Five Things I Learned In The Last 10 Days

I have just returned to civilization after 10 days in Maine for my second residency (of five) in my low-res MFA program, where I’m specializing in popular fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, romance, horror, crime, mystery, etc.). It’s kind of like summer camp for writing nerds, and given all the insanity going on in the world right now, it was the perfect escape at the perfect time….

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Die, Darlings, Die!

Kill your darlings. It’s one of the pieces of writing advice you hear all the time. But until recently, it never really meant anything to me. I had no problem cutting scenes from a story, or even cutting a whole character. Obviously I was sooo advanced of a writer that I didn’t need the old chestnut of advice. Nope. Not at all. I just didn’t…

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A (Half) Year in Review

Since I let this blog get a little cobwebby over the last year, a recap post seems like the perfect way to come back to the world. I was inspired by my awesome writer buddy Leslie Starr O’Hara the Cyborg Valkyrie, who wrote back in January about her writing goals for the year and put down actual numbers. She has this theory of thinking about…

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Why The Hugo Noms Make Me Sad

I’m new to science-fiction and fantasy. Not as a reader – I devoured Isaac Asimov short stories in elementary schools and loved Piers Anthony’s Incarnations of Immortality in junior high and went through everything Philip K. Dick ever wrote by the time I finished high school. And not as a writer – while I am far from published, my second-grade story “The Witch in the…

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A Very Nice No

So I heard back from the Clarions. Clarion UCSD wait-listed me, while Clarion West very nicely rejected me and encouraged me wholeheartedly to apply again next year. I’m thrilled. Seems odd to feel good about hearing a no, but this is my first time applying to these kinds of programs and I really rushed into it and did it without knowing much of what I…

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Getting Back on the (Writing) Horse

I celebrated my application to Clarion the only way that made sense – by not writing at all for 2 weeks. I mean, what’s more fun: working on your writing, or Twitter-stalking everyone who applied to Clarion, making calendars in your head about when people heard in previous years and comparing it to this year, reading current works of previous Clarion attendees, and generally making…

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I Applied To Clarion and All I Got Was This Awesome Insight

So I applied to Clarion and Clarion West. A day early, because apparently I don’t understand the difference between March 1st at midnight and March 2nd at midnight. I hadn’t written since going to Boskone – spent the past two weeks alternating between catching up on freelance work, relaxing with people I care about, and fussing over how to fix my memory story. All of…

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Pick All The Awards!

I saw Selma with family over Christmas and I loved it. The acting was very good, but what really made it work for me was the direction – strong enough that I noticed it, but subtle enough that I only saw it as a good thing (kind of like a beard on a handsome man). There is a moment shortly after the film opens that…

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