Nature writing is the art of distilling this wild world’s multi-headed firehose of stimulation, information, emotion, and memory into words that convey an intended message. Describing a landscape’s odor, sculpting a naturalist’s voice, relating the feeling of a wildlife encounter without actually stating it, rendering clearly complex natural processes, reporting observations with infectious confidence, coaxing readers into feeling for a fish (whether they want to or not) these are skills that demand insight and practice. Harder still is casting these spells in the service of a point, a message, a conclusion.The charge of stewarding our watersheds, our neighbors, and our world, requires committed conservationists to master textual persuasion, blending honest blocky understanding with the sure knowledge that humans decide based on emotion and connection. Nature and Science Writing for Conservation is designed to help adult students develop their ability to simultaneously report the science and persuade with art. Meeting primarily outdoors, students will read great nature writing, try out different formats of writing, provide peer feedback, and ultimately choose one of their compositions to revise and finalize.InstructorDr. Dan Levitis is a biologist, naturalist, conservationist, and storyteller. Writing in forms ranging from formal scientific publications to offhand poems, he most often wends essays with nature photography.Cost:$499/pp (scholarships may be available to those in financial need, please email Tony@sonomaecologycenter.org)Course Schedule:Sundays, July 10, 24, 31, Aug 7, 14, 21, 28Course time:10:00-1:00pm
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