Creative Writing Minor

Welcome to the website for the East Tennessee State University Minor in Creative Writing.  We're pleased to offer students rigorous and diverse coursework in fiction and poetry, as well as a variety of electives in drama, creative nonfiction and screenwriting. Over the years we've been proud to host many great writers on campus, including Tayari Jones, Ron Rash, Fred Chappell, James Dickey, Cris Mazza, Li-Young Lee, Robert Bausch and many others.

The minor is open to students majoring in any discipline.  We will update this space regularly with news on events and opportunities in creative writing here at ETSU and across the region.

Feel free to browse through the website, and please contact the Director of the Creative Writing Minor,  , if you have any questions. 

Anthology Reading

On November 14th, 2013, poets from across East Tennessee gathered at the Carroll Reece Museum, ETSU, to celebrate the release of The Southern Poetry Anthology Volume VI: Tennessee

Upcoming Events:

Poet Heather Dobbins will be visiting ETSU on Tuesday, February 3rd, 2015. She will be reading from her poetry at 7 p.m. in the Ball Hall Auditorium, with a reception to follow. A roundtable discussion on poetry and the creative process, moderated by Dr. Jesse Graves, will take place before the reading at 4-5 p.m. in the East Tennessee Room on the 3rd floor of the D.P. Culp Center. Both events are free and open to the public. This event is sponsored by The Mary B. Martin School of the Arts and the ETSU Department of Literature & Language.

Past News:

The Southern Poetry Anthology Volume VI: Tennessee is available now. Volume VI is edited by Paul Ruffin, William Wright and our own Jesse Graves. Pick up a copy today and enjoy great poetry from across the state, including some fantastic work by writers right here in East Tennessee. You can find more information on the series website.

Jesse Graves' Tennessee Landscape with Blighted Pine has won the 2012 Weatherford Award for Poetry, presented by Berea College and the Appalachian Studies Association. This volume has also won the Appalachian Book of the Year Award, Poetry Category, from the Appalachian Writers Association. Graves has also won the New Faculty Award from the College of Arts & Sciences for the 2011-2012 academic year. His poem, "The Kingdom of the Dead," has been featured in the online edition of The Missouri Review.



Dr. Frederick O. Waage has two books forthcoming in 2015: a novel entitled The Birth Spoon, by Little Creek Books, and a poetry collection entitled This Mortal Earth, by Anaphora Literary Press.

Dr. Don Johnson recently presented a reading of his poetry as the 2014 Bingham Reader at Milton Academy. His fourth poetry collection, More Than Heavy Rain, was published in 2014. A video of Dr. Johnson reading at Milton Academy is available here.

Dr. Jesse Graves was recently awarded the Philip H. Freund Prize from Cornell University. His second poetry collection, Basin Ghosts, was published in 2014. Dr. Graves will receive the 2015 James Still Award for Writing about the Appalachian South from the Fellowship of Southern Writers during the Southern Lit Alliance's Celebration of Southern Literature in Chattanooga from April 16-18. You can find out more about Dr. Graves’ work on his website.

Dr. Mark D. Baumgartner was awarded first prize in Fugue's Annual Writing Contest, judged by novelist Kevin Canty, for a novel chapter entitled "The Great Siwash Shoe War." The work is featured in the Fall 2014 issue of Fugue, and was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Over the past year Dr. Baumgartner's fiction has appeared in Confrontation and Yemassee. His short story, "Diamonds and Rust," was a finalist for Bellingham Review's Tobias Wolff Award for Fiction, and appears in the Spring 2014 issue of the journal.