Fall 2007
Fully Enrolled

HUMS 618
The Big Truth in Short Fiction: A Writing Workshop

Basch,Rachel N.

09/11/2007 - 12/11/2007
Tuesday 06:00 PM - 09:00 PM

Downey 100

Picasso stated that "art is a lie that makes us realize truth." During the course of the semester, we will explore this idea as both writers and readers of fiction. The course is designed to lead students to their own myriad sources for stories. Our chief focus in reading will be to read as writers, approaching stories as apprentice craftsmen.

We will read short fiction by contemporary authors such as Frederick Busch, Raymond Carver, Michael Chabon, Michael Cunningham, Charles D'Ambrosio, Jr., E.L. Doctorow, Edward P. Jones, Jhumpa Lahiri, Susan Minot, Alice Munro, Edna O'Brien and John Updike, among others.

Weekly writing exercises (1-2 pages) will be assigned to help students tap the wellsprings of their own material as well as to examine certain fictional techniques. In addition, each student will be responsible for writing two short stories. These stories will be discussed in a workshop format. The emphasis will be on process; students will be expected to provide oral and editorial comment on each manuscript presented.

Enrollment is limited to 14 students.

A syllabus for this course is available at:

Rachel Basch (B.A. Wesleyan University; M.A. New York University) is the author of two novels. The Passion of Reverend Nash (W.W. Norton) was named one of the five best novels of 2003 by The Christian Science Monitor. Degrees of Love (W.W. Norton, Harper Paperbacks) was translated into Dutch and German and was a selection of The Hartford Courant's Book Club. Basch's non-fiction has appeared in Parenting and on The Huffington Post, and she has reviewed books for The Washington Post Book World. Basch was a 2011 MacDowell Colony Fellow. She recently received the William Van Wert fiction prize for an excerpt from her new novel, The Listener. She currently teaches in Fairfield University's MFA program.


Consent of Instructor Required: No

Format: Seminar

Level: GLSP Credits: 3 Enrollment Limit: 14

Texts to purchase for this course:
Janet Burroway, WRITING FICTION: A GUIDE TO NARRATIVE CRAFT, 6th edition (Longman), Paperback


PLEASE NOTE: A required course packet will be available for purchase at PIP Printing, 179 Main Street, Middletown, (860) 344-9001.

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Contact glsinquire@wesleyan.edu to submit comments or suggestions. 
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