Method Writing

How far would you go to create a character? Have you ever pretended to be that character, speaking in his voice? Walking around the room the way he walks to get a feel for those motions before you try to put them into words? Journaling as that character to better...

Writing in –isms

I recently wrote on a manuscript, “Is all this realism necessary? I feel like it’s too much information, too many details. What about writing it as impressionism or expressionism?” Scott loves Impressionism. He’s always talking about light. You know, Rembrandt...

The Shape of Things: Function

I have been thinking about the shape of things because, in addition to the Christmas ritual—which when dissected seems a rather bizarre combination of festivity and tedium—my birthday is at the end of December, and Scott gave me a 1930s Underwood portable typewriter....

The Shape of Things: Form

This time of year, there are presents to fit in boxes, wrapping paper to measure and cut, and finally the feat of deconstructing the Christmas tree. My ornaments are mostly glass, so they get carefully wrapped in tissue paper and placed in small boxes. Then I place...

Mysteries

The other night I had an unusual experience, a first of its kind for me. I went to a shamanic drum circle winter solstice blessing ritual. (I had my first drum lesson the night before.) My partner, Scott, a drummer, and I went with open minds, to get our freak on, to...

On Workshops

I spent last week at a writers’ workshop. Hamline University runs a Summer Writers’ Workshop every year, and while students in the MFA program get first shot at registering, there are always some non-student participants. Hamline calls this an “intensive residential...

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