Scoping Digital Narratives — Summer 2024

A 10-week course in creating and scoping narratives for digital platforms

Protoclassic Staff
May 31, 2024

Course Code: CRW 201
Teacher: Timothy S.
Term: Summer 2024 (June 21-August 29)
Class Sessions: There will be five sessions over the term period.

How can writers make the most of digital platforms? This course explores ways web and social media publishing can build connection and engagement with the written word. Students will learn not only how to adapt novel-length material to the web (mainly by shortening it), but also how to create horizontal pieces that can be published to social media.

Assignments and Course Work

Major Projects

Initial Submission. Due at application. An ongoing work that the student wishes to review during the initial stage of the project.

Students will revise three short portions of this larger work in order to reduce the size and scope of the work, all to be delivered on July 5, July 19, and August 23, respectively.

In addition to this, there will be five short writing exercises to be delivered at least 24 hours before each class.

Readings & Course Materials

Denis, Johnson. Train Dreams. 2011.
Scofield, Sandra. The Scene Book: A primer for the Fiction Writer. S., Timothy. “The Fleeting and the Eternal.”

Grading & Assessment

Students will receive grades for each of their major projects and writing exercises. Each exercise and project will be graded based on the following criteria.

  • Rhythm (1 for slow, monotonous development or overly fast action to 10 for well-paced action that matches the character of the story)
  • Conflict (1 for lack of conflict to 10 for sophisticated conflict linked to larger story conflicts)
  • Resolution (1 story structure never reaches climax and tension is not released to 10 for plot structure leads to proper resolution with satisfying denoument)

In class-performance will also be graded based on the following criteria.

  • Understanding (1 for when student shows lack of understanding of lesson topics 10 for when the student shows complete mastery of lesson topic)
  • Participation (1 for student is disengaged or inattentive to 10 student adds value to class by questions and comments)
  • Preparation (1 for when student is completely unprepared to 10 when students made the absolute most effective use of class time)

Overall grade will be weighted 50 percent for major projects, 20 percent for class exercises, and 30 percent for in-class performance.

Class Topics

The lectures will include topics that include, but are not limited to

  • developing writing habits,
  • story openings,

Target Audience and Prerequisites

This course is designed for Upper Beginner writers who have completed 1 semester (or equivalent) of a college writing course. Students must prepare and/or bring their own textbook material.

Learning Objectives

  • Students will explore contemporary examples of short-form literature.
  • Students will explore new ways to express themselves by reducing the scope of longer writing projects.
  • Students will develop documentation allowing them to prepare horizontal works to their existing fictional work.



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"Protoclassic helped me both refine my writing and thinking on substantial intellectual projects all the while keeping an eye to the rapidly evolving online scene. It helped refine and then amplify my message while significantly broadening audience reach and impact." — Nicholas Gruen