Tag: fiction

  • Should Everyone Like Your Work?

    Should Everyone Like Your Work?

    “YOU!” The stranger shouted at me from across the room. I was standing in a dark, seedy bar off Magazine Street in New Orleans, with stone floors older than some American cities, the slick grease of a thousand good nights under my stilettos. “Me?” I pointed at myself; my other hand busy keeping my ballgown […]

  • My Top 5 Books for Any Aspiring Writer

    My Top 5 Books for Any Aspiring Writer

    photo credit @1924usWhile the writing world is divided on prefaces, I’m going to start with one. Mostly to say that when it comes to writing, the best thing to do is to write. “How-To” books, in-person seminars, online courses, critique groups, and even brainstorming walks to the ice cream shop all serve as a means […]

  • What Grey Clouds Can do to a Routine

    What Grey Clouds Can do to a Routine

    “Motherf*%$er.” I mumble under my breath. I hear my one and a half year old daughter give the word her best try from her car seat behind me. “Dammit, Collette,” I think, careful to keep this one to myself. I’ve just pulled into the gym parking lot, only to realize I’ve forgotten to move the […]

  • When the Work Might be BAD bad.

    When the Work Might be BAD bad.

    My mother has finished reading my novel. She is the first person to read the whole shebang. Of course she is: these are the kinds of things only mothers can be counted on to do (just ask Gustave Flaubert). What’s Lizzie’s great line? “I am half agony, half hope.” That’s me. It’s a first draft, […]

  • The Writing Truths we Forget to be True

    The Writing Truths we Forget to be True

    I can see him: the genius writer. He’s holed up somewhere with the kind of light that makes your eyes go bad and the kind of weather that makes you crave a good knit cardigan: oversized, of course. Outside, the wet clouds clap as he crushes out another stodgy cigarette. He hasn’t left his room […]

  • Alert: Clean filter

    Alert: Clean filter

    I tried to tell myself I’d just been busy, but I knew I’d hit an unparalleled level of spiritual dryness. It wasn’t for lack of trying, either. Ok, it was sort of from lack of trying. But I hadn’t done nothing. I’d picked up my devotionals every once and again, when the slight whisper of […]

  • When to Shut Up and When to Talk: The Key to Character Description

    When to Shut Up and When to Talk: The Key to Character Description

    I’ve been thinking a lot about my main character lately. I’m writing a novel. Did I tell you that? And it has a main character, and I’ve been thinking a lot about him lately. Mostly, how much to say about him. Not his internal state, of course, or else we’d have no novel. It’s his […]

  • One Writer’s Gentle Reminder About the Muse to Another

    One Writer’s Gentle Reminder About the Muse to Another

    You’re standing next to the punch bowl, wondering who ever thought the paper straw was ever a good idea as you pull a bit of soggy cardboard from your teeth. That’s when she walks in–and she’s absolutely dazzling. Her silken hair is perfectly swept. Her wardrobe is all one-of a kind (vintage pieces she can’t […]

  • Welcome, dear friend.

    Welcome, dear friend.

    A word. Any word. Even the word, “word.” Whew…and just like that, all that heart-stopping, white-sick terror of the blank page is gone. They say a lot of things about writing, some of it good, a lot of it junk, and most of it, who am I to say. But one of the good things […]