Empty-Nest Syndrome: Coping with the End of a Long-Term Project
The Writing Process

Empty-Nest Syndrome: Coping with the End of a Long-Term Project

After nearly 4 months, I finally finished the piece I was working on.  Now that it’s complete, I’m nagged by that dreaded inevitable question: “what’s next?” This feeling is familiar to most writers.  We work untold hours diligently, dedicatedly, even obsessively on a project, completely absorbed in an idea only to finally finish and feel … Continue reading

Don’t Be a Drag, Just Be a Queen: Writing as Entertainment
The Writing Process

Don’t Be a Drag, Just Be a Queen: Writing as Entertainment

William Zinsser, author of perennial classic “On Writing Well,” once argued the “mere serviceable is a drag.”  Despite what stuffy academics and the literati might say, I completely agree: the primary goal of writing is entertainment. “What?” you might scoff in disbelief, “what about the nobler goals of information and persuasion, guidance and enlightenment?” Yes, as … Continue reading

A Trail in an Enchanted Forest: Leaving Gold Coins for Your Reader
The Writing Process

A Trail in an Enchanted Forest: Leaving Gold Coins for Your Reader

Re-reading Roy Peter Clark’s brilliantly practical Writing Tools and stumbled upon a writing strategy I adore: Writing Tool #23: “Place gold coins along the path: Reward the reader with high points, especially in the middle.” The question that torments every writer: how do we compel our readers to keep reading?  Famed editor of the Wall Street … Continue reading