World Building: Science Fiction & Creative Writing

Single Semester Course

What distinguishes science fiction from other kinds of fiction? How do we establish rules for an imagined universe? Creating a believable story requires context and rules; science fiction inherently changes the rules of our existing world to say something new.

In this class, we will explore a wide range of classic and modern science fiction stories and analyze how the authors build and communicate their vision. Students will assess the plausibility of different stories and discover how even speculative fiction about the future reflects the culture and society of its author. We will also analyze how great stories use structure and style to surprise their readers while also explaining a believable and compelling new world. Sources will include short-story collections, videos, and short novels.