Malcolm Gladwell

Lesson time 2:42 min

Meet your instructor—best-selling author and longtime New Yorker staff writer, Malcolm Gladwell. Malcolm outlines what he has planned for your class and reflects on the idea of writing as a calling.

Malcolm Gladwell
Teaches Writing
In 24 lessons, the author of Blink and The Tipping Point teaches you how to find, research, and write stories that capture big ideas.
Get All-Access


The act of writing about others is not a trivial act. It's not entertainment. It's not a distraction. You don't read nonfiction for the same reason that you chew gum or watch the Kardashians on television. You read it because you're in search of something powerful and fundamental about what it means to be a better person. Never done a class like this before, and I thought it'd be really fun to do because it's a chance for me to reflect on my career, which is, at this point is almost too long, really, really long, and help other people who would like to pursue a similar kind of line of work. One thing I want you to take away from this class is the idea of writing as a calling. It's an activity that has a higher purpose. It's part of the way in which we fulfill ourselves as human beings, both in the words that we write and in the words that we read. So over the course of these classes, we're going to talk about my career, we're going to talk about where I get ideas, we're going to talk about the techniques I use in my writing, about puzzles and tools and the virtues of withholding information, suspense. I'm going to talk about what I'm not good at as a writer and how I compensate for that. I'm going to talk about writers that I love and what I learned from them. I'm going to talk about what's satisfying to me about the work that I do, and I'm going to try and translate some of the insights I think I have gleaned from my years of writing in a form that I hope that you, listening, watching, can use. I'm Malcolm Gladwell and this is my MasterClass.

Transform the ordinary

Ketchup. Crime. Quarterbacks. Thanks to Malcolm Gladwell’s books, these ordinary subjects have helped millions of readers grasp complex ideas like behavioral economics and performance prediction. Now, the renowned storyteller and best-selling author of Blink and The Tipping Point is teaching his first online writing class. Craft stories that captivate by learning how Malcolm researches topics, crafts characters, and distills big ideas into simple, powerful narratives.


Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

I looked at many different aspects of non-fiction writing. Some tips about the process are very useful, and I will use them in the future.

Getting through the process and being able to see beyond, I feel so inspired and motivated. So insightful. Thank you so much!

Changed my whole perspective ! Many thanks ! I hope to write someday a hearttouching piece that will reflect Malcolm's style at the core.

I've just watched all of Malcolm Gladwell's Masterclasses and I am left in awe. What a profoundly engaging communicator. His ability to keep me locked to the screen from one lesson to the next is something that not many (if any) teachers in the past have accomplished.


Robert C.

"Take your broken heart, turn it into art" ~ Carrie Fisher. A Meeting of Writers' Minds - right here. "Writing as a calling." Hi. Yes, we're off to learn from the Wizard.

Juliet F.

I'm excited about the assignment and am really looking forward to seeing Gladwell's techniques from idea creation to finished piece.

Marta K.

One of my favorite writers, nah, one of my favorite people in the world. Starting the masterclass today.

Genna W.

Hi everyone, I am excited to join this class with you. I am moved by Malcolm's clarity and heart.

Yuanqing E.

"Writing for higher purpose" has build up the ground for a writer. It's the calling from one's spirit to write something particular to echo individual's heart, lead crowd's mind, and find a way of productivity.

Sam A.

"The idea of writing as a calling.It's an activity that has a higher purpose. It's part of the way in which we fulfill ourselves as human beings." That's exactly right. Such a great sensation when one finally puts the right words to the drive and passion that animate my writing.The truth about the strong drive to becoming a professional writer so elegantly summed up and almost "legitimized". There's a flip side to that coin though: the fear of not getting your own work published. Can't wait to complete this class!

Sandra M.

I am intrigued with the introduction. Structural ideas to discuss abstract means. Fascinating. S.L. Northey

Patricia M.

I am excited and scare. Malcolm is like the Hitchcock of the non-fiction. What is going to happen after we unveiled his process? Will report back once I finish! (or before that)

farva J.

Great intro - I'm excited to learn and produce a written piece for The New Yorker and other magazines. J.D. Salinger got his start through his shorter submissions, it's great to embark on this challenge.

A fellow student

A brief start, but I’m so excited to take this course and learn from the Grandmaster of narrative construction.