Tag Archives: creative nonfiction

[writing prompt] The 20 Little Essays Project

This summer, while preparing to teach a class on the collage essay at the Collins’ Writers Conference in Davenport, I emailed author and teacher Amy Butcher to see if she had any great exercises she enjoyed when teaching about fragmentation, association, and imagination.  If you know Amy, you know that of course she did, and what she sent was this amazing little exercise which she had adapted from poet Jim Simmerman’s “Twenty Little Poetry Projects” exercise, which first appeared in The Practice of Poetry: Writing Exercises from Poets Who Teach (HarperCollins, 1992). Continue reading

Summer School with Catie Malooly: The Beauty and Horror of Nonfiction

The first in an ongoing series by undergraduate students in Intro to Creative Nonfiction at the University of Iowa who reflect on writing and revising. We begin with Ms. Catie Malooly who addresses procrastination, workshop, and the beauty and horror of creative nonfiction.

I procrastinate. Hard.

I wish I didn’t, but I do, and I don’t see that changing any time soon. I tell myself I write better under pressure, that those rigid deadlines are what I need to really crank out my best work. Continue reading

Summer School

My students this past semester rocked. Nine very different, very talented undergrads at the University of Iowa who enrolled in my evening Creative Nonfiction course. Their fields of study ranged across journalism, creative writing, music, and film so, lucky me, right? Right.


I tried to center the course around author Christopher Higgs‘s notion of intellectual polyamory and included this excerpt from an interview with him on the first page of the syllabus:

Become intellectually polyamorous, cultivate an insatiable curiosity for knowledge and experience in as many different guises as you possibly can, Continue reading