Online Course: Nature Writing – Then and Now

Henry David Thoreau, John Muir, Aldo Leopold, and Edward Abbey are just a few of the writers that are known for their work within the nature writing genre. Their works are quintessential examples and classics in this genre, however, there are many more diverse writers who have joined them in the field.

This session explores the environment of the mid-19th to mid-20th century and why these men chose to share their journals and express their views about the land beneath their feet. A century later, writers such as Terry Tempest Williams, Rebecca Solnit, Amy Irvine and Blair Braverman have been, and are challenging and echoing many of the elements these early writing pioneers addressed. These voices are adding their own understanding and point of views regarding the state of our planet currently – and as we all look toward the future.

This online course combines the energy of these writers to understand what it means to be a nature writer. Each wrote and writes of their time and place, an element unique to this writing genre. Perhaps you have a distinct writing voice and want to express yourself, your time and your place. Join us to gather resources from the past and in the current arena to formulate your point of view in the nature writing genre.


Topics Addressed:

  • Basic definition of “nature writing”
  • Why nature writing was and is so important – no matter what the decade or place
  • Why the genre found readership when it first appeared and has continued to do so
  • Why many of the classic texts are “evergreen” in appeal
  • Examples of “then and now” texts such as Edward Abbey’s Desert Solitaire and Amy Irvine’s Desert Cabal: A New Season in the Wilderness
  • Establishing your point of view
  • Establishing why your writing makes a difference
  • Composing your message and how it fits into the overall nature writing narrative
  • Having a vision to see your work through this century
  • Being part of the overall expedition to save this earth through writing


Register now

Contact for more information. Your questions, concerns, and comments are welcome.

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