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Faculty Expertise in Creative Writing

In the Creative Writing Program at Ohio State, students work closely in small class settings and in private conference with publishing practitioners of the craft. Our six core creative writing faculty — along with dozens of MFA GTAs and one affiliated faculty member specializing in screenwriting and story engineering — teach upper-level undergraduates and competitively-admitted MFA students in the primary genres of poetry, fiction and creative nonfiction.

Undergraduates may apply to work with faculty in our Creative Writing Concentration, completing a chapbook-length thesis before graduation, or they may opt for a minor in creative writing. MFA students work for three years on their manuscripts, with full financial support, before defending their theses in an MFA exam.

All students are encouraged to take professionalization courses: a literary editing and publishing course using Ohio State's nationally-recognized literary magazine, The Journal, as an on-site laboratory; and weekend workshops with three annual visiting writers. Recent and upcoming visitors include Nicole Sealey, Laura van den Berg, Dan Kois, Danez Smith and Aimee Nezhukumatathil. Most of our students pursue their own careers as publishing writers after graduation, and many find employment as teachers, editors and arts administrators.


  • Kathy Fagan Grandinetti: Directs the Creative Writing Program; teaches poetry workshops and poetics courses at all levels
  • Michelle Herman: Directs GISFA and the Young Writers Workshop; teaches fiction and nonfiction workshops, as well as forms, literary editing and professionalization
  • Marcus Jackson: Teaches poetry workshops and poetics courses at all levels, as well as literary editing
  • Lee Martin: Teaches fiction and nonfiction workshops and forms courses at all levels
  • Elissa Washuta: Leads the Native Craft reading series and teaches nonfiction workshops and forms courses at all levels
  • Nick White: Teaches fiction workshops and forms and literary editing at all levels
  • Angus Fletcher (affiliated faculty): Teaches courses in story engineering and screenwriting at all levels


Course offerings in creative writing — at both the undergraduate and graduate level — are varied and numerous and reflect the range of writing by our faculty of novelists, essayists, poets, memoirists and short story writers, as well as a screenwriter. We are well-known for encouraging graduate students in our MFA program to “cross over” into genres other than their primary one (and we offer coursework designed specifically for that purpose), for facilitating interdisciplinary work and collaborations beyond our program, and for the opportunities our department provides for rigorous and far-ranging scholarly coursework in such related disciplines as narrative theory, ethnographic studies and other areas of folklore, film studies, popular culture, rhetoric, digital media and so on. Periodically, creative writing faculty offer workshops designed for PhD students interested in exploring creative writing. At the undergraduate level, students may pursue a selective English major with a concentration in creative writing or a minor; many undergraduates choose to write a creative thesis (on the model of the MFA thesis): a chapbook-length work of fiction, nonfiction or poetry.

  • English 2265: Introduction to Fiction Writing
  • English 2266: Introduction to Poetry Writing
  • English 2267: Introduction to Creative Writing
  • English 2268: Introduction to Creative Nonfiction Writing
  • English 3465: Special Topics in Intermediate Fiction Writing
  • English 3466: Special Topics in Intermediate Poetry Writing
  • English 3468: Special Topics in Intermediate Creative Nonfiction Writing
  • English 6763.01: Graduate Workshop in Poetry
  • English 6763.02: Graduate Workshop in Poetry for MFA Students in Fiction or Creative Nonfiction
  • English 6764: Graduate Workshop in Screenwriting
  • English 6765.01: Graduate Workshop in Fiction
  • English 6765.02: Graduate Workshop in Fiction for MFA Students in Poetry or Creative Nonfiction
  • English 6768.01: Graduate Workshop in Creative Nonfiction
  • English 6768.02: Graduate Workshop in Creative Nonfiction for MFA Students in Poetry or Fiction
  • English 6769: Graduate Workshop in Creative Writing Special Topics
    Recent topics: Story engineering, MFA service, professionalization, etc.
  • English 6662: Literary Editing and Publishing
  • *English 6788: Studies in the Theory and Practice of Imaginative Writing
  • English 7871: Forms of Fiction, Nonfiction or Poetry (required for all MFA students)

*This course is designed for non-MFA graduate students and PhD students (creative writing as a method for studying scholarly issues — e.g., using text in visual art, disability narratives, ethnicity and literature, gender and genre, poetics, etc).