Tag Archives: The New Yorker

A Safe Place

A few  weeks ago, at the Fiction Writing Intensive offered by UC Berkeley Extension, writer Jane Anne Staw spoke of the five components of a writing practice. The first thing you need, she said, is a place.  A real, physical location where you feel the most relaxed, the least anxious.  She asked the students where they wrote. A home office. A chair in the kitchen, as the morning light moves across the table. At night, after dinner, when the house is quiet. A parked car. “Good.”  Jane Anne nodded.  “Whatever works for you.  It’s important not to judge.” I thought … Continue reading

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Two weeks ago, I heard Daniel Coshnear talk on “The Balanced Life.”  It was the final day of UC Berkeley Extension’s Fiction Writing Intensive, and we’d gathered four panelists to talk about Where to Go From Here:  Sustaining the Momentum.  The idea was to give the students – with varying degrees of writing experience – some practical and inspirational ideas for moving their work forward. Mimi Albert, a writer and longtime UC Extension insructor, talked about online classes.   Heather Cameron gave an overview on publishing.  Deborah Lichtman covered the pros and cons of MFA programs.  And Dan talked about making … Continue reading

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