English Department Launches New Creative Writing Minor

Drashhti Bilimoria, Contributing Writer

This semester, the English Department has launched a new Creative Writing Minor in line with Clark’s motto to “Challenge Convention. Change Our World.” The new minor gives both English majors and students majoring in other fields a chance to express themselves through the creative process.

Courses in the minor are structured so that students can study literary works from a writer’s point of view, in order to apply what they learn to their own writing. In addition, the minor provides students with interactive workshops, so students can receive feedback that will help them develop and refine their work.

The minor offers students courses in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction, and is entirely taught by writers whose work has been published. For example, Professor Jessica Bane Robert has had her poems and essays published in several journals, and has won prizes such as the Rita Dove International Poetry Prize and the “Atlanta Review’s” International Merit Award. Professor Morris Collins, who teaches Writing the Novel I and II, has published fiction and poetry, some of which appears in “Gulf Coast,” “Pleiades,” “Michigan Quarterly Review,” and “The Chattahoochee Review,” along with a novel which will be reissued in a second edition later this year.

The minor originated from the journalism concentration already established on campus. However, the concentration was limited only to those who were English majors. Those majoring in other subjects were allowed to take the classes, but would not receive a formal distinction on their diplomas or transcripts for it. However, English majors were not the only students taking these courses. Consequently, the English Department decided to provide a program which all Clark students, regardless of major, could join and receive credit for on their transcripts and diplomas.

The Creative Writing Minor requires a total of six courses: one 100-level English Literature course (non-FYI), two introductory creative writing courses, one two-hundred level English literature course, one advanced creative writing course, and a Creative Writing Capstone.