Tuesday, November 24, 2009

TWELVE SECRETS: The Fourth Annual Five-Minute Play Festival at Capilano University


Twelve five minute plays Three characters The tension of secrets The triangle

A Lecture by Tom Cone

Thursday, Dec 3rd

11:30 am

Capilano Performing Arts Theatre

The Creative Writing and Theatre Programs at Capilano University invite you to a special presentation by Vancouver playwright, librettist, lecturer and teacher Tom Cone. Tom will introduce some of the concepts and models that will inform this Spring’s Fourth Annual Five Minute Play Festival, which brings Creative Writing and Theatre students together to develop, under Cone’s guidance, a series of five-minute, three character plays. Open to all. Students interested in participating in the project must attend this lecture.

About Tom Cone

Playwright, librettist, lecturer and teacher, impresario, curator and promoter of cultural hybrids, and nurturer of the avant-garde, Tom Cone is major force behind Vancouver's experimental art, music and theatre scene. His many plays include True Mummy, Love at Last Sight, and Herringbone; adaptations of classic plays include Moliere's The Miser and Goldoni's The Servant of Two Masters; and his Librettos include The Architect for Vancouver Opera and The Gang for Vancouver New Music. Cone is also the founder of Songroom -- a salon for new song collaborations--, and CABINET: Interdisciplinary Collaborations -- an experimental arts collective. His latest play, Donald and Lenore, premieres this Spring as part of the 2010 Chutzpah! Festival.

For info:

Roger Farr, Creative Writing Convener

English Dept,

Capilano University

Friday, November 20, 2009

Creative Writing Courses: Spring 2010

Here’s what’s on deck for Spring 2010:

English 103-06 - Studies in Contemporary Literature - Roger Farr
(Mixed Mode-North Vancouver)
The aim of these mixed-mode sections of ENGL 103, which meet on-line every other week, is to put students into contact with some of the writers, texts, practices, and movements that compose “the contemporary.” We will read a novel, some very short stories (“micro fictions”), some poetry, and a graphic novel. You will develop your critical awareness of language and contemporary culture through a number of writing projects, and through participation in discussion forums and in-class activities. You will also have the option of completing one assignment as a "ficto-critical" project; that is, a project which involves combining "creative" with "critical" writing, if you are so inclined.

Required Text:

• Farr, Roger (Ed.) Open Text: Canadian Poetry in the 21st Century. Vol. II. North Vancouver, BC: CUE, 2009.
• Fiorentino, Jon Paul. Stripmalling. Toronto, ON: ECW, 2009.
• Stern, Jerome, ed. Microfictions. New York, NY: Norton, 1996.
• Stone, Anne. Delible. London, ON: Insomniac, 2007.
• other readings available in class and on-line.

English 190-01 - Creative Writing I - Reg Johanson
This course introduces students to fiction and poetry through reading and writing. Students learn to become critical of their own work and that of others. Students write a variety of assignments intended to open up the horizon of their writing to innovation and experimentation. Students also attend the Open Text reading series. English 190 is a required course for the Associate of Arts Degree in Creative Writing. Students who take this course may also be interested in Academic Writing Strategies- Creative Writing Seminar, also a required course for the Degree program students.

Required Text:

• Six Cities. The Capilano Review. Series 2 No. 47, Fall 2005.

English 191-01 - Creative Writing II - Crystal Hurdle
When is a poem really a story? When should you leave a draft alone? Through in-class writing, weekly homework assignments, and personal projects, you will write up a storm in a number of genres. You’ll be introduced to professional writers, from Lorna Crozier to bp Nichol, from Thomas King to Gabriel Garcia Márquez, to visiting writers at the Open Text and Kinder Text Reading Series, as well as to the work of your colleagues, in aid of developing your style, articulating your voice.

Required Texts:

• Gary Geddes, ed. 20th-Century Poetry & Poetics
• Gary Geddes, ed. The Art of Short Fiction

English 191-02 - Creative Writing II - Ryan Knighton
In English 191 we will continue to develop our skills as writers by asking how writing can be made, not what it might mean. Specifically, we will further engage with questions of poetry, microfiction, and so-called creative non-fiction, as directed by their form and history. Our workshops are neither roundtable editing sessions, nor, worse, copyediting boot camps. Rather, we will share draft examples of our own work in order to further our discussions, to expose new questions, and to seek the effects of craft. Some case examples from published works will be provided in class, but our own writing will serve as the primary texts. So will Stephen king’s memoir, On Writing, which is pretty damned fine. By the final class, students should have at least one reworked submission of writing ready for a magazine or periodical. To that end we will survey some of the nuts-and-bolts of pitching and publishing, too.

Required Text:

• King, S. On Writing (most recent edition)

English 203-01 - Canadian Literature - Sheila Ross
This course examines a selection of engaging contemporary Canadian narratives, introducing students to important critical and cultural issues about the Canadian colonialist past and multicultural present. Especially important is the related problem of literary representation, and each of these works in its own way compels us to ask, “What kind of story-telling is going on here?” We first examine two unusual biographies that draw us into the Canadian colonialist past: Chester Brown’s comic strip Louis Riel, and Rudy Wiebe’s provocative, “co-authored” Stolen life. This paves the way for a look at Thomas King’s short story collection One Good Story, That One, which invokes First Nations oral traditions and whose humour is entirely subversive. Similarly, Alice Munro’s Open Secrets seems intent on reminding us of a number of assumptions we have about how stories should behave and the kinds of truth they ought to disclose. The course considers two novels about immigrant experiences, very different except for this: each central character commits an act of audacious story-telling in order to dispel the silences that surround loss and longing (Yan Martel’s Life of Pi and Dionne Brand’s What We All Long For). Secondary material on authors, works and critical issues will be provided as the course proceeds.

Required Texts:

• Chester Brown, Louis Riel (1999)
• Rudy Wiebe and Yvonne Johnson, Stolen Life (1998)
• Thomas King, One Good Story, That One (1999)
• Alice Munro, Open Secrets (1995)
• Yann Martel, Life of Pi (2002)
• Dionne Brand, What We All Long For (2005)

English 207-01 - Literary Theory and Criticism - Ian Cresswell
This course is intended to introduce students to a variety of critical thinkers and literary schools within the western tradition. Starting with Classical notions of the nature and function of poetry, we move on (through an examination of Kantian aesthetics) to examine Aestheticism, with particular reference to Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray. Edgar Allan Poe's "The Purloined Letter" will take us into the world of psychoanalytical criticism, and specifically the work of Freud and Lacan. We will go on to explore Structuralism, Russian Formalism, Deconstruction and Marxism, with particular reference to Kundera's The Unbearable Lightness of Being. Finally, we will read Shakespeare's King Lear, having regard to the aforementioned theories.

Required Texts:

• Wilde, Oscar. The Picture of Dorian Gray. Edition in bookstore.
• Kundera. Milan. The Unbearable lightness of Being. Edition in bookstore.
• Shakespeare, William. King Lear. Edition in bookstore.
Dictionary of Critical Theory. Edition in bookstore.

English 217-01 - Literature on the Edge - Reg Johanson
The Graphic Novel: Comix and History
This course explores how the comix genre brings its traditional emphasis on satire, parody, and political commentary to bear on history and autobiography. Our reading list offers examples of the genre that highlight its subversive, anti-authoritarian posture, as well as its neurotic, paranoid darkness. We also watch several films for context and reference.

Required Texts:

• Mccloud, Scott. Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art. Harper Perennial: New York, 1994.
• Herge. TinTin and the Blue Lotus. Little, Brown and Co.: Boston, 1984.
• Speigelman, Art. The Complete Maus: A Survivors Tale. Pantheon: New York, 1997.
• Sacco, Joe. Palestine. Fantagraphics: Seattle, 2006.
• Satrapi, Marjan. Persepolis. Pantheon: New York, 2003.
• Satrapi, Marjan. Embroideries. Pantheon: New York, 2006.
• Brown, Chester. Louis Riel: A Comic Strip Biography. Drawn and Quarterly: Montreal 2006.
• Moore, Allen and David Lloyd. V for Vendetta. DC Comics: New York, 1989.

English 218-01 - The Art of Children's Literature – Roger Farr
This course examines writing for, about, and by children. From Robin Hood and Runaway Bunny to the latest issue of Stone Soup -- a magazine featuring writing and art by people under thirteen years of age --, we will survey a number of classic and contemporary works, with a focus on the complex interaction between attachment, authority, and autonomy. We will also read a short text that challenges the notion of ‘childhood’ itself, by making the radical argument that it is society that must adapt to the needs of children, not the other way around. With this challenge in mind we will consider the infamous case of “The Wild Boy of Aveyron,” a feral child found living in the woods in France in 1797. The story of his capture and attempted domestication reveals much about societal attitudes toward children – and “childishness -- in the West.

Required Texts:

• Children in Society: A Libertarian Critique
• The Norton Anthology of Children’s Literature
• The Wild Boy
• Songs of Innocence and Experience
• Runaway Bunny
• Stone Soup

English 290-01 - Creative Writing: Letter and Line - Reg Johanson
This course focuses on “documentary” poetry and poetics. Our starting point is Kaia Sand’s challenge, “why leave journalism to journalists, news to news services?”. We study the various ways in which poets can use, co-opt, subvert, and challenge the media, the ways in which we can “document” contemporary issues and struggles, and how our work can respond to a “social command”. Students also attend the Open Text reading series. English 290 is a required course for the Associate of Arts Degree in Creative Writing. Students who take this course may also be interested in Academic Writing Strategies—Creative Writing Seminar, also a required course for Degree program students.

Required Text:

• Six Cities. The Capilano Review. Series 2 No. 47, Fall 2005.

English 292-01 - Creative Writing: Children's Literature - Crystal Hurdle
Experience an intensive workshop in writing literature for children of various ages. Examine and practice the art of writing for children by exploring a range of different strategies and techniques: identify narrative structure, myth, character development, levels of diction, voice, etc. Discover voices and forms for your writing and express your ideas in styles appropriate for children’s interests at different ages, from picture books and nonsense rhymes for children to young adult novels in verse. In developing your own projects, become a successor to J. K. Rowling!

Required Texts:

• Sarah Ellis’ From Reader to Writer
• Deborah Ellis’ The Breadwinnner
• William New’s Dream Helmet
• Pamela Porter’s The Crazy Man
• Print Pack with assorted readings


Saturday, November 7, 2009


Sponsored by the Creative Writing Program at Capilano University

The Fall 2009 OPEN TEXT series at Capilano University concludes on Thursday, November 12th, 2009 with a reading by Vancouver poet at CapU instructor Kim Minkus:

CE 148 @ 11:30
Capilano University
2055 Purcell Way
North Vancouver

Kim Minkus is the author of 9 Freight (LINEbooks 2007) and Thresh (Snare Books 2009). Other work appears in FRONT Magazine, Interim, West Coast Line, The Poetic Front, LOCUSPOINT, ottawater, Memewar and Jacket. Her academic research focuses on contemporary poetry, feminist poetry and the archive. In the spring of 2006 she was a fellow at King’s College in London, England and the archival research she completed while there lead to the publication of her book 9 Freight. Currently she is a writing instructor at Capilano University.

stripped down. crawl and stick. folds flutter. stress random stress cathexis stress stumble. bare seizure. entrails near the surface. bodily movements ratchet each emotion. they all exhaust me. tremble while you tell me it matters. glean meanings where there are none.

-- from "Station"

For info:

Roger Farr, Creative Writing Convener

604.986.1911 (2291)