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Category: About Me

Enough ?>

Enough

My hair is mostly gray. I’m not young enough to engage in Twitter conversations with YA authors. But not totally gray. I’m not old enough to be revered by them. I write by the seat of my pants. I’m not degreed enough to talk shop with the MFA crowd. I was raised in the church. But I’m no longer Christian enough for that culture, or the subculture of writers who are fighting to find their place in it. I was…

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How to Love Writing ?>

How to Love Writing

“I hate writing. I love having written.” – Dorothy Parker I’ve met a few people who are quick to say they love writing. They are sincere, happy people who tend to glow in the dark. People who eagerly sift through tornado-paths of literary devastation to find the one story that can threaten to replace your well-earned despair with un-warranted hope. I hate* those people. I also hate writing. Okay, maybe that’s a little bit strong. How about this: I find…

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The Buoyancy of Words ?>

The Buoyancy of Words

Fair warning: I’m going to stretch a swimming metaphor well beyond my non-metaphorical comfort level. Feel free to believe that this discomfort serves some greater meta-metaphorical purpose. Then let me know what it is so I can say “yeah, I meant to do that.” Writers spend a lot of time going nowhere. We start out strong enough, with a perfect swan dive into the ocean of ideas. [Already the metaphor is causing me gastric distress.] But after a few weeks…

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True Stories ?>

True Stories

They tell you to tell the truth and this sounds reasonable but you’re not quite sure how to do it. They also tell you to do other things.┬áKill your adverbs. Kill your semi-colons. Kill your darlings. Kill your prologues. Oh, you say, those I can do. So you set the truth aside and head to the killing fields. You reach for your metaphoric fountain pen, dip it in metaphoric red ink, and prepare to earn another metaphoric belt in the…

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This Could Be a Problem ?>

This Could Be a Problem

I like languishing in obscurity. Languishing is my love language. This could be a problem. Well, not yet. But it will be if I reach any of my writing goals for the year, which include: a little book based on my #thewritinglife Twitter updates; the first novel in a YA series; a contemporary adult novel that’s been six years in the making; a few more blog posts; at least one provocative tweet. You can’t have a successful writing career unless…

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Finding Stories ?>

Finding Stories

I don’t know where you find your stories, but I find mine everywhere. All I need is a little prompt – an object, a smell, a look from a stranger. Some of my favorite stories are inspired by listening to the words people don’t say. Here, I’ll show you what I mean. I’m sitting in a Panera restaurant. I have a window seat. It’s just after the lunch rush. I’m going to look around and eavesdrop and see what stories…

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The Way I Walk ?>

The Way I Walk

I write the way I walk. When I know where I’m going, every step is purposed. I am not easily distracted. My footfalls are metronomic. And when I get to my destination? I feel good. I feel capable. I feel smart. I treat myself to a cookie because I deserve it. Hey, every little accomplishment means something. Most of the time I don’t know where I’m going. I walk in circles. I take the easy path. The impossible path. I…

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