This post was especially interesting to me because I’m watching my critique partner, Uma Krishnaswami, draft the book she mentions in real time. I love the Ted Kooser quote she shares (which is about poetry but applies to all writing — in Uma’s case, nonfiction): “A poem is an object constructed of words, and when this object is presented to its readers, it is theirs to respond to however they wish.”
(Dis)Organizing a Draft Part 2 :: Uma Krishnaswami
I’ve probably shared this post before, but it’s worth reading again: “In your life, you will be evaluated on your output. Your boss will evaluate you on your output. If you’re a writer like me, the audience will evaluate you on your output. But your input is just as important. If you don’t have good input, you cannot maintain good output.”
Your output depends on your input :: Austin Kleon
Erin Bowman has so many honest things to say about publishing. This one is yet another reminder to find satisfaction in the work, not the outcome, and to create your own sustainable definition of success.
Does pursuing success make authors unhappy? Thoughts on career goals, “success,” and the hedonic treadmill. :: Erin Bowman
“As best I can tell, different people are wired for different ambition types. The key seems to be to recognize what type best matches you before success begins to exert significant force on your career. A Type 1 personality stuck in a outbuilding on a farm, quietly writing day after day, will quickly become bored. A Type 2 personality working on a screenplay at the same time as two books while filling weeks with Hollywood meetings will be crushed with anxious unease.”
On Michael Crichton’s Busy Ambition :: Cal Newport
“Over-use of dialogue has become really rampant in the manuscripts I see. I constantly see authors contorting their novels to shoehorn everything into dialogue because they haven’t yet mastered other storytelling techniques.”
How to write good dialogue in a novel :: Nathan Bransford
And a huge congratulations to Irene Latham and Charles Waters for their beautiful Africa Town, winner of this year’s Scott O’Dell Award for historical fiction. Read our interview about their book here.