Posts about “Writing Advice”

Looking at Ledes (in Critical Writing) by Kevin O’Rourke

Posted Thu, 10/10/2019 - 9:50am by  |  Category: , , ,

Openings are important in any piece of writing, but they’ve always struck me as particularly important to critical writing.  Why? Well, because critical writing bears the burden of always being about something else, often something readers have heard of and…

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What I am Trying to Say: A Micro Lesson in Revising for Truth by CMarie Fuhrman

Posted Wed, 10/09/2019 - 9:45am by  |  Category: , , , , ,

It was an essay about climate change.  At least that is what I wanted the essay to be about. I wrote passionately about finding trash on the trail, the bear hunter who passed us on the road, a meadow in…

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Using Sound: An Exercise by Corinne Manning

Posted Fri, 10/04/2019 - 9:10am by  |  Category: , , ,

In a workshop, the writer Dorothy Allison had us go around the room and all fake an orgasm.  She critiqued the authenticity and then had us write a sex scene where sound was present. This idea came up when she…

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4 Tips for Writing Good Dialogue by Ana Pastor

Posted Tue, 10/01/2019 - 9:01am by  |  Category: , , ,

Writing for the stage offered me an opportunity to explore the mechanics of dialogue.  In a play, the spoken word carries a weight that in other genres it shares with written descriptions, insights into situations, references… On stage the word…

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Seven Signs You Should Write a Novella by Jesse Edward Johnson

Posted Mon, 9/30/2019 - 9:41am by  |  Category: , , ,

Do you write fiction?  Maybe you’ve got a shoebox full of short stories, or the drafts of various novels. Maybe you haven’t yet found the right form in which to realize the full potential of your story. Maybe you’re wondering…

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How to Find Story Ideas when You’re Feeling Uninspired by Alma García

Posted Fri, 9/27/2019 - 9:45am by  |  Category: , , ,

Creativity is a slippery thing.  There’s nothing so thrilling as being in the flow of the creative zone…until the day your inspiration is gone. Then it’s like you’ve been dumped on the side of the highway. You’re lost, tired, stuck,…

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Three Steps for Selling Your Next Book by Rachel Werner

Posted Mon, 9/23/2019 - 9:33am by  |  Category: , , ,

How do you want the reader to be changed by the words you’ve written? We all know too well that what motivates one person to keep turning pages could equally trigger another to shut a book forever. Which is why…

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The Great Divide: An Exclusive Q&A with Jayne Anne Phillips, Mira Jacob, and Ruth Joffre

Posted Tue, 9/17/2019 - 12:17pm by  |  Category: , ,

On September 27, Jayne Anne Phillips, Mira Jacob, and Ruth Joffre will start off the 2019–20 Hugo Literary Series with new works on the theme of “The Great Divide.” In a recent email exchange, Jayne Anne, Mira, and Ruth revealed…

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Micro-Lesson: Goal vs. Need by Jeff Bender

Posted Thu, 9/12/2019 - 9:45am by  |  Category: , , ,

There are a lot of names for these two ideas. Whatever we call them, they can shape some of our biggest decisions as storytellers. The Goal, or what Robert McKee (Story) calls the “conscious desire,” is the concrete and unconcealed…

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What Can We Learn from Harry Potter? by Karen Finneyfrock

Posted Tue, 9/10/2019 - 9:41am by  |  Category: , , ,

It was July 2007 and I was in line outside the bookstore at quarter to midnight. I was in Maryland and the mosquitos were still biting and the heat of the day clung to the sidewalk. I was only a…

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Lyric Essay 101 by Jessica Mooney

Posted Tue, 9/03/2019 - 9:34am by  |  Category: , , ,

Don’t know what a lyric essay is? Not sure if you’re even intending to write one? Don’t worry! My class, Structuring the Lyric Essay, will explore the lyric essay as a form that can be used to help inspire your…

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Titles That Don’t Let You Go by Susanne Paola Antonetta

Posted Tue, 8/20/2019 - 9:45am by  |  Category: , , , ,

Writing a title for a flash fiction or nonfiction piece is like dipping your oar into the roaring water while whitewater rafting. That oar stroke had better do some major work. The flash title is the oar that steers your little…

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Writing Prompt: Affected Bodies, Trauma, and Non-Human Encounters by Janice Lee

Posted Thu, 8/01/2019 - 9:45am by  |  Category: , , , , ,

What really exists is not things made but things in the making. —William James How other kinds of beings see us matters. That other kinds of beings see us changes things. —Eduardo Kohn In my upcoming class, Memory Space: Inherited…

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Micro Lesson: A Short Meditation on the Glamorous Refusal of No! by Anastacia-Renée

Posted Fri, 7/12/2019 - 4:21pm by  |  Category: , , , , , ,

In the beginning of my writing career, it was a given that I’d say “Absolutely” or “Yes” to almost anything asked of me—oftentimes watching others reaping the benefits or, even worse, finding out that the heartfelt energy I’d put into…

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What’s Your Romance Voice & Style? by Eilis Flynn

Posted Tue, 7/09/2019 - 9:34am by  |  Category: , ,

Have you ever picked up a book—a romance, one that the blurb promises to be a story that’s right up your alley—and found that it just doesn’t do it for you?  The story, the theme, even the author, they all…

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