From Pen to Publication: A weekend workshop of writing about adventure, nature, and the outdoors – supported by the Tūpiki Trust.

(May 24): BOOKED OUT: email us to go on a wait list if someone withdraws…..


You have been writing about your outdoor adventures, and want to know how to edit your own work and possibly get it published.

Join a two-day weekend workshop with outdoors writer Shaun Barnett. Limited to a group of 10, this specialised writing workshop will give aspiring writers several in-depth tutorials, question-and-answer sessions, plus the opportunity to workshop their writing with other students in the group.

The workshop will be structured around four half-day sessions, each with theory, discussion, and workshops.

1 Defining your audience and choosing an angle
What makes a good piece of writing? Who is your audience? The value of reading widely, with examples.

2 How to edit your own work
How can we get an objective view of our own work? What is the process for editing your own writing? How can we improve? The art of reading aloud.

3 Getting advice and feedback from others
The adventure writing school will provide opportunity for everyone to share their work, to gain feedback, and to learn how to give feedback to others. Learn about the value of ‘first readers’ – readers who can help you improve your work before submitting it to an editor or publication.

4 Getting published
The workshop will also cover what outdoor publications exist in New Zealand, and what editors want from writers. There will also be advice for planning a significant piece of writing, such as a feature-length article or book.

Students can bring two pieces of their own writing, fiction or non-fiction, with the aim of developing them both over the course of the weekend. Significant time will be set aside for editing, and workshopping everyone’s writing.

Students will also bring an example of some writing they admire to share.

The aim will be an atmosphere of encouragement and constructive critique.


Saturday June 24 and Sunday June 25, 2023.


St John Wanaka Ambulance Station classroom, 4 Link Way, Wānaka.


Adults: only $115 each thanks to amazing support from the Tūpiki Trust.  There is a maximum of 12 students.

Refund policy: If you have to pull out of the AFS and we can fill your spot, 100% refund. If you have to pull out before the course fills up, same 100% refund. If you pull out late and the course is full, and we can’t fill your spot, no refund.


The Tutor

Shaun Barnett is one of New Zealand’s most experienced outdoor writers, with 10 books and over 1200 articles published here and overseas.

Wellington-based, Shaun has been a fulltime freelance writer, photographer and editor for 25 years, and his books have sold over 130,000 copies. These include the New Zealand Book Award-winning Classic Tramping in New Zealand, Shelter from the Storm, Tramping, a New Zealand History, Across the Pass, and A Bunk for the Night.

Shaun edited Wilderness magazine for over three years, and Backcountry/FMC Bulletin for a decade. He has contributed to most of New Zealand’s major magazines and newspapers, including New Zealand Geographic, The Listener, North & South, and Forest & Bird.

He is also one of New Zealand’s most experienced trampers, having visited all of the country’s major parks and tracks, and tramped the length of Kā Tiritiri o te Moana/The Southern Alps. Shaun also enjoys climbing, ski-touring, sea-kayaking and mountain-biking, and has an extensive knowledge of New Zealand natural history.

Shaun Barnett at a campsite on the Ella Range, Nelson Lakes National Park / Image: Peter Laurenson.