Writers at Nimrod, 2016

What a week it’s been! Where to begin? Well, I guess with this message:

Begin Anywhere Nimrod Hall
“Begin Anywere.” -John Cage
So, how about walking through a typical day? As you know, I’m fond of before-breakfast walks—usually damp and misty. But glories abound, from wildlife and flowers along the way, to the little graveyard up the hill, to the Cowpasture River down the hill.

People gather to await the breakfast bell, still slightly groggy. But after a coffee infusion and a more-than-ample breakfast, we are hyped for the sacred writing time, which lasts till 1:00 lunch.
This year I finished and revised a 6K word short story mystery AND submitted it! So thanks to my fearless leader Cathy Hankla and my workshop/critique group members for comments and suggestions.
One of Cathy’s great strengths as a teacher is that she always seems to come up with targeted reading for specific writers. This year she brought Imaginative Writing for me. It contains “Interpreter of Maladies” by Jhumpa Lahiri, a wonderful example of showing an incident from the POV of a hired worker. But of course, Cathy is incredibly talented herself.
I tend to be a cave-dweller, so while others hike, run, do yoga, or go tubing on the river, I keep writing. And everyone understands.

Happy half-hour was typically celebrated with our workshop group, followed by dinner during which we dispersed among the other writers present. Then we adjourn to the renovated Rec Hall for 8:00 readings. On Sunday night, Cathy Hankla and Sheri Reynolds read and Charlotte Morgan gave us our marching orders about the week’s structure.

David Cooper and I read the first night. I read 600 words on “Repair or Redecorate?” which I hope you’ll have an opportunity to read in the Richmond Times-Dispatch sometime soon. David is a “retired” man of the cloth and counselor who bicycles, does yoga, and seemed perfectly comfortable surrounded by all these writer women!

Tuesday night’s readings were by Frances Burch, Jennifer Dickinson, Nancy Hurrelbrinck, and Molly Todd.
Frances Burch Jennifer Dickinson Nancy Hurrelbrinck Molly Todd Nimrod Hall
Wednesday night we had Betsy Arnett, Foust, Amelia Williams, Heath Lee, and Terry Dolson.
Betsy Arnett Foust Amelia Williams Heath Lee Terry Dolson Nimrod Hall
Thursday night it was Judy Bice, Jane Shepard, Ruth Gallogly, and Kristy Bell—and I didn’t get a picture! Maybe I can rectify that later.

This diverse group of writers includes poets, fiction writers, memoirists, inspirational writers, historians—you name it. Several are from the Richmond area, and therefore likely to be available for local readings, signings, etc. Besides me, Elizabeth Smart, Frances Burch, Judy Bice, Molly Todd, Kristy Bell, Terry Dolson, David Cooper, Foust, and Suzanne Munson fall into this category. But we also had writers from Roanoke, Boyce, and Afton, Virginia (Heath Lee, Betsy Arnett, and Amelia Williams, respectively), and two from Charleston, WV (Jane Shepherd and Kit Wellford). And then there were the outliers, Ruth Gallogly (Brooklyn, NY) and Denny Stein (Freemont, CA).

These are wonderful, interesting, dear people. What are the chances that I’ll see them again before next year?

One reason I love Nimrod is that I never know what I’ll come across. It might be riders from Vinyard Farms next door. These are Amber and Frankie—the horses, not the riders.

Amber and Frankie horses Vinyard Farms
It might be fellow walkers…
…or it might be an abandoned barn and gas pump. It’s always something!

Barn Nimrod hall
And it’s always great company, great energy, and unstinting support! We don’t leave till tomorrow, but I’m missing it already! Stay tuned next week for a final wrap-up.
Nimrod Hall, established in 1783, has been providing summer respite from everyday stress since 1906. It has been operating as an artist and writer colony for over 25 years. The Nimrod Hall Summer Arts Program is a non-competitive, inspirational environment for artists to create without the distractions of everyday life.

Guest Post on Thrill Writing: The Company You Keep

Thrill Writers, The Company You Keep - Does Your Character Act "Out of Character" in a Group Dynamic?

I’m honored to be interviewed on Fiona Quinn’s Thrill Writing, a blog helping thriller writers write it right. 

We talk about why a character might act “out of character,” group mentality, behavior matching, why people might be more passive in groups or more likely to riot, and more.

Excerpt from “The Company You Keep – Does Your Character Act ‘Out of Character’ in a Group Dynamic?”

In this article, we’re talking about what happens to a character when they get into a group where a character might act “out of character”, which is a fun way to develop the plot.

Can you first give us a working definition for “group”

Vivian – We usually think three or more, but some “group” effects are present even with only two. Also, the “group” needn’t be physically present to exert influence.

Fiona – Can you explain that last sentence?

Vivian – Some group memberships are literal memberships–for example, a church congregation, sorority, bridge club, etc. such groups are often in our thoughts, and serve as a reference or standard for behavior even when the member is alone.

Fiona –  Does “group mentality” work both ways? For example, people in a riot become riotous, but people in a disaster, where they see all hands on deck, become heroes?

People in a religious forum feel more religious. . .sort of like a magnifier?

Vivian –  Absolutely. I just mentioned formal groups–which are the ones having the strongest influence at a distance– but crowds, mobs, any physical gathering of people, shapes our behavior to act or remain passive.

Fiona – Can you give us a short tutorial on what we need to know about group dynamics to help write our characters right?

Vivian – Well, there is a phenomenon known as behavior matching, a tendency to do what others around us are doing. This is reflected in everything from eating to body language. Even a person who has eaten his or her fill will eat more if someone else comes in and starts eating. If others are slouching, your character isn’t likely to remain formal.

Fiona – Yes, it’s hard to pass up a piece of chocolate cake when everyone else is moaning about how delicious it tastes.

Just sayin’

Vivian – A related phenomenon–I suppose it could be a subset of behavior matching– has the label diffusion of responsibility. This is the tendency for people to stand passively by when others are present. There was a classic case, decades ago, in which a NYC woman named Kitty Genovese was murdered in the courtyard of her apartment. The murder took approximately half an hour, and dozens of her neighbors watched from their windows. No one came to help or even called the police. The more people who could help, the less likely anyone will take responsibility for doing so.

And then there is group disinhibition. This is sort of the opposite. It is that people are more likely to take risks, break the law, be violent when others are doing so. Think looting, or harassing a homeless person. Disinhibition is even more powerful when alcohol is involved. I recently posted a blog on alcohol for writers that goes into that a bit.

But the bottom line is that we behave differently with others present than when alone.

Read more at Thrill Writing

Thank you, Fiona!

Nimrod Writers, 2016

I treasure the constancy of Nimrod—all the things that stay the same. The physical surroundings have been spiffed up a bit from five or so years ago, but it’s basically unchanged: the main building, where hummingbirds gather and people wait for meal bells…
. . . the Old Post Office—which is the only pace where smoking is allowed. You will notice that the smoking porch doesn’t get much business!
Square House Porch nimrod hall
The Old Post Office porch
. . . and all the spaces where people could lounge but aren’t, for these pix were taken during the morning, which is sacred writing time, and therefore all good little writers are sequestered in their rooms…
Lawn chairs Nimrod Hall
Another thing that hasn’t changed about Nimrod is, as Charlotte Morgan says often, “There’s no such thing as a forced march!” So if one chooses not to write in the morning, that’s fine—as long as one is quiet and doesn’t encourage others to sluff-off.
hammock lounger nimrod hall
And one more thing that hasn’t changed: every year there are new t-shirts!
Once upon a time, Nimrod was a hunting camp, and reminders of that past are here still. As you can see from the following pix, the image has morphed over the years from the traditional trophy head to my personal favorite:
There are two new deer this year:

What’s new at Nimrod Hall?

This year, for the first time, there are three writers in residence present at the same time—Cathy Hankla, Charlotte Morgan, and Sheri Reynolds. Oh, if I could work with them all!
This year, all the writers mingle over meals and at the 8:00 evening readings:
Other meeting are much as before—i.e., critiques in small groups and a one-on-one conference with one writer-in-residence. I will meet with Cathy. I’m happy to be here!
Vivian Lawry Nimrod Hall
Nimrod Hall, established in 1783, has been providing summer respite from everyday stress since 1906. It has been operating as an artist and writer colony for over 25 years. The Nimrod Hall Summer Arts Program is a non-competitive, inspirational environment for artists to create without the distractions of everyday life. 

Nimrod Hall, Here I Come!

For many years I’ve traveled to Nimrod Hall in Millboro, Virginia, for their annual writing retreat. Nimrod has inspired several of my stories and given me hours of valuable writing time.

Nimrod Hall main buildling
Nimrod Hall

Last year I kept a travel log of my two weeks at Nimrod. I shared everything from packing my bags…

Packed for Nimrod Hall Writers' Workshop

…to the wild women writers I met there.

women writers at Nimrod Hall Summer Arts Program
2015 Week One writers at Nimrod Hall Writers Workshop
Note card showing women standing in a stream. Text reads, "We arrived at Nimrod with no baggage"
Note card by Susannah Raine-Haddad

As I prepare to depart, I look forward to my misty morning walks,

Nimrod Hall Writers' Workshop misty lane

and family-style meals with writer friends,

Nimrod Hall Writers' Workshop writers at lunch around table
2015 writers at lunch
Nimrod Hall writers lifting fake wedding cake at breakfast table
Who but Nimrod Writer Women would be passing around a paper mâché wedding cake at breakfast?

and uninterrupted writing time.

"Do not disturb" sign on door knob
No writer is ever disturbed between breakfast and lunch–and seldom otherwise.

This year I will share my travel log on my Facebook page. I hope you’ll join me there.

Happy writing!

view of Cowpasture River near Nimrod Hall during walk
Cowpasture River near Nimrod Hall during my morning exercise

Nimrod Hall, established in 1783, has been providing summer respite from everyday stress since 1906. It has been operating as an artist and writer colony for over 25 years. The Nimrod Hall Summer Arts Program is a non-competitive, inspirational environment for artists to create without the distractions of everyday life. 

To Book Addicts (You Know Who You Are!)

t-shirt for book addiction, "Books: Because Reality is Overrated"
Addict: a person who has a compulsion toward some activity. Because these compulsions are often injurious, the label of addict has negative connotations. So one might instead choose alternative labels, such as aficionado, buff, devotee, enthusiast, fan, fanatic, junkie, etc.
One who is addicted is dependent on something. Again, self-labeling might tend toward alternatives such as absorbed, devoted, fond, hooked, hyped, prone to, etc.
An addiction, being a habit of activity, is represented by many slang expressions, including bag, bent, craving, dependence, enslavement, fixation, hang-up, hook, inclination, jones, kick, monkey, obsession, shot, or thing. You’ll notice that these are largely negative, and seldom applied to book addicts.


But essentially, anything that is addictive is habit-forming, and that certainly applies to books.


Why addictions? Basically, an addiction is a coping mechanism. It is what a person turns to in time of stress, distress, boredom, anxiety, depression, etc. It takes one’s mind off whatever is unsatisfactory or unsettling. Many people will happily admit to “escapist” reading.


Not sure whether you’re a book addict or not?


Symptoms of book addiction:

  • carrying a book (or e-reader) everywhere
  • reading on subways, trains, planes, and when a passenger in a car
  • reading in doctors’ waiting rooms or exam rooms, or when waiting for anything
  • reading before the play or movie starts, and during intermissions
  • reading during lunch or coffee breaks at work
  • having stacks of unread books at home but still buying/borrowing more
  • consistently preferring the book to the movie or TV series
  • becoming anxious, uncomfortable, or irritable when no book is at hand
a stack of books is often a sign of book addiction
A sign of book addiction

Dangers of book addiction:

  • it can lead to further frustration when waiting for the next book by your favorite author(s)
  • it often annoys family or friends
  • limits exposure to other pop culture alternatives
  • it can become costly, especially if you are at the book-a-day level of addiction.

As Erasmus once said, “When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.”

And, beware, this addiction is often passed on to one’s children and grandchildren, ad infinitum.

Advantages of book addiction:

Unlike other addictions, unless you actually try to read while driving or crossing a busy street, it isn’t likely to cause permanent or serious physical harm; and it has an educational component, exposing the addict to a broader vocabulary, exotic places, and the expansive possibilities of the human mind.


Of course, for a true addict, it leaves one open to a related psychological disorder.
book addiction t-shirt, "Abibliophobia"

Takeaway for book addicts:

Go for it!  To paraphrase Abraham Lincoln, your best friend is a person who will give you a book you have not read. FYI, such persons are also known as “enablers.”

Alcohol for Writers

"alcohol for writers" whisky poured into tumbler

Keep it on the page!

Surely everyone can name at least one famous writer also famous for drinking. Think Raymond Chandler, Tennessee Williams, Dorothy Parker, Edgar Allen Poe. . . . If not, an internet search will turn up titles like these.


  • Top 15 Great Alcoholic Writers
  • Drinking Habits of Famous Authors
  • Top 10 Drunk American Writers
  • 99 Writers who Were Alcoholics, Drunks, Addicted To Booze, Etc.
  • 25 Great Writers Who Battled Drug Addiction and Alcoholism
  • All The Drunk Dudes: The Parodic Manliness Of The Alcoholic Writer
  • ‘Every hour a glass of wine’—the female writers who drank
  • What drives writers to drink?
This last question has led to numerous academic examinations and investigations of the topic.


As for “How to Drink Like Kerouac, Hemingway, and Other Famous Writers,” don’t try this at home, lest you end up on the list of “Famous Alcoholic Writers Who Died of Alcoholism.”


wine rack, alcohol for writers
So, although I don’t advise writers to drink, I do advise knowing about alcohol. It’s such an integral part of life in America—celebrations, business dinners, relaxation, sports events, picnics, parties, all sorts of gatherings from weddings to funerals—that one can hardly write realistically without scenes involving alcohol. So here are a few basic facts you should be aware of and ready to justify if you go against them. See below for why your petite female PI would be unlikely to drink a hulking athlete under the table.


Alcohol for Writers: The Facts

  • In general, bigger people, more muscular people, and males get drunk slower than smaller people, less-muscular people, and females.
  • Even controlling for height and weight, women absorb alcohol faster and metabolize it slower than men. In other words, they get drunk faster and stay drunk longer.
  • In general, the health-related problems for women drinkers come on faster and are more devastating than for men.
  • People get drunk faster on an empty stomach than after a full meal. I’ve read that ancient Romans drank olive oil to coat the stomach before their binges, because that slows-down the absorption of alcohol into the bloodstream.
  • People who drink regularly and heavily have a greater capacity (tolerance) than those who drink less.
  • People are more likely to blackout from fast drinking than from slow drinking of the same amount of alcohol.
  • A standard drink is defined as 1.5 oz.shot of liquor, 5 oz. of wine, or 12 oz. of beer. Most wine coolers are the equivalent of one standard drink. FYI, heavy drinking = anything more than two drinks per day for men or 1 drink per day for women.
shot glass, beer glass, wine glass
  • Having 2-3 drinks can cause a loss of motor control 12 to 18 hours after drinking. Name your accidental injury—falls, drownings, automobile accidents, etc.—and the incidence goes up with alcohol consumption. Name your intentional injuries—shooting, stabbing, physical violence, rape—it’s more likely to happen with alcohol.
  • There’s a reason athletes don’t drink before big events. Two to three drinks can deplete aerobic capacity and decrease endurance up to 48 hours after consumption.
  • Alcohol impairs both learning new information and recalling previously learned information.
  • Alcohol is a depressant for the central nervous system. People initially get “high” because the first thing to get depressed is inhibitions, creating a willingness to party and live dangerously. But beyond the buzz is the risk of seriously depressing metabolic functioning. A pulse rate below 40 or a breathing rate slower than 8-10 per minute is a medical emergency!
  • The website brad21.org is a great resource for writers! B.R.A.D. stands for Be Responsible About Drinking. It’s a series of bullet facts, well-footnoted for further reading.

Other Things Writers Should Know

…especially if a main character drinks.


First, perhaps most obviously, you need to decide on a preferred drink. According to bartenders, here are 10 drink stereotypes to help you create the desired impression. (Taken from complex.com, “The Funny Ways Bartenders Stereotype You Based On What You Drink.”)
-Vodka sodas are for people who want to lose weight—or want people to think so—but not enough to quit drinking.
-Jager bombs and vodka Red Bull are for basic bros.
-Blue Moon is for craft beer posers.
-Real craft beer drinkers are actually pretty cool.
-Annoying people act like they invented picklebacks. (Apparently a shot of whisky followed by a shot of pickle juice—really.)
-Buttery Chardonnays are for soccer moms.
-Only rookies drink Appletinis.
-Bud Light is for sporting events and day drinking, not Saturday night.
-Martinis are a classic, classy drink.
-Shots should be taken with a beer or a celebration. (Otherwise they’re for alcoholics.)
For a funny but useful commentary on everything from absinthe to wine see pointsincase.com, in an article titled “What Your Drink Says About You.”
Scotch whisky and bourbon bottle


Second, know your character’s drink. Know what it looks like, how it smells, how strong it is, and its taste. Also, whether wine, beer, or liquor, a drinker is likely to have the everyday brand and the special-occasion brand.


Third, know your character’s drinking habits and reactions. Know when, where, under what circumstances, and how much s/he drinks. People usually have a pattern of reaction to alcohol, roughly: fall asleep, talk more, repeat him/herself, verbal abusiveness, physical violence.
beer, beer glass


Takeaway for Writers

What’s good for characters isn’t good for authors!

Guiding Principles By Which I Was Reared

Top Ten Tuesday logo
Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature created by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week, they provide a prompt for bloggers. This week’s prompt is Ten Facts About Me.
During the first minutes of my first time alone with my future father-in-law (an academic dean), he said, “Tell me. What were the guiding principles by which you were reared?” I’d never given that much thought, but being young and intrepid, I came up with the following—not in any particular order.

If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing right.

Finish what you start.

If at first you don’t succeed, try again.

Failing is nothing to be ashamed of, but not trying your best is.

Go as far as you can, as fast as you can.

Education is the union card to a better life.

Your word is your bond.

Say what you mean and mean what you say.

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Always be there for family.

It’s better to be the one giving help than the one receiving it.

When all is said and done, be prepared to take care of yourself and yours.

When I think of these guiding principles, I always hear my father’s voice. I always see his face.
young man in military uniform, black and white photograph, guiding principles
My father when he was a young man

A Little Paranoia is Good For Writers

 abstract painting, dark, paranoia
Dictionary definitions of paranoia include: a serious mental illness that causes you to falsely believe that other people are trying to harm you; an unreasonable feeling that people are trying to harm you, do not like you, etc.; a psychosis characterized by systematized delusions of persecution or grandeur usually without hallucinations; a tendency on the part of an individual or group toward excessive or irrational suspiciousness and distrustfulness of others. in common parlance, a belief that people and objects in the environment are out to get you. Paranoia is a rich mine for writers.


For one thing, paranoiacs are not happy—how could they be?—and we all know that miserable characters can be extremely effective.


painting of a nude, blue, paranoia
But beyond that, writers should know several things. Paranoiacs are often above average in intelligence and function very well over-all within the family and work spheres. Note the phrase above about systematized delusions. They have well-integrated systems of belief that can often convince others that their beliefs are reasonable.


Also, the strict definition of paranoia includes several slippery modifiers: falsely believe, unreasonable feeling, excessive or irrational suspiciousness and distrustfulness. This gives writers a lot of latitude to develop tension.


Consider a poster that a classmate in graduate school had in his office:
Just Because You’re Paranoid Doesn’t Mean They Aren’t Out To Get You.
But perhaps the most value is in the fuzzy edges. For example, people losing their hearing but not yet recognizing the loss often tend toward paranoia: not hearing all that others say, s/he may suspect that people are mumbling or whispering in order to keep secrets.


And consider characters who have suspicious tendencies. What about a character who reads—or even writes—a book like one or more of the following.
  • Don’t Let Your Doctor Kill You by Dr. Erika Schwartz with M.J. Peltier
  • The Survivalist’s Handbook: How to Thrive When Things Fall Apart  by Rainer Stahlberg
  • Bug Out: The Complete Plan for Escaping a Catastrophic Disaster Before It’s Too Late by Scott B. Williams
  • Build The Perfect Bug Out Vehicle: The Disaster Survival Vehicle Guide by Creek Stewart
  • Someone’s Watching You by Forest Lee
  • Dangerous Instincts: Use an FBI Profiler’s Tactics to Avoid Unsafe Situations by M.E. O’Toole and A. Bowman
  • How To Be Safe: Protecting Yourself, Your Home, Your Family, and Your Business from Crime
  • Dangerous Personalities: An FBI Profiler Shows You How to Identify and Protect Yourself from Harmful People

painting, surreal head, paranoia

Takeaway for Writers

Include characters with suspicions, whether justified or not.

In Praise of Odd Type Writers

Odd Tye Writers, book by Celia Blue Johnson, red cover
Odd Type Writers by Celia Blue Johnson
Odd Type Writers by Celia Blue Johnson is a delightful discovery! The subtitle says it all. I recommend it for bedtime, the beach, the doctor’s waiting room, the subway commute. . . Well written, lively, each section short and entertaining.

Last week I posted on Why We Write. Consider this book a companion piece to that one. Johnson culled the quirkiest bits and most obsessive behaviors of each author from interviews, websites, biographies, etc. In her own words, “Edgar Allan Poe balanced a cat on his shoulder while he wrote. Agatha Christie munched on apples in her bathtub while concocting murder plots. Victor Hugo shut himself inside and wore nothing but a long, gray, knitted shawl when he was on a tight deadline.” And so much more!

From the Table of Contents
Edgar Allan Poe daguerreotype crop
By Unknown; most likely George C. Gilchrest, Samuel P. Howes, James M. Pearson, or Andrew J. Simpson, all of Lowell, MA [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons {{PD-US}}
  • Rotten Ideas: Friedrich Schiller
  • By the Cup: Honoré de Balzac
  • Feeling Blue: Alexandre Dumas, père
  • House Arrest: Victor Hugo
  • A Mysterious Tail: Edgar Allan Poe
  • The Traveling Desk: Charles Dickens
  • Paper Topography: Edith Wharton
  • The Cork Shield: Marcel Proust
  • Flea Circus: Colette
  • Traffic Jamming: Gertrude Stein
  • Tunneling by the Thousands: Jack London
  • A Writer’s Easel: Virginia Woolf
  • Crayon, Scissors, and Paste: James Joyce
  • Leafing Through the Pages; D.H.Lawrence
  • Puzzling Assembly: Vladimir Nabokov
  • Outstanding Prose: Ernest Hemingway
  • Sound Writing: John Steinbeck’Pin It Down: Eudora Welty
  • Don’t Get Up: Truman Capote
  • Early to Write: Flannery O’Connor
You’ll enjoy these sketches of famous authors whether you’ve read their work or not! Cover to cover, this is a great read!

Odd Type Writers book, back cover
Odd Type Writers back cover

Why We Write

Why We Write is a must read for writers!

This book, edited by Meredith Maran, presents interviews with 20 acclaimed authors on why and how they write. In case you can’t read the names on the cover, these authors span genres and styles:
Why We Write, edited by Meredith Maran, photo of book cover
Why We Write
  • Isabel Allende
  • David Baldacci
  • Jennifer Egan
  • James Frey
  • Sue Grafton
  • Sara Gruen
  • Kathryn Harrison
  • Gish Jen
  • Sebastian Junger
  • Mary Karr
  • Michael Lewis
  • Armistead Maupin
  • Terry McMillan
  • Rick Moody
  • Walter Mosley
  • Susan Orlean
  • Ann Patchett
  • Jodi Picoult
  • Jane Smiley
  • Meg Wolitzer
As Maran writes in the introduction, “When the work is going well, and the author is transported, fingers flying under the watchful eye of the muse, she might wonder, as she takes her first sip of the coffee she poured and forgot about hours ago, ‘How did I get so lucky, that this is what I get to do?’”


Alternatively, “And then there are the less rapturous days or weeks or decades, when the muse is injured on the job and leaves the author sunk to the armpits in quicksand, and every word she types or scribbles is wrong, wrong, wrong, and she cries out to the heavens, ‘Why am I doing this to myself?’”


Meredith Maran, editor of Why We Write, writing on her laptop
Meredith Maran, Photo by Lesley Bohm
As the interviews show, the creme de la creme of the writing world fly to the same heights and plunge to the same depths as every other writer.


Besides insights into the writing life of eminent writers, Moran gives us their vital statistics, list of collected works, and their Wisdom for Writers. So if you want to know who translates Isabel Allende’s books (Margaret Sayers Peden), how long David Baldacci practiced law (9 years), or when Jodi Picoult was born (May 19, 1966), look no more. Yes, you could find that information online, if you thought to look for it, but here it is, whether you knew you wanted to know or not.


Why We Write Words of Wisdom

Here are some of the words of wisdom I most took to heart:
"Remember to play when you’re working." Armistead Maupin, Why We Write
Armistead Maupin
"It’s worth the work to find the precise word that will create a feeling or describe a situation." Isabel Allende, Why We Write
Isabel Allende
"Thanks to e-books, publishers aren’t necessary any more." James Frey, Why We Write
James Frey
"Figuring out how to get an agent, how to find a publisher, how to pitch, how to network—all of this is beside the point until you’ve mastered the craft and honed your skills." Sue Grafton, Why We Write
Sue Grafton
"Don’t be afraid to make money writing the kinds of things you’d never write for the fun of it." Ann Patchett, Why We Write
Ann Patchett
And so much more! Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!
Why We Write, back cover
Why We Write