English 143A

Short Fiction

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
1 Spring 2022 Abrams, Melanie
TTh 11-12:30 Wheeler 301


The aim of this course is to explore the genre of short fiction—to discuss the elements that make up the short story, to talk critically about short stories, and to become comfortable and confident with the writing of them.  Students will write two short stories, a number of shorter exercises, weekly critiques of their peers’ work, and be required to attend and review two fiction readings.  The course will be organized as a workshop and attendance is mandatory. All student stories will be edited and critiqued by the instructor and by other students in the class.

Course packet available via bCourses and at Instant Copying and Laser Printing, 2138 University Ave (between Shattuck Ave. & Walnut St.), (510) 704-9700

Writing samples should be 8-15 pages of fiction (a complete short story, a few short shorts, a section of a novel, etc.). Since this is a class that focuses on psychological realism, please avoid genre fiction for your sample (no sci fi, fantasy, fan fic, etc.). No need to strive for perfection here (this class focuses on learning the craft of fiction, so I expect you have much to learn!), but strong sentences, an understanding that fiction revolves around conflict, and three-dimensional characters are encouraged.

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