Review Comment

GS fiction workshop

December 28, 2004

Nunez, Sigrid
GS fiction workshop

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

While Sigrid seemed harsh at times during the year (she will totally trash your fiction submission and make workshop a living hell if she doesn't like you - even if you submit a good piece) she grades fairly. She offers direct, decisive commentary that can be helpful if you can stop the copious amounts of blood and bile spilling out of your heart after dealing with her workshop. I'm not a particularly sensitive workshopper - and I cringed not only for myself but for several of my classmates over the course of the semester. Sigrid seemed to favor the two male students in the class - and her tendency toward astonishing displays of favoritism made me very uncomfortable and angry. However - I learned a lot. My skin got thicker. And I wrote some of my best fiction in an attempt to appease her with my final portfolio. The class was challenging, difficult, frustrating, insane, aggravating, impossible, but not worthless. Somewhere between a hit and a miss.

Workload:

two submissions over the semester. a 30-40 page portfolio at the end which is 100% of the grade - and gave me an ulcer.

April 30, 2004

Harrison, Colin
GS fiction workshop

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

Colin is a successful novelist and book editor who has helped at least one GS writing student get published. You have to listen closely, because he doesn't say much, but he does offer excellent criticism to students he thinks are worthy. But don't be fooled by his humor and apparently casual attitude. He's merciless toward students who are not professional material. And he'll tell you so, but not until the last class. That's when he offers his philosophy about how to be a successful author: "It's okay to be an asshole, as long as it all goes into your writing." Right.

Workload:

three short stories per semester. and they better be good.

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