A Survivor’s Guide to AWP

It's one of the largest annual gatherings of creative writers, publishers, and educators in the United States--usually well in excess of 10,000 attendees--and the largest such event for literary writers. Once again I'll be attending the AWP Conference & Bookfair, the Association of Writers and Writing Programs' annual extravaganza. This year the hordes will be …

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Using Extended Metaphors in Your Writing – Part One

One element of creative writing that I struggled with in my MFA program was the use of metaphor, particularly ones extended across long passages. I bemoaned my struggle from one of my Vermont College of Fine Arts residencies. But as I progressed in my studies I came to realize I was too hard on myself, …

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When Great Inventors Encourage Future Innovators

I knew when attending the White House ceremony for the latest class of National Medal of Technology and Innovation (NMTI) winners a week before Thanksgiving that I would have to blog on the experience. A logical narrative line to craft would have been the dramatic overlap in creative approaches pursued by NMTI awardees and the varied …

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Guest Post: Reliving Trauma through the Creative Process

Let me begin with a teaser for next week: I'm working on a post about creativity lessons we can learn from the newest winners of the President's National Medal of Technology and Innovation. I had the good fortune of attending the recent White House ceremony, and I'll bring you a taste of that as well …

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Do You Need an MFA to Write and Sell a Book?

That headline is, of course, absurd. The vast majority of published books are written by authors lacking MFAs, and I suspect that few works of literature we now rank as great were written during an MFA program. That said, Committed: A Memoir of the Artist's Road was my creative thesis in a low-residency MFA program …

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The Artist’s Road Memoir will be Published this Fall

So it's official. I've signed with an enterprising independent publisher and my memoir--four years after I first started working on it--will be published this October. So many readers of The Artist's Road have traveled with me as I've chronicled this pursuit. I've shared my highs and my lows, and there were a fair number of …

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When Creatives Give Back

As I struggled with learning how to put myself on the written page, I asked my Vermont College of Fine Arts instructor Sue William Silverman how she found the courage to share her trauma as a childhood victim of sexual abuse in Because I Remember Terror, Father, I Remember You. She first told me that …

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