The Sierra Club Nature Writing Handbook: A Creative Guide
This newest volume in the Sierra Club's acclaimed The series includes autobiographical writings, essays, short stories, and poetry that communicate a passion for nature which enhances our appreciation of a wide range of landscapes and wildlife. Diverse in mood and setting, the nineteen selections, including seven in print for the first time, represent the best of the genre.
Readers will delight in Chip Rawlins's memoir of life in the Wind River Mountains of Wyoming, Dan O'Brien's tale of falconry on the Great Plains, David Rains Wallace's exploration of the Darien, Barry Lopez's essay on the coral reefs of the Caribbean island of Bonaire, and Marybeth Holleman's evocative essay on St. Lawrence Island in the Bering Sea.
Other contributors are Rick Bass, SueEllen Campbell, Lisa Couturier, John Daniel, Jan Grover, Penny Harter, Adele Ne Jame, Homer Kizer, W. S. Merwin, David Petersen, April N. Rieveschl, Alianor True, Louise Wagenknecht, and Terry Tempest Williams.
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Having said this, word pictures generally fall into three broad categories: (1) they
describe a natural scene (either static, like a snowbound winter valley, or
dynamic, like a volcanic eruption), (2) they describe a person who is central to the
Sometimes it helps to actually sketch the scene on a piece of paper before
beginning the process of committing it to paper with words. Other times it can be
beneficial to close your eyes and try to describe the scene to yourself from
Choose a favorite outdoor scene, a streamside or a forest clearing or a
mountaintop, and sit there for as long as it takes for you to absorb its general
shape and salient details. When you have studied the scene long enough to
close your eyes ...