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This course is a fiction workshop, and its purpose is to make you a stronger and more sophisticated reader and writer of fiction. The bulk of what we read and discuss will be student work, but we’ll also devote regular attention to exemplary works of fiction (by writers past and present, famous and obscure, in a variety of styles and modes) to get a sense of how both our forebears and our contemporaries have attempted to navigate some of the same straits in which we may find ourselves today. Attention will be paid to such fundamental aspects of craft as character, setting, voice, and plot, as well as headier concerns such as theme, meaning, aesthetics, and strategies for editing and revision. Students will have multiple chances to submit their work for group critique, as well as regular individual conferences with the professor.