Friday, March 27, 2015

LU MFA Foundations: Glossary of Poetic Terms--Scott Berzon

Scott Berzon recommends the Poetry Foundation link below for poetry students to familiarize themselves with poetic terms:

An excerpt:

Tone
The poet’s attitude toward the poem’s speaker, reader, and subject matter, as interpreted by the reader. Often described as a “mood” that pervades the experience of reading the poem, it is created by the poem’s vocabulary, metrical regularity or irregularity, syntax, use of figurative language, and rhyme.


In the LU MFA Foundations series, our faculty members 
discuss or clarify foundational elements of the craft of creative writing.
Other entries in the series are linked here.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

LU MFA Foundations: When To Stop Working on Your Novel--Tony D'Souza

In the article linked below, LU MFA faculty member Tony D'Souza shares his realization about the importance of knowing when to stop working on your novel:

http://www.adweek.com/galleycat/when-to-stop-working-on-your-novel/40766

An excerpt:

"I felt time trickling away, one year, another. I married in the interim; we had our first child. Still, Voyage of the Rosa wasn’t right, and making it so remained elusive. Pushing through those endless revisions was like wading through molasses. Our second child was born; The Konkans advance had long since run out, and now there were twice as many diapers to buy. Something began to tighten in my belly that I knew was panic."


In the LU MFA Foundations series, our faculty members 
discuss or clarify foundational elements of the craft of creative writing.
Other entries in the series are linked here.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

LU MFA Foundations: Recommended Reading for Advice to Poets--Eve Jones

Eve Jones recommends the following article by Mark Yakich for good advice to writers and workshoppers of poetry:

http://bostonreview.net/poetry/NPM-2011-mark-yakich-yakking-points

An excerpt:

"When reading a poem, try to come to it on its terms, not yours. Don’t try to fit the poem into your life. Try to see what world the poem creates. Then, if you are lucky, its world will help you re-see your own."


In the LU MFA Foundations series, our faculty members 
discuss or clarify foundational elements of the craft of creative writing.
Other entries in the series are linked here.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

LU MFA Foundations: Defining Flash Fiction--Mary Anderson

What is Flash Fiction?

In 1986 the short short story reemerged in the first of many anthologies edited by Robert Shapard and James Thomas. Short shorts were surfacing at the time in literary magazines such as North American Review and Sundog. A separate genre, Sudden Fiction, appeared and then a further shortening of the term evolved, and “flash was coined by James Thomas in 1992, which he defined it as being 250-750 words and debuted in Flash Fiction: 72 Very Short Stories. Shorter than its predecessor sudden fiction, but longer than Jerome Stern’s microfiction, flash is one of the more popular terms used to reference short shorts in the United States.” (xxxvii)

The computer lured back the audience that television stole and it reduced the American attention span even further spawning online magazines and blogs publishing Flash. Plus, its “brief length makes it perfect for viewing online and on hand-held electronics.” (xxxvi)

So far, during its adolescence, sub-genres of Flash Fiction have included: “dribbles (50 words), nanofiction (55 words), drabbles (100 words), quick fiction, fast fiction, microfiction, furious fiction, sudden and flash fiction postcard fiction, napkin fiction (from Esquire online), minute-long stories, smoke-long stories, skinny stories, vest-pocket stories and pill-size stories (from the forties), pocket-size stories, palm-size stories. . .” (xxxvii)

Flash Fiction was a sub-genre of Micr-O Fiction and defined as: “a novel crossed with a haiku,” in The Oprah Magazine (July 2006). Eight stories of 300 words or less were featured, including gems by Antonya Nelson, Stuart Dybek, and Amy Hempel. (xxxvii)

Lindenwood’s Flash Fiction course in the MFA Program, along with Rose Metal Press, bring together the advice of fifty or so experts and offer a primer to its students. Flash Fiction is so much more than a story quantified by a word count. Students in the Program will develop a set of tools that allow them to use image, smart surprise and an economy of language to write and publish Flash stories that, as Robert Shapard suggests, “achieve a depth of vision and human significance without ever wanting to be novel(s).” (89)

Masih, Tara L. Field Guide to Writing Flash Fiction: Tips from Editors, Teachers, and Writers in the Field. Brookline, MA: Rose Metal, 2009. Print.


In the LU MFA Foundations series, our faculty members 
discuss or clarify foundational elements of the craft of creative writing.
Other entries in the series are linked here.