Online: Zoom
Our Planet, Our Stories

Our Planet, Our Stories: Writing Climate Essays and Op-Eds

7 Thursdays, from 6:00pm-9:00pm, starting October 26th (Eastern Time)
Online: Zoom
See Map
Level: For Everyone
Adult (18+)
This class is full

GrubStreet’s Our Planet, Our Stories series focuses on the climate crisis, and aims to help writers find creative ways to engage with this urgent global issue. At the end of the series, all participants will be invited to submit writing to an anthology that GrubStreet will put out in the spring of 2024. This is the second installation of GrubStreet's annual Our Times, Our Stories series, which offers a variety of free and reduced-cost classes focused on a pressing contemporary issue, with a free print and digital anthology of student writing collected nd distributed at the end of the series. To donate to the series, please visit our donation page.

Our Planet, Our Stories: Writing Climate Essays and Op-Eds

Everywhere you look, there it is: the crisis of climate change. Writing about the environment, and the many constant, overwhelming realities that plague it, presents major challenges: How do we write with specificity about something that is omnipresent? And how do we write vividly, and with urgency, about problems that are unfolding at scales so large that they often lend themselves more easily to numbers and charts than they do to words?

In this seven-week nonfiction workshop, we will write essays and/or op-eds that capture the climate crisis with words, while adding a personal element that can make such large scale problems feel tangible to our readers. You will take one essay or op-ed through two rounds of workshopping, with an eye towards publication, with the possibility of workshopping a second piece once, depending on enrollment and class time. Along the way, we will read work from authors like Bill McKibben, Elizabeth Kolbert, Michael Pollan, Harriet A. Washington, Wendell Berry, Rebecca Solnit and Wangari Maathai. All writers in this class will be invited to publish their work in an anthology put together by GrubStreet in the spring of 2024.

Please note: Class does not meet on November 2nd, or November 23rd.

Other Classes in the Our Planet, Our Stories Series

Our Planet, Our Stories: Writing Climate Fiction (multi-week, starting 10/24)

Our Planet, Our Stories: Apocalyptic and Dystopian Fiction (Sunday, October 29th, 12pm-4pm, FREE)

Our Planet, Our Stories: Nature Writing (Sunday, November 12th, 12pm-4pm, FREE)

Our Planet, Our Stories: Ecopoetics (Sunday, December 3rd, 12pm-4pm, FREE)

Our Planet, Our Stories: Writing Climate Justice (Sunday, December 10th, 12pm-4pm, FREE)

Class Format

This class will take place using Zoom videoconferencing. About 15 minutes before your class is scheduled to begin, you'll receive an email from your instructor with a link to join the class meeting!

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Ethan Gilsdorf
See Bio


  • Craft Lessons
  • In-Class Writing
  • Instructor Feedback
  • Workshop
  • Reading Homework
  • Writing Homework


  • Personal Essay
  • Literary Journalism
  • Nonfiction

Commitment Level



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