After the Story Is on the Page: Writing about People We Love

After the Story Is on the Page: Writing about People We Love

“What about writing about friends and family?” Some version of this question comes toward the end of almost every personal essay class I teach. We’ve already discussed interrogation and discovery as we write. We’ve thought about beginnings and endings. We’ve considered scene, summary, and reflection. We’ve explored where to find ideas. We’ve spent time engaged… Read more »

September 2022 Leisure Learning

September 2022 Leisure Learning

Happy Autumn, word nerds! Fall has officially arrived and in just a few days, we will be entering perhaps the most magical month of the year: October. Can you feel the sparkle in the air? My cat and I certainly can (see bio). While not everyone celebrates Halloween, October is a particularly special month for… Read more »

Whose Emotion Is It?

Whose Emotion Is It?

Someone once asked me at a reading what I would say to an aspiring writer, and I answered “craft your pain.” I believe a story can uplift, amuse, and encourage, but no matter how lucky you are, by birth or chance, everyone experiences grief. Everyone knows loss, and everyone needs, at one time or another,… Read more »

LGBTQ+ Literature in Translation: Notes of a Desolate Man

LGBTQ+ Literature in Translation: Notes of a Desolate Man

Notes of a Desolate Man by Chu T’ien-wen was translated by Howard Goldblatt and Sylvia Li-Chun Lin. In my search for gay Asian literature, specifically, I discovered several compelling texts, translated to English from writers of Filipino, Chinese, Vietnamese, and other nationalities. Notes of a Desolate Man is Taiwanese, which I thought an appropriate place… Read more »

Moving Past the Middle Muddle Mood

Moving Past the Middle Muddle Mood

The creative life is filled with magic, passion, and adventure. This is the truth. Writing, like reading, transports a soul. This is also true. Even if you’re only in it for the money and fame (ha, ha), if you keep at it, you will discover things about yourself and the world you could know in… Read more »