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Virtual Blooming: A Nature Writing Workshop
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The fees from ABC’s adult writing workshops subsidize our free writing programs for kids, whose work is collected in a yearly anthology, and pay our adult workshop instructors. A limited number of seats in each class are reserved for scholarships, which cover 100% of tuition-fees and are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. All are welcome, and we especially encourage BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ writers to apply.
To enhance the nature-writing experience, participants will receive a special workshop kit including Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer, a waterproof, tear-proof notebook by Field Notes, and more.
― Robin Wall Kimmerer, Braiding Sweetgrass
Whether you live in an urban area or in the countryside, this 6-week class aims to get you out of your head and into nature. We will write about the natural world, and our place in it, using model texts across various genres from authors such as Robin Wall Kimmerer, Rebecca Solnit, Rachel Carson, Barry Lopez, Natalie Diaz, and Helen Macdonald. Discussions in class will focus on different ways of looking at and interacting with the outside world, techniques for writing about nature, and what constitutes nature writing. Additionally, each week there will be a new fieldwork assignment that will require you to, in some way, leave your home, record observations, and share your findings with the group.
This class is both interactive and active and will include reading, research, observation, writing, and contemplation of questions such as: How do I interact with the natural world around me? Who is Indigenous to this land and is that reflected in the way my town/city is organized? How can I honor and protect the flora, fauna, and original people of the place I call home? What does it mean for humans and nature to coexist in a responsible, loving, and equitable manner? And how do we make the outdoors a place of true belonging?
This course is open to all writers of any genre who are interested in writing about nature. Prior workshop experience is not necessary, but all members of the class must come to each session prepared to discuss the readings, willing to share their own writing and fieldwork, and be generous in their responses to their peers’ work.
This Austin Bat Cave adult writing workshop is limited to 15 students and open to writers of all levels.
About the Instructor
Dana De Greff
Dana De Greff holds an MFA in fiction from the University of Miami. She has taught Creative Writing classes at the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Miami, Miami Arts Charter, and Books & Books. She is the author of Alterations (winner of the 2018 Rane Arroyo Chapbook Series published by Seven Kitchens Press), and has been accepted or awarded scholarships from the Tin House Summer Writers’ Workshop, The Key West Literary Seminar, the Lemon Tree House Residency, and Hedgebrook. Her work appears in Cosmonauts Avenue, PANK, Origins Journal, and Gulf Stream Magazine, among others. Most recently, she’s the recipient of a 2021 Pushcart Prize Nomination for her story “Storms,” published in the Winter 2020 Issue of Jabberwock Review and was selected as a finalist for the 2021 Key West Literary Seminar’s Marianne Russo Award for her novel-in-progress, EVERYDAY MYSTICISM.