Disagreement is one of the greatest things about being a person who interests themselves in poetry. I love the nit-picky, technical, sometimes telling, and often illuminating conversations that sometimes emerge in workshop. These conversations force everyone to reveal exactly what is important to them, and what kind of poet they want to become. I begin [...]
Poetry & Fiction
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Piano, Spoken Word, Electronics November 3
& John Woodward
Richard McCannFiction, January 30
Poetry, April 24
& Brenda Hillman
The Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing is for students with advanced abilities in the writing of fiction and poetry. The nationally ranked program offers a balance of intimate and intensive writing workshops with courses in literature, form and technique, and related electives. CSU also offers a Master of English in Creative Nonfiction, and our MFA students regularly enroll in Creative Nonfiction Courses. Course work culminates in a thesis—a collection of poetry, short stories or a novel—and the completion of a comprehensive Portfolio.
Applicants to the program should request application information from our Graduate Programs Assistant; contact information is available on the M.F.A. application page. Though GPA is considered, we pay the closest attention to your writing sample: 12-20 pages of poems for poets, or two short stories or a chapter or two of a novel in-progress for fiction writers. For full consideration for a Graduate Teaching Assistantship, and for any University fellowships, we must receive all of your application documents by January 1st.
Teaching Assistantships are available on a competitive basis, as are assistantships for the position of Administrative Assistant to the Director of Creative Writing. Students with Teaching Assistantships or Colorado Fellowships usually complete the M.F.A. in three years; those who don't need financial aid can finish in two.
If you're applying for a graduate teaching assistantship (GTA), make sure to provide a written statement that speaks to your qualifications and enthusiasm for college teaching. Remember, most GTAs will be teaching freshman composition. In your application, emphasize anything that speaks to your formal teaching experience (paid or volunteer), such as tutoring, writing center counseling, or even coaching or outdoor recreation. In addition, remind those who are writing your letters of recommendation to speak to your potential for college teaching.
We offer a variety of for-credit internships (some paid) in such areas as college teaching, public education, arts administration in literature, and literary editing (including the Center for Literary Publishing, the Colorado Review, and the Freestone, the Department's alumni magazine. A paid internship as editor of Garden Level, a literary magazine staffed by CSU undergraduates, is also available.
M.F.A. candidates can also take a course in Teaching College Creative Writing, which allows them to teach Introduction to Creative Writing.
- Completion of forty-eight semester credits including twelve credits of thesis work
- Completion of the following required core courses:
- E513 Form & Technique in Modern Literature: Fiction or Poetry (3 credits)
- E640 Graduate Writing Workshop: Fiction or Poetry (12 credits)
- One course (300-level or above) outside the English Department (unless your bachelor's degree was not in English—3 credits)
- E699 Thesis (12 credits)
- Pre-20th Century E500+ literature course (3 credits)
- For a brief overview of all major requirements, see M.F.A. Program Requirements
- Completion of portfolio
- For additional details, see:
“If there's a book that you want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it.”
~ Toni Morrison
Study WithDan Beachy-Quick Leslee Becker John Calderazzo SueEllen Campbell Matthew Cooperman Judy Doenges Camille Dungy Stephanie G'Schwind EJ Levy Todd Mitchell Steven Schwartz Sasha Steensen
It wasn’t so long ago—about two years and some change—that I sat down in a room full of people I didn’t know. I knew exactly no one in that classroom. It was the MFA orientation, and I’ll be honest, I was intimidated. I had no idea why I was in that room—except maybe a quiet, [...]
This week, in the midst of grading papers for my own classes, I’ve been invited to guest teach a lesson on poetry in a colleague’s Intro to Lit course. My colleague was very forthright: “I just don’t speak poetry.” So far, she admitted, her main line-of-attack in teaching the unit has been to offer a [...]
Many of us know Gary Snyder in the context in which the upcoming reading at CSU was advertised—a legendary beat poet who read alongside Ginsberg and was immortalized by Jack Kerouac in the Dharma Bums, a poet who also won a Pulitzer prize, who was a finalist twice over for the National Book Critics [...]
The strangest aspect to September this year, as school in its inevitable routine renews, is how green is the grass in Colorado. Usually, by late August the grass is sere, yellowing long ahead of the trees whose dark green leaves seem to ignore the fact of the impending season. But this summer’s monsoons have come [...]