June 3 - July 26, 2024

8-Week Online Spiritual Nonfiction Workshop with Jonathan Malesic

June 3 – July 26, 2024
Class size limited to 10 students
Cost: $250

Writing nonfiction about spirituality — whether your own or others’ — is as rewarding as it is challenging. It demands you tell the truth about something that’s often invisible but that nevertheless motivates consequential human actions. But like other nonfiction genres, it rests on a foundation of characters, scenes, and information gathered from memory, interviews, objects and written texts. This class will help you meet the challenge and write more incisive, more inspiring and more beautiful essays about religious lives.

Each week, we will analyze classic and contemporary spiritual nonfiction from St. Augustine to Kaya Oakes, to see how writers deal with self-representation, conflict, structure and other elements of narrative nonfiction. And we will practice workshop norms of respectful dialog and critique, with the aim of making everyone’s work better through revision. You will have the opportunity to workshop and get instructor feedback on two essays, one of up to 1,200 words and one of up to 3,000 words.

The class will proceed asynchronously via the user-friendly online Wet Ink platform. Each Monday for eight weeks, a new lesson will be posted with a written “craft talk” on that week’s topic, as well as readings, exercises and discussion forums. There will also be two informal, optional Zoom meetings during the eight weeks of class.

Jonathan Malesic has written essays for The New York Times, The Atlantic, The New Republic, America, Commonweal, Notre Dame Magazine, Plough, The Point, The Hedgehog Review and elsewhere. His work has been listed as notable in “The Best American Essays” four times, as well as in “The Best American Food Writing” and the Pushcart Prize anthology. He is the author of two books: “Secret Faith in the Public Square” (Brazos, 2009), which won a Foreword INDIES gold medal for the religion category, and “The End of Burnout” (University of California, 2022), which was named one of Amazon’s Best Books of 2022. He has taught at King’s College (Pa.), McCormick Theological Seminary, Southern Methodist University and the University of Texas at Dallas. He holds a Ph.D. in religious studies from the University of Virginia.

The instructor will provide links to the assigned reading material; you will not need to buy any books for this class.

The class will proceed asynchronously via the user-friendly online Wet Ink platform, allowing you to complete the assignments on your own schedule. Interactions and feedback with Jon and your peers will also take place within Wet Ink.

A new lesson will be posted with a written “craft talk” on that week’s topic each Monday for eight weeks. There will also be two informal, optional Zoom meetings during the eight weeks of class.

Wet Ink was designed specifically for online writing classes. Wet Ink is private, easy to use and interactive. Learn more about Wet Ink by watching a class demo.

Questions?

If you’re interested in the course but the enrollment fee poses a financial hardship, email Mike Jordan Laskey at jccucommunications@jesuits.org. You can also email Mike with any general questions about the course.

Register for this Event

The "8-Week Online Spiritual Nonfiction Workshop with Jonathan Malesic" course is full.

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