Category Archives: Uncategorized

New Year, New Schedule… New Mistakes to Make!

It’s possible that I am my own Iago

So, I’m back to school, and we’re on a new schedule (woo) and I’ve got new students (woooo) and I almost made it into the year with no new classes, but then a bunch of the nerdy kids were sad there was no AP Literature & Composition this year so… AP Lit & Comp club?? (Seven kids have expressed interest. This may well be the Best Club Ever.)

That got me thinking, of course, about all the

amazing classics we’d get to read once I put together a reading list.

Continue reading New Year, New Schedule… New Mistakes to Make!

Blast from the Past

Well, while The Baby is napping, and C’s off feeding a friend’s cats and picking up his brother’s dog, I thought I’d try to pop up a quick entry. I’m working on finishing up my grant report for the Teacher Creativity Grant that led to the creation of this blog (fellow educators, GO APPLY!) and will post that shortly. I’ve also been doing some literary archaeology and re-reading the big, sprawling, terrifying novel draft that I was working on with a friend for several years (but no updates since… yikes, January 2015!).  Continue reading Blast from the Past

Long Time No See

Well, I fell off the blogging wagon a bit, because, as T. S. Eliot tells us, “April is the cruelest month,” and also May sucks too when you’re a teacher.

I’ve mostly just been grading and grading and grading, but it’s not all bad.

I’ve also been reading blogs (like Janet Reid’s and Jenny Crusie’s) and just basking in all of the information they present. Crusie’s especially has had lots of good stuff about writing technique. Have I plugged her Writing/Romance blog here yet? It’s great, even if you don’t write romance.

And I’ve been reading ebooks from the library on my phone! I’m almost through Sarah Rees Brennan’s Lynburn Legacy trilogy, which I’m enjoying quite a bit (not as much as The Demon’s Lexicon trilogy, but quite a bit nonetheless). Brennan describes it as “a romantic gothic mystery about a girl named Kami Glass, who discovers her imaginary friend is a real boy.” What a gorgeous elevator pitch! Obviously the book’s about more than that–and I’m on to book three by now–but it’s amazing how compactly she manages to describe it.

OK, I have to get back to the grading now… or possibly just back to reading ebooks on my phone while I pretend to grade…

Romance (and Prejudice)

One of the tips that Bob Mayer gave at Write on the River when I attended was to join your local chapter of the Romance Writers of America, no matter what your genre.



Can I just tell you a little bit about how English Majors like myself are taught to think about romance novels???

No, see, Austen doesn’t count. Because she’s different. Because we SAID SO, okay?!?!?!

Continue reading Romance (and Prejudice)

Writing Dates

So, I am the sort of person who works best when others are around, even if I’m not talking to them. When left unsupervised, I have a tendency to procrastinate horribly unless I’m going to have to perform shortly with a hard deadline (this is why teaching works well for me–with literal bells ringing to tell me what to do next–and writing novels is a struggle, even though I really enjoy writing!).

termpaper#the struggle is real

So, to this end, I’ve set up a weekly “writing date” with a long-distance friend. Continue reading Writing Dates

Midwest Writers Workshop 2015

20150725_130355The third and final of my Lilly-grant-funded adventures this year was the Midwest Writers Workshop (#42, certainly an auspicious sign!).

This workshop was AMAZING! I got a ton out of it and it really had the most breadth in terms of a writing conference that could meet the needs of people at all levels, from novices just starting their novels to published authors looking for networking opportunities. Continue reading Midwest Writers Workshop 2015