Creative Writing at The New School

Registration for spring continuing education courses in creative writing at The New School opens on Tuesday, December 8! Many new classes are available this spring, including multi-genre and multi-media writing courses. Here is a preview:


urban-349805_640Walking in New York: Multi-Genre, Multi-Media Writing

New York is a great walking city, and a uniquely urban form of literature has grown out of the activity of flanerie, or, aimless strolling. From the poetic reveries of James Schuyler and Frank O’Hara, to the meditations on exile of Walter Benjamin and Paul Celan, walking becomes a creative act. In this course, students plan and document a series of walks, creating their own literary and autobiographical map of New York—a personal poetics of space. We create a poetics of walking, of ethnography, and of autobiography, mapping discoveries of self and others through writing.
These voyages and readings provide the occasion to write a series of texts, documenting our walks through New York and our responses to the literature of flanerie. Students are also encouraged to explore the intersections between writing and other media/art forms, such as performance, digital media, visual art, film and sound as we document the unfolding and creation of our own New York landscapes. With Rebecca Reilly. 15 sessions, Mondays, 4:00-5:50pm. Jan. 25-May 16. More information.

Queer_Nation_Houston_x6Queer Forms: A Cross-Genre Workshop

This workshop approaches genre as a suspect category. Studying hybrid and multi-genre texts by queer authors, students look to models of creative writing that explode and exploit the conventions of established forms: biomythography, lyric essays, ecopoetics, and more. Students craft their own weekly writing assignments with an eye toward genre-bending, guided by the principle that innovative writing comes from innovative thinking. Readings include texts by Dodie Bellamy, CA Conrad, Audre Lorde, and Vivek Shraya, as well as critical responses to these authors' work. Students will generate new writing, though works in progress are welcome. This workshop is open to all students with an interest in queerness and hybridity. With Justin Sherwood. 10 sessions, Mondays, 6:00-7:50pm, Feb. 22-May 2. More information.


 man-160034_960_720Suspenseful Storytelling

Why are some memoirs and essays almost impossible to put down? Open to writers of all levels, this workshop explores ways to create suspenseful, compelling, page-turning nonfiction. We discuss aspects of writing that help hook a reader—including dialogue, character, when to reveal crucial information, and how to bring about the correct level of uncertainty in a reader’s mind. We put these elements of craft to use in our own submissions. Each student has two opportunities to workshop an essay, chapter of a memoir-in-progress, or any other type of nonfiction in a supportive, constructive atmosphere. By the end of the course, students complete a compelling piece of writing that will have readers hooked. With Jessica Sholl. 15 sessions. Tuesdays, 6:00-7:50pm, Jan. 26-May 10. More information.

Metropolitan_Museum_of_ArtOn Location: Writing at The Met and MOMA

New York City has a long tradition of artistic exchange and collaboration between writers and painters and of exchange between writing and the visual arts]. Kenneth Koch and Larry Rivers, John Ashbery and Jane Freilicher, and James Schuyler and Fairfield Porter were close friends and collaborators. Derek Walcott and e. e. cummings both painted and wrote, and photographers like Rudy Burckhardt documented friends creating art in their studios The class splits its time between The New School, where we share our writing, and the city’s two preeminent art museums, the Museum of Modern Art and The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Students meet at The New School from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., break for lunch, and reconvene in front of Moma,or on the steps of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, at 1:00 p.m. We will spend time exploring the collections and current exhibitions and writing flash fiction and “ekphrastic” poems, and other creative pieces responding to art. We will visit The Met’s European Painting Galleries, Sculpture Courts, Medieval Art and Armor Collection, and Costume Institute, as well as visiting the art galleries on all the separate floors of Moma. A final paper, containing each student's original writing during the course, will be due on the last day of class. With Star Black. 7 sessions. Fridays, 10:00am-3:00pm, Feb. 5-March 18. More information.


32424_ca_object_representations_media_4165_largeThe New School: The Pilot

In this one-of-a-kind course, writers fashion and manufacture a multi-media, multi-cultural soap operatic event. We create a fictive world, write scripts, and shoot the pilot of our show. Readings explore the political structures of the soap opera, from the epic forms of myth and religion to the bougie forms of the novel and event television. In assignments and editorial board, we'll hash out the script, the locations, the cast, the production.  Screen credits to be determined. With John Reed. 15 sessions, Fridays, 4:00-5:50pm, Jan. 29-May 13. More information.

8029002405_6a6c620d40_oWriting the Photobook

The course examines works of fiction focusing on actual social and political problems in the world today, as these problems reflect a given nation's struggle to form a democratic society to protect the rights of the individual. Relevant topics include religious fundamentalism, the rights of women, poverty, torture, and dictatorship. Readings include Nuruddin Farah's novel Gifts, Micheline Aharonian Marcom's novel The Daydreaming Boy, and works by other writers on the international scene, including J.M. Coetzee, Salman Rushdie, David Grossman, and Mohsin Hamid. With Robert Dunn. 15 sessions, Wednesdays, 6:00-7:50pm, Jan. 27-May 11. More information.




CE Spring 2016 Catalog CoverView The New School's Spring 2016 Continuing Education catalog here. Registration begins Tuesday, December 8. For questions about Creative Writing courses, call 212-229-5611, or write to Laura Cronk at

About The Author

Founded in Greenwich Village in 1931, Creative Writing at The New School continues to promote, engender, and shape innovative literature.