/ Graduate Catalogue / Writing / 2013-2014

The Brief Encounter Workshop

This is a course from a previous year. View the current courses

In this class, we will focus first on close reading and then on close writing—developing small essays that encompass something very large. We will do much of our work on the micro-, as opposed to the macro-, level, distilling ideas and language into perfect sentences, one after another, until we have created tiny, beautiful works of art. We’ll study short, powerful pieces by Annie Dillard, E. B. White, Virginia Woolf, Tobias Wolff, Abigail Thoams, Joan Didion, Anne Carson, Verlyn Klinkenborg, Ian Frazier, and others. The essays will be generated through writing exercises designed with specific topics and goals in mind.