Creative Writing


Creative Writing at the University of Montevallo

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Creative Writing Students

As an integrated part of the traditional English major or as a stand-alone concentration with any other field of study, UM’s minor in Creative Writing offers students a sustained basis for cultivating their writing as an art form. Through a mix of workshops and seminars, students in the minor will explore the theory and practice of creative writing in order to foster imagination in all their written efforts. Some courses focus on multiple genres, while others focus on a single genre (poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction).

15 Credit Hours Required, including:

ENG 261 – Introduction to Creative Writing (3 hrs.)
ENG 361 – Intermediate Creative Writing (3 hrs.)
ENG 461 – Advanced Creative Writing (3 hrs.)

Choose two of the following:

ENG 361 – Intermediate Creative Writing (3 hrs. – second genre)
ENG 365 – Creative Writing: Forms (3 hrs.)
ENG 456 – The Writing Process (3 hrs.)


Qualified students in UM’s Master’s program in English may pursue a creative writing thesis option. M.A. students who complete the creative thesis work with a faculty advisor to compose an original work of creative writing (60-100 pages of fiction or the equivalent of a chapbook of 20-25 poems for poetry), as well as a critical introduction offering a contextual framework that situates their work in relation to its genre, literary influences, and artistic goals. For more information about UM’s M.A. in English, visit https://www.montevallo.edu/academics/colleges/college-of-arts-sciences/department-of-english-world-languages/programs/english-m-a/the-masters-of-arts-in-english/


Creative writing students have the opportunity to participate as contributors, readers, and editors of UM’s creative arts journal, The Tower and to attend readings and discussions with local and nationally-known authors through the Forte Festival of Creativity, the Poetry@UM Reading Series, and the BACHE Visiting Writers’ Series. Recent visiting writers have included Sarah Shun-lien Bynum, Karen Bender, Ramona Ausubel, Derrick Harriell, Kim Addonizio, Alina Stefanescu, Tina Mozelle Braziel, Ashley M. Jones, Allie Rowbottom, Joseph Scapellato, Aja Gabel, Natashia Deon, Jean Guerrero, and others. 


murphy photo







Dr. Jim Murphy (PhD University of Cincinnati) is the author of three poetry collections: The Memphis Sun (Kent State University Press), Heaven Overland (Kennesaw State University Press) and The Uniform House (Negative Capability Press). His poems have appeared in or are forthcoming from Brooklyn Review, Cimarron Review, Gulf Coast, Painted Bride Quarterly, Mississippi Review, Puerto del Sol, Texas Review, The Southern Review, TriQuarterly and other journals. He has also translated a chapbook of poems from Spanish, Amazonia, by Colombian American poet Juan Carlos Galeano. For more about Dr. Murphy’s work, visit https://negativecapability.storenvy.com/products/7949598-the-uniform-house

Email: murphyj@montevallo.edu

Office: Humanities Hall 200B







Dr. Ashley Wurzbacher (PhD University of Houston) is the author of the short story collection Happy Like This (University of Iowa Press), winner of the 2019 Iowa Short Fiction Award and a National Book Foundation “5 Under 35” honoree. Her stories have appeared in The Kenyon Review Online, Gettysburg Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Prairie Schooner, The Iowa Review, The Cincinnati Review, The Florida Review, and other journals. Her novel is forthcoming from Atria Books. Read more about Dr. Wurzbacher at https://ashleywurzbacher.com/. Read a sample of her work at https://kenyonreview.org/kr-online-issue/2019-mayjune/selections/ashley-wurzbacher-342846/

Email: awurzbac@montevallo.edu

Office: Humanities Hall 300A


“Creative writing at Montevallo gave me an intimate space to share my work. Workshopping everyone’s materials quickly became my favorite part of the week, as I was able to not just read stories but also hear and witness them come into being. These experiences were revelatory not just for my own writing but also my professionalization as a writer; they allowed me to think critically about what it means to be a writer inside and outside of an institution while also preparing me for my work in an MFA program and beyond.” –Levi Pulford, ’20

“The creative writing program at Montevallo provides the amazing opportunity to work with other writers on campus to get better at the craft. It is an environment full of people who all love the same thing. Because of things like the workshops, the program is extremely helpful in bettering your writing abilities!” –Adriel Vinson, ’21

“The Creative Writing program brought me out of my writing cocoon. It’s such a pleasure to be able to share my work with others, and receive valuable feedback that will allow me to make writing my forever career.” –Elliot Eguia, ’21

“The creative writing classes at Montevallo have been some of the most interesting, engaging, and diverse classes that I have taken on campus! They have helped me develop critical analytical skills, given me confidence as a communicator, and allowed me to further my writing skills and nurture my creativity. The program harbors amazing faculty and allows you the opportunity to build connections with them and form friendships with your peers.” –Madisen DeMent, ’22

“The creative writing course at Montevallo has taught me real world skills to prepare myself to continue writing after graduation. It is taught by professors who are active, published writers who know exactly what you will encounter in today’s competitive market.” –Shannon Veitch, ’22

“The creative writing program really helped me gain confidence in my work! I never thought I would love poetry until I added this minor!”        –Mallory Currie, ’20 


Keep apprised of UM creative writing news and events by following:

@MontevalloCW on Twitter and Facebook

@umthetower on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

Please visit http://um-tower.squarespace.com/ for more information about The Tower.