An advanced course for juniors and seniors with strong writing skills, this course is a workshop-intensive introduction to arts writing, with a focus on journalism and digital writing. In the first half of the course, you will write pieces in 5 different genres of arts writing: analysis, review, trend piece, profile and essay. Each week we will discuss three student drafts. You are free to choose your topic and your deadline: all 5 pieces are due by Spring Break. In the second half of the course, you will specialize in one “beat” (literary fiction, hip-hop, video games, experimental music, etc.) You will create a blog and write about this beat three times a week. You will also, with others working in a similar area, assign your classmates three readings that showcase the best recent writing you have read in your beat.
Readings for the course will come from the following sources:
–The New York Times Arts & Culture Reader ed. by Don McLeese ISBN: 978-1-60426-480-7 (available in Oberlin Bookstore)
–Readings posted to this website: I may assign additional, current examples of arts writing to reflect class discussion/highlight notable articles published during the semester. –Your classmates’ drafts.
–Your classmates’ blogs.
–Widely and often in publications that do quality arts journalism in your beat.
Getting In Touch With Me/Finding Out About Class Updates
please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org (I have had some difficulty with oberlin.edu emails)
please speak with me about arranging a time to meet outside of class; my office hours will be by appointment.
I will use this website to make announcements, provide you with readings, etc. Please check it regularly (or subscribe).
Course Procedures & Participation
This is not a course you can do well in if you are not in the classroom with us, since it is very dynamic, collaborative and workshop-based. So show up. If you miss more than 4 classes you will not be able to pass. Similarly, this is not a good course for those who prefer to sit quietly: we need every student participating during our sessions for class to be productive.
Using A Public Website for Student Writing
You will be submitting your drafts to this website, which is open to the public (though let’s be honest: it won’t get much traffic). By becoming a student in this course you agree to have your writing accessible to everyone on the internet, in theory. However, you may request that I delete specific posts or replies after they have been discussed by the class, and I will hide the website after the course concludes.
From time to time, I will ask you to write something and post it to the website during class. Please arrive with a laptop, tablet, smartphone, etc. you can use. If this is not possible, please speak with me and we’ll make arrangements.
To make the most of this course, you will be able to use basic features of wordpress, particularly posting. Wordpress is simple to learn, and googling instrutions, WP support, etc. should be sufficient.