Story Surgery

I re-read a short story recently that I had put away because I didn’t know what to do with it. I’d submitted it a few times with no luck—a sign the story isn’t bad, but it’s not as good as it could be. I had never been satisfied with the ending, so I started there. I … Continue reading Story Surgery

Own the Emotion, Give It Away

Some years ago, I volunteered as a studio monitor during a regional ballet association festival. I watched nervously as the teacher pushed and corrected the young dancers, but I was happy to see how he also encouraged and praised. Toward the end of the session, he told the dancers something I’ve never forgotten: Technique isn’t enough. You … Continue reading Own the Emotion, Give It Away

Find Your Voice, Make It Sing

Many years ago, when I was teaching English and creative writing to high school students, I attended a creative workshop for teachers “up East” where we learned fresh approaches to teaching writing. More importantly for me, it turned out, was the encouragement to write a story of my own. I remember sitting on a bench … Continue reading Find Your Voice, Make It Sing