Division of Interdisciplinary Inquiry: Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing
Professional Title: M.F.A. Creative Writing Faculty
Areas of Academic Focus and Expertise: Writing for Stage and Screen
Representative List of Recent Courses Taught: Distance-Learning Courses: Creative Writing I-IV; Craft and Reflection I-III; Graduating Seminar Preparation; Creative Thesis; Residency Seminars: Dialogue Across Genres; Heightened Reality: The World of the Absurd
Education: B.A., English Literature, Kansas University; B.A., Speech and Drama, Wichita State University; London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, Post-Graduate Certificate; M.A.,Creative Writing, Boston University
Representative List of Recent Publications / Exhibitions:
Teaching Philosophy: At its core, teaching is a partnership (it's just you and me). I have a passion for storytelling - whether it's on the stage or on the screen, and my favorite thing to do is to talk about the infinite varieties of story. As a teacher I consider it my calling to open doors, not to close them. I try to listen, not only to you and what you want to accomplish and why you're writing and what you want the audience to understand, but also to what the play/screenplay itself wants to do, say, accomplish. Sometimes we writers are not sure what we're writing about or even why we're writing it; we're simply trying to get something out onto the page so we can understand it and then shape it in a meaningful way. And sometimes our intellects get in the way of our instincts - especially in the first drafts. I try to listen to the play's instincts most of all - sometimes they are smarter than we are. And I ask a lot of questions. Answers are not so helpful in the long run - they're an easy fix, but questions are helpful. Questions open doors to solutions. Finally, I want you to come away knowing your strengths and weaknesses so you can continue to grow in the "real" world. Therefore, I revere so-called "failure." It's where we learn the most, and it sets us on a path toward success. I hate to mention the dreaded word "process," but writing is one, and once we understand this, we retain power over our writing. And we should all be so very powerful.Awards: Elliot Norton Award 2012 for Sustained Excellence, Heideman Award, IRNE award (twice), Dramatists' Guild Commendation, Milan Stitt Award for Outstanding Teacher of Playwriting, Leonides A. Nickole Theatre Educator of the Year Award, Huntington Playwriting Fellow, Outstanding Achievement in Theater Arts Education Award, Theatre Hero Award (Stagesource), AATC National Steinberg Award nomination, Best Play Award (Southeast Theatre Conference and Mississippi Theatre Association), David Mark Cohen Award (2nd place), Creative Writing Fellowship in Fiction (Wichita State University MFA in Creative Writing Program).
Current Affiliations: Boston University, member of A.E.A., A.F.T.R.A., and the Dramatists' Guild. Artistic Director of both the Elliot Norton Award-winning Boston Theater Marathon and Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott's Boston Playwrights' Theatre. National Chair of Playwriting at the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival and a Playwriting Fellow with the Huntington Theatre Company.Past Affiliations: MIT, Wellesley College, Suffolk University, ART Institute for Advanced Theatre Training, Boston College.
MFA in Creative Writing
Program of Study
Message from the Faculty
Writing for Stage and Screen
Writing for Young People
The Graphic Novel and Comics
Frequently Asked QuestionsPartnerships
Tuition and Fees
Letter from the Dean
Office of the Dean Staff
Graduate School of Arts and Social Sciences Home
888.LESLEY.U / 617.349.8300
Request more information
Schedule a campus visit
Get your application started today!