From Niche to Bestseller: Summer School for Mass Market Publication


  • 5-8 PM BST
  • June 12-July 31
  • Live online writing course
  • 8 consecutive Wednesdays
  • One open mic reading night
  • 2 one-to-one meetings with Kathryn
  • Lectures, discussions, writing workshops
  • Professional and detailed feedback on all writing
  • Signed copies of Writing Wild, The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh, Essentials of Narrative Nonfiction
  • Tea break midway
  • Tuition: £1500

Questions? Email


Learn how to write creative nonfiction in this eight-week summer course — a premium immersion in creative nonfiction for motivated academics and others who want to write for the mass market. This live online creative writing course will help you deep-dive into the genre and help you to harness fictional devices to make your nonfiction come alive. The aim is transforming from niche or academic writing to mass market through narrative nonfiction — the fastest-growing genre in publishing. A typical student might be a teacher, academic, or expert in their field from the arts and humanities to the natural sciences. They want to expand their writing beyond peer-reviewed journals to a wider reading audience.  Their time is valuable. They want a high-quality, positive, and intensive learning experience with a professional writer and seasoned teacher. Notwithstanding, the course is open to anyone who wants creative or narrative nonfiction and experience rapid growth and an understanding of the genre.

This high-value course provides the space, structure, and support to grow as a writer of creative nonfiction. Students will also discover a great sense of fellowship from this international writing community. Whether students aspire to write stand-alone essays or explore a book-length manuscript, they will learn techniques and approaches through engaging lectures, lively discussions, supportive workshops, and reflective in-class writing exercises.  Students will learn how to ‘show, not tell’ in their creative nonfiction, read great essays and books, and write essays as well.

Questions? Drop Kathryn a line at


  • Learn prewriting and drafting techniques
  • Understand the difference between showing and telling in writing
  • Discover your own voice and explore your presence in the narrative
  • Uncover the most compelling narrative arc of story
  • Practice the Iceberg Principle to flesh out people as characters
  • Craft textured and revealing dialogue and use it to advance action
  • Telescope from the personal to the universal



Essay Collections



  • Essentials of Narrative Nonfiction: Harnessing Fictional Techniques to Make Your Nonfiction Come Alive by Kathryn Aalto (available February 1)


No matter your subject or style, you will find a great writing community in this creative nonfiction writing course. All of Kathryn’s writing courses are characterised by a warm fellowship and positive accountability, which provide valuable support and focus. Each session you gather with your classmates, you will learn from and teach each other while gaining a new set of friends who share your writing aspirations and growth mindset.


Read more testimonials here about this creative nonfiction writing course.

“If you want to learn how to weave facts into an engaging format, to transform your research into a story, then Kathryn is the perfect instructor. She explains the elements of narrative nonfiction so you shift from wondering what the technique is, to feeling excited to try it out in your own writing. And her feedback is phenomenal – detailed, generous, encouraging and probing — exactly what you need to feel confident to take the leap into a new genre of writing.”

Katherine E-K., PhD, University of Strathclyde

“As an academic for over thirty years, honestly, my writing had become more than a little dry and stodgy. My classes with Kathryn taught me to add rich details like sounds, smells, and observations that brought my pages to life, and most importantly, made writing fun again! Kathryn’s feedback and encouragement–and that of my wonderful classmates–created a space where I could experiment and try new things. I’m really proud of an article I published, writing in a narrative nonfiction style, and have a book project underway. Kathryn’s classes and coaching have been instrumental to my progress and growth as a writer.

Rachel S., PhD, University of California

“If you are an academic looking to enhance the engagement, reach and impact of your research, I highly recommend Kathryn Aalto’s “Niche to Bestseller: A Summer Intensive in Mass Market Publication.”  Building on Kathryn’s expertise as a researcher and narrative nonfiction writer, this course teaches you how to move seamlessly between immersive and reflective writing strategies to amplify the resonance of your research findings and persuasiveness of your arguments. Short lectures and writing workshops will teach you how to create gripping scenes, engage the senses, spark curiosity, experiment with voice and convey your expertise with flair. Such techniques can strengthen the writing of traditional scholarship as well as extend the reach/impact of your research, most especially if you want to engage fresh readerships through online essays, op-ed pieces, blog posts, magazine articles or social media posts. Along the way, you will receive insightful and actionable feedback to enhance your writing, so that you can work with confidence towards publication.”

Wendy K., PhD, Maidenhead, England