My First Book’s Coming Out. Cue Panic?

My first book releases March 31st. This isn’t the post I thought I’d write about such an occasion, but then– this isn’t the book I thought I’d write, either.  Here’s a confession. Publishing this book is easily one of the most terrifying things I’ve ever done. Writing it involved excavating and articulating stories, fears, and beliefs…

What Writers Can Glean from “The Wolf of Wall Street”

In my latest for Ploughshares Literary Magazine, I summarize the Crazy response to The Wolf of Wall Street, and tackle the Good that might come from ethically-precarious art. An excerpt: Criticisms of The Wolf of Wall Street both devalue viewers—by assuming they can handle only moralistic tales—and esteem them, by providing immediate evidence of their astonishing critical thinking skills. The film’s critics…

4 Reasons to Write the Hell out of (What’s Left of) 2013

Ok so it’s almost Thanksgiving. If shopping, family drama, travels, and/or assorted year-end hells are killing your writerly motivation, here are four reasons you’ll want to go write anyway. Like, right now. It’s my latest for Ploughshares Literary Magazine: Consider yourself kicked in the ass.  (you’re welcome)   PS. If nothing else, you can always employ your…

(listening to Russian poets)

“For to live means to sing, to love, to rage, and to tear things to shreds, while…faces look on and pupils burn.” –Nicolay Aseev (Choosing to ignore for a moment that Aseev wrote this in a bullfighting context.) (Because advice is advice amirite)

Writing in a Changing World: Craft, Readerships, and Social Media

Ok WriterFriends, My latest blog for Ploughshares Literary Magazine is all about navigating writing as a career: Learning publishing/submissions, taking risks, defining success for yourself,  sustaining your writing practice even if you’re not part of a writing community, etc. (I KNOW.) It’s an interview with Stephanie Vanderslice, director of the Arkansas Creative Writing MFA program,…