Creative Writing Major

Exceptional writers make the world their muse. As a creative writing major at Truman, you hone your writing talents drawing inspiration from a foundation of liberal arts courses combined with a wide range of experiential learning opportunities. We are the only public university in Missouri offering a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing.

Inspirational Surroundings

Truman’s beautiful campus and engaged learning community inspire meaningful interaction with your professors and fellow classmates who come from a wide variety of backgrounds and interests. By immersing yourself in Truman’s living-learning environment, you acquire a wealth of experiences to draw inspiration from — new experiences, great friends, and the academic focus that a dynamic community like Truman can offer you.

Your professors make you their top priority—advising, mentoring and guiding you—and you can count on personalized feedback from your peers in the program. You may even publish your work in one of Truman’s literary journals.

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Want to Double Major?

Because the BFA Creative Writing program was designed and approved by Truman faculty and by the State of Missouri with certain course requirements, you cannot double major with a BA English degree and a BFA Creative Writing degree. BS Physics and BFA Creative Writing, great. BA Economics and BFA Creative Writing, fantastic. BA English and BFA Creative Writing, not going to happen.

Preparing for Lives That Matter

Pick from a rigorous program of advanced writing workshops in fiction, poetry and nonfiction; intro classes in genres such as poetry, novel and short story writing; and electives where you can devise your own projects.

A degree in creative writing prepares graduates for a wide range of careers. Good writers are rare, and you’ll be in high demand for diverse fields such as publishing, teaching, journalism, filmmaking, new media, editorial and literary consultants.

Upon successfully completing courses approved for Truman’s BFA Creative Writing program, graduating seniors will demonstrate these attributes.

Skills

  • ability to trace the development of the current literary landscape and contextualize one’s work within it
  • ability to read both published and unpublished work with care and to be able to articulate one’s reading
  • ability to practice one’s craft in multiple genres, grounded in the study of process employed by successful writers across genres
  • ability to employ a writing process that recursively progresses through drafting, peer and instructor feedback, reflection, revising, editing

Knowledge

  • studied familiarity with contemporary writing and its literary traditions
  • knowledge of the conventions of genres and the history of the development of writers and conventions within genres
  • understanding that results from the study of the interrelatedness of literatures across cultures, historical periods, and genres
  • knowledge of the conventions of contemporary textual production, including submitting writing to editors, participating in the publishing process, and the professionalization of creative work
  • knowledge of literate audiences and how certain genre conventions are most effectively invoked to reach those audiences

Attitudes

  • a respect and awareness that arises from a fully-engaged commitment to employing a creative process rooted in textual study
  • an informed attention to the various communities within which writing occurs
  • a commitment to the preservation and development of literary culture on Truman’s campus, in the Kirksville community, and beyond
  • a recognition of the long tradition of cross-pollination between the arts
Aaron Tjarks

You have an opportunity to develop in so many capacities and rub elbows with brilliant people. The campus is large enough to meet new people but small enough that it feels tight-knit. The faculty truly care about student well-being and success.

Aaron Tjarks, Class of 2012