Tag Archive 'writing life'

In Praise of Paper Books

I recently started rereading a book I bought many years ago – one volume of an eight volume collected set of The Spectator, a London daily periodical from the early 18th century. William Addison and Joseph Steele wrote most of the The Spectator’s 2500-word, witty and wise essays on serious topics of social value. A […]

The Thrill of the Write

Recently I read on Kirkus about novelists “who do really funky research.” Like Jodi Picoult who spent time in a prison. Susan Minot traveled to Uganda to get to know girls kidnapped by the Lord’s Resistance Army. Peter Rock explored an underground shelter used by former members of a New Age religion. Ann Tyler has written: […]

Pram in the Hall

You know that question everyone always asks writers? The one about what we do all day? In my experience most writers spend their days doing a lot of nothing — interspersed with trying in vain to organize vast teetering piles of books and papers, totally forgetting the thing we swore blind we’d be doing this […]

Writing the Rails

Ever since I read an article about writer Jessica Gross taking a writing residency aboard Amtrak, Arlo Guthrie’s “The City of New Orleans” has been on endless loop in my mind. Then, when I heard about the possibility of more residencies on trains, I immediately tweeted: @Amtrak Would love nothing more than to write an #AmtrakResidency […]

After You Publish

Back in 2004, Mark Zuckerberg and some friends launched a social networking website in his dorm room — Facebook. By 2007, he was a billionaire. In 1995, J. K. Rowling typed the manuscript for Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone on a manual typewriter and, after numerous rejections, sold it to Bloomsbury Press for an […]

The Artifacts of Everyday Life

We have lost Christopher Robin’s mother recently, and her estate and all her things must be settled. CR is back in England taking care of it. As you read this, I will be on my way. It’s been challenging to stick to my writing schedule, worrying and feeling the upheaval, and that was my first […]

The Gift of Wounds

None of us makes it through life without some kind of pain and loss and heartache. We are all of us, broken or wounded in some way. Some of these wounds arise from tragic circumstances: the loss of a loved when far before their time, abuse, neglect, betrayal. But sometimes brokenness happens simply in the […]

The Tricks and Treats of Writing

Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays. The laughter, the screams, the decorations, the ghost stories — it’s all such fun. But even from a young age, I knew that “trick-OR-treating” was a misleading term, because you can’t have one without the other. No costume? No candy. Unfortunately this is true of writing […]

Learning How to Blog—the Hard Way

Today’s guest is Kim Triedman, an award-winning poet and novelist. Her debut novel, The Other Room, and two full-length poetry collections, Plum(b) and Hadestown, are releasing in 2013. The Other Room was a finalist for the 2008 James Jones First Novel Fellowship, and Kim’s poetry has garnered many awards, including the 2008 Main Street Rag […]

When Funny Just Won’t Come

When I became a regular contributor to Writer Unboxed, I made a silent vow to write something funny for my bi-monthly contribution. Therese and Kath, Writer Mamas, gave me carte blanche to write whatever I wanted, but I wanted to write funny. But, this time, try as I might I can’t be humorous. In fact, […]

Taking a Break

Today’s guest, Kathleen McCleary, is a journalist and author whose work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Ladies Home Journal, More, and Good Housekeeping. She has written three novels: House and Home (2008); A Simple Thing (2012), and most recently Leaving Haven (2013). Kathleen has taught writing as an adjunct professor […]

The Creative Personality

In modern western society, we like to pretend we love and support creativity. It brings us innovation and entertainment, after all. Without highly creative people, we wouldnot have personal computers, iPhones, Facebook, or movies. We wouldn’t have great paintings or books to read or light bulbs or cars or drugs to stamp out tuberculosis. Creativity […]