Creative Writing

ENG 313 Written on the Body: Poetry & Creative Non-Fiction

The frame of our creative writing workshop is the body. How would you write the story of your body and its lived experiences? How do you express the way love, anger, trauma, and justice is written on the body? What are some ways to re-member and honor our bodies through poetry and creative nonfiction?

Whether you are a beginning or practiced writer, this course will allow you to develop your creative writing skills, explore your voice, and participate in a creative community. In the first half of the semester, we will learn the basic mechanics and techniques of poetry. In the second half of the semester, we will approach the art of creative nonfiction. We will examine works for their craft and technique and experiment with our own writing exercises.

It is crucial to note that while the writing process is vulnerable, it does not have to be alienating or destructive. Throughout the semester, we will build a learning community that is supportive and thoughtful. As the writing workshop is central to our course, students will participate in at least two large workshops, with the possibility of two smaller roundtables.


Course Texts (will be available at UH Bookstore)

  • Leah Lakshmi-Piepzna, Body Map
  • Monica Ong, Silent Anatomies
  • Lydia Yuknavitch, The Chronology of Water


Required Course Materials

  • Internet Access: In addition to the three texts available at UH Bookstore, other readings and related media will be made available on Laulima. Course texts for creative nonfiction as well as copies of the syllabus, assignment sheets, and other relevant links will be available online through Laulima
  • Dedicated course notebook and pen: Your notebook will be used for class notes and in-class writing exercises and may also record ideas, overheard conversations, quotes, and observations. Be sure to organize your notebook in a way that suits how you think and write.
  • Research folder: This folder will hold any articles, photographs, notes, etc. that may enrich a future piece
  • Printed copies of workshop pieces for peers and me