Naomi Sandweiss

Class Title: Nature of Your Life: Autumn
Instructor: Naomi Sandweiss
Class Term: October 1-October 29, 2018
We are not accepting any more enrollments for Naomi's class; the class has started.


In this class we will use nature to better understand our lives and share our stories. For four weeks, participants will observe aspects of nature and use this understanding to write about their lives. Our Autumn journey will take us from the harvest to preservation to considering our homes and habitats.

Class Description

Participants will keep a guided nature journal and receive a weekly writing assignment focused upon a particular question or prompt. Each week, the instructor will provide feedback and if they wish, participants can share work with each other for feedback as well.

At the end of this class, students will be able to:

  1. Practice observing natural surroundings and keep a nature journal.
  2. Use nature as a metaphor for their own lives or the lives of their characters.

Instruction/Communication Method: We will use email and if desired, a Facebook page to share instructional materials and receive written work. No materials need to be purchased but the book Writing Wild: Forming a Creative Partnership with Nature comes highly recommended.


Class members will keep a guided nature journal throughout the class. Units are organized around four weekly themes using nature as a metaphor.
  • Unit 1: Homes and Habitats: Identify where you or your characters flourish or are strained and consider which habitats offer support.
  • Unit 2: Harvest: Celebrate the abundance that you or your characters have harvested and what it took to get to this place.
  • Unit 3: Preservation: We will consider the magic and alchemy of preservation and how it applies to our lives.
  • Unit 4: Overwintering: Consider how you or your characters prepare for the arrival of the colder, darker days ahead.

Student Skills, Equipment, and Time Required

Basic work processing and email skills.

Time Commitment: Approximately 2 hours per week.

Tuition/Fees for this course

SCN members: $128. Non-SCN members: $160.

Instructor Bio

Naomi Sandweiss' research and writing have taken her from Taos, New Mexico, to Venice, Italy and many places in between. Her publications include Jewish Albuquerque: 1860-1960, in which she used more than 200 historic images to illustrate the city's fascinating Jewish history. Her articles and essays have appeared in numerous publications; shes taught University-level writing and communication courses and is currently working on a novel set in 17th c. Venice. Naomi enjoys exploring nature and the outdoors in her home state of New Mexico. Visit her website.

Praise for Naomi's Classes

  • Naomi Sandweiss offers thought-provoking prompts inspired by nature. The course supports any genre of writing, and I felt encouraged to take risks. —VJ K., London ON CANADA

  • Thoroughly enjoyed taking [Naomi Sandweiss'] course. Liked the small number of people, and the good exchange we were able to have because of it. Still have questions that need answered, but Naomi gave us good sources and encouragement to find answers on our own. —Karen D., Columbia MO

  • This was my first attempt at an on-line writing class, my first attempt at writing fiction, my first attempt at writing historical fiction; it was my first attempt to put down on paper an outline for a story that I wish to incorporate into my storytelling repetoire. It was a great success. Naomi Sandweiss was spot on with her assignments, gave helpful hints and suggestion and supported my efforts in many positive ways. I have recommended your site to many of my women writing friends. Thanks. —Thea N., Des Moines IA

  • Naomi Sandweiss offers a class that is engaging, supportive, and full of good resources and suggestions. She encouraged interaction between class members, and I came away feeling that I had learned more about the craft of writing historical fiction, with the added bonus that I learned new things from the interesting historical stories that my colleagues presented. I would definitely recommend this course. —Karen D., Columbia MO