About Nathanael Green
Most writers will tell you, getting published is pretty darn difficult. It can feel like trying to win the lottery.
Nate Green got a poem published in the sixth grade.
Okay, it was a poem in a brochure about the sixth grade play. And he’d be the first to tell you trying to become a published writer is not for the faint of heart. But we can’t be surprised, can we, that after that early success Nate Green went on to become a professional writer and writing teacher.
Today, he’s also the Honors director for the Albany campus and Betty Harder McClellan Distinguished Professor in Humanities at Russell Sage College.
The perspective Professor Green shares with his students about the writer’s life and career is a fully rounded one. After graduation from college he worked as a copywriter while he earned an MFA in Creative Writing. In 2010, he opened his own advertising and copywriting business.
When Professor Green started out a Sage, teaching a writing course or two as an adjunct professor, he kept his business going. He was good at what he did, and he’d made a living writing marketing and advertising copy for nearly 20 years. But then the opportunity was presented to teach full time and Professor Green realized he’d fallen in love with this teaching business.
“When I see that moment when something clicks for a student,” he says. “It’s hard to beat.”
Professor Green calls upon his decades of experience as a working writer to teach a broad range of writing classes, everything from Marketing Writing to Writing With Flair, a small, high-level Honors course that explores style and technique in-depth, both academically and with the student’s creative writing.
The current that runs through all these different sessions is the desire Professor Green has to show how writing clearly is about thinking clearly. It’s about making connections, often unexpected, when you put thoughts to words, paragraphs, and pages.
Sometimes this can be a tough sell to students.
Nate talks about teaching Joseph Conrad’s book, “Heart of Darkness.” Most often, he says, students start out hating the reading. Conrad can be maddening. “But usually by the time we’re done,” Nate says, “the student admits, ‘Well yes, it made me think.”
Bingo. Nate has produced the moment he’s been after all along.
“This matters quite a lot,” Nate says, “because it makes them really think, and wrestle with their own notions of what’s right and wrong, and good and bad writing, and how we handle issues like race.”
He finds this commitment to being the best teacher possible is what sets Sage professors apart. “It’s a teaching college,” he says. “The professors are here because they enjoy and see the value in working with their students. The relationship I sense we all have with our students is: ‘I’m here to help you for four years.’”
Recent Courses Taught
“It’s a teaching college. The professors are here because they enjoy and see the value in working with their students.
Assistant Professor of the Practice of Writing; Director, The Kathleen Donnelly Center for Undergraduate Research
Nathanael Green is an author of novels and short fiction, and his corporate communications work has led to a successful freelance business and accolades for Best Self Promotion and Best Advertisement.