University of Houston-Victoria students in an “Introduction to Creative Writing” class will face their fears by reading their manuscripts to an audience for the first time.
Jaguar Stories was the idea of Christine Granados, a lecturer in the UHV School of Arts & Sciences and the class instructor. The event will be from 3 to 4 p.m. May 10 in the Alcorn Auditorium of UHV University West, 3007 N. Ben Wilson St. It is free and open to the public.
Students will read five minutes of material from the short stories and book chapters they have worked on throughout the semester. Students are not required to read their stories during the event but are highly encouraged, Granados said.
“Jaguar Stories will be good practice for reading to an audience,” she said. “People write because they want to share their stories, and it’s important that they do share them.”
“Introduction to Creative Writing” is open to all students and part of the new bachelor’s degree in creative writing program which started in the fall. The online class spent the semester writing and critiquing each other’s work.
“Teaching the students to be fearless in their writing is the hardest part for me as an instructor,” Granados said. “But their excitement about writing gives me hope that there are people out there who like to read and tell stories.”
UHV sophomore Sara Ramos was nervous to join the online class.
“I’ve always enjoyed writing but still was intimidated to start the class because I wasn’t used to others reading what I wrote,” she said. “I liked the fact that I didn’t know the other students in the online class, so their critiques of my stories were easier for me to take.”
Ramos said that throughout the semester, she got to know the other students through their stories and critiques. The biggest thing she learned in class is to write what she knows. That’s why Ramos’ final exam writing piece is the first chapter of a book she plans to complete later. The story “Gone” is about the death of her father and is told through the eyes of her niece.
“I’m not sure if I am emotionally ready to read my story during the event,” she said. “But this class has inspired me to want to take more creative writing classes and continue telling my stories.”