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    Issue 58 Winter 2016

    The Weather

    Can you believe this weather we’re having?

    We’re not just making small talk: our winter issue, Creative Nonfiction #58, is all about the weather. Whether enveloped in fog, stranded in a blizzard, or steering through a sea squall, the writers featured in this issue are battling forces larger than themselves. That’s what the weather does, after all: puts us in our place.

    Plus, Al Roker talks about the challenges of writing creative nonfiction; Dot Earth blogger Andrew C. Revkin reflects on 30 years of covering climate change; how technology is changing memoirists’ work; tiny truths; and more.

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    Issue 56 Summer 2015


    Our summer issue is all about waiting. Writers explore the boundaries of their patience as they wait for a missing family member’s return, for sleep to come, for doctors, planes, or the next good wave.

    Plus, we consider the murky origins of the term “creative nonfiction”; the art of immersion reporting; books that took lifetimes to write; and more.

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    Issue 55 Spring 2015

    The Memoir Issue

    Our spring edition, "The Memoir Issue," is big news: a special double issue with twice as many stories as usual, from places as far-ranging as Japan, Australia, the Marshall Islands, the Appalachian Trail, and Vermont.

    This issue is also big in scope, illustrating thorny issues such as the power (and fallibility) of memory; the challenges of telling other people’s stories accurately; and the art of self-analysis and reflection.

    Plus, CNF #55 features columns on how social media might be changing human memory; readers’ duty to wield belief responsibly; accepting the narcissist within; tiny truths; and more.

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    Issue 54 Winter 2015

    Lost Truths & Family Legends

    Our winter issue is full of family lore--the stories we grow up hearing and the tales we, in turn, tell. Like the night we hit the deer, or Dad's close encounter with a serial killer, or the time Grandma saved the village from the Germans ... Every family has at least one story like this--but is it true? (And, if it's a good enough story, does it matter whether it's true?)

    Plus, we explore the special challenges of writing about family; writers travel in search of missing stories; and Rick Bragg reflects on the process of interviewing living legend Jerry Lee Lewis.

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    Issue 53 Fall 2014


    Creative Nonfiction #53, our first-ever readers' choice theme issue, is dedicated to MISTAKES. We've collected an explosive group of essays exploring wrong turns and missteps—from a dramatic prison protest to an ill-advised game of strip-spin-the-bottle, from a bad tattoo to the epidemic of errors plaguing our healthcare system. Together, these true stories grapple with questions that get at the heart of how to live.

    Plus, why building a platform is a waste of a writer's time, why publishing won't make you happy, and why readers shouldn't worry (too much) about the occasional typo.

Online Reading

The Price of Writing

Jennifer Niesslein

Why would anyone work for free? It's complicated. more

The Baby Room

Nancy McCabe

“Adoptive parents believe in the wonders worked by love and willpower and diet and medicine. We believe was can undo almost any damage.” more


Suzanne Roberts

The winner of the $1,000 first place "Mistakes" essay prize discusses her compelling essay, which illuminates, through the story of her unintended pregnancy at age twenty-four, the ways in which her mistake has taken on new meaning over time. more


Lenka Clayton

CNF Staff

"I love the implied clatter of the typewriter. When you look at a typewritten page you can almost hear the sound of its production." more

The Magazine