Saturday, August 9, 2008


So, I was thinking and thinking about writing this morning. I wondered how to make this blog useful to both myself and others. I think maybe clients might read it; teachers from my school; a few old friends here and there; some family members might read it (that'd be rare, but they are sure to talk about it to each other rather than to me!). I think writing in seclusion can be frustrating, yet if you don't do the alone time, nothing gets done. I like to go for a walk, then write. I like to get on a schedule. I like to teach. I like to hang out with my kids and / or my husband. BALANCE is essential. The other day my nine year old went somewhere with a friend and I was at a loss for what to do when I didn't have to squeeze writing in. That was a signal to me--I could get that empty nest syndrome when she's gone, even though I have plenty to keep me busy. What I need to do, however, is write. So that's what I'm going to do: make a list of stories that need work, pick one, and revise. I was looking at a story this morning that I thought was finished, but that I wasn't quite happy with. I'd been sending it out, getting rejections, but still that feeling--I don't like it as much as other stories I've written. Having left it alone for a long time, rereading it, I realized the language was a little listy, a little clunky. I wanted to throw it away, but Ilove the ending of it (I'm not saying which story). So I realized that I need to go at it with a pen and my vocal chords. Read it out loud. I had read it aloud when I wrote it, but now with time and distance, I can hear it better. So I'm going to go into my new writing studio and read it out loud. CU LTR

Thursday, August 7, 2008


Places you can't find my work: the fifth corner of the Monopoly board game, the Missouri Review, the New Yorker, on the side of a bus, tatooed on my tooth, the Kenyon Review, inside the dynamite factory, Alaska Quarterly Review, written on a roll of duct tape, oh stop. You get the point.

Which is not say I haven't tried. Well, I haven't tried the New Yorker, and I haven't sent anything to the Kenyon Review for a long time. But the only way to find out if someone will or won't publish your work is to send it to them.

On talking to people who've never been published. It ain't that easy. Send to smaller magazines first. Go on-line, read magazines on-line that have received notoriety and success in the on-line market: Storyglossia, Wheelhouse, Story South, Pindeldyboz...(Stop putting these websites down; we're talking short story writers here, not novelists, although lots of novelists have been published on-line). There's many many others. Read that stuff! It's great. A few good writers you can read on-line: Laurie Seidler, Neil Crabtree, Stephanie Dickinson, Steve Almond, Tobias Wolff. Those are not in any particular order. See the writers.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Back to Work

I'm taking the RIAP conference on teaching reading and writing and am overwhelmed with work, so the blog is off the map right now.

Just want to mention my Creativity Jolt! class at the writing salon. It runs five weeks and is starting August 20th. Sign up! You'll love it. It's just the thing you need if you want a place to write without judgment.

To all friends who are waiting for me to read their work--sorry, but I'll get to it. You know I'm good for it.

I'll be back this weekend.