Category: writing

Camp NaNoWriMo 2018: Fail better

Camp NaNoWriMo 2018: Fail better

If you want to be a writer, you have to be comfortable with failure. Failure isn’t bad, though. It (hopefully) means you’re learning and growing. But more importantly, failure means you’re trying. I’ve been participating in National Novel Writing Month since 2007, and Camp NaNoWriMo since it began around 2010. The goal for NaNoWriMo is...

Why don’t you get a real/better/higher-paying job?

Why don’t you get a real/better/higher-paying job?

Coming out of a writing retreat or conference is always difficult. The transition from being surrounded by writers who understand the struggle (of writing, of creating a life conducive to writing, of getting published) to people who don’t feels like an extreme version of jet lag. (It’s the same when I come home from a...

Adventures in writing conferences: AWP 2018

Adventures in writing conferences: AWP 2018

Last week I went to Tampa for the 2018 AWP Conference. For those of you who aren’t familiar with AWP, it’s the Association of Writers and Writing Programs, and each year they hold a huge conference in a different city (next year is Portland!). It’s an exhausting three days full of craft talks, discussion panels,...

Flight ritual

Flight ritual

If I were a character in a Warren Zevon song, I’d be Suzie Lightning. I wrote a story about her, though that story has yet to find a home (it was a finalist in a Glimmer Train contest, though!). Every time I fly, I have to listen to that song. “She only sleeps on planes...

Dream writing

Dream writing

Often at night my mind races. Half awake, half asleep, I write entire essays and stories in my head, revise them, erase them. I never get up to put these pieces down, and by the morning I’ve usually forgotten what they were about, or that I wrote them at all. This isn’t a loss. I...