Elliott Bay Books

Just got back from an overnight trip to Seattle and spent an hour at Elliott Bay Books this afternoon. I love this bookstore.  It’s got amber-colored worn wood floors, all these intriguing different levels reached by ramps and wood staircases, and, of course, books.  One of the best things about the bookstore is all the […]

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Planet of Unwritten Novels

A new idea for a novel is forming in my brain. I have to be very, very careful with it.  I’ve still got a draft and a half of the current novel to finish, so I can’t do anything with this new idea yet.  And, one thing I’ve learned is that I can’t even pay […]

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Alice Sebold, Writing, and the Unconscious

Writing is living; living is writing. I am one of those people who is so identified with my calling that I can’t seperate myself from it.  I see analogies to writing and the writing process in everything.  Apparently the same is true with Alice Sebold. Catching up on my magazine reading at lunchtime today (magazines […]

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Review: Between, Georgia

Just finished reading Between, Georgia by Joshilyn Jackson.  I liked it.  Don’t throw fried green tomatoes at me, but sometimes the whole quirky southern fiction thing wears a wee bit thin. (Stop it! Stop pelting me!  I went to school in the south!  I teach down there!) This book had quirkiness galore but the main […]

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Writing Translation

Writing Translation

Happy May Day. My student, Ben Norwood, sent me a wonderful end-of-the-semester gift today–a copy of the The Republic of Letters, the journal begun by Saul Bellow.  Ben translated one of the stories in it, a piece called, “Xavier the Leper,” by Alberto Rangel, from Spanish. I’m just in awe of this. The story is […]

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Bad Writing Habits Follow Me Wherever I Go

I’ve been working on removing an excess of interiority from my novel.  Scenes which otherwise might clip along are bogged down by my protagonist, the beloved Emma Jean, thinking too damn much.  We’ve been talking about this bad habit of mine in my weekly writing group, but I hadn’t internalized it until I started reading […]

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