision for Lee is due. Include my workshop comments with the revision.

 

Lee's Lecture Notes:

who will bring manuscripts next time?!?

Lyndon and neopostmodernism; and postmodernism

Lecture Notes Day 13

Another discussion of WarpnWeave or Touchstones...a lot of my students are in each issue!

 

 

Exercise ? : character from p. 99-107--complete one of these character exercises thinking about

Pam Durban's advice about giving characters particular sadness or particular anger (Letters p. 147).

 

??Directed Journaling--journal 4: from last week where we chose character questions from a 50 question list, or this list from Proust, and wrote about one of our main characters, pushing to find non-cliched concrete details to help flesh the character. These are often part of the three journals you should be writing each week.

Oct. 11

 

Pomo Fiction: How the Avant-Garde Can Teach You Style and Humor

Readings Due Before Class:

--Peer Stories: ??--bring comments on their stories (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here!).
--Bring Best 99
--Wallace: bring it
--Handout: Postmodern Laundry List
--Wallace: start "Westward the Course of Empire Takes its Way"
--FYI ?? workshop 1 revision for Lee is due. Include my purple workshop comments with the revision.

 

Assignments Due Before Class:

  • Reading Reaction 3 due by 11:59pm: Touchstones or Warp n Weave: 600 words reaction (30 pts) uploaded to Canvas Assignments--what editorial biases did you notice, and what did you think about them?  What works did you like most and why?  What does reading this magazine tell you about publishing?  What would you "normally" be compelled to read based on the first sentence/line (and why--Lish's pony metaphor)?  What doesn't compel you and why? Upload this to Canvas discussions.
  • Exercise 6--"The Five Highlighter Exercise" due by 11:59. Use 5 different highlighters to highilght (digitally or by hand) each type of prose element you are using in your apprentice story or workshop. Purple for exposition, green for narration, yellow for dramatized scenes, blue for description (you can see my board notes here; click here for an example). There is an older What If? assignment handout for this under Canvas Files. Show this to me, turn it in, or post it to Canvas Discussions Ex. 5 (if you want to highlight in Word, you can easily upload that file; if you have a smart phone, you can scan documents to pdf with an ap like CamScanner for Android, or Genius Scan for Ios).
  • who ?? will bring 15 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here. Upload workshop stories to Workshop 2 Drafts here.

 

Announcements:

Today's Lecture Notes Day 14

 

Possible On-Line Readings and Interviews (view both) for Outside Reading Reactions:

David Foster Wallace reading fiction from Brief Interviews...: and dialogue "Yet Another Example..."; BI #51 and obsessive characters; "A Radically Condensed History of Postindustrial Life" (obviously a flash fiction with surreal detatchment); Charlie Rose interview (part 1; part 2; part 3; part 4)

Rick Bass Community of Glaciers (part 1; part 2); On The Fly interview

Annie Proulx on Wyoming and "Brokeback Mountain"; reading at Dunedin Public Library;

Lorrie Moore Lannon Foundation reading from A Gate at the Stairs; PBS Newshour interview

Chitra Divakaruni (author of "Mrs. Dutta...") reading from One Amazing Thing--part 1; part 2; interview (part 1; part 2)

Nathan Englander reads from The Ministry of Special Cases; On the Fly interview.

Junot Diaz's acclaimed novel The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao part 3 (:52); part 4; news interview; on his writing process with Oscar Wao;

Pam Houston reading from The Rumpus (and excerpts); ASU interview

 

Ursula K. Le Guin reading Lavinia; interview about the book.

 

Student Suggestion--Ray Bradbury NEA interview; Ray Bradbury Theate--The Murderer (part 1; part 2; part 3);

Student Suggestion--Douglas Adams reads from The Hitchhikers' Guide to the Universe; 1980 interview

 

Oct. 16

Pomo Fiction and Exercises

Readings Due Before Class:

--Peer Stories: ??--bring comments on their stories (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here!).
--Best 99: Julavits "Marry the One"; Houston "The Best Girlfriend..."
--Wallace: bring it
--Read or browse these hypertext fictions (?) on the web: excerpt from Califia; Adventures in the Great OutThere (sci fi);
--Wallace: keep reading "Westward the Course of Empire Takes its Way"

 

Assignments Due Before Class:

  • Outside Reading Reaction #1(due by 11:59): 600 writerly words about a reading, play, or performance event you've attended (not a musical). See some Youtube readings/interviews (look at both) in the previous lecture notes above. Be sure you use one of our Letter's or Texts of Bliss theory, or any other theory to help you make specific and writerly comments. You can do two extra reactions for extra credit.
  • ?? who will bring 15 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here. Upload workshop 2 stories to Workshop 2 Drafts here.

 

Announcements:

  • FYI Be working on a piece you might want to workshop next (this could be your pomo story, a regional story, or whatever else you want us to comment on)
  • Sign up for a consultation as needed.

 

 

Day 15 Lecture Notes

Day 16 Lecture Notes

Oct. 18

Pomo Fiction, Mixing Genres, and Exercises

Readings Due Before Class:

--Peer Stories: ??--bring comments on their stories (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here!).
--Bring Best 1999 and Wallace
--Wallace: keep reading "Westward the Course of Empire Takes its Way"
--Handout: review the Pomo Laundry List

 

Assignments Due Before Class:

  • for oct. 23 Exercise 6: The postmodern revisionist story draft (from Lance Olsen): after you've chosen a myth, a novel, a story, a piece of folklore, or some other text you have always loved, do some kind of revisionist fiction rewriting of it. What part of Oedipus Rex are you revising? Maybe he actually hears good news from his messenger! And he ends up dying of obesity and cholesterol and the boredom of his people. Read Barth's "Dunyazadiad" in Canvas Files for more ideas (or read the first number of pages--it's a retelling of 1001 nights from Sheherazade's little sister's POV). See Canvas Announcements for more detail, or click here. For more detail click here, or go to the lecture links. Try to get close to 3000 words (or at least just start the story).
  • Spencer and Jami will bring 15 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here. Upload workshop 2 stories to Workshop 2 Drafts here.
  • Sign up for a consultation. If you missed class, check Canvas Announcements for sign up times still available.

 

Announcements:

  • FYI Be working on a piece you might want to workshop next (this could be your pomo story, a regional story, or whatever else you want us to comment on)
Day 17 Lecture Notes
Oct. 23

Workshop and Revisionist Pomo Stories

Readings Due Before Class:

  • Read and write comments on Spencer and Jami's fiction drafts for today!

 

 

Assignments Due Before Class:

  • Ex.6 revisionist myth, fairy tale, history, novel, short story--choose a story or a piece of history to revise into your own original postmodern story (like Lyndon revises Lyndon Johnson's life, and like Barth revises the 1001 Nights.
  • Kenzie and Christina bring 15 drafts for workshop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day 17 Lecture Notes--Pomo and Narrative

Oct. 25

Workshop and Revisionist Pomo Stories

Readings Due Before Class:

  • Read and write comments on drafts from Kenzie and Christina! Wait--we will have to comment on Nov. 6th!

 

 

Assignments Due Before Class:

  • Justin bring 15 drafts for workshop

 

 

 

 

Oct. 30 and Nov. 1

Consultations Oct. 30 and Nov. 1 Midterm Consultations in Lee's office CB410d--no class--see Canvas Announcements for times.

  • Grade your peer's workshop comments 1 (see Canvas Assignments): Please rate each of your classroom peers' 1st half of the semester abilities to write annotations and/or summary comments, or oral comments, on your workshop days.  Rate them 1-10 with 10 being an A, and 6 being a D.
  • Check Canvas Announcements.

 

 
Nov. 6 Lee was sick  
Nov. 8

Workshop! And "Regional" Writing and "truth"

Readings:

--Read Peer stories and write comments on Justin's fiction draft for today! Bring comments from the week before for Christina, Kenzie and bring comments on their stories (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here!).
--Best 99: Kohler "Africans"--be sure you bring your book daily so we can look at regional details
--Handout in Canvas: Bass's "Ruth's Country" (a Mormon/Moab story; Go to Canvas Files to find the full story)
--Online Handouts: Houghton's "Pure" (a flash chapter from a novel; Our Lovely Deseret #9).
--Be ready to show me one strategy from the pomo readings that looks like one of the postmodern strategies from the Pomo Laundry List. And be ready to read from your pomo revisionist story (I'll pull things up on the board).

Assignment Due:

  • Sharon, Christy, Rebecca bring 15 drafts for workshopand (20 pages, double-spaced MAX). Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 2 Drafts Here.
 

Announcements:

  • FYI Be working on a piece you might want to workshop next (this could be your pomo story, a regional story, or whatever else you want us to comment on)
  • National Novel Writing Month begins!  You have one month to write an entire novel--Do it for extra credit!  For More information, go to http://www.nanowrimo.org/ 
Toni Morrison and Truth vs. truth
Nov. 13

Regional Fiction

Readings Due Before Class:

--Peer Stories: read and comment on Christy and Rebecca's fiction drafts (if you miss a class, you need to pick up manuscripts in advance outside my office CB410d or on Canvas Discussions Workshop Drafts Here!).
--Bring Best 1999 and Wallace
--Wallace: finish "Westward the Course of Empire Takes its Way"
--Handout: under Canvas Files, read the short excerpt from "The Dunyazadiade" by John Barth (read the first three pages)
--Online Handouts: Evenson's "The Prophets" (a blackly commic (?) homage to the Lafferty brothers from Our Lovely Deseret #10)
--Letters:  Lindberg, Oates, Price

 

Assignments Due Before Class:

  • Comment on two Postmodern Revisionist Stories--choose 2 peers to comment on. What can you say about their revisionist vision?  Are they playing with any other postmodern (pomo) techniques--parody? Excess? Short-Circuiting?  Who's telling the story?  Are they unreliable?  Are they neurotic or fatalistic, or do they believe in the goodness of humanity (pomos are usually fatalistic), or the evils of technology or corporations?   What kind of Freytag's Triangle or Hero's Journey are they following, or how are they undercutting this kind of structure?
  • Workshop 1 Revision: revision of first workshop story is due. Include my purple workshop comments with the revision. If you haven't done so, upload your draft to Canvas Assignments Workshop 1 Drafts Here which is where I'll put the grade.
  • ?? who will bring 15 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here. Upload workshop 2 stories to Workshop 2 Drafts here.

Announcements:

  • FYI Be working on a piece you might want to workshop next (this could be your pomo story, a regional story, or whatever else you want us to comment on)

 

Journal 4: guided journal writing to some of Mitchell's 50 character questions (I like the last 10 best); for one or more of the characters you are working with, choose any 5 of the 50 character questions, and start filling in some of their background and emotion.
Nov. 15

Regional Writing and Dialogue, and Workshopping

Readings:

--Peer stories by ?? read and commented on (close read).
--What If? Bring it
--Letters: Bring it

 

Assignment Due:

  • Exercise 7--Regional Story: start a draft of (or even finish!) a "regional" story where a certain setting (like Utah, or Phoenix, or South Africa) and the people/culture of a certain setting play a larger role; stereotypes may be played with but also deconstructed. Think about the "regional" story premesis from the readings: a story about a religious zealot getting more and more out of control? A story about a mother in Orem, Utah who has visions of Hollywood granduer? A story about a Moab ranch hand falling in love with a Mormon girl who has a fundamentalist father? (Ideas from students: A Neverending Story that a character picks up on Center Street outside ABG's?  An underground world below the University Mall?  A story about a character searching for the long lost Everett Reuss in Escalante?  A story about falling in love with Cowboys (or pseudo cowboys)?  A story about a haunted house next to the Provo River?  A story about a character who finds a human ear in the grass while walking to I Hop?  A story about dumpster diving in Orem?). Upload this to Canvas Discussions.
  • Melissa, Whitney, Travis, Myke will bring 15 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here. Upload workshop 2 stories to Workshop 2 Drafts here.
  • All late work due by 11:59 Nov. 25!

Announcements:

 

Workshop 2 Revision: ??? revisions for Lee are due. Include my purple workshop comments with the revision. If you haven't done so, upload your draft to Canvas Assignments Workshop 1 Drafts Here which is where I'll put the grade.
Nov. 20-25

Thanksgiving--no class

All late work is due Nov. 25!

 

 
Nov. 27

Workshopping

Readings:

--Peer stories: Melissa, Whitney, Travis, Myke
--Best 99
--What If pp. 73-89 on Dialogue

Assignment Due:

  • Extra Credit: Outside Reading Reaction #2: 600 writerly words about a reading, play, or performance event you've attended (not a musical; you can also find more Youtube readings as needed--see links from Outside RR 1 in Canvas Assignments; there are also readings of many of the Best 99 stories in Canvas Files Audio--we listened to some of "Mrs. Dutta" in class last time). You can also use videos in Canvas Course Media. Be sure you use concepts we've been covering in class and from readings, and of course use textual evidence to back up what your are saying. If you like, you could watch Sheila Kohler reading from Cracks part 1; part 2; part 3; her bio page. Post to Canvas extra credit.
  • Reply to 2 Ex. 7 Regional stories uploaded to Canvas (see last class period; you'll only do the people in your section). Your comments can be based on workshop craft concerns, but you can also think about postmodern strategies, or the broader audience effects of a regional story.
  • Jade, Diedra will bring 15 copies of a workshop story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here. Upload workshop 2 stories to Workshop 2 Drafts here.

 

 
Nov. 29

Workshopping

Readings:

--Peer stories: Jade, Diedra
--Letters: Staffel. Thon, Updike

Assignment Due:

  • Exercise 8 on dialogue: choose one of the dialogue exercises from What If pp. 73-89.
  • Kenechi, Justin, Kenzie will bring 15 copies of a workshop story--Kenzie has already given us her story (20 pages, double-spaced MAX)? Be sure to upload workshop 1 stories to Canvas Discussions Workshop 1 Drafts Here. Upload workshop 2 stories to Workshop 2 Drafts here.
  • You can sign up to meet with me about grades and writing (we will meet in my office, CB410d). You can also set up Canvas Chat, but see me during or after class!!!

 

What If? Revision ideas...gifts to yourself
Dec. 4

Workshopping and Consultations!!

Readings:

--Peer stories: Justin--he will leave them outside CB410d, Lee's office; Kenechi (he also has his under Canvas Discussions). Also bring stories from last week that we haven't workshopped yet (Jade, Diedra, Whitney, Travis?). If you still have McKenzie's, bring comments on it today!
--Letters: Welch, Wolff
--What If? part 10 on revision pp. 197-223

Assignment Due:

  • Exercise 9: your What If? revision journaling--scan and upload to Canvas. The Revision exercises are from 197-221 and you can choose any to help you with a story you are turning in next week. I like "Opening Up Your Story" p. 199, "Gifts to Yourself" p. 203+, and "What's At Stake?" p. 213. Gifts to Yourself gives you a way to push the patterns and symbolism of your details, to make them more "telling" as Flannery O'Connor says, more resonant. You can include a paragraph where you've highlighted key details, then show me some freewriting about the connotations and possible extensions of those details, the connections they could have to other details in the story.
  • Grade your peer's workshop comments 2 (see Canvas Assignments): Please rate each of your classroom peers on their 2nd half of the semester ability to write annotations and/or summary comments, or oral comments, on your workshop days.  Rate them 1-10 with 10 being an A, and 6 being a D.

Announcements

  • Complete on-line course evaluation in My UVU.
  • Sign up for final consultations if you want revision help.You can sign up to meet with me about grades and writing (we will meet in my office, CB410d). You can also set up Canvas Chat, but see me during or after class!!!

 

Why are you writing the story you're writing? Why do you care about your story? If you can't answer,

Gifts for Yourself from What If?

 

Dec. 6

No Class--Lee will be in her office CB410d to work and meet with students if they want...after 12 noon and until 5pm, and after 8pm until 10pm--ask for times--today is mostly filled

 



 
Dec. 8 event Friday

Journal Pub Night reading night--Touchstones, Warp n Weave at 6pm at student center Center Stage--you can take notes and write an Outside Reading Reaction about what you hear, reading styles, writing styles etc. 600 words as an assignment or as extra credit due Tonight!

 

 
Dec. 8

Reading day--no classes for all campus--Lee may have some consultations in CB410d--2:15pm-6pm or 7pm--sign up early in the week.

Assignment Due: to Canvas!

  • Extra credit outside RR's due, still 600 words, so in other words this might be ORR2 or 3 (there are readings tonight at the Journal Pub Night you could use, or find your favorite author on Youtube.com, or see my list of on-line readings in the Outside RR1 on Canvas Assignments).
  • Self-Evaluation due to Canvas Assignments: a kind of cover letter for your revision, think about your own writerly aesthetics as they have evolved during our course, and where you are as a writer and reader based on writing ability, revising ability, workshopping comments, readings and reactions completed on time, attendance, improvement, and overall commitment? Please upload your letter to Canvas Assignments.
  • Complete missing items like any reading reactions (RR4 is missing for a lot of people--get back there and finish it--it's worth a whopping 30 points which can really tank your grade if you don't finish it).
  • Complete on-line course evaluation in MyUVU.

 

 

 

Dec. 9

Sat.

Lee will have a few Canvas chat sessions after 4pm. Email me if you want to meet, and if you want me to read something in advance...  

Dec. 11

Mon.

 

Finals Week

I will be available to Meet with you in CB410d--12noon to 6pm to discuss final essays, revisions and grades... (see sign up sheet on Canvas)

Announcements:

  • Self-Evaluation was already due to Canvas Assignments Dec. 8, so be sure to get it in ASAP if you are behing: this should be a cover letter for your revision where you think about your own aesthetics as they have evolved during our course and where you are as a writer and reader based on writing ability, revising ability, workshopping comments, readings and reactions completed on time, attendance, improvement, and overall commitment? Please upload your letter to Canvas Assignments.
  • If you come to see me, bring your stories that have comments so we can discuss questions and ideas for revision!
  • Complete on-line course evaluation in UV Link.

 

 

Dec. 13

Wed.

  • Workshop 2/Story 2 Revision due by 11:59 to Canvas!
  • Be sure you send a scan or photo of my comments to you, and upload them to Canvas Assignments Workshop 2 Revision .

 

AND be sure you check your email until January or so in case you are missing something by accident like a revision or reading reaction that we didn't notice during our consultations.

 

Day 18 Lecture Notes