This studio course offers an introduction to audio storytelling across genres. Students receive hands-on instruction in the foundations of narrative audio production, including vocal delivery, writing for the ear, interviewing, editing, and sound design. We experiment with a range of short audio genres—"Moth"-style live storytelling, audio documentary, and audio fiction—through both individual and collaborative projects. Class sessions include a blend of discussion, workshops, and hands-on production activities with professional audio kits and software.
ENGWRT 1450 / Fall 2016, Spring 2018
The Multimedia Essay
This studio course explores the contemporary craft of the essay across media. Throughout the semester, students read, listen to, view, and discuss a range of creative essayistic texts in a range of genres—from journalistic photo essays, to personal audio essays, to lyric video essays—and try out these forms for themselves through a series of audiovisual writing projects. Class sessions include a blend of discussion, workshops, and hands-on production activities using photo/audio/video editing software from Adobe Creative Cloud.
ENGWRT 1451 / Spring 2017, Fall 2018
Narrative Audio Workshop (MFA)
In this course, you should expect to dedicate yourself to a single, substantive work of narrative audio—documentary, reported essay, etc.—which you’ll carry from concept to completion with support and insight from your fellow students. While your ideas may evolve over the semester, you should plan to come to the workshop with a concept for a project that you’d like to pursue, which you’ll then pitch, record, script, edit, mix, and polish, aiming to leave the class with a roughly 20-minute broadcast-quality story.
ENGWRT 2110 / Spring 2019
Listening to Audio Genres (MFA)
In a twist on the traditional graduate "readings" course, this "listenings" course explores the present-day landscape of narrative podcasting against the backdrop of 20th-century radio greats. Students are exposed to a variety of audio styles and genres, including narrative journalism, personal essays, non-narrated documentaries, and serial (non)fiction. Through discussion, critical writing, and creative imitation, we'll use these born-audio stories to reimagine the possibilities of our writing—whether it’s for the ear or for the page.
ENGWRT 2390: Readings in Contemporary Nonfiction / Fall 2017
Digital Nonfiction Workshop (MFA)
In this exploratory workshop, we consider how words can be combined with and interpreted through sounds and images to create rich multi-sensory narratives. Through a mix of discussion, workshops, and hands-on production activities, students come away with a set of technical and conceptual tools for translating their writing into a range of audiovisual genres, while considering how their encounters with these media might, in turn, inform and enrich their craft as writers in traditional textual forms.
ENGWRT 2310: Graduate Nonfiction Workshop / Spring 2017