Creative Nonfiction Writing with Dr Sian Prior


12 hours




Live Delivery



Next Intake

To be determined


We are living in the age of 'reality hunger'. The reading public has an insatiable appetite for well-crafted true stories. From essays to memoirs and autobiographies, from personal columns to self-help books, the ingredients remain the same: well-planned and focused research, a clear and convincing voice, and an ability to 'show' rather than 'tell' your readers what you want them to know. You will also learn how to structure and write a persuasive publishing proposal. This online course will introduce you to some of the essential skills required to write publishable works of nonfiction. You will participate in instructor-led sessions and get a session where the instructor will provide individual feedback on your work.

Course content

  • Finding the ‘story’ from the ‘situation’ you want to describe in your nonfiction.
  • Creating vivid ‘characters’ in nonfiction writing
  • Choosing the most appropriate point of view
  • Researching marketable genres/formats/projects
  • Research techniques, including interviewing
  • 'Show don't tell' techniques
  • Developing the right ‘voice’ for your story
  • Pitching your work to editors/publishers
  • An insight into today's publishing industry


There are currently no dates scheduled for this course. Please contact us or join our mailing list to express your interest in this course.

How to enrol

More details


Students must be 18 or over and should have an interest in writing non-fiction.

Materials supplied

Materials required for the course will be provided. All relevant course notes are supplied with comprehensive instructions and exercises.

Materials to bring

Pen, paper and/or laptop for note taking.

Suited to

Public, private and community sector professionals and creatives committed to higher communication standards in nonfiction writing. This course is specifically designed to meet the needs of two groups: those who have little practical experience but are drawn to the idea of writing nonfiction, and those who already have some nonfiction writing in progress and want to underpin their current writing with more skills.


You will refine your story-telling skills by developing a deeper understanding of the key ingredients of engaging nonfiction writing. You will be able to identify the universal elements in your story in order to broaden its appeal. You will be introduced to techniques for conducting well-planned and focussed research, for developing a clear and convincing writing voice, and for writing persuasive publishing proposals. These skills will help you to write commercially publishable works of nonfiction.

Upon finishing the course you will receive a RMIT Certificate of Completion. You can use this as a record to demonstrate the outcomes covered in the course.

Sian Prior smiling at camera in balck shirt

Facilitator: Dr Sian Prior

Dr Sian Prior is a writer, broadcaster and teacher of journalism and nonfiction writing. She has worked as a journalist for 30 years and taught writing at RMIT for over a decade. She also runs community writing workshops and mentors individual writers. Sian has a PhD in Creative Writing and her critically-acclaimed memoir ‘Shy’ (Text Publishing) was published in 2014. 

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torres strait flag

Acknowledgement of country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business. - Artwork created by Louisa Bloomer