Writing Workshop

Writing the Wild
Online via Zoom,
and also in your
nearest wild spot
May 30, 2020
11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Tuition:  $75, includes Ruby’s new book, Ground Truth

This workshop relies on Thoreau’s notion of ‘Sauntering’ as it applies to writing about the natural world in fiction and nonfiction. Participants will learn to create a framework for their field work that helps open pathways of memory, free association, and curiosity as well as the fundamentals of deep, scientifically-driven observation with the goal of crafting immersive, vibrant settings and scenes that bring the natural world into sharp focus. Particular emphasis will be placed on advanced skills of observation and questioning, and accessing and mastering the language of the wild. Writers will be encouraged to share their work.

While walking is the underpinning of this workshop, all those able to access the Alder Creek Farm are welcome to participate to whatever level of physicality they feel comfortable.

The class is structured as follows:

  • 11 a.m. to 12:30:  Ruby leads an instruction session, and then provides prompts.
  • 12:30 to 3 pm:  Participants find their nearest “wild” spot to observe and write to the prompts.
  • 3 pm to 4 pm:  The group returns to the Zoom Room to share their observations and thoughts, as well as the results of their writing effort.
  • 4:30:  Ruby will read from her latest book. Participants will be admitted to the reading at no extra charge.

The Lower Nehalem Community Trust invites you to check out the Elk Meadows for your walk in the wild. You can access the meadow at the end of Neptune Way.  Turn off Hiway 101 at Bayside Gardens Road and turn left at Neptune Way (nearly to the end of Bayside Gardens Road).  You can park along the large gravel shoulder on Neptune Way, just before it veers right and becomes Creekside Drive.

Ruby McConnell is a writer, geologist, and adventuress whose work focuses on nature, the environment, and the relationship between landscape and the human experience. Her experiences as a researcher, activist, and explorer in the wild lands of the western United States led her to write A Woman’s Guide to the Wild- the definitive outdoor guide for anyone who identifies as, or loves, women (or just wants to learn how to read a map).

Ruby believes that positive outdoor experiences are the key to healthy living and protecting the environment and is committed to breaking down barriers that prevent all kinds of people from being outside. Her writing has appeared in publications such as Grain Literary Journal, Oregon Humanities Magazine, and Mother Earth News and was awarded an Oregon Literary Arts Fellowship in 2016. She is almost always in the woods of the Pacific Northwest, but you can find her online  @RubyGoneWild.