Writing and the Spirit


The Perelandra College Master of Writing and the Spirit programs exists to help provide skills, wisdom, and most of all the access to inspiration, which together equip writers to create captivating works of lasting value.


Certificate: 15 standard college semester credits, at least 9 of which to be chosen from core classes. The remainder can be taken from the core, the Great Ideas or Independent Study.

Degree: 30 standard college semester credits. Each credit obliges the student to about 50 hours of participation. These credits include:

Core: 15 credits of writing selected from the following 3 credit classes:

Writing and the Spirit (Writing 551) — Through reading and experiential exercises, learn how to get free, love like Walt Whitman, become who you are, live in beauty, and change the world for the better.

Story Basics (Writing 552) — Develop skills in writing fiction and non-fiction stories within an open yet effective structure that not only offers room for but also invites inspiration.

Poetry Basics (Writing 502) — Poetry Basics approaches poetry emphasizing ways to use the language more effectively in all modes of writing. The course includes readings from exemplary poetic and critical works and the writing and revising of poems. By the end of the course, students will demonstrate, through their poetry and by analysis of their own work as well as that of established poets, their familiarity with a variety of poetic forms and techniques. In addition, they will exhibit competence in writing concise, rhythmically sound poems that surprise and perhaps delight.

Love and the Spirit (Writing 554) — Through reading and writing reflections, learn how to love better;  to love individuals, love strangers, love our readers, love our created characters, and love our work.

Inspired Short Works (Writing 555) — While reading selected short works of fiction, essay, poetry and philosophy, discover conditions of heart, circumstances, and mind that allowed the inspiration free rein.

Inspired Major Works (Writing 556) — Learn from the masters. Through reading and reflection, gain an intimate knowledge of the working of master artists and how their lives and attitudes informed their creative processes.

Writing “Anointed” Sermons (Writing 557) — Read and analyze inspired sermons asking at what points did the Holy Spirit speak through them, and write sermons asking and how might you successfully invite the Spirit’s participation.

Writing Devotionals (Writing 558) — By reading a variety of devotional collections, engage your imagination and develop a sense for what makes an effective devotion, then open your heart and mind and create a collection of your own.

15 additional credits to be chosen from the above core classes; our Great Ideas curriculum; our Independent Study in Literature electives in which masterworks of literature, philosophy, and/or religion are read, reflected upon, and discussed with mentors emphasizing the inspiration that made them masterworks; or our Independent Study in Writing classes, in which students create and book length works.


The Conjunction of Beauty and Truth: (Writing 561)
– Read: Robert Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance; John Keats, “Ode On a Grecian Urn” ; selections from Plato and Aristotle

The Necessity of God: (Writing 562)
– Read: Fyodor Dostoyevski, The Brothers Karamazov. Reflect upon “Ratikin says that one can love humanity without God. Well, only a sniveling idiot can maintain that.”;
– Read: David Foster Wallace , “This is Water”

A Quest for Superman: (Writing 563)
– Historians have contended that the great movements, events, and catastrophes of the twentieth century — the rise and fall of communism, the holocaust and others — were foretold by the controversies of 19th century philosophy and literature embodied in Friedrich Nietzsche’s advocacy of the Superman and in Fyodor’s Dostoyevski’s murderer Raskolnikov. As these controversies have as yet to be resolved, writers are still called to take a stand.
– Read: Fyodor Dostoyevski, Crime and Punishment; Friedrich Nietzsche; Thus Spake Zarathustra

Kierkegaard on Love: (Writing 564)
– Who are we to love? What is love? How should we express love? Why should we love?
– Read Soren Kierkegaard, Works of Love; C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves. Prerequisite,  Love and the Spirit.

Simplicity: (Writing 565)
Read: Henry David Thoreau, Walden; Thomas Merton, No Man is an Island

Evil?: (Writing 566)
– Where does evil come from? How does evil enter our world? What can be done to minimize evil?
– Read: M. Scott Peck, The Road Less Travelled and People of the Lie


Independent Study in Literature: (Writing 567)
– Read: Works to be chosen in collaboration between the student and the professor.

Please email ken@perelandra.edu with any questions.

Independent Study in Writing (Writing 568) allows students the opportunity to work under the supervision of an established writer while creating and revising the project they have been working toward during the previous classes

As always, our tuition is minimal.