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Our January master classes are now full. See you next year!

Writing of Witness

Writing of Witness expands first-person narrative onto the larger canvas of the issues that connect individuals to their surroundings.  Through shorter magazine pieces or book-length projects, participants in these mirror image master classes take their writing from singular to plural by finding the connective tissue that makes their work come alive.  

Working with award-winning writers Elizabeth Rosner and Sandra Lorenzano, the Writing of Witness program is a sister to our investigative journalism program. Taken as a whole, our masterclasses in literary non-fiction and journalism embody our core commitment to truth-telling and freedom of expression.

As part of a growing network of solidarity among writers, Under the Volcano especially encourages risk-taking candidates with intrepid projects to apply. 

Who's Who
in Writing of Witness @UTV

Elizabeth Rosner

A native of Schenectady, New York, Liz Rosner is a novelist, poet and essayist who lives in Berkeley, California. Her novels include The Speed of Light, Blue Nude and Electric City. Her first book of non-fiction, Survivor Café: The Legacy of Trauma and the Labyrinth of Memory, published in September 2017, was featured on NPR’s “All Things Considered” and in the New York Times and was named one of the best books of 2017 by the San Francisco Chronicle. She is working on a new book of creative non-fiction, THIRD EAR; a Life of Deep Listening.

Sandra Lorenzano

Nacida en Buenos Aires, Sandra Lorenzano se considera así misma “argen-mex”; ha vivido en México desde 1975, producto del exilio. Novelista, poeta y colaboradora frecuente de diversos medios periodísticos, posee un PhD en literatura por la UNAM y ha sido miembro del Sistema Nacional de Investigadores y del Sistema Nacional de Creadores del Arte. Actualmente, Lorenzano es Directora de Cultura y Comunicación Social de la Coordinación Universitaria para la Igualdad de Género, y coordinadora de “Cultura y Migración”, un proyecto internacional de la UNAM, la UNESCO y la Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. Escribe una columna semanal para la plataforma digital Sin Embargo


What makes our program unique

Early to mid-career non-fiction writers live and work alongside journalists, poets and fiction writers, sharing meals, ideas and work-in-progress
Participants receive feedback from both accomplished peers and seasoned faculty mentors
The two-week time frame allows space for revision and new submissions
Writing of Witness is available in either Spanish or English
Partial financial support is available to qualified applicants (talent + need)
Writers of color especially encouraged to apply

Memory as Witness

Insights on writing from faculty members Liz Rosner and Sandra Lorenzano

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Writing of Witness Fellowship

The Words of Witness Fellowship is awarded to a US-based writer of literary non-fiction whose work addresses issues of social justice, racism or the fate of the earth in an innovative way.


in their own words


Mis compañerxs de taller y Sandra Lorenzano fueron y son un apoyo escritural incomparable. 


I had the incomparable Liz Rosner. What a gifted, generous teacher!


Writing of Witness - Under The Volcano