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ENGL 292 – Techniques of Nonfiction

In this course, we will learn how to craft and revise short pieces of nonfiction writing that draw on our own life experiences and our observations of the world around us. To achieve this goal, we will constantly be creating and editing our own prose, and we will perform various writing exercises. Moreover, we will read our colleagues’ nonfiction prose and offer them thoughtful, generous feedback. Finally, we will read various published nonfiction essays–memoirs, musings, reviews, and reportage–and we will analyze these pieces in order to understand how veteran authors narrate “real-life” stories in a way that is engaging, beautiful, and meaningful. Upon completing this course, you will have a deeper knowledge of how to construct resonant nonfiction narratives, and a better understanding of various literary concepts, including pacing, arc, imagery, place, and character. You will have learned how to harvest experiences and observations from your own life in order tell a story that reveals subtle but acute information about the larger world.

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