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Creative Writing: One Book Semester

One Book Semester

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Program Contacts

Fred Leebron
Program Director

Melissa Bashor
Administrative Director

Buffa Short
Program Assistant

Program Office:

Spend six months working on your prose or poetry manuscript with a senior editor from a major publishing house.

Enrollment is limited. MFA graduates from any program and other experienced writers are encouraged to apply. We strongly encourage applicants to already have a first draft of the manuscript completed by the time the program starts.

 2017 Faculty

Barbara Jones
Executive Editor, Henry Holt and Company
Novels, memoir, and other narrative nonfiction

Megan Lynch
Senior Editor, Riverhead Books
Fiction and narrative nonfiction 

How the Program Works

Students may begin either in September or in January. Students beginning in September begin the program with an hour phone conversation with your editor to discuss the project in detail.

The semester begins with a special program on campus, January 12-14, 2017 where you will meet your editor and work face-to-face on the first 25 pages of your manuscript. Six weeks later, you'll email your editor the next 75 pages, and your editor will respond with a substantive critique. You'll repeat the process every six weeks through June, by which time your editor will have read and critiqued your entire manuscript, up to 325 pages for prose, or 100 pages for poetry.

This program carries 12 hours of academic credit. Because it is not part of a degree program, it is not eligible for federal financial aid. Academic credit from the program may be applied torward the MFA degree at Queens.

Application Requirements and Costs

We require a completed application form, a writing sample, and a $50 application fee. Apply online or by mail.

Applications will be reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis, and admitted applicants will be notified within a few weeks. The last day to submit or postmark an application is October 1. Decisions will be returned by November 8.

Tuition is $7,345 and does not include travel or housing costs for the initial weekend on campus. Tuition is payable in full by December 1.

The Writing Sample

The writing sample must be 20-30 double-spaced pages of prose (fiction or nonfiction), or  10-15 pages of poetry. The first page of your writing sample should be a cover-sheet with your name, email address, genre (fiction, nonfiction, or poetry), and a one-paragraph synopsis of your book project. Please include page numbers and your name at the top of every page of your sample.

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