by Julie Brickman
Spalding MFA Faculty, Fiction

“This is what makes place so vital: its tie to character, tone, experience, change; its influence on the characters; its reflection of the unfolding riches of the story. Place is woven into the fabric of experience.”

I always love descriptions of place. Often, to get myself rolling on writing, I look out my window and describe what the landscape looks like at that moment of the day. Today, the mist from the ocean has grayed the air all day. Early this morning, my house, which sits on the edge of a canyon about a mile from the ocean, was enveloped by mist so thick that neither tree nor earth nor neighbor’s house was visible, nor even a bird in flight. Continue reading “WRITING PLACES”


by Katy Yocom
Spalding MFA Associate Administrative Director

Occasionally I get calls from prospective students who worry about the cross-genre exploration built into the Spalding low-residency MFA in Writing curriculum. “I want to be able to focus on my own area,” they’ll say. Their concern raises two questions: Just how cross-genre are we? And why do we emphasize cross-genre at all? Continue reading “JUST HOW CROSS-GENRE IS THE SPALDING MFA PROGRAM?”

Thorns Will Be Necessary: The Appeal of the Flawed Character

by Beth Bauman

Spalding MFA Faculty, Writing for Children and Young Adults

My new favorite TV show is the HBO crime drama “The Night Of.”  It’s tough and gritty and co-written by the inimitable Richard Price.  I’m going to detour here and mention how at a New Yorker festival years back, I first met Price when he and another author gave talks about their writing. Continue reading “Thorns Will Be Necessary: The Appeal of the Flawed Character”

Re-mindfulness: An Alum’s Travels In Rome

By: Terry Price

Spalding MFA Alumn in Fiction

“The only true voyage of discovery, the only fountain of Eternal Youth, would be not to visit strange lands but to possess other eyes, to behold the universe through the eyes of another, of a hundred others, to behold the hundred universes that each of them beholds, that each of them is…” ~ Marcel Proust, Remembrance of Things Past, Volume 5 – “The Prisoner” Continue reading “Re-mindfulness: An Alum’s Travels In Rome”

A Few Thoughts On Photography And Fiction

by Pete Duval

Spalding MFA Faculty, Fiction

The language of photography has certain similarities with fiction—in particular with the short-short story. I want to talk about a story I’ve often used in my workshops—a two-page short-short titled “No One’s a Mystery” by Elizabeth Tallant—and three photographs by Anders Petersen, from his famous 1970 photobook Café Lehmitz. Continue reading “A Few Thoughts On Photography And Fiction”

Creating The Illusion Of Action: Verb Density

By Jody Lisberger

Spalding MFA Faculty

I’ve been thinking recently about a kind rejection note I received a few weeks ago. The editors wrote: “We have decided to pass on this one. We think it’s a compelling story and certainly worth developing, but the narration is a little internal (it’s not flushing out as much as it could) and there could be more external action… We hope you’ll consider us in the future.” Continue reading “Creating The Illusion Of Action: Verb Density”

Welcome Home: A Writer’s Return To Rome

By Sena Jeter Naslund

Spalding MFA Program Director

It’s a bit odd to say to a group of students and faculty, recently arrived in Rome, “Welcome Home!” But you know how that goes: wherever the Spalding Master of Fine Arts in Writing gathers, I always say, as program director, “Welcome Home!” and we are at home when we’re with each other. Continue reading “Welcome Home: A Writer’s Return To Rome”

MFA Offers Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Creative Writing

By Katy Yocom

Spalding MFA Associate Administrative Director

For writers ready to carve out space in their life for creative pursuits, Spalding University’s low-residency Master of Fine Arts in Writing is launching a post-baccalaureate certificate program in Creative Writing. The certificate program launches in November and is equivalent to one semester in Spalding’s low-residency Master of Fine Arts in Writing. Those who complete the certificate program earn 15 hours of graduate-level academic credit. Continue reading “MFA Offers Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Creative Writing”