Molly Patterson is the newest addition to the English Department’s talented, creative writing staff. New this fall, Patterson’s happy to be teaching at UW-Eau Claire. From the beautiful campus and town, to the supportive writing communities (both on and off campus), to the friendly and welcoming department, Patterson says she’s lucky to be here.
Patterson attended Carleton College in Minnesota and earned her bachelor of arts in English-literature. After completing her undergraduate degree she moved to China for two years. She then returned to the United States to San Francisco and waited tables while also writing. Patterson then went to Ohio State to pursue her Masters of Fine Arts degree. Before becoming a professor at UW-Eau Claire, Patterson was Writer-in-Residence for St Albans, a prep school in Washington, DC. While at St Albans, she worked on a novel and a collection of short stories.
So far, the introductory creative writing course is Patterson’s favorite class to teach. She loves the idea of awakening students to the craft of creative writing and allowing them to discover their own stories.
While at UW-Eau Claire, Patterson’s goal is to get students who are at the introductory level excited about creative writing. She also wants to get advanced writers excited about writing, while also showing them what it really means to be a writer, such as revisions, edits, and multiple drafts of stories.
Patterson’s writing goals include completing a draft of her novel finished by the end of the year and to have success with her collection of short stories Just Because You Can, published by Five Chapters Books. The collection will be released in fall 2014.
When asked about advice to aspiring writers, Patterson says students simply need to sit down and write. Writing can’t be precious, and if a person is serious about writing, then s/he needs to treat it like a job. Some days it’s great and some days it’s not, but if writing is important, then a person can’t wait to be inspired.
Contributed by Erin Stevens