the writing life Category

Getting Motivated

Well, it’s February and if you’re anything like me, your New Year’s resolutions to write more, submit more, write on a schedule, finally finish that scene, that story, that book have all faded away like champagne bubbles. To help you get back to being productive, here are some websites dedicated to helping writers get motivated: […]

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Getting to Know the Market

Re-posted from my monthly column at FFC. If you’re new to the submissions game, trying to find markets that might fit your work can seem like an impossible task. How do you learn your way around an arena as vast and varied as the world of literary magazines? Mostly, it just takes a lot of […]

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Do it.

Reposted from my monthly column at FFC. The other day on Facebook, my cousin posted a note about her first ever college writing class. The students were asked to bring in a piece of writing they admired and three of them brought in this poem by Charles Bukowski, called “so you want to be a […]

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Using Your Writing Skills IRL

Cross posted from my monthly column at FFC. I often joke with my partner (who, in addition to being a fabulous writer, has worked in the web doing user experience and strategy work) about how I have absolutely no skills that are marketable in the real world. Of course I know this isn’t really true; […]

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My First Time

This month’s article at Flash Fiction Chronicles is about my first time being published. I’ve re-posted it here: Everyone remembers their first time. Maybe you’re young and naive, like I was. Maybe you’ve been working up to it so long that you already feel like a pro. But when the moment arrives, it’s always the […]

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The Bravest Person You’ve Ever Met

I’m working on my first novel. It’s a tough process filled with self-doubt and fear. I’ve also made the mistake of learning everything there is to know about how impossible it is to sell a first novel. Here’s a scary statistic, the average number of novels a writer produces before they sell one is four. […]

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Where to Send Your Experimental Writing

Last weekend, I facilitated a workshop all about experimental writing as part of Dzanc Books’ National Workshop Day. During the workshop, I talked a bit about publishing experimental writing and gave the participants a (very incomplete) list of venues that are particularly amenable to this kind of writing. Below is this list. Of course, what […]

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What to Do With This Novella…

I’m currently writing a thousand things at once (it works for me; don’t judge) and, among them, I’m polishing up a novella-in-stories and getting ready to…what? It’s a tough sentence to finish for many reasons. First, I’m not even sure a novella-in-stories is a thing. (Anyone ever write one of these? What did you do […]

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Dating Advice for Writers

Today I had a nice long chat with a friend and fellow writer. He was feeling a little down about this business of ours and I gave him a completely unsolicited pep talk. Halfway through my speech about sending work to editors, I realized it sounded like I was giving him dating advice. So I […]

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Writing Awards Make Me Crazy.

Much has been written about writing awards: if they matter, why they matter, why they’re helping writers, why they’re hurting writers, who wins them, who doesn’t deserve them, and why no one should give a crap about any of it. This is not one of these articles. I’ve read all the arguments, all the careful […]

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