Through the Leaf-Mould: Speculative Fiction Writing


Course Description

J.R.R. Tolkien said stories grow “like a seed in the dark out of the leaf-mould of the mind.” If you are an aspiring fantasy and science fiction author, and you would like to learn how to grow a short story from the idea stage to a finished draft, then we’d love you to join our workshop.

Speculative fiction exercises our imaginations by asking, “What if?” Asking this question challenges writers to explore unusual viewpoints. Students will grow their story while developing storytelling skills such as worldbuilding, characterization, plot, and viewpoint. All finished drafts will then be critiqued by the entire class, enabling students to develop the ability to notice, describe, and fix problems in their own work.

To fertilize our leaf-moulds, we will read and discuss works from such speculative authors such as Ursula K. Le Guin, Octavia Butler, Charles de Lint, and China Miéville.

Please note, that this course has a maximum enrollment of 15 students.

Priority is given to students who pay upon registration.

For fully registered courses, a waiting list will be created. Should vacancies develop, those on the waiting list will be contacted on a first-come, first-served basis.

Please note that we do not allow participants to audit courses for free.

Course Details

First Session: Monday, January 7th 2019

Course Length: 12 weeks, Mondays, 6:15 PM - 8:15 PM

Instructor: Matthew Rettino and Michael Wheatley

Course Fee: 

$150.00 (tuition fee)

$100.00 (promotion for new students)

Reading and Administration Fee:



$185.00 (tuition fee)

$135.00 (promotion for new students)


NOTE: Reading Fees are included in the total price of the course.

Please note, degree students must schedule an appointment with the Admissions and Accreditation Committee to register for courses for this term. Degree students should not register online.

The course fees are refundable in full before the second session. After the second session, an administrative fee of $50 for the withdrawal will be applied. Refunds will not be issued after the third session.

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