Nonfiction Workshop

Workshop dates

2020 programming has been cancelled

Applications Now Closed


Please email or call 740-427-5196.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the State of Ohio’s accompanying restrictions, Kenyon College has made the difficult decision to close campus through July 31st, so we must cancel Kenyon Review’s residential 2020 Writers Workshops. These are unprecedented times, and we regret we will not see you this summer. We trust you’ll understand this decision as your health and safety are of the utmost concern to us.



By using the full range of available literary devices and techniques to tell a story rooted in truth and experience, the particular genre of literary nonfiction is all about pressing against the boundaries of the very term “genre.” As Rebecca McClanahan, one of our instructors, writes, “Though rooted in fact and in actual, lived experience, literary nonfiction aspires to the condition of art, revealing itself in various ways—in close attention to language, for instance, or in an elegant structure, a well-paced narrative, a surprising voice, or in a new take on an old subject.”

The Kenyon Review’s literary nonfiction workshops create the space to explore the possibilities within this rich genre. Through analysis of elements such as frame, structure, pacing and tone, participants investigate how an author’s choices affect the narrative of a lived experience. Writers complete and share daily writing assignments geared toward specific nonfiction techniques, focusing on expanding their knowledge of literary nonfiction and creating new work to develop once their workshop week concludes.

Each class is limited to 12 participants. Admissions decisions are made on a rolling basis, and we make every effort to notify applicants within four weeks of application. The application consists of the online application form, a resume, and a writing sample. The writing sample should be a short nonfiction piece or an excerpt from a longer work. Based on your application, you will be assigned one of the following instructors: Rebecca McClanahan or Dinty Moore in session I or Geeta Kothari in session II.



Select a topic for more information.

Workshops Overview
Application Process
Social and Residential Life
Getting to Campus


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Writers Workshop classroom
Writers Workshop classroom
Writers Workshop classroom
Writers Workshop classroom
Writers Workshop classroom
Writers Workshop success
Writers Workshop conferencing
Writers Workshop in the Gund Gallery
Writers Workshop conferencing
Campus beauty
Writers Workshop final dinner
Writers Workshop final dinner
Writers Workshop participants
Writers Workshop at a reading
Writers Workshop participant
Writers Workshop audience