Doing It Write: Club Unites Writers on Campus

Written by Chandler Ryd

A group of writers—including myself—wanted to bring all these different facets of Hillsdale’s writing culture together in a unified group. Last semester, we filled out the paperwork, drafted the bylaws, and guided our club proposal through Student Federation. The Hillsdale Creative Writing Club is now a thing.

We asked Dr. Kelly Franklin, Assistant Professor of English, to be our Faculty Advisor. “I would be really excited first if it fosters more outlets for writers,” he said, “and, second, if it encouraged more writers to take writing seriously.” For the infamously busy Hillsdale student, it can be difficult to devote time to writing.

“But the only difference between writers and non-writers is those who write,” Dr. Franklin continued, “so pushing those vague, sort-of yearners into the act of writing, and pushing compulsive writers into the act of publishing,” is a big focus of the club.

Another emphasis of the club is to encourage writers to share their work. We put little pieces of ourselves into our writing—even here on the Student Stories Blog—and it can be terrifying to expose our ideas to a wider audience. The club has plans to host open-mic nights at A.J.’s Café in the union, so that members can read their works in a public venue. At club meetings, we also regularly workshop each other’s pieces to provide feedback, as well as encourage everyone to submit to the Tower Light.

As a college that emphasizes the Great Books, we have rich resources—from the helpful professors to the outstanding library—that students have yet to fully dig into. We write plenty of essays, but creative writing forces us to process our education in our own nuanced voice. Writing is hard, and writing takes time, but maybe with a new club, students might finally start the story they’ve been dying to write.


Chandler Ryd is a freshman at Hillsdale College who is majoring in English. He is a Collegian Freelancer, creative writer, photographer, filmmaker, and craft root beer enthusiast.