Section 1: Monday and Wednesday 5:00-6:15 PM

Professor: Silas Hansen
The word essay comes from the French verb “essayer”–to try. In this creative nonfiction class, we will try to understand both our own lives and the world around us through the act of writing personal essays. We will begin by making sense of our own lived experiences through personal narrative and memoir; in the second half of the semester, we will look at the larger world and study travel writing, food writing, profiles, cultural criticism, and more. Throughout the semester, we will study the craft elements that make for excellent essays (scene-writing, characterization, research, structure, language, voice, etc.), which you will practice in writing exercises and essay drafts.
Assignments will include brief reading responses/quizzes, short writing exercises, essay drafts/workshop submissions, workshop/peer review responses, and a portfolio of revised work.
Possible Texts: Tell It Slant; The Touchstone Anthology of Contemporary Creative Nonfiction; and essays published in recent issues of literary journals