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Posts Tagged ‘writing life’

Of Cookbooks and Lynchings

By Richard ChessSeptember 6, 2016

“Men and women in automobiles stood up to watch him die.” That’s the sentence one student recalled when I asked the class what was memorable in Eula Biss’s essay “Time and Distance Overcome.” The man who died was a black man “accused of attacking a white woman.” For his alleged behavior, he was “tied to…

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My Own Commencement, Part 2: The Uses of Confusion

By Gregory WolfeSeptember 2, 2016

This post is excerpted from Gregory Wolfe’s final commencement address as director of the Seattle Pacific University Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing last month. Wolfe, who founded the program, stepped down as director yesterday. Read part 1 here. I’d like to close my commencement address by taking a lesson or two from the…

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My Own Commencement, Part 1: The Birth of an MFA

By Gregory WolfeSeptember 1, 2016

This post is excerpted from Gregory Wolfe’s final commencement address as director of the Seattle Pacific University Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing last month. Wolfe, who founded the program, steps down as director today. Read his full announcement here. Once upon a time—well, seventeen years ago, to be exact—I was contacted by Mark…

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Why We Write

By Peggy RosenthalJuly 20, 2016

What is it about words that so moves those of us who are writers? We take the most common of media—language—and can’t resist caressing it, playing with it, taking it apart and putting it together again in some new shape. Why do I love to write, even need to write? I’ve been pondering this question…

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Staying Where I Am

By Lindsey CrittendenDecember 23, 2010

The other night, I got home from my writers’ group feeling jazzed. After struggling with a story revision, I’d decided to show them something different, twenty-five pages of new nonfiction. “I loved it,” they said, and “This is what you should be writing.” Comments and questions, too, but in general a big thumbs-up. I dropped…

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The Work Awaits

By Sara ZarrOctober 27, 2010

I join Good Letters with excitement, gratitude, and not a little bit of self-doubt. In the days when I was an unpublished aspirant—before I learned that becoming a better writer was far more important than nailing the perfect query letter—I heard from the experts that you should never advertise your lack of qualifications when contacting…

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In Bed

By Lindsey CrittendenMarch 18, 2010

I stole the title for this posting from Joan Didion. One reason I stole it was that I like the brevity of the phrase: In Bed. There you have two short one-syllable words that share a precision, and the precision they share is this: here, now. And, yes, I stole those two sentences, too, from…

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