You've probably read a great deal of articles bemoaning our generation's hunger for instant gratification in the internet age. Indeed, I'm faced with this situation on any given day when it's so much easier to read another article than, say, grade a stack of papers. But why is instant gratification bad? And are there situations… Continue reading Can instant gratification lead to long-term gains? The surprising truth
In my grad writing program, we read a novel a week. Aside from writing exercises, this had the biggest impact on me. Immersing myself in quality writing from a range of genres and then deconstructing these books in class improved my own writing immensely. Reading frequently and performing close readings helps you get a feel… Continue reading Learning from Kelly Link: How to Captivate Your Readers When It Comes To Intriguing Writing, Less is More
When I found out that Brian Evenson was writing a book about his "personal and literary" reflections on Raymond Carver -- specifically the short story collection What We Talk About When We Talk About Love -- I was excited. Evenson's disconcerting, macabre short stories have always resonated with me. While I'm not as well-read in Carver's work, I've… Continue reading 6 Reasons to Read Brian Evenson’s Take on Raymond Carver Transform Your Writing and Get Inspired
If you're a blogger, or if you're a business owner who reaches out to your audience through a newsletter or podcast, consistently coming up with new topics can be challenging. Or rather (at least for me), coming up with the energy to deliver fun, engaging content week after week is challenging. I also write a newsletter… Continue reading Not Feeling It? How to Deliver Fun, Engaging Content Anyway
Recently we covered writing exercises, which are helpful for plunging into your first draft. But what about when it's time to revise? It can be a letdown when you look back on that manuscript you wrote in a rush of inspiration and discover it's riddled with plot-holes and meandering subplots. You may be tempted to… Continue reading What is the best resource for revising fiction?
Has your creativity been hibernating lately? Most days I do some form of writing, whether it's a blog post, an email to my list, or a sales letter. Creativity, though, is rarely the main objective. Even when I'm working on my fiction, which is supposed to be creative, it often feels like I'm going through the motions:… Continue reading The Best Writing Exercise Books to Dust Off Your Creative Bone
I’m super passionate about freelance copywriting. But let’s face it, constantly hunting for clients can be exhausting. It's not uncommon to spend hours going back-and-forth with a potential client through email or over the phone, only for the project to fall through. Even when you achieve a steady flow of clients, you’re still trading time… Continue reading The Best Affiliate Program for Community-Centered Learning Learn the ropes of affiliate marketing while earning money at the same time!
Mind Mapping for Writers: Revision Made Simple Does “revising” your story consist of making tiny line edits only you will notice? With some of my short stories, I did this for years. I knew they weren’t quite where I wanted them to be but thought maybe if I kept tinkering around with the sentences, changing… Continue reading Revision Woes? How a Bird’s Eye View Helps You Regain Control of Your Story
What do you do with a BA in English? That’s the title of a song from the great Broadway play Avenue Q. In the song, Brian laments, “Four years of college and plenty of knowledge/ Have earned me this useless degree.” If you studied literature or some offshoot like “Medieval Poetry” in college, you’ve probably… Continue reading What do you do with a BA in English?
One of my favorite scenes in The Shining is when Jack is writing and Wendy enters the room (watch the scene here). This is his reaction: I think all of us writers can relate to this. When we’re in our element and something interrupts our flow, it takes time to regain that momentum. Plus, there’s… Continue reading How to drill through the distractions and enter The Zone