Written by guest-contributor

Building the Story: A Q&A with Chavisa Woods by Corinne Manning

Posted Mon, 9/03/2018 - 10:02am by  |  Category: , ,

Chavisa Woods writes like everything is on fire because it is. This year, she was awarded the Shirley Jackson Award, the Kathy Acker Award, and received her third nomination from LAMBDA for her story collection Things to Do When You’re…

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Four Ways to Refine Your Critic’s Voice by Melinda Bargreen

Posted Wed, 6/20/2018 - 11:01am by  |  Category: , ,

As the saying goes: “Everyone’s a critic.” But bringing out your inner reviewer is a complex process. Writing a review is much more than just “criticizing.” In my upcoming class, Critical Thinking: Writing a Review, you’ll have the opportunity to…

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Keep Writing: A Teach-In With Write Our Democracy and Seattle Escribe

Posted Wed, 5/30/2018 - 9:44am by  |  Category: ,

It’s a myth that good writing requires solitude. Or, at least, it’s a half-truth. When I teach, I tell my students this: We write in community. What I mean by this is that writing is an act of connection, a…

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How to Start Budgeting for Your Self-Published Book

Posted Thu, 5/24/2018 - 4:00pm by  |  Category: ,

My second novel, The Biographies of Ordinary People: Volume 2: 2004–2016, publishes this week. Or, if you want to be more accurate, self-publishes this week. I elected to self-publish both volumes of The Biographies of Ordinary People (a Millennial-era Little…

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Six Ways Writers Can Help Their Publicists by Michelle Bonanno Triant

Posted Tue, 5/08/2018 - 10:32am by  |  Category: ,

Writers always want to know what they can do to help facilitate publicity efforts for their books, especially during that unbearable wait between the last pen stroke and publication date. First, it’s important to get into the mindset of a…

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Renewal: Writing About Change by Anne Liu Kellor

Posted Wed, 4/18/2018 - 9:24am by  |  Category: , ,

Sometimes I feel the need to explain why so many of the readings I select for my classes are tinged with sadness. It’s what I’m drawn to as a reader, I say. I like stuff that is dark. As a…

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Micro Lesson: Asking and Answering Questions of Travel with Elizabeth Bishop by Carolyne Wright

Posted Mon, 4/09/2018 - 11:09am by  |  Category: , , ,

Elizabeth Bishop (1911-1979) was the consummate American poet of travel, writing and translating worldwide, and living for fifteen years in Brazil. Her “traveler takes a notebook, writes” about the mysteries of maps, the wonders of cultures and landscapes. In my…

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Micro Lesson: An Exercise in Empathy by Ruth Joffre

Posted Thu, 4/05/2018 - 7:35am by  |  Category: , ,

It is often said that reading makes us better, kinder people. Many articles expound on how the act of reading benefits the mind and body by decreasing stress levels, teaching us about other people and cultures, and introducing us to…

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Accessing Hinduism in Your Writing by Shankar Narayan

Posted Wed, 4/04/2018 - 7:48am by  |  Category: , ,

Hinduism is an entire universe of gods, concepts, traditions, and philosophies. Just as you can practice any religion concurrently with being a Hindu, you don’t have to be a true believer to take advantage of Hinduism in your writing practice. Many of…

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Writing Women’s Lives by Susan Meyers

Posted Mon, 4/02/2018 - 7:00am by  |  Category: ,

In the United States, women buy statistically more books than men—but publish fewer books, win fewer literary prizes, and get reviewed with far less regularity. Similarly, women account for only 10% of op-ed pieces that are published nationally. Why is…

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Micro Lesson: Screenwriting for Fiction Writers by Michael Shilling

Posted Thu, 3/22/2018 - 10:27am by  |  Category: , ,

Interested in dipping your (electronic) pen into the screenwriting well? Not sure where to start, who to study, how to think about the form? In my class Screenwriting for Fiction Writers we’ll take up these matters and more, looking at…

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Why I Write by Participants in Building a Writing Class with Anne Liu Kellor

Posted Tue, 11/21/2017 - 7:49am by  |  Category: , ,

The passages that follow are excerpts from a ten-minute in-class free write from the prompt Why do you write? Afterwards, we read aloud in a round and the energy in the room was palpable. I feel so grateful each time…

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Micro Lesson: Jeanine Walker on Discovering Poetic Voice

Posted Fri, 7/07/2017 - 11:04am by  |  Category: , , ,

Our voice as poets is a mix of who we are, what we think and feel, and a summation of everything we’ve read in our lives. Voice is the result of both experience and influence. In her book Black Lightning:…

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On the Poetry of Witness and Protest by Merna Ann Hecht

Posted Wed, 6/28/2017 - 8:13am by  |  Category: ,

At this turbulent time in our country and globally, many poets feel summoned to write about events that pose grave threats to justice and endanger our common humanity. We turn to poetry in order to find a language that provides…

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Micro Lesson: Magical Realism with Stephanie Barbé Hammer

Posted Tue, 5/09/2017 - 11:04am by  |  Category: , ,

Aimee Bender is a fan of both magical realism and surrealism, meaning that she likes to put magical characters into mundane and even boring situations. The key to making this move work for readers is languaging the “quotidian,” or every…

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