Should You Give up Writing?

I often ask myself if I should give up writing. It mostly happens in moments of feeling down, which strike at random. A wound opens up, and I ask myself, am I good enough to keep going? Is it all just a waste of time? This feeling also rears...

National Novel Writing Month 2021

I first heard about National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) 13 years ago when I came across Chris Baty’s book “No Plot, No Problem.” I wasn’t a plotter at the time and the idea of sitting down and letting the novel flow out of me was intriguing. And the idea...

How to Receive Feedback

We’ve talked about When to Give Feedback, How to Give Feedback, now let’s talk about how to receive it. Out of all three, this is the hardest, but a necessity on the path to improvement. We learn so much from feedback. But it’s not always natural at first. I’ve...

Writing Epiphany – Imposter Syndrome

I had an epiphany while writing the blog post about imposter syndrome. The last section about believing compliments made me think about the first time imposter syndrome showed up in my life. I can’t believe this connection just popped into my head. It was a compliment that made me...

Book Review: The Sanatorium

Suspense/Mystery/Thriller The Sanatorium by Sarah Pearse 380 pages. Penguin Random House The setup for The Sanatorium was so promising. British detective Elin and her boyfriend, Will, travel to the Swiss Alps for her estranged brother’s engagement party. Her goal is to confront him about their little brother’s mysterious death...

How to Ease Imposter Syndrome

Notice in the title I used the word ‘ease’ instead of ‘overcome.’ That’s because I don’t have a crystal ball, and I haven’t overcome imposter syndrome. There are many days where I feel like I’m a big fake. As much as I’d like to get rid of it, I...

How to Give Feedback

Last week I talked about When to Give Feedback, this week let’s talk about how. Most writers, at some point, will find themselves in a quid pro quo situation with feedback. Critique groups usually expect you to give feedback in order to get it. And writer friends may ask...

Writing Exercise – Why do you write?

One of the first assignments I’d give as a writing teacher would be to have my students write a journal entry on why they want to be a writer. I encourage you to do this now. Remember back to when you first wanted to be a writer before you...

When to Give Feedback

I recently saw a tweet asking if you should give unsolicited feedback to a friend. Clearly, the person wanted to be helpful but also wanted to be considerate. You’ve probably found yourself in a similar situation wanting to balance fixing something and keeping your friendship. As you can imagine,...

Book Review: Anxious People

Fiction Anxious People by Fredrik Backman 353 pages. Atria Books. A bank robbery turns into a hostage situation. Told in the witty way Backman wrote A Man Called Ove, Anxious People tells the story of two cops, a bank robber, a real estate agent and seven hostages. All of...