Discover the five things I’ve learned about writing and reading great non-fiction.
I’m an author, an analyst, and — currently — a Professor of Practice of Human Rights at Yale University’s Jackson Institute for Global Affairs. But first, and always, I am a reporter. I write long-format narratives, mainly about war and the politics of conflict.
I’m a former Guggenheim Fellow, and in 2020 I was awarded the Black Dodd Prize, the American Academy of Arts and Letters highest prize in Non-Fiction. My award-winning book, The Morning They Came For Us: Dispatches from Syria, has been translated into 30 languages. I’ve written seven other books on war and conflict, served as the Middle East Editor at Newsweek reporting mainly on human rights abuses and investigating war crimes, and been a frequent writer for The New York Times, the New York Review of Books, Harpers, Granta and The Guardian.
Some of the greatest forms of literature come in the form of narrative nonfiction – in particular memoir and essay. I look forward to leading you through five things I’ve learned about this form.
In this live, two-hour class, I’ll talk about the essential role that great non-fiction narrative plays in shaping readers’ and writers’ understanding of the world. I’ll also share the most storytelling techniques I’ve found most useful in my own work: I’ll talk about the best ways to interview sources (including family members and voices from the past), and address each of the essential components of great narrative: construction, timing, research, pace, dialogue, and recall.
We’ll also talk specifically about memoir — about how to construct a compelling and successful narrative that shares the substance of your own life and what we all can learn from specific techniques of great writers including Joan Didion, James Baldwin, Barbara Skelton, Lillian Hellman. Together, we’ll look at thematic memoirs such as Andrew Solomon’s The Noonday Demon, Mary Karr’s The Liar’s Club and Lit; and also at some populist nonfiction, including Cheryl Strayed’s Wild. (I’ll share specific readings I’ll reference in this class in advance with you via email closer to the time of our live session.)
If you’re a writer, my aim is that when this class concludes you’ll be better equipped to make your non-fiction as successful as you want it to be. If you’re a reader, I hope all we share together will increase your continuing appreciation and enjoyment of great, essential writing.
I hope you’ll join me.
About Janine di Giovanni
Buy your ticket today
Join multi-award winning journalist and author Janine di Giovanni and discover the five things she’s learned about writing — and appreciating — narrative non-fiction and memoir.
Online Class Details
- 120 minutes
- Single ticket for session - $60.00
Join multi-award winning journalist and author Janine di Giovanni and discover the five things she’s learned about writing — and appreciating — narrative non-fiction and memoir.https://myfivethings.com/class/writing-narrative-non-fiction-and-memoir/
Frequently Asked Questions
Your ticket entitles you to ongoing access to this class — even after the live session concludes.
Please look for an email with information about how to access the course archive within 48 hours of the end of the live class. Once you get it, you’ll have all the information you need to access this course for at least nine months from the live class date — across any and all devices you own.
If you’d like a refund, we can happily credit the card you used to register for the session. Please send a note to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll confirm receipt as soon as we see it (We don’t need your credit card info – just your email address and date of purchase.)
There are two things to know:
- Unfortunately, we can only accept cancellations and refunds up to 48 hours before a scheduled session.
- There is sure to be a lapse in time between the time we refund your order and the time a corresponding credit appears on your credit card statement. So that you’re not left waiting and wondering, we’ll contact you as soon as we’ve processed the credit in our system.
If you’ve purchased a ticket for this online class and you find that for some reason you can’t make the live session, we’ve got you covered:
We’ll make an archive of this class available within 48 hours of the live session, and we’ll send every ticket holder details on how they can view it.
Ticket holders can view this full session archive any time they like – as often as they like.
We take data security and your privacy as seriously as you do.
That’s why we use Stripe to process your registration transaction. They take your credit card and secure your data – in fact we don’t even have access to your credit card number. Which is just the way we like it!
The information we do retain we protect carefully.
Still have a question? We’d be please to hear from you: email@example.com.
The receipt you receive via email immediately after you register is all you need to know you’re set for the upcoming session.
About 48 hours before the live class is scheduled to begin, we’ll send you a personalized email confirming everything’s on schedule and containing easy instructions for accessing the class.
We’ll send another reminder on the day of the class itself, and we’ll be available online just before the class begins to make sure you have no problems joining when the time is right.
If you’ve not received confirmation of your purchase, it’s not because we haven’t sent it. In fact, we send a confirmation right away to make sure that we can reach you with class details.
If you haven’t received a confirmation, check your “junk” or “promotions” email first — some people’s email programs group unfamiliar emails in these types of folders. The email date and time should match closely the time you purchased your ticket online.
If the confirmation email is not there, there’s a small possibility that your email address wasn’t entered as you intended when you registered (You’d be surprised, but this happens). If we don’t have your proper email address, we can’t contact you.
In any case, if you can’t find your confirmation email, please send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll get back to you right away!
Thanks for stopping by!
Sign up for our newsletter.
Find out first about every new class.
Register now. Get the latest news and the earliest discounts delivered right to your inbox. Not all the time. Just once a week.