Applicants to the Creative Writing option must have already been admitted to, or be eligible to apply to, the English: Language and Literature major. A student may apply to the English major and for the Creative Writing option simultaneously, but admission to the Creative Writing option will be contingent upon acceptance to and declaration of the English major. (The Creative Writing option is not available to Evening Degree Program students; it is offered in the day program only.)
Applications for the Creative Writing option are accepted in Autumn, Winter, and Spring Quarters, and should be submitted to the Creative Writing office, B-25 Padelford, by the third Friday of the quarter at 4:00pm. Applications are not accepted in Summer Quarter.
To be eligible to apply for the Creative Writing option, you must
Submit two sets of the following application materials:
1. Undergraduate Creative Writing Option Application(two copies) Transcripts for all college work completed, both at the UW and elsewhere (these are additional sets of transcripts, separate from the transcripts you will have supplied as part of your application for the major):
2. A Writing Sample (two copies) of 3-5
poems and 5-10 pages of fiction (preferably a complete
- Do not include genre fiction
See our basic guidelines on writing samples. Though genre fiction in general -- and the shifting and ambiguous boundaries between genre fiction and literary fiction -- merits a much longer discussion, in a nutshell, beginning writers applying to the creative writing option in the major should steer clear of submitting as their writing samples any stories that include one or more of the following: dragons, knights, princesses in distress, private eyes investigating murders, cold war spies, spaceships, aliens, entire civilizations on other planets, gunslingers in the Old West, zombies, wizards, alternative realities, and the like. For additional information, see articles from Wikipedia and The New Yorker on genre fiction.
- Be sure to proofread carefully.
Admission to the Creative Writing option is competitive; completion of the requirements above does not guarantee admission.
Students who are denied admission to the Creative Writing option will continue to be English majors, and may complete the requirements for the literature BA in English. They may apply for the Creative Writing option one additional time, but if they are denied admission then, they must complete the literature major or elect another major in another department.
Department of English Admission and Continuation Policy (rules for satisfactory
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