Picador Seminars by Emily Nemens

As part of her tenure in the winter term of 2022/23, Picador Professor Emily Nemens will teach two classes at American Studies Leipzig.


Writing the Short Story

Wednesdays, 3:15-4:45

There is no “right” way to write a story, but in this participatory introductory writing course, we’ll break down and examine the individual elements of story writing to understand the component parts—including character, plot, setting, and style—to see how stories are constructed. Through in-class exercises and discussion of notable contemporary and historic stories, we’ll discuss elements of short fiction, then try our hand at our own stories. Over the course of the term, students will have the opportunity to share works in progress, give each other feedback, and revise their stories.

This class, formally comprising a 45-minute seminar followed by a 45-minute tutorial, forms the BA Professional Skills Module “Creative Writing: Imagining America” (5 credits). More information on this module is available here.


The Narrative of American Sport

Thursdays, 3:15-4:45

American sports writing long ago transcended the newspaper recap and box score; in the last century and vibrantly today, writers have explored sports in genres as diverse as novels to literary essays to poems, examining the psychology of competition and the dimensions of fandom. In this discussion-based seminar for MA students, we’ll look at sports literature, including longform reportage, fiction, poetry, and film—to understand the history, contemporary breadth, and potential futures of sports storytelling, and what these literatures can tell us about American culture.

This seminar is part of the MA module “Culture, Consumption, Identity.”