LT219-5-SP-CO:
Writing the Short Story

The details
2019/20
Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies
Colchester Campus
Spring
Undergraduate: Level 5
Current
Monday 13 January 2020
Friday 20 March 2020
15
20 August 2019

 

Requisites for this module
(none)
(none)
(none)
(none)

 

(none)

Key module for

BA W800 Creative Writing,
BA W801 Creative Writing (Including Year Abroad),
BA W803 Creative Writing (Including Placement Year),
BA W808 Creative Writing (Including Foundation Year)

Module description

Students will read a diverse selection of short stories drawn from various literary and cultural traditions, both historical and contemporary, to inspire and form the writing of their own short stories.

Aims
To increase student awareness of creative possibilities of form, story structure and style within the confines of the short story, and encourage original responses to these.

To continue the practice of giving, receiving and redrafting work in response to feedback within the workshop environment.

To increase the understanding of the history of the short story, in terms of how it can inform their own creative practice.

After successful completion of the module, students should be able to:

1. Identify the significant short story conventions of form and structure.
2. Conceive, plan and execute an original creative response to short story conventions.
3. Display self-awareness of writing technique and the process of revision and redrafting of fiction,
4. Develop the skill to give and receive feedback in a peer environment in a way that contributes positively to the subsequent development of that work.
5. Practise the habit and discipline of regular creative composition and delivery of work in the form of the short story.

Module aims

To increase student awareness of creative possibilities of form, story structure and style within the confines of the short story, and encourage original responses to these.

To continue the practice of giving, receiving and redrafting work in response to feedback within the workshop environment.

To increase the understanding of the history of the short story, in terms of how it can inform their own creative practice.

Module learning outcomes

After successful completion of the module, students should be able to:

1. Identify the significant short story conventions of form and structure.
2. Conceive, plan and execute an original creative response to short story conventions.
3. Display self-awareness of writing technique and the process of revision and redrafting of fiction,
4. Develop the skill to give and receive feedback in a peer environment in a way that contributes positively to the subsequent development of that work.
5. Practise the habit and discipline of regular creative composition and delivery of work in the form of the short story.

Module information

Course tutors will supply a reading list of essential and recommended short stories for in-class discussion. Two or three short stories a week will be selected from the following anthologies:

Essential

The World's Greatest Short Stories (Dover Editions), Edited by James Daley, 2006
The Penguin Book of the British Short Story: 1: From Daniel Defore to John Buchan, Edited by Philip Hensher
The Penguin Book of the British Short Story: 2: From PG Wodehouse to Zadie Smith, Edited by Philip Hensher.
The Best American Short Stories of the Century, Edited by John Updike, Katrina Kenison, 2000

Recommended

Hills. R. Writing in General and the Short Story in Particular, New York: Houghton Mifflin, 2000

The Paris Review Interviews
https://www.theparisreview.org/interviews

McSweeney's Internet Tendency
https://www.mcsweeneys.net/

Bloom, Harold. Short Story Writers and Short Stories. New York: Chelsea House, 2005
O'Connor, Frank. The Lonely Voice: a study of the short story. 1963

Supplementary On writing
Baxter, Charles, Burning Down the House
Gardner, John, Notes on Fiction for Young Writers

Learning and teaching methods

Weekly two-hour seminars. Seminars are typically composed of two halves; in the first half, students present their analysis of the short stories indicated in the reading list, and discuss their findings with the group. In the second half of the seminar, a selection of students will workshop the fiction submitted as homework to the group the previous week.

Bibliography

  • George R.R. Martin. (1983) Sandkings, London: Futura.
  • Carver, Raymond. (1995) Where I'm calling from: the selected stories, London: Harvill Press.
  • Helen Simpson. (2001) Hey Yeah Right Get A Life: Vintage.
  • (2015) The Penguin book of the British short story, London: Penguin Books.
  • May, Charles E. (c1994) The New short story theories, Athens: Ohio University Press.
  • Woolf, Virginia; Kemp, Sandra. (1993) Selected short stories, London: Penguin.
  • Mansfield, Katherin. (2018) The garden party & other stories, [S.l.]: PAPER + INK.
  • Joyce, James; Johnson, Jeri. (2000) Dubliners, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Chekhov, Anton Pavlovich; Bartlett, Rosamund. (2004) About love and other stories, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Hills, L. Rust. (2000) Writing in general and the short story in particular: an informal textbook, Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
  • Halpern, Daniel. (1999) The art of the story: an international anthology of contemporary short stories, New York: Viking.
  • Dick, Philip K. (2000, c1987) We can remember it for you wholesale, London: Millennium. vol. v.5
  • David Herman. (2008) The Cambridge companion to narrative, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Gebbie, Vanessa. (2013) Short Circuit, Cromer: Salt.
  • Daley, James. (2006) The world's greatest short stories, Mineola, NY: Dover Publications.
  • The Necklace - Guy de Maupassant, https://americanliterature.com/author/guy-de-maupassant/short-story/the-necklace
  • Burroway, Janet. (2015) Imaginative writing: the elements of craft, Boston: Pearson.
  • Updike, John; Kenison, Katrina. (2000) The best American short stories of the century, Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
  • Hemingway, Ernest. (1993) The first forty-nine stories, London: Arrow Books.
  • Black Box | The New Yorker, https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2012/06/04/black-box-2

The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course. The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students. Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Coursework Portfolio and commentary (5,000 words in total) 08/04/2020 95%
Practical Participation 5%

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%

Reassessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Jon Crane
LiFTS General Office – email: liftstt@essex.ac.uk Telephone 01206 872626

 

Availability
Yes
No
No

External examiner

Dr James Michael Miller
Kingston University
Senior Lecturer in English Literature and Creative Writing
Resources
Available via Moodle
Of 40 hours, 40 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).

 

Further information

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