I didn’t write American Family; it burst from my chest like the alien in the movie by the same name starring Sigourney Weaver. It was also produced by the clash of politics, law and faith that swirled around LGBTQ rights at the beginning of the millennium.
American Family began writing itself years before I even knew I was going to write it. When I try to figure out when my novel began, a…Continue
“Summer, you can feel it dying.” This is the opening sentence to a chapter of Jerry Spinelli’s Space Station Seventh Grade. I use it at the beginning of the school year to show sixth graders I understand they’re losing something: the freedom to play video games all night, sleep all day, wake up in time for dinner when their parents return from work, and start all over again. I also do it for myself. Spinelli goes on to describe summer as having a funnel shape, wide at the beginning…Continue
Lessons I Learned While Editing
I am editing my first novel for the ninth or tenth time. That is, I am implementing changes my editor has suggested. Finding an editor I was willing to work with was quite a journey and a huge departure from writing in isolation.
I had taken lots of writing courses, earned my certificate in creative writing, and read a library of books on writing and my writing improved. But I couldn’t get my book published. I realized that to become a…Continue