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You Tell Me It’s the Institution: Creative Writing and Literary History by Kenneth W. Warren

lareviewofbooks.org – Sunday September 13, 2015

I SPENT SIX WEEKS during the summer before my senior year of high school attending a creative writing course called "The Composing Process" at the Phillips Academy Andover Summer Session. It was 1974 and Richard Nixon was being forced from office as a result of the Watergate burglaries and the subsequent cover-up, yet for me the most momentous aspect of that summer was not the nation's political crisis but the idea that I, a skinny black kid from a public high school in Albuquerque, New Mexico, might be on my way to becoming a writer of serious literature. We read In Our Time andAbsalom, Absalom!, among other classic work, and I tried my hand with Hemingwayesque short fiction and imagist-inspired poetry, to the praise of my instructor and to what seemed like the admiration of my classmates. The reading was a revelation, and the fact that some of the pieces I wrote took on, to my eyes, the aura of "real" literature gave me some assurance that I, too, might also some day become a "real" writer. Perfecting artistic craftsmanship felt as important as knowing what was up politically, and that feeling helped me justify my as yet unspoken belief that once I got to college I could treat the sciences and social sciences as barely tolerable nuisances while I pursued matters of real importance on the pages of novels, poetry chapbooks, and anthologies.

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Writing Out Gender Bias

huffingtonpost.co.uk – Friday September 11, 2015

The Nine Worlds Multi Genre Convention arrived in London at the beginning of August and I had been invited to speak on two panels. Being a huge science fiction and fantasy enthusiast and writer, I was delighted to attend. Nine Worlds is proof that you don't have to be a nerd or fan to enjoy science fiction, fantasy and gaming. Personally I don't like to use the term 'fan' as it implies that anyone who follows a TV show or a band is a nut job. We're generally not.

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Unlearning to Write

slate.com – Friday September 11, 2015

The first thing you learn when you set out to teach writing is that you will never teach anyone to write well. It's a cruel joke universities play on humanities grad students. As you're preparing to step into a classroom, they assign you an impossible task, one they cloak with a label like "Introduction to Rhetoric" or "Expository Composition." Here are 20 undergraduates, they say. Show them how to make their prose sing. Staring your new charges down, you begin to speak. Your voice cracks. They see the fear in your eyes.

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How Mindfulness Can Transform Your Writing Life

huffingtonpost.com – Thursday September 10, 2015

It could be said that writing starts when the ballpoint hits the surface of paper, or when fingers tap the square-shaped keys of a keyboard, but I like to think that writing begins somewhere else.

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Success isn't just about 'showing up'

dailylife.com.au – Wednesday September 9, 2015

The recipe for success in life is straightforward. You get qualified, hone your craft, join the industry association, get a blog, and — TA-DA! — it all pays off and you succeed.

Reality, however, often has other ideas.

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Stephen Kiernan, author of 'The Hummingbird,' talks about his writing process

startribune.com – Wednesday September 9, 2015

Stephen Kiernan's first novel, "The Curiosity," was a modern-day "Frankenstein," the story of a 19th-century judge who was frozen in the Arctic and thawed out (and lived!) in modern times. His new novel, "The Hummingbird," heads down a very different road. Told in the first person by a hospice nurse named Deborah Birch, it follows two tracks: Deborah's end-of-life care for a prickly academic, and her struggles at home with her husband, who has returned from his third tour of military duty suffering from PTSD.

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What we learned about... non-fiction writing

theguardian.com – Tuesday September 8, 2015

Inspiring advice from author and philosopher Julian Baggini on how to kickstart the writing process - and keep focused on your goals.

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A manifesto for self-publishing authors

thebookseller.com – Monday September 7, 2015

I hereby declare: That I will not renege on the best publishing opportunities for authors ever and I will not allow the publishing industry to renege on its responsibilities to writers and readers...

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Bill Clegg on Novel Writing, Agenting, and Obsessing Over Sufjan Stevens

vogue.com – Saturday September 5, 2015

Those who have watched Bill Clegg's career from afar might believe he has nine lives. Clegg is first and foremost a literary agent, and, as a recent Vanity Fair profile asserts, one of the biggest in the industry. He's also a best-selling memoirist...

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Can authors compete with 'non-competes'?

thebookseller.com – Saturday August 29, 2015

No publisher would agree, at an author's request, to forgo publishing another author's book on a particular subject. So why should an author assume a similar obligation? But it happens all the time.

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