ELEMENTS OF NARRATIVE - 2017/8

Module code: ELI2035

Module provider

School of Literature and Languages

Module Leader

VLITOS PM Dr (Lit & Langs)

Number of Credits

15

ECT Credits

15

Framework

FHEQ Level 5

JACs code

W800

Module cap (Maximum number of students)

45

Module Availability

Semester 1

Overall student workload

Workshop Hours: 20

Lecture Hours: 10

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework CREATIVE WRITING SUBMISSION (2000 WORDS) AND REFLEXIVE CRITICAL COMMENTARY (500 WORDS) 100%

Alternative Assessment

N/A

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

Students must be enrolled in the English and Creative Writing programme, or be taking Creative Writing as their minor pathway or have completed at least one previous Creative Writing module at the University of Surrey. At the discretion of the module co-ordinator students who have not previously completed a Creative Writing module at the University of Surrey but who submit to the module co-ordinator a portfolio of 1000-1500 words of creative writing (poetry, prose, screenplay or dramatic script) may also be admitted to this module.   This module has a capped number and may not be available to ERASMUS and other international exchange students. Please check with the departmental exchange coordinator.

Module overview

This module explores the varied formal and technical challenges facing creative writers, examining the affordances and constraints of different modes of writing and the cultural, historical and theoretical contexts which impact upon text production and reception. It seeks to promote fuller critical awareness of the cultures and contexts of text design, and translate this awareness into more effective creative practice.

Module aims

Further develop their confidence and experience in producing effective creative writing

Heighten their awareness of the stylistic and technical considerations involved in text production

Enhance their ability to examine their own work critically and have a better understanding of the processes of editing and revision

Develop the ability to formulate their creative aims more clearly and effectively

Locate their own creative practice more fully in relation to literary, historical, theoretical and cultural contexts

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
Show evidence of increased confidence and familiarity with the techniques of creative writing KPT
Demonstrate an enhanced ability to produce lucid and critically-informed commentary on their own creative writing KCPT
Demonstrate fuller understanding of the contextual forces shaping text production and of the creative affordances and constraints of different media KCPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Module content

Indicative content includes:

Week 1

Lecture

Introductory Lecture

This lecture gives an overview of the module, its rationale and the themes and aspects to be covered in the course of the semester.

 

Week 2

Lecture

Verbal and Visual Narratives I: Setting the Scene

In this lecture we discuss the consequences for storytelling of some of the differences between the visual and the verbal, with particular emphasis on how different modes of narrative establish mood, setting and narrative expectations.

 

Week 3

Lecture

Verbal and Visual Narratives II: Establishing Character

This lecture examines the different ways in which verbal and visual narratives are able to establish and convey aspects of fictional character.

 

Week 4

Lecture

Verbal and Visual Narratives III: Focalization

This lecture will discuss the different means by which a ‘point of view’ can be established in verbal and visual narratives. From whose perspective is this story being told, and what creative and interpretative implications does this have? 

 

Week 5

Lecture

Verbal and Visual Narratives IV: Telling Time

In what ways do verbal and visual narratives differ when it comes to the handling of issues of  temporality? How can different modes of storytelling convey the passing of time, for example? This lecture will examine different critical attempts to describe and analyze the relationship between time and fictional narration – and to explore the implications of this relationship for creative writers.

 

Week 6

Lecture

Representing Speech

This lecture explores the relationship between the spoken word and the written word. It asks: How have different writers attempted to represent speech on the page? What are the implications of using phonetic spelling to represent spoken accents? What do we mean by ‘realistic’ speech and dialogue? In what ways is this desirable and how can it be achieved?

 

Week 7

Lecture

Drafting, Redrafting, Editing and Revising

This lecture will examine the most effective ways of redrafting, editing and revising creative work, with reference to the techniques employed by a range of contemporary writers.

 

 

Week 8

Lecture

Rhetorical Devices I: Prose

This lecture will explore a variety of common rhetorical techniques and their use in crafting a memorable, persuasive piece of creative prose.

 

Week 9

Lecture

Rhetorical Devices II: Poetry

This lecture will explore a range of common rhetorical techniques and how they have been used in crafting a memorable, persuasive piece of poetry. It will also examine the specificities of poetic syntax.

 

Week 10

Lecture

Lecture

Dramatic Structure

This lecture will explore the challenges of structuring dramatic writing, and will explore the differences and similarities in the technical demands of writing for the page and writing for stage, screen or radio.

 

Week 11

Lecture

Adaptations

This lecture concludes our examination of the possibilities and limitations of different narrative modes by examining a range of adaptations from page to screen, and reflecting upon the theoretical and practical issues raised when a written text is adapted into a film – or vice versa.

 

Christmas Vacation

 

Week 12

Revision

 

Weeks 13

Exams/Assessment

 

Weeks 14

Exams/Assessment

 

Week 15

Reading week preparing materials for semester 2 modules

 

Assessment Deadlines:

 

Creative Writing:

Essay:

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

 

Introduce students to a range of technical considerations in the composition of creative prose, poetry dramatic script and screenplay. It is also designed to encourage and enable them to reflect in a historically, theoretically and critically informed manner upon their own work and on the writing of others. It is designed to encourage them to discuss and evaluate different technical decisions made during the creative process and to reflect upon the implications and effects of these decisions.

 

The learning and teaching methods include:

 


Lectures (11 hours)
Workshops (22 hours) – These involve both disucssion and parctical exercises and the presentation of creative work to the group.

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate

 



Their technical accomplishment in their chosen branch(es) of creative practice


Their ability to reflect critically upon their own work, and locate it productively in relation to the themes of the module and it literary, critical and theoeretical context more generally

 

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of a portfolio composed of:

 


Creative Writing submission (2000 words)

 


Reflexive Critical Commentary (500 words)

 

To be submitted at a date near the end of the semester.

 

Formative assessment and feedback

 

Students receive formative feedback in the form of:


Peer and tutor verbal feedback in class on work produced during writing exercises, which may be developed for inclusion in the Creative Writing portfolio.



Peer and tutor feedback during two workshop sessions in the middle and near the end of the semester, in which they have a chance to read and discuss their work (verbal and/or written)

Reading list

Reading list for ELEMENTS OF NARRATIVE : http://aspire.surrey.ac.uk/modules/eli2035

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2017/8 academic year.