Upcoming
Courses

Upcoming
Courses

Image of books stacked on top of one another

Spring 2022 Courses

Registration for core NEOMFA courses (workshops, craft and theory courses, MFA literature courses, and the internship) begins 12 am, October 1. See details on our registration page (here).

Consult each university's course listings and schedule to find and register for literature and elective courses. We will publish recommended courses here as we receive them.

Note: As of now, all CSU and YSU classes are scheduled to run remotely during Spring 2022. KSU and U of A courses will run in-person; all NEOMFA students attending classes on those campuses will need to follow the vaccination and testing requirements of each university.

 

#fiction

FICTION

Book 2

Instructor: Christopher Barzak
Campus: Youngstown State University
Day & Time: Thursdays 5:10-7:50 PM
Delivery Method: online
Course Number: ENG 6967

In this class we will write a large portion of a book of fiction. Form is open, so you can feel free to write the opening of a novel, novel-in-stories, or short story collection. Ideally you’ll use this class to work toward creating a large portion of your graduate thesis, though you can also use the course to simply experiment with an idea you haven’t necessarily committed to as well. Students who took Book 1 in the Fall can continue to work on the book they began then, and new students to Book 2 who did not take Book 1 can begin work on a book in this course. We will write and critique fiction written by members of the class. The fiction should be one long chunk of either an intended novel, novel-in-stories, or short story collection. Emphasis will be placed on analyzing and producing the components and operations of novel openings, as well as structuring and arranging various kinds of short story collections. This class will be delivered online live. 

Contact cmbarzak@ysu.edu to register

Craft & Theory of Fiction

Instructor: Laura Maylene Walter
Campus: Kent State University
Day & Time:  TK
Delivery Method: in-person
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Fiction Workshop

Instructor: Imad Rahman
Campus: Cleveland State University
Day & Time: Wednesdays 6:00-8:50 PM
Delivery Method: online
Course Number: ENG 610

This fiction-writing workshop is an open, inclusive space designed to both help you generate material through a series of exercises and prompts and to provide a safe and vibrant creative atmosphere for the work you turn in to be rigorously workshopped. The operating principle here is for us to find that sweet spot, that breakthrough moment that often comes while you’re in the middle of a story or a chapter that will surprise you, and by extension, us, your readers. I want to encourage you to take risks, to go beyond your comfort zone, to understand that success inevitably takes numerous detours through failure (as Saumel Beckett said, Fail Better). Our guides for this journey will be three novels (Colson Whitehead's Harlem Shuffle, Alexandra Kleeman's Something New Under The Sun & Marlowe Granados' Happy Hour) & two short story collections (Mariana Enriquez's The Dangers Of Smoking In Bed & Simon Rich's New Teeth).

Contact m.i.rahman@csuohio.edu to register

#nonfiction

CREATIVE NONFICTION

Creative Nonfiction Workshop

Instructor: David Giffels
Campus: University of Akron
Day & Time: Thursdays 5:20-7:50 PM
Delivery Method: in-person
Course Number: ENG 3300: 689-[section number TK]

In this MFA creative nonfiction writing workshop, students will propose a semester-long writing project tuned toward their own literary style, goals and writing background. Once the proposals are discussed and approved, each student will submit two to three pieces of original work to be read and discussed by the workshop participants. Individual readings will also be assigned, tailored to each writer’s aesthetic and goals. Open only to students in the NEOMFA program in creative writing.

Contact dg36@uakron.edu to register

Craft & Theory of Creative Nonfiction: Illness Narratives

Instructor: Hilary Plum
Campus: Cleveland State University
Day & Time: Tuesdays 6:00-8:50 PM
Delivery Method: online
Course Number: ENG 615

This craft and theory seminar will study the challenges and possibilities that illness presents to narrative forms. How can writing give form to an ethics of healing? How does illness alter our work and our aims as writers and readers? The covid-19 pandemic will be part of our course, as will other eras, theories, and occasions of writing illness, disability, and mortality. Our consideration of illness will include both intensities of personal experience and structures of public policy and the rhetoric of disease—both the body and the body politic, both the person who is ill and the forces that shape, name, treat, exclude, and exploit her experience. How does illness change the conceptions and practices of the narrating self? How may literature represent the time and suffering of illness? In what ways do the experiences and meanings and burdens of illness “belong” to the individual vs. the collective? We will explore the work of theorists, essayists, journalists, and documentary filmmakers, and we’ll create essay proposals and projects according to our own interests. Readings may include work by Arthur Frank, Edward Said, Jean-Luc Nancy, Audre Lorde, Svetlana Alexievich, Susan Sontag, Claudia Rankine, Eula Biss, Caren Beilin, Roy Scranton, and others.

Contact: h.plum@csuohio.edu to register

#poetry

POETRY

Poetry Workshop

Instructor: Phil Brady
Campus: Youngstown State University
Day & Time: Wednesdays (Time TK)
Delivery Method: online
Course Number: TK

This is a student-centered class; the most important text is your own work. We will meet virtually on Zoom. We will consider poetry as “an aesthetic experience of language” avoiding limiting definitions and rigid practices; at the same time we will focus on poetry as a formal art, and we will work in a varied of traditional and experimental modes. The class will frame conversations about student poems in terms of each poem’s arc from inception through completion. Where does the poem come from? Where is it going? How does it relate to other poems, both by the author and by other poets? In addition to form, we will engage issues of idiom, identity, and tradition, and share ways that poems come together to compose a body of work. We’ll also explore the mysterious and potent connection between sound and meaning, delving into poetry’s pre-literary source as utterance. We’ll invite and encourage one another to consider poetry as a life-sustaining and life-examining art.

Contact psbrady@ysu.edu to register

Craft & Theory of Poetry: Lab Experiments With Language: Writing, Science, and the Imagination

Instructor: Catherine Wing
Campus: Kent State University
Day & Time: Tuesdays 4:25-7:05 PM
Delivery Method: in-person
Course Number: ENG 66895

Using the incomparable Lynda Barry as our guide this class will investigate the imagination as it moves, plays, and operates in the realms of writing and science. The traditional divide between the Arts and Sciences is long out of date (beauty vs. truth, fiction vs. fact, emotion vs. reason) and due for a reboot. Our task will be to think about how these categories might be more alike than different, to cross-pollinate the ideas and metaphors of distinct disciplines through language, to create new perspectives on the world and to communicate those perspectives in writing. We’ll be hearing from a variety of scientists across the disciplines (Anthropology, Biology, Ecology, and Philosophy just to name a few) and responding to their research with our own creative work. Writing will be constant and experimentation expected. Ruthless curiosity and rigorous enthusiasm shall be our calling cards. This class is not for the faint of heart, the short of sight, or the narrow of mind, but if you’re an explorer ready for some rather bold going, then let’s forge on.

Contact cwing1@kent.edu to register

#playwriting

PLAYWRITING

Playwriting Workshop

Instructor: Michael Geither
Campus: Cleveland State University
Day & Time: Mondays, 6:00 PM-8:50 PM
Delivery Method: online
Course Number: ENG 612

This is an open workshop designed for playwrights and non-playwrights. We’ll spend the early portion of class generating work in and out of class and reading contemporary plays from Alashea Harris, Daaimah Mubashshir, Will Arberry, Sheila Callaghan, Will Eno, Jennifer Haley, Gina Gionfrido and Richard Nelson. As class progresses we’ll workshop our developing plays through cold readings.

Contact m.geither@csuohio.edu to register

#literature

LITERATURE

MFA Literature: Theory & Practice of Modern Poetry

Instructor: Mary Biddinger
Campus: University of Akron
Day & Time:  Mondays, 5:20 PM-7:50 PM
Delivery Method: in-person
Course Number: 3300:689

What can poems from the past teach us about risks poets are taking today? In this literature seminar we will cross between decades, examining poetry collections from yesteryear alongside new books (for example, we’ll talk about Satan Says by Sharon Olds, and frank: sonnets by Diane Seuss). The class will include both critical and creative assignments responding to the books, and conversations about what we can learn from them as writers. All NEOMFA students are welcome, regardless of genre and previous experience with reading or writing poetry. Content note: readings may include adult themes, including references to sex, drugs, violence, mortality, mental illness, etc.

Contact dg36@uakron.edu to register.

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#electives

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#internship

INTERNSHIP

NEOMFA Internship: Writer in the Community

Instructor: David Giffels
Campus: University of Akron
Day & Time:  Saturdays 10:45 AM to 1:15 PM
Delivery Method: in-person
Course Number: 3300: 689-[section number TK]

This course fulfills the NEOMFA internship requirement and will prepare students to apply their knowledge of creative writing by participating in a community-based teaching residency. In the internship seminar, writers will develop practical skills and knowledge to prepare for professional life beyond the MFA experience. Students will complete 120 hours of work in a variety of pursuits, including teaching, publishing, copywriting, journalism, arts nonprofit work, and others. These hours can be completed prior to or concurrent with the seminar, but must be complete by the end of the semester. The seminars will meet once a month, with instruction and exercises focused on building career skills and a portfolio of materials.

Contact dg36@uakron.edu to register

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English Department
Cleveland State University
2121 Euclid Ave., RT 1815
Cleveland, Ohio  44115

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