Masterclass: Narrative Non-Fiction with Ben Rawlence

Masterclass: Narrative Non-Fiction with Ben Rawlence

Making True Stories Sing
  • Ben Rawlence Headshot
    Ben Rawlence
Date Tuesday August 15th 2023, 19:00-21:00 BST
Location Online

Join Ben Rawlence, award-winning non-fiction author and Arvon Writer-in-Residence, for an in-depth look at how to make true stories sing. Ben approaches non-fiction narratives from a number of different angles in his work: Radio Congo used a travel/memoir style to take readers into Africa’s deadliest war; City of Thorns pioneered third person points of view to bring Africa’s largest refugee camp to life through the eyes of its inhabitants; The Treeline combined science, nature, travel writing and reportage.

In this session he will draw from a range of styles and ‘ways in’ to a narrative, covering the essentials along the way: finding the beginning of the idea, developing the shape of your story, and questions of form, voice, character and structure. During the two-hour session he will break down the heavy-lifting that goes into making an accessible and page-turning work of narrative non-fiction, giving you new direction and focus.

The Masterclass will be delivered via Zoom webinar, so you can take the session at your own pace, without the pressure of having your video or camera on. Sessions are also recorded so if you are unable to attend live, you will have access to the recording for a month afterwards.

Note: We are pleased to announce that through a partnership with Climate Spring there are a number of free places available for this Masterclass.

This event is part of Ben Rawlence’s season as Arvon’s Writer and Residence for Spring/Summer 2023. Ben’s series of online and in-person events centre nature, asking writers to develop creative responses to the forces that threaten it. Learn more about Ben’s season here. 

Online: £35

Concessions: £17.50

As part of our effort to increase participation in the arts, a limited number of half-price concessions are available for this course at checkout. There are a limited number of free subsidised places for those who cannot afford the concession price.

We are committed to making our Arvon at Home programme accessible to as many people as possible.

Across all of Arvon at Home

Masterclasses and Online Writing Day

How I Write

Online Writing Weeks / Weekends

Subject to funding/permissions (please contact us for more details)

If you have any access issues that we have not covered here, please contact us on

See here for more access information.

"These zoom opportunities are really helping to open my world and keep me inspired to write."
— Masterclass participant
"Arvon at Home creates a model to participate in inspirational tutoring for writers, at a distance. The feeling of attending to my writing life in an excellent fashion, and still having a half-day for my work and caring responsibilities at home, felt like a good balance."
— Masterclass participant
"It was an absolutely brilliant session and very very useful. And it made me realise how much I’ve missed this kind of workshop because of having children and family that I can’t leave. Now we’re all in the same boat the online stuff is truly transformative."
— Masterclass participant



See all Courses & Retreats