As a Creative Writing student in LCAD’s BFA program, your story will unfold in three acts. The first act, which encompasses the freshman and sophomore years, is about foundation and structure. Whether a podcaster, a screenwriter, a graphic novelist, or even a eulogist (hey, the working writer often finds herself in strange and beautiful situations), every Creative Writing student learns the foundations of the three major writing disciplines — poetry, fiction, and non-fiction. The curriculum assists students in not only familiarizing themselves with the essentials of language and story as it pertains to Creative Writing, but it also facilitates the development of a specific creative process, which allows the individual voice of the writer to begin taking shape.
The second act of the program, the junior year, commences once the student establishes a focus in one of the three major disciplines. Within these disciplines, students are given freedom not only to explore the boundaries and margins, but to push beyond them. Within fiction, for instance, a student might explore writing for comics, teleplays, novels, picture books, or video game outlines and flowcharts. A poet might pursue erasure poetry, songwriting, poetry comics, or spoken word. And a non-fiction student might experiment with podcasting, memoir, journalism, travelogue, or even stand-up comedy. Of course, these are only some examples; again, we encourage students to subvert the familiar and write in forms and genres that honor their individual identities. To this end, students will notice a shift in coursework from foundation-level classes to those that focus on deep craft, the seemingly intangible components of great writing — wit, rhythm, suspense, and so on — which further help to define a unique voice.
In the final act of the program, the senior year, students synthesize all they’ve absorbed and begin work on the Senior Portfolio, a major manuscript that epitomizes what the student has learned in the program. Depending on the student and the discipline, this might be a collection of short stories, a feature screenplay, a novella, an album of song lyrics, or any other manuscript of appropriate scope. During the development of this manuscript, students will pursue their own Narrative Experience and Research, which will aid in the drafting process. It’s an internship of sorts, thematically related to the developing work. A student drafting a manuscript that deals with death might volunteer for hospice care; or a student drafting a manuscript that deals with man’s place in nature might volunteer in the National Park Service. These meaningful experiences will layer the writing with an emotional, spiritual, and intellectual significance befitting an LCAD Creative Writing graduate.
BFA Program Learning Outcomes