Spring 2023

E 311C - Intermediate Creative Writing: Nonfiction

Overview of Course

In her poem, “The Summer Day,” Mary Oliver provocatively asks, “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” Travel writers often take up this challenge of composing and communicating observations of life lived. Our course will explore travel as concept, event, and emerging narrative through active writing and revision sessions. We will listen, improvise, and rethink the ways that our lived experiences in each port correspond with and differ from writers who attempted to capture each place before our arrival. We will move dynamically between reading widely across published travel texts (e.g. memoirs, essays, poems, films, podcasts, and photojournalism) and the craft of writing travel, real and imagined, into the narratives of our wild and precious lives. Projects will include a travel journal, short essays, and a final portfolios of polished writing based upon your experiences on our voyage as translated in narrative form.