Writer, What Are You Made Of?

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I haven’t written a blog post in nearly a year. The reason? I have been writing.

Last September, I started a writing workshop via MeetUp in order to connect with local writers. Previous to that, I had been attending workshops through Grub Street and although I admire their programs, the cost is high. As a result of the workshop I started, I’ve met a bunch of extremely talented writers, but the best thing is that the workshops keep the fires burning. I’ve written more new stories in the last year — and also revised more manuscripts — than I ever have. 

In this last year, I’ve grown exponentially as a writer. My prose is better but even more than that, I’ve come to a better understanding of who I am as a writer.  I’ve been tapping into those deep, personal zones, the ones Robert Olen Butler calls “white-hot” places in From Where You Dream. The ones that scare you or feel difficult to broach. I’ve been working on staying there, unflinching. The idea speaks directly to what I wrote nearly a year ago in The Path Not Taken. That is, if you want to create honest-to-goodness art, you must slog through the mud. Actually, sit down in it. Dive.

So that’s where I’ve been. I’ll check in again. 

Credit: Ruud Onos / Flickr, Creative Commons