Even if your interest in creative writing and literature is that of a hobbyist rather than an academic, the skills you can expect to gain from this course will be highly transferable to other areas, particularly within the humanities. The emphasis of the course is not only on developing a deeper understanding of your chosen subject area, but also in training broader skills in research, communication, analysis and independent study.
The Extended Project
As with all of the Oxford Gap Year programmes, the Creative Writing and Literature course focuses on the production of an extended piece of writing that the student must research and produce independently under the guidance of our tutors. Students on the Creative Writing and Literature Gap Year programme have the choice to write an academic thesis, such as an evaluation of a particular text or texts, or to focus on producing an extended piece of creative writing, which might be a series of poems, a novella, a collection of short stories or something else along similar lines.
The quiet and reflective atmosphere of Yarnton Manor is highly conducive to writing and previous residents have found that whether strolling in the grounds or sitting in the manor house, inspiration strikes at all times. Support from academic tutors and small group tutorials ensure that students remain motivated and are equipped with the tools necessary to produce their work to the highest standard. Many great writers such as J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis and Philip Pullman have found inspiration in Oxford. Its dreaming spires, grand buildings and quiet secluded writing spots will allow you to follow in their footsteps.
After Orientation Week, tutorials at our International Study Centre begin. This phase introduces the student to some of the fundamental areas of Creative Writing and Literature. A variety of core modules will be studied, of which the following are a sample:
- Shakespeare: Poetry to Stage
- The Evolution of the Novel
- Genre Fiction: Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror
- Writing for Stage and Screen
- Ways to find inspiration to write: A Practical Guide
Students will gain a foundation of knowledge on which to build when they embark upon the independent work of their Project, as well as being exposed to renowned, classic and contemporary British authors such as Shakespeare, Jane Austin and J.K Rowling. Students will be expected to do considerable out-of-class study during this phase in order to expand their breadth and depth of knowledge beyond that which can be taught in timetabled sessions and to study any areas not covered in class that they feel would be valuable for their thesis.