The best teacher I've had at Columbia. If you are serious about writing (and, above the S&S level, he will demand that you be so), he will inspire you and keep you excited about what you and your classmates are doing. Great dry sense of humor. If you are faint of heart, the roundtable criticisms may contain too much actual criticism. But he knows how to cut people off constructively when they are being unreasonable. The man is just hardcore. Remarkably, though, in a friendly way. Perhaps most impressive is how much of his passion he actually checks at the classroom door in order to foster a good environment for beginners. You can sense it, though, behind his comments, and it'll come out every once in a while.