Students studying outside the library

‘Shared Worlds’ creative writing camp coming to Wofford

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SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Wofford College is offering rising 8th graders through rising 12th graders the chance to participate in an innovative new summer camp.

Shared Worlds is a two-week residential camp based on a “shared world” theme that takes interdisciplinary learning to a new level. A shared world is a growing trend in fiction that centers on a complete, fictional world designed by a group. During Wofford's Shared World program, students will design fantasy worlds with other young, creative writers.

The camp will begin on July 20 and will last until August 2.

Jeremy Jones, a lecturer at Wofford, is the facilitator of the camp.  “This camp is designed to be an interdisciplinary creative writing camp.  Students work on problem solving skills, and they leave with an enhanced knowledge of how to work together and how to contribute to a group.”

The camp puts a premium on space, and limits the number of accepted students, which translates into a small group learning environment.

“Each group of 12 students chooses a genre – science fiction or fantasy.  Then, they create an imaginary world together, drawing on each other’s strengths and interests, whether it’s history or philosophy or science or something else,” says Jones. “It all goes in there.  They must compromise, work together and make hard decisions.  Once they’ve written a guide to their ‘world,’ each of them writes stories set in that world.”

In order to build a shared world, students will attend overview classes with Wofford College professors in many disciplines, including history, religion, and physics. Furthermore, students will take classes in creative writing. All classes emphasize problem solving, collaborative learning, and experiential learning.

Students will also have the opportunity to learn from established professionals in the field, such as Jeff VanderMeer.  VanderMeer is a two-time winner of the World Fantasy Award and has also been a finalist for the Hugo Award, the Philip K. Dick Award, the International Horror Guild Award, the British Fantasy Award, the Bram Stoker Award, and the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award.

“When you look at what Wofford offers through its humanities classes, Community of Scholars, learning communities, and innovative programming such as Interim, it’s clear that Wofford already has a thriving, interdisciplinary approach to education.  Some schools draw distinct lines between the disciplines--history is history, literature is literature, math is math.  But at Wofford, it's about cross-pollinating, about working together.  Physics professors team up with poets and religion professors team teach with journalists.  Sparks fly, and students benefit from that kind of energy in a classroom,” Jones says.

Tuition for the program is $1,250, which includes accommodations, all meals, instruction, supervisory personnel, program material, activities, professional evaluation, and certificates.

For more information or to register for the camp, please visit the website at

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