Creative Writing

UTC offers a B.A. and M.A. with a Creative Writing concentration. Students take a wide-range of course and can emphasize fiction, creative nonfiction, or poetry with award-winning faculty.

The program also includes several opportunities to get involved in English department publications and the biannual Meacham Writers' Workshop.

Our students, and the Sequoya Review, have won first prizes prize in poetry and fiction and second prize in Literary Magazines at the Southern Literary Festival. More than twenty UTC undergrads have gone on to publish almost fifty books. One recent graduate received a $100,000 advance for her YA novel, to be published in 2016.

Many have gone onto teach at various levels here and abroad and have entered the publishing and advertising fields. Former graduates include

  • Writer for the TV series Better Call Saul
  • Macarthur Genius Award winner
  • NEA and Whiting fellowship winners 

Recent alumni have gone on to jobs in editing, publishing, and technical writing in Chattanooga and beyond: 

  • Senior Writer, Mohawk Industries (Chattanooga area)
  • Copyeditor and brand voice manager at Bellhops (Chattanooga)
  • Photographer—currently in Serbia photographing refugees
  • Marketing, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Senior Editor, Field and Stream
  • Producer of popular podcast, Everything Is Stories

A minimum of 39 hours English in addition to general education requirements including:

English Core:
ENGL 2010 - Introduction to Literary Analysis
ENGL 2050 - Introduction to Rhetorical Analysis
ENGL 2130 - Survey of American Literature
ENGL 2230 - Survey of British Literature
ENGL 3340 - Shakespeare

One course from:

ENGL 3710 Reading Like A Writer: Fiction
ENGL 3720 Reading Like A Writer: The Short Lyric Tradition
ENGL 3730 Reading Like a Writer: Creative Nonfiction

12 hours of major course work chosen from the following writing courses:

ENGL 3740r - Creative Writing: Nonfiction
ENGL 3750r - Creative Writing: Poetry
ENGL 3760r - Creative Writing: Fiction
ENGL 4720r - Advanced Short Story Workshop
ENGL 4820 - Writing with Style
ENGL 4860 - Visual Rhetoric
ENGL 4910r - Writing Workshop
ENGL 4920r – Novel Writing Workshop
ENGL 4930r – Speculative Fiction
ENGL 4940r – Short Prose Collections

One course from the following to satisfy the Senior Capstone Requirement:
ENGL 4960r - Internship
ENGL 4980 - Senior Seminar: Special Topics
ENGL 4994r - Departmental Practicum
ENGL 4995r - Departmental Thesis

Additional 3000-4000 level English courses to total at least 27 upper-level hours.

Completion of at least one additional 3000-4000 level literature class.


The Department of English is home to several publications, including Poetry Miscellany, The Tennessee Philological Bulletin, MidAmerica, Midwestern Miscellany, and The Tennessee English Journal. Our students often participate in the production of these publications. Visit the Publications page for more informtation on each.

The Sequoya Review is UTC's Literary and Arts magazine. This magazine aims to publish engaging, immediate creative writing and visual art by Chattanooga students.  Everyone is encouraged to submit and all works will be judged anonymously and impartially under the condition of blind submission. Please visit the Sequoya Review website for more details!

The Meacham Writers’ Workshop, hosted by UTC twice a year, is free and open to the public. Former visiting writers include: Phil Levine, James Tate, Tomaz Salamun, Mary Ruefle, Dara Wier, William Matthews, Stanley Plumly, Marvin Bell, Bret Lott, Mark Cox, Mark Jarman, Gerald Stern, Tim O'Brien, Rebecca Makkai, Teddy Wayne and William Gay.

Former students who have returned as visiting writers include: Khaled Mattawa, Laurel Snyder, Paul Guest, Bradley Paul, Bridgette Bates, Ever Saskia, Jane Bradley, Cherie Priest.

The English Department sponsors several annual writing awards, scholarships, and the (K-12) Young Southern Student Writers Contest. Learn more here.