Bringing Place to the Page: Writing about Landscape, Home, and Travel

Wednesday, December 14th, 2021 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm Eastern

Everyone comes from somewhere, and every story unfolds in an environment. When approached creatively, place can serve as more than a backdrop, and even as a character itself, which can enliven and enrich our stories about human drama and personal experience.


Additional Information

The market for creative nonfiction continues to show interest in books that grapple with place and environment, and especially those that combine the personal with an external gaze. Books like H is For Hawk, Braiding Sweetgrass, The Hidden Life of Trees, Lab Girl, and Underland have found massive readerships among both literary and general audiences by engaging with places near and far and revealing complex textures and connections everywhere.

Writing about place without descending into self-satisfied nostalgia or eco-punditry is a balancing act and art. This webinar offers insight into how to transform perceptions into pages and help readers experience approximations of landscape in your nonfiction.

In this webinar, you will:

  • EXAMINE how all writers must write about place and environment, even when they don’t label themselves “environmental” or “place-based” writers. You’ll learn to be aware and even take advantage of that inevitable fact in your work.
  • CONSIDER the differences among environments: urban vs. rural/wilderness, home vs. away, environments in flux and transition zones. By understanding such distinctions, you’ll learn how to write compelling and persuasive narratives that move beyond flat, cliché language and into the more evocative and concrete.
  • LEARN how to engage landscapes. A writer is always a part of any environment. We’ll consider ways of writing one’s self in a place/environment. What are the risks of writing about a specific place? We’ll also learn how to avoid environmental preachiness and nostalgia.

There will be time for a Q&A at the end of the presentation.

This webinar is ideal for writers who are just starting out, writers who have written in other genres (fiction, memoir, etc.) or writers just getting their feet into environmental/place-based writing.

All registrants receive a recording.

Course Presenter

Course Registration


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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 [email protected].

Hear from our Students

Creative Nonfiction’s online writing classes have helped more than 3,000 writers tell their stories better.

Read Success Stories


I enjoyed reading other peoples work and getting feedback about my own work– the handouts/video links and class lessons were also very informative and relevantly paced to the give structural guidelines.

Catherine O’Neill

Webinar FAQs

  • How do I prepare for the webinar?

    We usually open the webinar 3-5 minutes prior to start time (see webinar invite) so you can check your audio settings and make sure everything is working properly on your end. The host will welcome everyone and ask you to introduce yourself and share where you’re joining from in the text-based chat. Participation in the chat is optional.

    The actual webinar program usually gets rolling five minutes after the start time. This is also when the recording starts if you watch the video afterward.

    No one can hear you or see you during the webinar. The only people who are visible and can be heard during the webinar are the instructor and host.

    Audio Settings:
    If you’re unable to hear any sound during the webinar, please look at the bottom left of your Zoom window for Audio Settings, and click the small arrow to check your settings.

    Getting familiar with the Zoom software

    There are several ways to interact with the presenter and other students during the webinar:

    *Live chat

    *Formal Q & A window

    Live Chat:
    The live chat is where you can exchange messages in real time with other students attending the webinar, as well as the instructor and host. Usually your chat visibility defaults to just the presenter/panelists. If you want everyone attending to see your chat message (and most people do), then you need to select “everyone” or “all panelists and attendees” in the chat window.

    How to banish the chat:
    We encourage you to make use of the live chat throughout the webinar because it’s one of the great benefits of joining the live event. However, some find the chat distracting and would like to turn it off. As of today, Zoom doesn’t allow students to disable the chat, but there is a way to effectively “banish” it if you do not want to see it:

    1. Click the Chat icon at the bottom of the Zoom window
    2. When the Chat appears on the side of your window, click the small arrow icon and select Pop Out, which separates the Chat into its own free-floating window
    3. Then, using your cursor, drag the Chat off the side or bottom of your screen

    Formal Q & A:

    All webinars include time for Q & A with the presenter. This will be included in the recording.

  • How can I download the webinar recording?

    In most cases, unless you see the download arrow under the recording window, you will not be able to download the recording. You will have ongoing access to the recording link to view at your leisure. You can download any supplemental materials provided by following the links in the webinar recording description. The recording will be sent to you three days after the live event.

  • I did not receive the recording for a webinar. Can you re-send it?

    Yes, we’re sorry this happened. These messages are sent from “[email protected]” and sometimes go missing. Please email us and we’ll respond with a link to the recording.

  • When will the recording be available?

    We ask for 3 days to send you the recording. If you do not receive it within that time frame, please contact us and we’ll assist you.

  • Can I still register for [x] webinar?

    If the webinar is not marked “sold out,” you can still join.