The Writing Program

In most writing programs, students must complete two years of liberal arts requirements before they are allowed to begin writing. At Pratt, writing majors start writing on the first day of freshman year and continue for the next four years, completing a book-length work of poetry, fiction or creative nonfiction as a senior thesis. In other words, they learn by doing and by having their efforts rigorously responded to in critiques by hard-working peers and inspired, accomplished instructors.

Along the way, writing majors read widely and deeply in contemporary and classical literatures; they study literary and media theory, science and math, grammar and logic. But the primary focus is on writing, and the curriculum flows outward from and is fueled by writing as the chief activity. Beyond the writing studios that form the core of the curriculum are more specialized, tutorial-sized courses such as The Book as Compositional Form, How to Break into Journalism, Screenplay Writing, Blogging, The Graphic Novel, Crime Writing, Bending Genre, and Experimental Fiction.

The writing program also takes full advantage of the fact that it is located in New York City, arguably the publishing capital of the world, and in Brooklyn, the borough now most densely populated with writers and artists. New York City provides brilliant faculty, an endless stream of famous writers who come to campus to read from their work or serve as Writers-in-Residence, and a host of internship opportunities at institutions ranging from St. Mark’s Poetry Project to Saturday Night Live.

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