Writing Under Attack: What to Do When Someone Takes the Wind Out of Your Sails

writing

It’s not uncommon for a writer to be verbally attacked by someone close to them when they share their writing. Sometimes the attack is subtle, questioning, and other times it can be an all out siege.  I received this letter in my inbox and the author gave me permission to share it, along with my response, in hopes it may help others who have less-than-supportive partners, family members or friends. I have been involved in relationship with a guy for the last two years. We got together just as I was leaving my teaching job to concentrate on writing (a…  Read more

When You’re Having Trouble Sitting Down to Write

writing

Okay, writing time… I’ll just make myself a green smoothie and then…oh, maybe I should put in a load of laundry…now, I’ll just sit down and…oh, wow, it looks like it might rain. I’ll just take that bike ride first… huff,puff, puff…Now I’ll just sit down to write and…oh, the phone. Better get it. It could be Oprah wondering how my book is coming along…Okay, that was a huge time waste, but now to get down to wr…Doorbell?Are you kidding me? Much of the time, the difficulty in sitting down to write comes from the pressure we place on ourselves…  Read more

Don’t Believe Stephen King

on writing by stephen king

On a consultation call today with a new client, she’d mentioned that her self-confidence took a nosedive today.  On reading, On Writing, by Stephen King–a fabulous book about writing well, by the way–she was crestfallen by his pronouncement that you’re not really a writer unless you write every day. Rubbish. First of all, are you solely a writer? Or do you have another business? Perhaps you are a therapist, doctor, lawyer, coach, entrepreneur or stay at home mom…Well, Mr. King is a full time writer. Mr. King primarily writes fiction. You, most likely, are writing about your life, your work,…  Read more

What Improv Can Teach You About Writing

peeking out of box

With something like 17 of us gathered around the stage, Chris Simpson singled me out to take a step back to enlarge the circle. I looked down at my feet. The woman to my left stood about 8 inches farther back, as did Kevin, to my right–their heels a mere inch or two from the edge. Every fiber of my being told me not to step any closer to the edge of the stage–especially with my back to the drop. I inched back a couple centimeters as a compromise. Thus began my first lesson in trust last night in Improv…  Read more

October is the Month for Writers Conferences and Book Festivals!

whistler

I love writers conferences–both presenting and attending workshops. Perhaps my favorite aspect of writers conferences is the opportunity for new input into one’s writing: An essayist may show you a new way of seeing something about your writing. Or a poet may teach you a nifty trick to get your creative juices flowing. Or you may learn some editing tools that make your writing better. There’s also, of course, the sense of community–just being around other people who love writing, who love words. I often find myself especially inspired after the evening readings–staying up late to write some more. Writers…  Read more