Sierra Writers Conference

I’m excited to talk about writing this weekend at the 2023 Sierra Writers Conference.

I’ll be describing how I constructed the literary narrative of The Cold Canyon Fire Journals and how I approach natural history writing more generally. We’ll explore the following themes:

  1. Storytelling on multiple levels: the stories of the individual organisms and how they relate to their habitats over time; the story of my own observations and interactions with the landscape; the stories of scientists and their research; and the larger narrative of environmental change.
  2. How I bring the place around me to life in writing using sensory details and close observation, and how I extend that close personal knowledge to an understanding of larger patterns in the world.
  3. Thinking ecologically to always situate the species I am considering into their broader environment—knowing that it is impossible to understand that one species without knowing all of the other lives to which it is tied.
  4. Sitting quietly and walking carefully and patiently to allow the stories to reveal themselves.

Registration and more details about the conference can be found here.

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