ACU Department of Language and Literature is adding a new course next semester called World’s Greatest Micro Narratives. English professor Al Haley will instruct the class.
The class is an experiment designed to demonstrate that less really is more. Students will read a number of books related to the theme and will also create their own works like short poems, three-minute films and micro fictions.
Haley was asked to teach the class by Dr. Cole Bennett, department chair and associate professor of English, earlier this year.
“When Dr. Bennett asked me to teach Special Topics in Creative Writing for Spring 2013, it gave me the opportunity to dream up any course I wanted as long as it related to writing and reading,” Haley said. “I’ve long admired the concept of ‘less is more’ in everything from architecture to the Lord’s Prayer. That led me to make a study of short narratives in several genres. It’s been my goal of trying to figure out how I can learn to write as concisely as possible and still move my readers’ emotions.”
Because the class privileges brevity, Haley expects students will be motivated to take it.
“Students can expect short readings and short homework assignments. Does it get any better than that?” Haley said. “Students are eager to study things that are happening right now. I think students will enjoy exercises in which they’ll write something short.”
Anthony Hill, sophomore music major from Godley, was a little skeptical after hearing about the class.
“Well, obviously that sounds great as far as from a student’s perspective,” Hill said. “Less homework equals more time spent on other things. It really depends on how the class is set up. I’d be scared that I wasn’t getting all I could out of the class.”
Haley has two things he hopes students will take away from the class.
“The first goal is that students scrutinize all forms of short communications they encounter in everyday life,” Haley said. “The second is for students to become more creative individuals. To make that happen they’re going to try creating all kinds of micro narratives of their own.”