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Oscar Wilde said “a poet can survive everything but a missprint.”  I suspect that that’s a slight overstatement.  And yet, there’s no denying that a typo can really mess with… Read more

600 Miles Through Rough Country

Some days I swear that, writing-wise, I’m like Bart Simpson* muttering “can’t sleep clowns will eat me.”  Except, of course, I substitute write for sleep.  Why will the clowns eat me?  The temptation to be really really glib here is almost overpowering, but I’m going to try to play this one straight. I’m trying to finish three short stories and start a new book.  I know what all four works are about; what I don’t exactly have a handle on is some of the events in those stories. This is… Read more 600 Miles Through Rough Country

Ur Doing it Rite

My friend Janni Simner wrote a great piece last week on finding the writing process that works for you.  Go read it.  No, really.  It’s terrific.  I’ll just wait here. I am one of those neurotic folks who thinks that everyone else was issued a full set of instructions at birth. For everything–friendship, clothes, housekeeping, parenting, business.   Mostly I’ve learned to background that assumption, or even forget it for long periods of time.  (I am always convinced that people I think are cool must have homes that are tidier… Read more Ur Doing it Rite

Obscenity

I missed last week’s post (I really am trying to post weekly) because I was in Massachusetts for my father’s memorial party.  Yes, I said party.  My father was a big believer in parties, and he left very specific instructions about this one: the Dixieland band that was to play us down to the river where his ashes were to be scattered (by plane) and then triumphantly back again afterward, a real New Orleans funeral; the specific locale; and no “memorial service” or religious overtones whatsoever.  Oh, and the party… Read more Obscenity

So, What Do You Write?

There are a list of questions that writers get fairly routinely, most of them springing from the GP (general population)’s odd ideas about the writing life, which seem to arise from years of TV and movies, prejudices for and against the “artistic life,” and vague recollections of their own dislike of writing essays in school.  There are business questions (“so how much did you get paid for writing that book?” and its opposite-twin, “how much did you have to pay to get that book published?”), glorious fantasy questions (“so which… Read more So, What Do You Write?