Poetry Can Change the World

Can poetry change the world? Just ask Andrei Voznesensky, a Russian rock-star poet who sold out stadiums for his poetry readings in the 1960s. Yes. Stadiums. Voznesensky said, “If you want to change the world’s spirit, I will suggest that only poetry can do this.” Poetry Is Play Poetry, for the most part, is playful,… Read more »

#5onFri: Five Poems We All Need To Read

There are years I barely remember – what happened to all 365 days of grade four? The only thing I remember is Mrs Vanbuskirk getting so mad she yelled at me in front of the class. I remember her white coat with the red embroidered designs of polar bears. She had impossibly black hair and… Read more »

Interview with Marcie Rendon

Editor’s Note: Columnist, Sara Farmer, is writing a limited series for DIY MFA in which she interviews #ownvoices authors and authors of color. She began her series with an interview of Silvia Moreno-Garcia, author of Mexican Gothic. Check back in two weeks for the next installment! About Marcie Rendon Marcie Rendon, citizen of the White… Read more »

Drawing the Vote

Why vote? I never ask myself this question and here’s why. At nineteen, I went on my first trip abroad. It was Fall 1980. My plan was to traipse across Europe with my bestie, starting in October, have grand adventures, become more worldly, and be home by Christmas. I thought I had prepared for the… Read more »

When Is It Historical Fiction and When Is It Something Else?

During an interview for the promotion for my most recent book, it dawned on me we have never actually discussed, in this column, the relationships between “pure” historical fiction and the adjacencies that might be either sub-genres or just tangentially related. The interviewer asked how historical fantasy differs from historical fiction – and answering that… Read more »

Story Grid Scene Analysis: Something Borrowed

If you’ve been following my last two articles on scene analysis, you know how valuable I believe it is for writers to understand how to determine if a scene either advances the plot and/or develops the character(s). This is especially important if it is the opening chapter of a novel. Before I became a Certified… Read more »

Ten Black Science Fiction & Fantasy Authors to Read Now

Shortly after I submitted my last Speculations, COVID-19 made its presence felt. The world shut down and we all self-isolated and waited for health authorities to tell us that the danger had passed. It hasn’t. Then May 25, 2020 arrived, and 8 minutes and 46 seconds changed everything. Though George Floyd was not the first,… Read more »

A Bouquet of Comics

My first deep impression of anthologies was as texts in poetry school. I still have a shelf dedicated to these early intros to poetry: The Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry, Imagist Poetry: An Anthology, Great Poems by American Women: An Anthology. In the literary arts, collections like these register a kind of arrival to such… Read more »

Pandemic Potpourri

It’s probably fair to say that the number of us actually living our 2020 plan is vanishingly small.  It was to have been my year of geographical expansion – a self-organized book tour to signings and festivals around the country. What’s happened instead is a geographical contraction to the four walls of my house and… Read more »

Sara Farmer

Cozy to Cold-blooded: An interview with DP Lyle

DP Lyle’s 4th Jake Longly thriller Rigged is here! Fans of the series can expect another smooth, funny ride with Jake, girlfriend Nicole Jamison, dad Ray, and childhood friend Tommy “Pancake” Jeffers. Since this book is set in the nearby town of Fairhope, rather than Jake’s hometown of Gulf Shores, AL, we meet police chief… Read more »