Holiday Spirit

Holiday Spirit

My Muscatine writing group, Writers on the Avenue, has a writing exercise they’ve been doing for quite some time. (Years. Perhaps decades.) Members at a meeting generate a list of words–without looking at what others have suggested–and then, for the

Being Sensitive

Being Sensitive

There’s a new concept emerging in the writing community that wasn’t on my radar a decade ago, and that is the notion of a sensitivity reader. Different from a beta reader–someone you find to read your work-in-progress for free, purely

Just Enough Rain

Just Enough Rain

After a spring of record flooding, the summer has turned dry. Dust blows over the gravel roads to and from Girl Scout Camp. Farmers scan the sky, and my husband hauls out the hose to water the garden. We’ve left

Reviews Redux: Extra Considerations

Reviews Redux: Extra Considerations

So far in this series, we’ve pondered why to write reviews, how to write reviews, and how to respond when your work is reviewed. The prevailing theme, as we’ve discussed, is to be professional and courteous, which sounds like good

How to Respond to Reviews

How to Respond to Reviews

You did it! You wrote a thing, and you published it. It’s out there for the world to see. You want people to read it. You’re asking people to read it. You’ve sent all your favorite people free copies, hoping

Reviewing pt. 1: Why Do It

book with open pages shaped into a heart

When I was sending out ARCs (advance reader copies) for The Necessaries, and as I think about review venues for the essay collection My Caesarean (forthcoming in May), I’m surprised by how many sharp, avid readers are shy about posting