To Write, To Write, To Write




Poets & Writers, May/June 2013


These days I’m more interested in learning/ discovering how to wedge a place for myself in the publishing game, but there was once a time when writerly chops were hardly developed. And P&W is as good a source as any for fostering that. The mag is slowly going techie, since that’s where writing and publishing are going, but this issue deals squarely with the pen-in-hand, fingers-on-the-keyboard phase of creative writing.


Benjamin Percy, in his essay, “Writing with Urgency,” urges simple steps on how to structure a story or essay.

Ruth Ozeki in “A Crucial Collaboration,” talks chemistry between writers and readers – one of my favorite subjects.

And Daphne Kalotay regales us in “The Clam Before the Calm” with anticipatory thoughts of the post-acceptance phase of having a novel published – in this case, hers.

Another subject: writing contests – do they matter? Not according to a number of fuzzy cheeked editors and agents. There’s not much money in them (see page 16), and no one has much faith that your next piece will be worthy of accolades or publishing.

The most intriguing article for this writer is Michael Bourne’s piece, “The Novella E-Revolution.” Novellas used to be the between-the-stools bit of writing – too long to be a short story, too short to be a novel. It’s been talked about more and more in recent months, but now e-publishers are taking note.


Although I feel , perhaps more than a bit egoistically, that I’ve outgrown a lot of what P&W has to offer, it is a mag for and by writers, and its bi-monthly issues, along with its web site, are true troves for writers with their feet not yet on the ground.



Visit my website here, where you’ll have an opportunity to download an audio eversion of my latest, Sam’s Place, as well as select book review podcasts. Then there’s my FB Fan Page here. On both you’ll find more on ideas and events that matter to me – and possibly to you.

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