The Zell Visiting Writers Series brings some of the most exciting writers working today to the University of Michigan. In this introductory creative writing course students will use the ZVWS as a lens through which to view the landscape of contemporary literature, considering the themes, forms, and styles that define our moment in literary history as they read samples of visiting writers’ work and attend the ZVWS readings.
Good writing finds the universal in the particular, the timeless in the present — even when that present is busy with Grand Theft Auto, vampires, and alligator theme parks. Over the course of the term, students will tease out the concerns, challenges, and approaches shared by the semester’s line-up of visiting writers, and will learn how poems, stories, and essays can illuminate their own experiences. Assignments will include research and presentation on a visiting writer, an interview with a writer of interest, and short imitations, creative responses, and reviews in response to selected readings. The course will culminate with a final portfolio inspired by the ZVWS.
Class meetings will be devoted to
discussions of reading and listening assignments
- sharing and critiquing imitations, creative responses, and reviews
- presentations on visiting writers and conversations with guest