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Creative Writing: The Craft of Style

Creative Writing: The Craft of Style

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Creative Writing: The Craft of Style

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About this Course

Your style is as unique and distinctive as your face, your voice, except that you can choose it, you can can work on it, enhance it. In this course we will introduce aspiring writers to the art of putting pressure on written language. We will study the use of metaphor and imagery, and demonstrate how clarity, grace, and inventiveness in word choice are imperative to a story’s success. Writers will emerge with the revision skills essential to all writers of good stories and good prose.


Creative Writing: The Craft of Style is course 4 of 5 in the Creative Writing Specialization.

This Specialization covers elements of three major creative writing genres: short story, narrative essay, and memoir. You will master the techniques that good writers use to compose a bracing story, populated with memorable characters in an interesting setting, written in a fresh descriptive style. You will analyze and constructively evaluate peer writing. In the Capstone, you will draft, rewrite, and complete a substantial original story in the genre of your choosing. Our courses are designed for anyone from the aspiring short story writer to established novelist. Whether you have a finished novel sitting on your desk calling for a fresh look or have had the germ of an idea for a decade, this Specialization gives you tools to achieve your goal. Through 4 courses focused on a key aspect of writing, and taken in any order you choose, you will develop a stronger ability to not only refine your writing, but critique writing in general and find inspiration in the works you are already reading. Each course is taught by an esteemed author and professor. Collectively, they have published over a dozen novels and won numerous awards, including features in such publications as The New York Times, The Washington Post, and O: The Oprah Magazine. Thanks to our sponsors, upon completion of their first assignment, learners in each course will receive up to an 80% discount from Write-Bros and a 30% discount off their first purchase from Scrivener to use on their writing software.


Week 1

Meaning, Sense, and Clarity

  1. Introductions
  2. The Pyramid of Language
  3. Scatteration
  4. Shop Talk with Amity Gaige
  5. Excellent Word Choice at Work
  6. Assignment: Choose Your Words: Sensous Description
  1. Assignment: Sensuous Description
Week 2

Writing with Nouns and Verbs

  1. Introduction to Writing with Nouns and Verbs
  2. Nouns and Verbs at Work
  3. Close Reading of "Lord of Misrule"
  4. Visiting Writer: Jaimy Gordon
  5. Assignment: Short-Short Narrative
  1. Assignment: Very Short Narrative
Week 3


  1. Introduction to Economy
  2. Surgery
  3. Shop Talk with Brando Skyhorse
  4. Visiting Writer: Sophie McManus
  5. Assignment: Cut It Out
  1. Assignment: Cut It Out
Week 4

"No Ideas But in Things"

  1. Recap and Introduction
  2. Respecting the Reader's Mind
  3. Shop Talk with Amy Bloom
  4. The Reader-Writer Arc
  5. Song of Solomon
  6. Gardner Exercise

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Video Quality

4 weeks
2-4 hours/week