open invitation no. 16: writing communities matter

Don’t be alone. It is natural to retreat when things get tough. Recently I wrote this sentence — I’ve had to learn to write through dark times.  I know uncertainty has the potential to destroy a writer’s mojo…I also know writing can be one of  the best ways to process uncertainty.  This is especially trueContinue reading “open invitation no. 16: writing communities matter”

open invitation no. 15: constant

Some things never change. There might be magic waiting to be discovered in the things that seem to never change. Spend some time thinking about something that’s been a constant in your life. Maybe you always get a new toothbrush on your birthday or you still sit in the same porch swing as you didContinue reading “open invitation no. 15: constant”

open invitation no. 14: when you don’t feel like writing

Sometimes you don’t feel like writing. Do it anyway. Being a writer can seem magical…until you sit down to write. I started my career as a middle school language arts teacher. I assigned writing. I always thought the assignments were interesting and easy. By dumb luck, I landed in a workshop with Katie Wood RayContinue reading “open invitation no. 14: when you don’t feel like writing”

open invitation no. 13: claim sacred space

Claim a sacred space in each day. The days go by in a flash. Slam-bam and you are crawling into bed. Writers are just like everyone else, except they’ve decided to claim sacred space in each day to pause. Learn to make pause. Stop. Notice. Think some thoughts. Sacred means something you protect. Protect theContinue reading “open invitation no. 13: claim sacred space”

open invitation no. 12: write anyway

Sometimes things don’t go as planned. Write anyway. There’s a quote that goes — Don’t sweat the small stuff.It’s all small stuff. Richard Carlson said that. It’s actually the title of a book he wrote in 1997. I remember it being a popular phrase when I was in undergrad, and it wound its way intoContinue reading “open invitation no. 12: write anyway”

open invitation no. 11: learn some facts

Learn some facts. Research is one of my favorite parts of the writing process, and I use it all of the time. I love to find facts or learn how things work or dig out quotes and statistics. Research is not just for informational writing. It’s great for fiction. It’s an asset to poetry. ItContinue reading “open invitation no. 11: learn some facts”

open invitation no. 10: just write

Just write. Each week there is an open invitation. It is open in the sense that it is for everyone. It is also open in the sense that you can give it a whirl…or not. Your choice. The magic of this community comes from sharing our stories. Any story…or poem…or letter…or anything else you wantContinue reading “open invitation no. 10: just write”

open invitation no. 9: stack a series of sounds

Play with the sound of words by stacking a series of similar sounds. Let’s have some fun with words. There are a few ways that writers play with similar sounds of words. Try one of these! AlliterationUse the same beginning sound three or more times in a row. “Stacking a series of similar sounds” isContinue reading “open invitation no. 9: stack a series of sounds”

open invitation no. 8: choose to find a celebration

Choose to find a celebration. “If you look at life one way there is always cause for alarm.” Elizabeth Bowen said this. These words casually circle through my mind on most days. They prod me to consider different ways to look at the day. I do not have to be alarmed. I can find aContinue reading “open invitation no. 8: choose to find a celebration”