Creative Writing Minor

College of Liberal Arts
Undergraduate minor

About this program

The Creative Writing minor offers students experience in drafting, analyzing, and editing creative works of writing. Students in the minor may take classes in fiction, poetry, memoir and creative non-fiction, writing children's literature, writing very short creative works, writing humor, writing for publication and profit, and advanced creative writing.

The Creative Writing minor provides a familiarity with the joys and challenges of the art of writing imaginatively, including developing an individual writing process, setting writing goals, understanding the opportunities available in print and electronic media, and leading a life made richer by the literary arts.

Students must complete a total of 19 credits.

The Creative Writing program at Metropolitan State University is one of the richest and most diverse in the nation. Both our B.A. and minor in Creative Writing include workshops in fiction, poetry, memoir, and creative non-fiction; in writing children's literature, writing very short creative works, writing humor, writing the graphic novel, writing for publication and profit, and advanced creative writing.

As a creative writing student at Metropolitan State, you will gain experience in drafting, analyzing, and editing creative works of writing. Our stellar faculty is award-winning, widely published literary artists whose joy in both teaching and writing is infectious. Metropolitan State's creative writing curriculum challenges students with the delights and hard work required to write imaginatively, including developing an individual writing process, setting writing goals, understanding the opportunities available in print and electronic media, and leading a life made richer by the literary arts.

The program invites you to learn from instructors who are highly accomplished practitioners and excellent teachers. Faculty in the creative writing program are accomplished writers of national prominence. Author accolades include

  • a #1 New York Times Bestseller,
  • a nomination for the Pulitzer Prize,
  • a Today Show Book Club pick,
  • the Geisel medal,
  • a Christopher Award,
  • an American Book Award,
  • a PEN/Open Book Award,
  • an Asian American Literary Award (Members' Choice),
  • two Loft-McKnight Awards,
  • several Minnesota State Book Awards, and
  • several American Library Association Awards.

Enrolling in this program

Current students: Declare your program

Once you’re admitted as an undergraduate student and have met any further requirements your chosen program may have, you may declare a major or declare an optional minor.

Future students: Apply now

Apply to Metropolitan State: Start the journey toward your Creative Writing Minor now. Learn about the steps to enroll or, if you have questions about what Metropolitan State can offer you, request information, visit campus or chat with an admissions counselor.

Get started on your Creative Writing Minor

Course requirements

Prerequisites

WRIT 359 may count as either a prerequisite or elective, but not both.

WRIT 359 Boot Camp: Creative Writing for Non-Majors

4 credits

This class is a hands-on workshop that explores, explains and discusses all the essential aspects of craft employed in the writing of poetry, short fiction, short memoir and other, less easily-definable works of short creative writing. Character development, point of view, tense, dialogue, chronology, voice, narrative arc, pacing, tension within both scenes and an overall narrative, creative use of language, and all basic literary terms will be covered, with the goal of helping students tell a compelling story no matter the genre.

Full course description for Boot Camp: Creative Writing for Non-Majors

Requirements (19 credits)

Required (3 credits)
Electives (16 credits)

MDST 520 Digital Storytelling

4 credits

Digital storytelling is a growing area of multimodal communication that is part of a larger movement to empower communities and voices through the use of digital tools and platforms. Digital stories are short videos that combine narration, images (still and moving), sound effects, and music to tell a compelling story. Students will create two digital stories: a personal story and a story that promotes a cause or organization (e.g., a Kickstarter-style video). The process will include multiple rough cuts and a final version of each video, as well as extensive instructor and peer feedback.

Full course description for Digital Storytelling

WRIT 300 Creative Writers, Identity and Race in the Twin Cities

4 credits

This writing class, a combination of in-class meetings and significant individual work outside of class, explores the many ways that creative writing, from books to literary readings to public art projects, informs daily life. Much of the content of WRIT 300 focuses on how social constructs of race and racism have influenced creative writers in the Twin Cities, from the legacies and impacts of racism on writers¿ creative process and output to the creative writing communities¿ collective and institutional responses to racism. This writing class is designed for non-creative writing majors; students from all disciplines with an interest in creative writing are welcome.

Full course description for Creative Writers, Identity and Race in the Twin Cities

WRIT 355 Writing Children's Literature

4 credits

This class offers an introduction to writing children's literature in the genres of picture book, fiction, nonfiction and poetry in a workshop environment. Students examine works of guest authors and critique both published and student writings. Through activities and assignments, students have the opportunity to develop the unique craft and vision required to write quality children's literature. This course may be repeated for credit.

Full course description for Writing Children's Literature

WRIT 356 Writing Humor

4 credits

This course is a serious inquiry into what's funny, how to write that way and how to say something important in the process. Each writer will focus on developing an idea of serious purpose and conveying that purpose through the use of humor. All genres are welcome. This course may be repeated for credit.

Full course description for Writing Humor

WRIT 357 Writers as Readers

4 credits

This workshop course emphasizes the union of reading and creative writing. Good creative writers need to understand literature from the writer's perspective. They also need a comprehensive background in the various genres of literature and must be able to discuss, critique and identify the basic components of imaginative writing. This course focuses on tone, style, diction and author's voice through the students' own writing and through the readings of others.

Full course description for Writers as Readers

WRIT 358 1000 Words or Less

4 credits

Writing Short Creative Works is a multi-genre workshop designed for creative writers who wish to work exclusively on very short pieces. Students will deepen their knowledge of the general craft of writing, expand their personal writing horizons by writing outside familiar genres, and work intensively on drafting and revising short works. The range of writings possible in this class include poems, prose poems, personal essays, sudden fiction, humor writing, short-short memoirs and creative non-fiction, and other genre-defying work. This course may be repeated for credit.

Full course description for 1000 Words or Less

WRIT 359 Boot Camp: Creative Writing for Non-Majors

4 credits

This class is a hands-on workshop that explores, explains and discusses all the essential aspects of craft employed in the writing of poetry, short fiction, short memoir and other, less easily-definable works of short creative writing. Character development, point of view, tense, dialogue, chronology, voice, narrative arc, pacing, tension within both scenes and an overall narrative, creative use of language, and all basic literary terms will be covered, with the goal of helping students tell a compelling story no matter the genre.

Full course description for Boot Camp: Creative Writing for Non-Majors

WRIT 481 Advanced Creative Writing

4-5 credits

This advanced workshop provides students with the opportunity to develop and refine works of fiction, creative nonfiction or poetry. Open to all advanced creative writing students. Those who are nearing graduation who take this course to fulfill the capstone portfolio requirement for the writing major must register for five credits. This course may be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: Two 300-level creative writing courses or instructor's consent.

Full course description for Advanced Creative Writing

Restricted electives

Only one elective course can be chosen from these to count towards minor

SCRW 313 Beginning Screenwriting

4 credits

The process of writing narrative screenplays will be introduced through writing exercises, screenplay readings, film viewings and discussion. Writing exercises will explore creativity, individual voice and practical skills. Writing in screenplay format will also be covered. Students will finish with at least one complete short screenplay ready for production. This course provides a foundation for further study in screenwriting.

Full course description for Beginning Screenwriting

SCRW 314 New Screenplay Forms

4 credits

Through writing exercises and screenwriting assignments students will explore and practice writing in a variety of forms including adaptations, webisodes, scripted series, or other emerging episodic forms. Films and screenplays will be analyzed and discussed for critical and historical perspectives. Professional development opportunities will be introduced.

Full course description for New Screenplay Forms

SCRW 415 Advanced Screenwriting

4 credits

This course investigates the dramatic essence, creative demands, and craft of feature length screenwriting. Originality and distinctive voice will be analyzed and explored through readings and writing exercises. Students will write a rough draft feature length screenplay. Films and screenplays will be analyzed and discussed for critical and historical perspectives. Professional development opportunities will be presented.

Full course description for Advanced Screenwriting

THEA 400 Playwriting I

4 credits

Writing for the spoken word and for acting demands different skills than writing for the page. Develop your ear, your signature of voice, your sense of subtext. Through a variety of approaches, from improvisation to creative autobiography, students explore character, conflict and drama as metaphor. Writers with material they would like to explore or adapt for the stage are welcome. Expect to complete at least one short play.

Full course description for Playwriting I

THEA 587 Playwriting II

2-4 credits

From the well-made play to theater with a social conscience, this course uses a workshop approach to further explore and challenge the playwright's "voice" through a professional process of discussion, analysis, work with a director and rewriting. Students may explore a variety of subjects and styles or expand upon projects in progress. This class may be taken as an independent study with instructor's consent.

Full course description for Playwriting II