‘Tis the Season to Be Creeped Out

I’m a chicken. But I’m a chicken who loves a theme, so every October I steel my nerves and look for scary reads. Most years I gravitate toward the classics, safely familiar stories like Dracula, Carmilla, or Frankenstein, because I like the trappings of horror without the actual being afraid part. And last October when we challenged each other to write horror stories, I kept mine pretty tame, because I wasn’t quite in the mood to scare myself. This year feels different. So for the next two weeks I’ll be reading more horror and more about horror, trying to figure out what … Continue reading ‘Tis the Season to Be Creeped Out

Reading: The Best Friend of Writing

There is nothing like being a writer and opening a book that someone else wrote. When I was younger I was thoroughly intimidated to write after reading the likes of Dickens, Wordsworth and Shakespeare. Who wouldn’t be? You think, how can I call myself a writer when I know darn well I can’t write like that? You might be discouraged before you even even put pen to paper. As i’ve gotten older though I look instead at these powerhouses and more as my goals and teachers, my mentors and friends. I read to learn- what do they get right and … Continue reading Reading: The Best Friend of Writing

Story break!

NaNoWriMo leaves little time for other pursuits, but getting out of your head and into somebody else’s words for a few minutes can do wonders for your writing. At least, it’s been good for mine—especially when I’m steeped in something I’ve been working on for a long time. It’s so easy to fall into patterns and forget there are other things you can do with words. Anyway, here’s The Rose MacGregor Drinking and Admiration Society by T. Kingfisher. It’s a charming story that sets a common fairy trope on its head in the most delightful way. On a similar note, here’s Blessings … Continue reading Story break!

Pitt-Johnstown Fall Reading Series – Michael W. Cox – November 1, 2018

The Writing Department at Pitt-Johnstown hosts a Fall Reading Series every year, presenting one poet, one creative nonfiction writer, and one fiction writer during the fall semester. The readings are held in room 131 in Blackington Hall and are free and open to the public. For the final event in this year’s reading series, fiction writer Michael W. Cox will be reading this Thursday, November 1st at 7pm from his latest book, The Best Way to Get Even: A Novel. Dr. Cox teaches writing at Pitt-Johnstown and was one of my mentors when I attended. I proofread this novel a while back, … Continue reading Pitt-Johnstown Fall Reading Series – Michael W. Cox – November 1, 2018

I’ve spent my life looking for a word

Hello Creative Writer, As a writer you well know the struggle of finding the perfect word. There are so many to choose from but there is a short list of words that convey the right nuance, the right emotion and the perfect message. It can be torturous to sit with a sentence nearly complete but for one word that hides at the tip of your tongues and on the edge of consciousness. Imagine, then, this feeling amplified. It is not just a sentence that needs completing. For years, decades, my mind has been searching for a word. I read as … Continue reading I’ve spent my life looking for a word