Welcome to fiction 210 with Molly!  I can’t tell you how excited I am to have you all here.  This class will function more like a club than anything else.  I’ll be using this blog to communicate with you throughout the semester, to connect you to various readings, and to discuss reading and writing via comments.

Today we’ll be going over the syllabus and course requirements.  If there’s time we’ll listen to this short story by James Salter called “Last Night” via the New Yorker Fiction Podcast. Otherwise we’ll listen to it first thing on Wednesday.

For Wednesday:

Read the following stories by Wednesday.  I want you to tell me which story you liked the best and a brief explanation of why (around 200 words, less if you prefer) and leave this as a comment on the blog.  Please get these up before you go to bed on Tuesday night. (I won’t always expect such a fast turn around for responding, but bear in mind: these stories are very short.) I will leave my own response this afternoon that you can use as a model.

Dracula, by Stanley Donwood

5 Stories, by Lydia Davis

Worst Times #6, #25, and #17, by Brandi Wells

Act Like You Mean It, by Jason DeYoung


Start thinking now about your assignment for Friday:

I’d like you to bring in a page-long excerpt from something you like to read.  Choose something that has inspired you to write in the past, is indicative of the writing you want to do, or just has always resonated with you for whatever reason.  In addition, please bring 250-500 words, typed, explaining why you’ve brought in the particular piece and what it means to you.  Be prepared to present your sample to the rest of the class.  Do not worry at all about whether or not the content is “academic” enough.  If it’s a graphic novel, fine.  Science fiction, fine. Smallville fan fiction?  Fine.  I just want to see what you’re interested in reading, and so does everyone else.

Also by Friday:

Please email me a picture of you with basic profile information for the “people” section of the blog.  You can attach a .jpg or give me a weblink to an existing photo.  Include the following:

Your preferred email address

Your home town.  A few likes.  A few dislikes.  Any other short biographical material you’d like to include.  See the “people” section linked here for my shining example.