Prepared Courses (Syllabus available upon email request)
Queering Poetry (8-week course)
Queering Poetry: A Workshop is a weekly generative creative writing space for poets who self-identify as queer. In this space, we will explore the craft of writing, produce edited/finalized work in community and foster our creativity in an affirming poetic space. Sponsored by the Q Youth Foundation and Influx Collectiv(e)’s Queer Poetry Reading Series, the seminar will consist of poets responding to and writing towards specific prompts designed to add some generative constraints towards each poets practice (plus bonus prompts if desired!). At the end of the seminar, poets will select their favorite pieces to be workshopped, after the workshop and subsequent edits, these pieces will eventually be published in an anthology that documents the creative works produced in the workshop. Poets will also get the opportunity to perform these works during a public showcase: The workshop will culminate in a final public reading, September 28th 2019, 6pm at Expo Park LAPL.
Folks who are selected participants in the workshop will get the opportunity to write and respond to at least 8 prompts/poetic writing exercises, develop poetic editing skills to enhance the work in finalized drafts, build queer poetry community in their city, and discover/read queer poetry from contemporary creatives.
Creative Writing: Queer Experiments (12 week course)
Creative Writing: Queer Experiments will look at a survey of intersectional texts written by authors who define themselves as LGBTQ. From Maggie Nelson, to Joe Brainard, to Danez Smith, to CA Conrad, to Audre Lorde and Gloria Anzaldua, we will read a broad survey of texts written by authors who identify within the LGBTQ community and will investigate the questions: What is queer writing? What does it mean to be a queer writer? What are queer experiments? What is the purpose or the intention behind breaking form rules? What does it mean to queer something? How does a marginalized identity transfer into words on a page? Are queer writers only doing queer experiments when they are discussing “queer topics”? What does the experimental form enable the author to unearth? For whom are queer experimental books written? Do new stories need to be told in new forms? Do new stories get lost in new forms? What is a “new” story? Does creating an exact definition of queer experimental writing limit forms of queer expression? At what point does an experiment become popularized and canonical?
By the end of the course students will have a portfolio of strange experimental prose and poetry pieces, and an understanding of what queer writers are creating now.
Because the terms queer writing and experimental writing can have profoundly varied definitions, we will spend time discussing and creating a lexicon of shared language to discuss this topic. In terms of logistics, this course will be divided into several units separated by the content and form of the texts. We will be analyzing specific books and the experimental techniques they employ. The first unit will introduce queer writing with some primary and essential queer theorists and will also introduce some key terms that will become essential in our discussions. Units two and three will investigate queer lists (the power of accumulation in a narrative) and the queering of words and language. The fourth unit will queer prompts and the fifth unit will analyze form as a tool to correct historic inaccuracies. These first four units will require creative writing and imitation of queer forms. The final written assignment will be the only analytical paper which involves creating a guideline as to what constitutes a queer experimental text.
This is a reading and creative writing heavy course. We will be looking at pieces of writing that metaphorically and symbolically rip the heads off Barbies, we will then imitate said writing styles and rip heads off Barbies ourselves. In other words, we will be reading writers who break the rules and then breaking the rules ourselves.
Selected Student Feedback:
- “My [TA] for this class was phenomenal. Cori was able to help me find truth and acceptance in my personal writings; she was able to help me extend on and challenge my writing; an enlightening experience.”
- “Every time I have a session with her; I learn something new about English.”
- “Cori was extremely helpful. She taught me a new way to be descriptive. She told me everything I needed to fix on my essays.”
- “I felt comfortable with Cori. Not one second did I feel judged.”
- “She is a strong reader and has an in depth mental library. Lots to draw from.”
- “Cori was able to inspire me to write about something more personal by asking me questions.”
- “She helped me become a better writer.”
- “The session I had with Cori was always amazing. She helped me organize thoughts in my writing and gave me confidence so I could keep working on it.”
- “Exceptional understanding & teaching skills.”
- “She has helped me tremendously with my essays.”
- “She is understanding, approachable and very helpful.”
- “Cori is such a great mentor & is so invested in helping us the best she can.”
- “She was critical in helping to fully understand direction given by the instruction.”
- The section “helped me understand the reading better. Inspiring and helpful.”
- “She’s great!” and “had a great understanding of the content and was great at explaining to the group.”
- “I got better at critical thinking.”
- “She was prepared and understood opinions with an open mind.”
- “Very helpful and supportive.”
- “She knows each and every concept that has been talked about and led the students to dive into the conversation well.”
- “Cori always explained the information in a way that seemed more manageable and less daunting.”
- “Amazing writing coach and best of all a person you could rely on when you have problems. She was a wonderful TA.”