Creative Writing Concentration
The Creative Writing concentration is one of few such programs in New Jersey. It offers foundation courses in literary study and research with specialized creative writing workshops and tutorials in diverse genres.
Those enrolled take courses in:
- The Techniques and Craft of Poetry
- Creative Nonfiction
- Literary Research and Methods
This is done while working with nationally known creative writers to create a distinctive body of work of publishable quality. Students also benefit from attending workshops and readings by prominent writers from around the country who are invited to Monmouth’s campus as part of our vibrant Visiting Writers’ Series. Past visiting writers include novelist and short story writer Joyce Carol Oates, novelist Colm Toibin, poets Gerald Stern, Jane Hirshfield, and Laura Kasischke, and Monmouth’s own creative nonfiction writer Melissa Febos. More informal brown bag workshops on various topics related to advanced graduate study, career development, mentoring, manuscript preparation, and publication expand the extra-curricular offerings of the English Graduate Program.
M.A. theses completed under the direction of English graduate faculty with expertise in Creative Writing include:
- “Orchidelirium” (poetry), by Taylore Glynn, directed by Dr. Michael Waters
- “Holy Heart” (creative nonfiction), by Jennifer Filannino, directed by Prof. Melissa Febos
- “The Beast” (fiction), by Christopher Boggart, directed by Prof. Melissa Febos
The Monmouth University Library binds, catalogs, digitizes and stores for future access all M.A. manuscripts that have been successfully defended by their student authors. Graduates of the Program receive a bound copy of their manuscript.
Program Application Requirements
To be considered for admission, students must submit an application to Monmouth University along with a $50 application fee, and provide the following:
- Possession of a baccalaureate degree with a minimum 2.75 overall GPA, fifteen or more credits in literature or a related field, and at least one course in creative writing is strongly recommended.
- An application essay of 1,000 words describing your interest in creative writing, what you hope to accomplish in the M.A. program, and how you think the program will fit into your academic and career goals.
- A brief creative writing sample: four to five pages of poetry, fiction, creative non-fiction, or drama writing.
- Two letters of recommendation. Letters from current or former professors recommended; if these are unavailable, letters may be sought from current colleagues, or a current or recent supervisor.
Immersed in English Studies
Alex Gilvarry’s favorite class is his Graduate Seminar in Fiction because the novels and short stories studied investigate elusive narrative techniques like consciousness and heartbreak. His research has taken him to the old Continental hotel in Vietnam where his latest novel, Eastman Was Here (Viking, 2017), is set.
Visiting Writers Series
Monmouth University’s Center for the Arts Visiting Writers Series brings the most celebrated poets and authors from around the world and our own back yard to the University’s historic Wilson Hall. With our Visiting Writers Series, we hope the audience will experience a renewed sense of their relationship to poetry and fiction, to language, and to be moved emotionally by that writer’s representation of what it means to be a human being, whether that experience is one of joy, celebration, longing, or sorrow.
See Upcoming Calendar