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SKETCHING AUTOBIOGRAPHIX AND POETRY COMICS

Amaris Ketcham, ketchama@unm.edu
Nora Hickey, nhickey@unm.edu

 

COURSE DESCRIPTION (BLOCK COURSE)
Creative writing and comics have more in common than you might think. Image has been a cornerstone of poetry for a century. We ask that writers "show" instead of "tell." When we hear a good story, we want to be able to visualize it. More and more artists are starting to draw from creative writing to create autobiographical and lyrical comics. Memoir is perhaps one of the most democratic forms of writing—anyone who has lived and been passionate about a subject can write one. Many of the autobiographix (drawn memoir) we will read in this course act as eyewitness accounts of history. Students will delve into coming of age stories that take place during wars and social upheaval. They will explore lyricism and its relationship to image, the power of text when joined with art, and the various forms in which we can create poetry and memoir comics. In this block course, students will enroll in two sections of UHON 302 to practice writing and sketching both poetry and essay comics. They will analyze examples, learn the history of comics, and ultimately, create their own comics. There will be opportunity to create and experiment in class, and workshop works in progress. Open to creatives of all levels and abilities--no background in art or creative writing necessary. 

 

READINGS AND TEXTS
Scott McCloud Understanding Comics 
Alison Bechdel Fun Home 
John Lewis March 
Marjane Satrapi Persepolis 
Art Spiegelman Maus 
Lucy Knisley An Age of License 
Bianca Stone Book of Hours 

Plus a reader with selections that inform us on memoir, poetry, historical context, and craft.

 

FILMS AND OTHER COURSE MATERIALS
TBD

 

STUDENT REQUIREMENTS
Active participation 
Several in-class assignments 
Five take-home assignments 
Two Presentations 
10-15-page final comic 
One short reflection and analysis essay

 

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTORS
Amaris Ketcham earned her M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the Inland Northwest Center for Writers at Eastern Washington University. Amaris has published essays, poetry, and short fiction in a variety of magazines, anthologies, and online venues. Her teaching interests include creative writing, fine arts, graphic design, and print and digital production. She currently serves as the Faculty Advisor for Scribendi, the Honors College and Western Regional Honors Council literature and arts magazine. 

Nora Hickey teaches composition, reading, humanities and creative writing courses at the University of New Mexico and Santa Fe University of Art and Design. Her work has appeared in Bennington Review, the Massachusetts Review, Guernica and other journals. She podcasts with City on the Edge, a show about all things Albuquerque.