Master of Fine Arts (Creative Writing)

  • Roses at the Drumheller Fountain

Program Overview

The Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing is a two year program offering a degree in either Poetry or Prose, and is a part of the English Department's Creative Writing Program. Founded in 1947 by Theodore Roethke, the Creative Writing Program's tradition of transformative workshops continues with our current faculty: David Bosworth, David Crouse, Rae Paris, David Shields, and Maya Sonenberg (Prose), and Linda Bierds, Andrew Feld, Richard Kenney, and Pimone Triplett (Poetry). They include among their many honors fellowships from the MacArthur Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts. The list of our alumni publications represents a significant chapter in the history of American literature. The program has been ranked among the top ten in the country.

Students participate in writing workshops in prose and poetry, and undertake coursework in literary periods and types, and critical theory. MFA candidates also present a Creative Manuscript (minimum 30 poems,100 pages of 5 short stories and/or personal essays, or 150 pages of a novel or book-length essay), a Critical Essay (20-30 pages, addressing the student's relationship to his or her reading based on the student's own writerly concerns and studies), and an oral presentation (a discussion with and/or questions from the candidate's thesis committee on the creative manuscript, critical essay, and/or the writing process and which may include a reading from the candidate's Creative Manuscript).

The program admits only ten to twelve students each year. The relatively small size of our program (20-25 students) allows for close associations to develop among students and faculty. The first year is devoted to participation in workshops and literary seminars, and the second year allows for concentrated work on a creative manuscript and critical essay under the supervision of one of our regular faculty.

Students are funded through Teaching Assistantships, Fellowships, and a long-standing relationship with the Amazon Literary Partnership.

Students also enjoy Seattle's lively literary and arts scene. Seattle is home to numerous reading series, the Seattle International Film Festival, and many highly-acclaimed theater companies. Surrounded by spectacular scenery, Seattle is minutes away from hiking, skiing, and boating.

Learn more about UW's Creative Writing Program.

Application Information

Application materials are due January 2 (or the first business day after January 1st). Initial offers of admission are usually made by mid-March.

Funding Opportunities

We offer a funding package to all admitted MFA students for two academic years. Learn more about the funding package and other funding opportunities here: MFA Funding and Support.

MFA Degree Requirements & Program Guide

The MFA is designed to be completed within six full-time quarters (two academic years). MFA students can refer to the MFA Degree Requirements and MFA Program Guide.

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