"Creative nonfiction is not making something up but making the most of what you have." –John McPhee

Fall 2016

Issue #61, Learning from Nature

In this issue, we seek inspiration from the natural world. Deer antlers help surgeons build better prostheses, and scientists studying hibernation in arctic ground squirrels find a possible key to understanding Alzheimer’s disease. Biomimicry visionary Janine Benyus fights to restore natural balance on a parcel of land in Montana, and in Oregon, naturalists grapple with the ethics of killing one species of owl to protect another owl’s habitat.

Plus, how essay structures work on the human brain; 50 years of women writers exploring wilderness; hermit-crab essays; Thoreau’s remarkably elaborate journaling process; tiny truths; and more.

Read Now

What's the Story #61 Lee Gutkind

There’s a story in every design and a design in every story. read more

Nature Mothers Vivian Wagner

From Rachel Carson to Cheryl Strayed, what women writers have found in the wild read more

Online Reading

I Survived the Blizzard of ’79

Beth Ann Fennelly

As the snow falls ever heavier and the temperature drops ever lower in the author's hometown, she ventures out into a world of white. more

Before We’re Writers, We’re Readers

Randon Billings Noble

Fifteen contemporary writers of creative nonfiction discuss the nonfiction books they remember best from childhood and which influenced them as writers. more


Show Me All Your Scars

Edited by Lee Gutkind

Addressing bipolar disorder, OCD, trichotillomania, self-harm, PTSD, and other diagnoses, these original true stories vividly depict the difficulties and sorrows--and sometimes, too, the unexpected and surprising rewards--of living with mental illness. more


Online Classes

WINTER COURSES START JANUARY 9, 2017, and include classes on Advanced Memoir & Personal Essay, Creative Nonfiction Boot Camp, Eureka! Science Writing for General Audiences, Flash Essays, NEW! The Blank Page: Working Through Writer's Block, Narrative Journalism (formerly Magazine Writing), The Thirty-Minute Memoir, Writing Your Nonfiction Book Proposal, & Writing the Personal Essay. more




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Online Classes

Produce your best work with the help of professional guidance, firm deadlines, and a lively community of writers.


Learn new skills and gain essential experience in the world of literary publishing.

CNF in the Classroom

Creative Nonfiction makes a great educational resource; discounts are available for classroom use.