Courses of Study

Creative Writing
See course descriptions for this department or program. 

In the Department of English.

Director, Professor Debra Spark
Advisory committee: Professors Jennifer Finney Boylan, Michael Burke, Peter Harris, and Debra Spark; Associate Professor Natalie Harris; Assistant Professor Adrian Blevins

Colby students may study the craft of imaginative writing in one of two ways—through a concentration within an English major or by electing a minor in creative writing if their major is a discipline other than English. English majors wishing to concentrate in creative writing should read the requirements for the concentration described separately under the heading for the English major in this catalogue.

The minor is designed to enhance existing major programs, to add structure and a sense of purpose to those students already committed to creative writing, and to encourage the consideration of serious graduate programs in writing.

Requirements for the Minor in Creative Writing

The minor consists of seven courses total: four writing workshops and three courses in literature. 

The four writing workshops should include a sequence of two workshops in fiction (English 278 and 378), poetry (English 279 and 379), or (when available) creative nonfiction (English 380 and 382); two additional creative writing courses at the 200 level or above. Students may count Beginning Playwriting (Theater and Dance 141) as one of their creative writing courses.

The three literature courses should include classes with the “L” designation at the 300 or 400 level, preferably taken in the English Department. Minors are heartily encouraged, but not required, to study modern or contemporary literature in their home genre. Thus a student of prose might enroll in Modern American Fiction (English 345) or The American Short Story (353); students of poetry should consider enrolling in Modern American Poetry (English 347) or Contemporary American Poetry (351).

Other courses of interest to prose writers might include the Modern American Novel, Victorian Literature, or African-American Literature. Poets might elect Geoffrey Chaucer, The British Romantic Period: Green Romanticism, or 17th-Century Poetry.

First priority for admission to English 278 and 279 is given to sophomores.  Admission to advanced writing workshops is by manuscript submission only.

No requirement for the minor may be taken satisfactory/unsatisfactory.

A creative writing concentration within and in addition to the English major is offered as another option in development of skills in creative writing. The requirements for the concentration are specified in the “English” section of this catalogue.