Online: Creative Non-Fiction

Ashley Kalagian Blunt

Monday 30 October to Friday 8 December 2023, online

Full Price: $660
Member: $495
Conc Member: $430

This course is no longer available to book. Sign up for our waitlist here to find out when it’s running again. In the meantime, check out our list of current courses or sign up for our Newsbite weekly newsletter for updates.

This creative non-fiction writing course will be held online.

Creative non-fiction encompasses everything from memoir to true crime to nature and travel writing. Grounded in factual truth, this broad genre engages readers through the techniques of fiction, including scene-setting, character-building, and even dialogue.

What is creative non-fiction? Read this helpful article for more information.

When done well, creative non-fiction can elevate your writing from a factual account to a gripping narrative. It also invites boundless innovation in form and style.

This six-week online course with Ashley Kalagian Blunt is an opportunity for you to delve into the world of creative non-fiction, try new techniques to stretch your writing muscles, and receive feedback in a supportive and encouraging setting. Each lesson includes writing exercises designed to help you practise a wide range of skills, and weekly deadlines for short assignments will provide motivation. You can work toward the completion of a short-form piece for submission at the end of the course, or develop your skills for a longer project.

Is this course right for you? Read our FAQ > 

Five core writing assignments will receive both tutor and guided peer feedback. It might come as a surprise, but giving peer feedback is one of the best ways to determine what makes good writing work and improve your own skills faster.

This course involves submitting short writing exercises, and giving and receiving peer feedback. Participants will receive limited tutor feedback.

Week-by-Week Course Breakdown

Week 1: Delving in

We’ll plunge into the incredible breadth of form and style that creative non-fiction encompasses, analysing a range of examples to determine the components of the genre. You’ll have an opportunity to explore initial ideas for your own creative non-fiction writing and how to best strengthen your skills, both during our course and beyond.

Week 2: Balancing scene, summary and musing

There are only three narrative modes – scene, summary and musing. We’ll unpack the function of each, consider a range of examples to develop our understanding, then experiment with all three modes in our own writing.

Week 3: Writing the self and others

How do we craft an authentic version of ourselves on the page? How do we shape others into characters? When should we insert ourselves into the narrative, and when should we let the story speak for itself?

Week 4: Drawing on research

The non-negotiable element of creative non-fiction is its basis in ‘truth’. Research is valuable, even when writing about our personal experiences. How do we incorporate research without letting it overwhelm our writing? How do we craft facts into compelling narrative? And once we dive into research, how do we know where to stop?

Week 5: Exploring form and voice

Form is one aspect of creative non-fiction that can be especially creative. We’ll analyse examples of form and have a play using generative creative writing exercises. Plus, we’ll get into the nitty-gritty of voice. How do we define this all-important aspect of writing, and how do we shape and finesse our own voice?

Week 6: Getting published

In our closing week, we’ll polish our prose and prepare for the challenge of sending our work out into the world, to give it the best chance of connecting with editors, publishers and, ultimately, readers.

Participant Requirements

This course will be most useful to writers interested in crafting short-form creative non-fiction, but will also be beneficial for those working on book-length projects, including memoir.

Please expect to dedicate a minimum of 3-4 hours to coursework each week. This includes reading, responding to discussions, writing, revising and providing peer feedback.

Internet access and confidence using basic computer software are essential for this program. Please read our FAQ before enrolling.

You do not need to log into the course at a specific time and there are no live meetings. You will receive an email with an invitation link to join the online classroom by 10am on the day the course starts.

  • You can complete the lesson material in your own time.
  • This course includes short writing assignments and the opportunity to give and receive peer feedback, and some tutor feedback.

You can find out more about the course by reading our frequently asked questions. If you have any questions, please contact us.

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