John D. Nesbitt is available for workshops, classes, talks, and individual sessions. In addition to consulting and editing, he does translation and court interpreting. His offerings are supported by a strong academic background as well as a solid publishing history.

If you are interested in working with John on a project or to have him as a featured speaker for your event, please contact him by email.

Current Offerings

John offers workshops in the following areas:

  • Writing fiction—specialized topics such as narrative point of view, writing in scene, characterization, dialogue, prose style, conceptualizing the form or arc, planning a novel, note management, outlining, and critiques.
  • Writing traditional poetry—rhyme, meter, line arrangement, sound effects, figurative language.
  • Writing in the workplace (usage, style, tone, and format).
  • Editing one’s own sentences—common but significant errors to recognize and overcome; writing effective as well as correct sentences, with focus on such aspects as sentence structure and language use.
  • Studying poetry to become a better fiction writer.
  • Introductory Spanish for travel, business, or the workplace.

John is available to teach classes in the following areas:

  • Creative writing, fiction.
  • Studies in the short story and the novel.
  • Western American literature.
  • Genre fiction.
  • Composition and literature.
  • Grammar, punctuation, sentence structure.
John writing some notes in his office

Past Experience

John has given workshops on the following topics:

  • Narrative point of view in fiction.
  • Characterization.
  • Dialogue.
  • Short story writing; short story vs. novel.
  • Prose style and sentence-level concerns.
  • Writing traditional poetry.
Shaping the Story

John has given talks on the following topics:

  • Early twentieth-century fiction as cultural document.
  • The depiction of frontier towns in western fiction.
  • Wyoming in fiction.
  • Good western books.
  • The depiction of agriculture in poetry.
  • The process a book goes through from manuscript completion to its appearance on the book racks.
  • The value of foreign language study.
  • The democratic value of reading.
  • The democratic value of writing.

John has taught college courses in the following areas:

Basic writing, applied technical writing (includes business writing), composition, introduction to literature, intermediate composition, advanced composition, creative writing, literary genres fiction, literary genres short story, classical backgrounds to British and American literature, survey of American literature, survey of British literature, Western American literature, first-year college Spanish, Spanish conversation, studies in Hispanic culture (field trips to Mexico).


John has published magazine, journal, and encyclopedia articles as well as reviews on authors such as Louis L’Amour, Owen Wister, Zane Grey, Frederick Manfred, A.B. Guthrie, Jr., Elmer Kelton, Luke Short, Max Brand, Charles Marion Russell, Will Henry, Robert Roripaugh, Gary McCarthy, Caroline Lockhart, Peggy Simson Curry and Gretel Ehrlich.

John has written books on basic writing, composition, introduction to fiction, writing fiction, Robert Roripaugh, and Wyoming fiction.

John’s professional work is supported by a strong academic background:

  • B.A., English, University of California, Los Angeles, 6/71
  • M.A., English, University of California, Davis, 12/74
  • Ph.D., English, University of California, Davis, 6/80
    • Dissertation: “Literary Convention in the Classic Western Novel.”
  • Non-degree graduate work, Spanish, University of Wyoming, 1/88-8/88
  • Diploma in Spanish Philology, Instituto de Filología Hispánica, Saltillo, Coahuila (Mexico), 8/94
  • Distance education courses in film, literature, and writing with University of Wyoming, University of California, University of Montana, and University of Iowa, 2001-2004.

John is a Registered Spanish Interpreter on the Wyoming Supreme Court Interpreter Roster, and has written about his experiences.

John has served on the board of Western Writers of America, Wyoming Writers, and WyoPoets and has served as president of the latter two organizations.

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