Interview with Guest Author DJ Lee

Saturday, March 28, 2020

When her friend vanishes in the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness of Idaho and Montana, DJ Lee travels there to find answers. The journey ends her fifteen-year quest to uncover her family’s troubled history in this remote place. In Finding Home in the Bitterroots (Oregon State University Press), Lee struggles with wild animal encounters, dangerous river crossings, bush plane flights in fog, and strange characters who come to the mountains to seek or…

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Interview with Author Sarah DiGregorio (and Book Giveaway!)

As someone who dealt with many complications getting pregnant, I was excited to talk to Sarah DiGregorio, who writes about premature birth in her book  EARLY: An Intimate History of Premature Birth and What It Teaches Us About Being Human (Harper). In this reported memoir, the freelance journalist, who covers both healthcare and food for many publications (including The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Wall Street Journal, and Catapult)…

Saturday, March 21, 2020
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Interview with Humorist R. Eric Thomas

Saturday, February 15, 2020

R. Eric Thomas may be the funniest current events writer around. In “Eric Reads the News” at Elle.com, he presents his unique take on pop culture and politics, like Watch Donald Trump Explain How a Dog Works or Once Again I Am Delighted To Spend My Entire Check On Oprah’s Favorite Things. I’m so excited for his memoir in essays, HERE FOR IT, or How to Save Your Soul in…

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Who Am I and What is My Brand?

God, the word “brand” seems to be the antithesis of actual writing.  But when you’re writing non-fiction that’s what publishers want to know. Not, “I have an idea for the greatest relationship advice book in the world,” but, who are YOU to write a relationship book?? See even if it’s the greatest business/relationship/pregnancy book in the world, or even a memoir on addiction/prison/infertility — it’s going to have to join dozens…

Friday, January 31, 2020
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Comp Titles – Something Old, Something New…

Friday, January 24, 2020

When I used to work as a newspaper editor, people would send in all kinds of crazy submissions. Like, hello? “We don’t publish poetry,” I would sometimes reply. “But you should!” They’d write back. (Which why I stopped replying). A publication (magazine/newspaper/website) wants to publish similar things to what they’ve been publishing but not the same. They don’t want ideas for new columns or things they should be doing. I…

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Interview and Book Giveaway: Sandra A. Miller, Author of Trove: A Woman’s Search for Truth and Buried Treasure

Saturday, January 18, 2020

I am pleased to introduce Sandra A. Miller to the Debutante Ball this Week! Her memoir, Trove: A Woman’s Search for Truth and Buried Treasure, was recently published by Brown Paper Press. At the same time, she launched an online treasure hunt with a valuable prize, so readers can also experience the thrill of looking for an actual treasure. Her essays and articles have appeared in over one hundred publications…

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Writing Dreams — Dreams of Writing

Friday, January 17, 2020

Dreams are boring. That’s a rule in fiction. Also in life. No one wants to hear about your dreams. Not your night dreams, or nightmares, and not even your regular life dreams or goals: The former lacks narrative structure (“and then you were flying? Wait, I thought you were a shark?”) the latter makes people nervous because they may not be in touch with their own naked ambition. I don’t want…

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My favorite book of 2019

Monday, December 23, 2019

My favorite book of 2019 is the memoir, Once More to the Rodeo. Author Calvin Hennick wants to teach his son, Nile, lessons he hopes will help him navigate through life successfully: what it means to be a man and the importance of taking care of family. He decides to take Nile on a road trip from their home in the Boston area to Hennick’s tiny hometown of Maxwell, Iowa….

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Self-Care For Writers

Friday, December 20, 2019

What the F is self-care? I recently heard a young millennial (or was it an old Gen Z’er) complain about the term. Maybe she wasn’t complaining as much as wondering. Why wouldn’t you care for yourself? wrote this young whippersnapper, whose every move, from waking up to eating the proverbial avocado toast to actually interesting things like partying, was posted on social. I am not making fun of her. I…

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Best Writing Advice Ever On Your Worst Enemy

Friday, December 6, 2019

“What should I do?” I began my session with my mentor. See, I was in a low-residence MFA, where we had two weeks in school (then the rest of the semester remote.) “I mean, I kind of like this beginning,” I said, showing her a printout of an essay I began, “but maybe this one makes more sense,” I said, whipping a different version out of my backpack. I often…

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