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Advanced Nonfiction Writing: Xfic cancelled

ENGL 145.301
instructor(s):
Tuesday 1:30-4:30pm

Are you interested in testing the boundaries of creative nonfiction? Do you have a crazy idea that you’d like to write for class credit and also get it published? Send a quick pitch to English 145: Xfic, Penn’s journal of experiential nonfiction, to earn course credit in English 145 and get published at the same time. For this issue, we will be loosely incorporating the theme of space. We even have a handful of stories in search of a writer. Are you the writer for this story? Let us know, and if you can tell us why you’re the writer for this angle, we’ll assign it to you!

  • researching/visiting an immigration detention center; or something related to immigration in general/xenophobia/the wall
  • Space Mirrors. Yes, there are actually scientists working to develop gigantic mirrors in space to deflect sunlight as to slow climate change. (One plan involves robotic space mirrors.)
  • Infiltrating a secret society. Think ultra-wealthy clubs, Freemasons (there’s a temple in Philly), Scientology (in Philadelphia too!), secret societies at Penn…
  • Flat earth society/moon landing deniers
  • Researching/visiting a slaughterhouse/meat production plant. What goes on in places consumers aren't supposed to see?
  • For some reason, we’re interested in that giant explosion at the refinery in Philadelphia last summer. If you’ve ever seen it from above while crossing the bridge to the airport, well, it’s an interesting space, right? A whole parallel city.
  • Do you know any students doing something insane or insanely fascinating at Penn who could be the subject of a profile for XFic? Does it have something to do with space, however you define that term?

We’re also interested in the theme of space as it might speak to: What does it mean when you call a place home? Is there a place that used to be home but isn’t anymore? Where have you been, and where have you not yet visited? Can you think of a place you would want to investigate that is new, uncomfortable, somehow unwelcoming? A space you feel you don't belong? Or just a fun space that you want to explore? Or do you have an entirely different concept that has nothing to do with space that you just think would be fun to pursue? If so, let us know, and send a quick pitch to jaykirk@upenn.edu.