WRITE YOUR TRUE STORY.
Join CNF's growing online writing community.
Our 5- and 10-week classes offer firm deadlines, a flexible schedule that fits your needs, and feedback to help you keep writing and improving your work. And the small class sizes (no more than 14 students per class) help foster community and connection.
Whether you're just starting out or are looking for an advanced class to help you refine and polish your work, we have a course for you. Classes are offered Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer term.
See what past students have to say about our growing writing community; read some publishing success stories from our students; learn more about our instructors; and see a complete list of our past classes.
Self-Guided // 4-Week Online Course
May 13 - June 9
Whether you’re writing narrative journalism, memoir, or personal essays, a richly felt space/place can add depth or intrigue. In this generative workshop, you will write a portrait of a place, either natural or man-made, with an emphasis on depth, mood, and researched accuracy.
Summer Online Classes
July 1 - August 4
FUNDAMENTALS—open to all levels.
Our fundamentals courses are designed for those who are new to writing or new to creative nonfiction as well as those who could benefit from a back-to-basics review on how to effectively and intentionally use elements of the writer's craft.
Instructor: Marissa Landrigan
Discover ways to use digital communication technologies to enhance the inherent connective power of creative nonfiction.
Instructor: Marty Levine
Bring the past to life! Get insight into how to translate facts and research into vivid characters and scenes!
Instructor: Jonathan Callard
Find the balance between the personal and the powerful, and learn how to share your thoughts with readers of differing beliefs or traditions.
Instructors: Rhonda J. Miller, Ploi Pirapokin or Waverly Fitzgerald
You want to do it. You mean to do it. You’re going to do it! Ensure that you will get around to that summer writing by joining.
Instructor: James Polchin
Explore the rich possibilities of drawing on photographs that intrigue, haunt, or prompt forgotten memories and experiences.
INTERMEDIATE —suggested prerequisites.
Our intermediate courses are designed for writers who have some experience either in the genre or CNF's courses. Past course participation is not required but we do recommend starting with one of our fundamentals courses, especially Foundations of Creative Nonfiction.
Instructor: Chelsea Biondolillo
Gain writing and research skills—everything from general literary techniques to interviewing and fact-checking—that will help you craft engaging nonfiction about scientific discovery, research, and policy.
Instructor: Meghan O'Gieblyn
Explore new structures, hybrid forms, and nonstandard narrative perspectives, and discover a variety of strategies for innovation in nonfiction writing.
Instructor: Jenna McGuiggan
Distill experiences, big or small, into their purest essence.
Instructor: Joanna Cooper
Whether you are an aspiring essayist interested in infusing your work with fresh new possibilities, or a poet who wants to try essay, this course will have room for you to experiment and play.
Zen of Process » NEW!
Instructor: Sarah Cannon
As you connect and synthesize your ideas, you’ll see how a strong voice and structure emerge in your work—elements that, ultimately, make readers want to turn pages.
ADVANCED—required prerequisites for enrollment.
Our advanced courses are for writers who meet one of the following qualifications: 1) you have completed two previous courses with Creative Nonfiction (one must be either Writing the Personal Essay or Memoir and Personal Essay course); or 2) you have an MFA in creative nonfiction; or 3) you have published widely.
We offer advanced courses fall, winter, and spring term.
Please note: it is not uncommon for classes to fill up before the end of early registration, particularly in the last few days before the deadline. If you know for certain that you wish to take a particular class, we recommend registering early. If you'd like to be added to a waitlist for a sold-out class, please email our director of education, Sharla Yates, at yates[at]creativenonfiction[dot]org.
Is there a course that you'd like to take that isn't being offered? You can request a course here and we'll notify you when it's being offered again.
Please follow the links below for more information:
- Online Course Catalogue
- Our Instructors
- How do the classes work?
- Why Creative Nonfiction?
- Testimonials and Publications by CNF Students
- Frequently Asked Questions
- How do self-guided classes work?
If your question is not answered in the Frequently Asked Questions, please contact Sharla Yates, Director of Education, at yates[at]creativenonfiction[dot]org.