Writing About Love

Writers, as I compose this note to you all, I’m listening to a trivia contest about celebrity micro-marriages, unions that lasted all of 72 days or nine days or even just 55 hours. Love, it seems, can go spectacularly wrong.

As can our writing about it. You know what I mean—the over-flowery, purple, cringe-inducing paeans to amore; the clinical descriptions of looks or worse, body parts. (Quelle horreur.) The clichés.

We trip ourselves up when our focus is too narrow, trying to evoke a single feeling, where love is ephemeral, and when you’re in it, it’s a state of being. Maybe, what we need to do is think of love as an environment.  Continue reading “Writing About Love”

Submission Tips

Maybe one of your New Year’s Resolutions is to submit your work for fellowships and residencies, to contests, or for publication. Maybe you’ve got a project ready to go. If so, yay! Good on you. Before you hit send, let’s review some best practices to help you vault over that slush pile.

I’m going to skip the fundamentals, so if you need a refresher, read thisthis, and this.

I asked some writers who’ve worked the other side of Mount Slushie: What snapped your glazed eyes to attention?

Continue reading “Submission Tips”

The Food Angle

Sometime this holiday season, I’m going to make my grandmother’s broccoli-cheese casserole. It’s gooey, it’s crunchy, and every time I smell it, it heightens how much I miss her.

That’s the thing about this Season of Eating — so much food, and almost all of it is laden with not just calories but memories, hopes, connections. It might be a challenge for our pants, but it’s a feast for our writing.
Continue reading “The Food Angle”