Oct. 25

Class Plans:

Journal: What are the conventions of cnf and fiction? Break your analysis into at least 3-4 subgenres. What are some of the conventions of flash fiction, for example? What did we learn about flash fiction and characters? What about the lyric essay or the traditional personal essay? Make lists or write a short response detailing the conventions of a few of your favorite cnf and fiction subgenres. (5 mins)

i. Exit Slips:

  • Questions about Fiction:
    • “I have trouble expanding my fiction piece without losing the story or making it boring.”
    • “What is ‘not enough’ to call a fiction piece? I feel like sometimes, without realizing it, I write the bare minimum.”
    • “I am interested in knowing how famous the authors we studied really are.”
    • “Is it possible for fiction to be about your experience in a way that it’s still a part of the fiction genre?”
  • Questions about Poetry:
    • “What kind of poetry are we going to look at? What kind of poetry do you prefer/ like most?”
    • “Is there a specific genre of poetry we have to write for our portfolio? Is there a length limit/ requirement?”
    • “…How can I make myself comfortable with my poetry writing?”
    • “What qualifies for a piece of poetry to be considered poetry?” “What makes a good poem?”
    • “I’m not into the whole rhyming thing. It feels very superficial and I hope I don’t have to do it.”
    • “Are we going to write Sonnets?”
    • “I want to be able to write more vivid, detailed, cinematic poetry rather than telling direct emotions. I’d like to learn how to do that.”
    • Does poetry have to be complex and have ideas that are implicitly expressed? Can it just be straightforward?”
  • Final Reading Progress
    • “[My group hasn’t] made much other progress besides the one time we met in class and discussed it altogether.”
    • “No. No idea, no progress. The entire concept is daunting.”
    • “Final Reading progress has not been made at least venue wise. We haven’t talked since the meeting.”
    • “No idea, would like to help with the Final Reading please.”
    • Take away – speak with your groups before we meet next, so you can have something to report on when I give you class time. After this, you will probably have 15-20 minutes only when we meet to discuss the Reading. Much of the planning will have to take place outside of class. 

I. Poetry Intro – what carries over? Let’s look at the Journal for today.

II. Addressing Old Ideas

III. Billy Collins Author Presentation

IV. Discuss Poems/ Craft

V. How We Read/ Using Media

VI. Final Reading Planning


Homework: Read “The Block Method of Unblocking Writer’s Block,” by Maria Gillan (handout), “Bag of Mice,” by Nick Flynn (handout), and “Nude Interrogation” and “Facing It,” by Yusef Komunyakaa (Burroway). Take up Gillan’s challenge to write whatever comes to mind from the following prompts for 20 minutes (see below or create your own). You can turn in the whole freewrite, or you may choose to turn in a revision, a summary of the process, another type of reflection, or a resulting poem or other creative work.

  • I’m always afraid of _______ showing up at my doorstep.
  • Growing up in my street, in my town, meant…
  • My mother’s stories…
  • What I told the cops/ what really happened…

(From Writing Poetry to Save Your Life, Maria Gillan)