Courses: Fall 2014


CWL 500.S01 Introduction to Graduate Writing, Robert Reeves & Carla Caglioti,

Wednesdays, 5:20-8:10 (Class #86962). A seminar that introduces students to one another, the faculty, the program in Creative Writing and Literature, and to issues in contemporary writing. Offered in conjunction with the "Writers Speak" lecture series. Students will attend the regular series of readings sponsored by the Writing program and meet at weekly intervals under the direction of a faculty advisor to discuss and write about topics raised in the lecture series, as well as issues generated from seminar discussions and assigned readings. 

Please note: CWL 500 is a required course that should be taken in the first semester.



CWL 510.S01 Forms of Fiction: Investigating the Short Story, Susan Merrell.

Tuesdays, 5:20-8:10 (Class #86961). The class will examine the short story from structural, historical and psychological angles. Reading widely across the genre while producing their own stories, students will develop a conscious set of rules for story craftsmanship.


CWL 510.S01 Forms of Fiction: Fiction, Fact and the Heart of the Story, Lou Ann Walker.

Thursdays, 5:20-8:10 (Class #95063) When should a story be told in memoir form? As a short story? Do the series of events deserve to be a novel? During this course we will look at the ways in which other writers have told the same story via nonfiction and fiction. Which approach works better for which events? We’ll be discussing structure, style and substance as students attack their stories from a number of different points of entry.  Two evening sessions may be replaced with a meeting on Saturday 11/8.


CWL 520.S01 Forms of Poetry: Powers of Poetry, Julie Sheehan.

Wednesdays, 2:20-5:10 (Class # 86963) Workshop focused on the seven great powers of poetry: image, particularity, wildness, juxtaposition/parataxis, repetition, sound, and form. Alongside the participants’ own work, written from weekly prompts, a course reader will supply examples drawn from contemporary poetry, with occasional examples from earlier in the tradition. Participants will comment on each other's work and on the readings. By semester's end, participants will have seven polished, revised poems and a working knowledge of the tools most often wielded by contemporary practitioners. This is an excellent workshop both for poets seeking to hone their craft through revision and for writers in other genres who are curious to explore the power of poetry.


CWL 565.S01 Special Topics in Writing: Imagining What You Know, Roger Rosenblatt.

Mondays, 2:20-5:10 (Class #86964) A workshop in the uses of the imagination in different forms of writing. Students will produce both comic and serious pieces, including satires, parodies, fantasies, fables, essays and stories.


CWL 565.S02 Special Topics in Writing: What We Write About When We Write About Love, Roger Rosenblatt.

Tuesdays, 2:20-5:10 (Class #94916) On writing about various kinds of love -- romantic love, love of family, friends, love in courtship, in marriage, love of home, of country, of work, of art, beauty, God,  of nature, of life itself. The delirium, confusion, ecstasy, fury, and mystery of the subject. We will write love poems, love songs, the dialogue of lovers, definitive essays, and more. Put a little love in your writing. If the course runs as passionately as planned, we all should wind up hating one another.


CWL 570 Advanced Writing Workshop: Shaping the Manuscript, Neal Gabler.

Mondays, 5:20-8:10 (Class #80074) The focus is on work in progress and the development of an existing manuscript, be it a memoir, novel, collection of essays, YA novel, or short story collection. The workshop is open to students who are pursuing a book-length project and who want to be exposed to the work of others in varying genres. It is strongly recommended for students preparing for the thesis.


CWL 580.S01 Practicum in Arts Admin, Christian McLean.

Days and Times TBA (Class #87361) The essentials of arts administration, to include assisting in the coordination of reading and lecture series, planning and administering conferences, or other writing and arts administration activities. Permission of instructor and completion of at least 6 program credits required.


CWL 581.S01 Practicum in Teaching Writing, Julie Sheehan.

Wednesdays, 11:20-2:10 (Class #94917) This course provides hands-on experience and instruction in the basics of writing pedagogy, including designing writing assignments, sequencing assignments, motivating writing, writing skill development and evaluating writing. Students will also be given a preliminary overview of the major theories driving composition pedagogy. Permission of instructor and completion of at least 6 program credits required.

All Southampton classes are held in Chancellors Hall

Thesis - CWL 599.V01
Must have thesis planning form on file and approval of thesis advisor to register.   





Stony Brook Manhattan
101-113 East 27th St. (midway between Park Avenue South and Lexington), 3rd Floor


CWL 510.S60 Forms of Fiction: Novel, Susan Minot.

Wednesdays, 5:20-8:10 (Class #87628).One characteristic of the novel is that casts a wide net in terms of form and its definition. In the course we will read a selection of novels with an eye to examining its aspects both classic and innovative. The primary focus in class will be on student work: either at the beginning of a novel or with work already in progress.  In examining sections we look at tone and building blocks of what proposes to be a larger work. 


CWL 540.S60 Forms of Creative Nonfiction: Memoir, Melissa Bank.

Thursdays, 5:20-8:10 (Class #87627). In this workshop on the memoir, we will be figuring out how you can make your autobiographical stories as powerful as they can be, through discussing each other's work and looking at the masters of the genre.


CWL 530.S60 Forms of Scriptwriting: Find Your Story, Write Your Script, Annette Handley Chandler.

Mondays, 5:20-8:10P (Class Nbr: #87319). Understand the craft of screenwriting through the deconstruction and examination of screenplays and films. This weekly seminar will offer the basics of screenwriting craft including the elements of drama: conflict, story structure, scene construction/juxtaposition, character development and arc and dialogue. In addition to reading screenplays and viewing films and clips, it will include an intensive, interactive workshop for the development of individual scripts. Students must complete a first act and a comprehensive outline. Those who prefer can complete a full length script. Available via Skype.


CWL 565.S60 Special Topics in Writing: Writing from New York’s Street Art, Star Black.

Eight Saturdays, 10:00A - 4:00P (with break for lunch): 8/30, 9/7, 9/13, 9/20, 9/27, 10/4, 10/11, 11/1 (Class #88809). Street Art, as well as Hip-Hop, originated in The Bronx and became a global influence, including having an essential role in the fall of the Berlin Wall. It continues to mirror the population’s direct needs and opinions, and in New York City, there are as many opinions as there are New Yorkers. This course sets out to visit Street Art’s visual neighborhoods—Harlem and The Studio Museum of Harlem, the East Village, the Lower East Side, Williamsburg, Bushwick, and gallery walls in Chelsea. Students will carry cell-phone cameras and document what’s new, and then write poems, prose poems, or flash fiction inspired by the photos taken during class excursions. Students will create a final project containing both their photographs and original writing. The class will convene at SBM to share original work as it progresses. Students will need to plan a “coffee shop budget” for pauses during class excursions.








CWL 202D-S04  Introduction to Creative Writing: Mary Ellen Walsh & Team

            Wednesdays, 5:20P - 8:10P (Class #94841)

Creative writing workshop in multiple genres, from fiction to poetry to scriptwriting, intended to introduce students to the basic tools and terminology of the fine art of creative writing. Participants also read contemporary works, give a public reading, and attend Writers Speak, the Wednesday reading series. This course, offered on the Southampton campus, is required for the minor in creative writing. Prerequisite: None

The free SBU shuttle runs regularly to and from the Student Activities Center at SBU to Chancellors Hall on Southampton campus, and is revised each semester to fit with the courses being offered at Southampton. Visit for the schedule.




CWL190-B Introduction to Contemporary Literature

S01 Mon/Fri, 1:00-2:20P (Class #92528), Chris Byrd, SocBehav Sci N115

S02 Tues/Thur, 10:00A-11:20A (Class #94835), Marc Perrin, Hum 3015

Seminar surveying recent works in a genre or topic, to introduce students to poetry, creative nonfiction, fiction or a combination of selections focusing on a particular theme. Participants will develop skills of interpretation and analysis through reading and writing about contemporary literature.  Required for the minor.

Prerequisite: Completion of DEC A


CWL 202-D (ARTS) Introduction to Creative Writing:

S01 Mon/Wed, 8:30-9:50A (Class #92542), Emily Gilbert, SocBehav Sci N1115

S02 Tues/Thur, 11:30A-12:50P (Class #94836), Whitney Gaines, Hum 3016

S03 Tues/Thur, 1:00-2:20P (Class #94837), Emmett Haq, Hum 3015

Creative writing workshop in multiple genres, from fiction to poetry to scriptwriting, intended to introduce students to the basic tools and terminology of the fine art of creative writing. Participants also read contemporary works, give a public reading, and attend a reading series. This course, offered on both Southampton and main campus, is required for the minor in creative writing.Prerequisite: None


CWL 305G-S01 Forms of Fiction

S01 Tues/Thur, 11:30A-12:50P (Class # 94838), Emmett Haq, Hum 3015

Study of the genre through readings, discussion and regular submission of original work. Course explores methods for expressing the human condition made available through fiction, with examples from the tradition that illustrate point of view, character development, dialogue, plot, setting, theme, motif, and other elements. Areas of study include Short Story, Novella, The Popular Novel, Graphic Novels and Writing Funny.

Prerequisite: CWL 202-D


CWL 310G-S01 Forms of Poetry, Julianne Jones, SocBehav Sci N1111

S01 Mon/Wed, 8:30-9:50A (Class # 94840

Study of the genre through readings, discussion and regular submission of original work. Course explores methods for expressing the human condition made available through poetry, with examples from the tradition of such tools as metaphor and image, sound, line, form, and juxtaposition. Areas of study include Powers of Poetry, Bright Containers: Form & Meter, and Methods & Madness, a study of the philosophical vs. visionary strains in poetry. Course may be repeated as the topic changes..

Prerequisite: CWL 202-D