Introduction to Creative Writing

Become a better writer and learn the creative writing techniques that turn good ideas into great stories.

This four-week introductory course will teach you all the key components to great storytelling, including how to develop characters, setting, and the narrative arc. You will learn important tools, such as point of view, dialog, themes, symbolism, and metaphor. All throughout the course, your instructor will provide you with personalized feedback on your writing, so that you improve your writing skills. You will also connect with fellow students and share feedback with each other, which can be a great way to gain insights and perspectives from your readers. 

Whether to develop your creative ideas or prepare for writing essays, this course will help you create lively characters and vivid settings that jump off the page. By the end of the course, you will produce a piece of short fiction and have a set of tools that will allow you to flourish as a writer. 

What you will learn:

✔ Write well-crafted fiction   
✔ Sketch characters with wants and fears that propel the narrative of your story    
✔ Write dialogue that develops your characters     
✔ Create vivid settings with details that are significant and support the characters   
✔ Write metaphors that are thematically linked to your characters and settings 

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What you need to participate:

  • Computer or mobile device with Internet. Internet speed must be at least 1.5Mbps download and 800Kbps upload. For students using a mobile device, download the Canvas mobile app and select “Interlochen Online” as your school.
  • Flying Lessons & Other Stories, a collection of stories edited by Ellen Oh 
  • Word processing program, such as Google Docs or Microsoft Word, that can create PDF files
  • (Optional) Paper notebook and pen/pencil

How the course works:

Interlochen Online courses are designed to be inspiring and flexible with weekly learning units that combine video segments and guided instruction that you can complete on your own schedule during the week. You will interact regularly with your instructor and peers inside the learning environment. 

You can also participate in an optional weekly hour-long video class meeting, where you can learn from the instructor and interact with fellow students in real-time. At the beginning of the course, you will complete a survey indicating your preferred times for the class meeting. The instructor will make every best effort to identify a meeting time that works for everyone. The instructor will also post recordings of the meetings and you can view them when it is convenient. 

The goal is that you walk away not only with practical skills and connections but that you are inspired and motivated to pursue your art and realize your potential.

Upcoming Course Dates

July 15 - Aug. 9, 2024 | Teen and adult sections

Sept. 16 - Oct. 12, 2024 | Teen and adult sections




Teens: Grades 6-12

Adult Learners: 18+

Future Sessions

Academic Calendar

Dianca London Potts

Instructor of Creative Writing

Jeni McFarland

Instructor of Creative Writing

Questions? Speak with an Advisor.


Phone: 231.276.5990 

You can also schedule an appointment.

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