Reality is Overrated: Newsflash from Miranda July

41Qu2jj8qQL._SX323_BO1,204,203,200_Miranda July’s recent novel, The First Bad Man, is the story of Cheryl: a slightly lost, often mistaken, out of touch, middle aged, single woman with a shifting relationship with reality. As she slips in and out between what’s reliably happening and her own fantasies, she enters a space where anything goes. And it’s her laissez faire attitude toward life that makes this book fun to read.

Continue reading Reality is Overrated: Newsflash from Miranda July

WIP Reading, Tuesday, July 29th, 7 – 9PM @ 61 Bergen St – Brooklyn

2014_XX-LITWRAP-Writing_in_Progress-illo-r1-1LitWrap Summer Party
Tuesday, July 29th, 7 – 9PM
61 Local (Cobble Hill)
61 Bergen St, Brooklyn

We are so excited to bring you our third LITWRAP Works-In-Progress reading, with an awesome
lineup of local writers: Kris Waldherr, Brian Erickson, Ilana Kramer, Sarah Seltzer, Rachel Lyon, Max Bean, Mary Lannon, and Gerard Cabrera. Grab a drink downstairs and join us UPSTAIRS for some words and inspiration. Hope to see you in real life for hugs and high fives!


Supported by a grant from Poets and Writers

Let’s Kick It on July 29th for a Works-In-Progress Reading!

12680Has that novel deadline started to feel further and further afield?  If so, we invite you to the third installment of our works-in-progress series to read aloud.  There’s something about those words hitting the air that will tell you all you need to know about your current draft.

Interested readers: email with 1200 words to save your spot for our July 29th reading at 61Local from 7-9pm.  Works-In-Progress only!

What are your goals as a writer? Be specific

imagesThis is the second question of the “Short Answer” section of the Pen Center Emerging Voices Fellowship application for 2015.  The first — why are you applying for the fellowship — is a little easier to answer.  There are considerable benefits: a professional mentorship with a published author, classes at the UCLA Writer’s Extension Program and a series of genre specific master classes, to name a few.  But specific goals as a writer?  That’s a little harder to say.

Continue reading What are your goals as a writer? Be specific

Writing Schedules: Begin with a Blessing

bissingerDo you have a writing schedule?  Mine is: wake up, fret about writing, make some tea and fret some more.  If yours is looking about the same, then what about taking a tip from Henry Miller, who began his day with a blessing? 

“I open the door in the morning, look towards the sun rising over the mountains, and bless the whole world, birds, flowers and beasts included.  After I have moved my bowels I take the hound for a walk.  Then a stint of writing, then lunch, then a siesta, then water colors, then correspondence, then a book, then a fuck, then a nap, then dinner, and so to bed early and up early and all’s well except when I visit the dentist now and then.”  

If we take him at face value (which might be the only way to take him) then writing is a part of a larger creative life, all of which gets to be nurtured and enjoyed. 

(from The Devil at Large: Erica Jong On Henry Miller, By Erica Jong)


The Best Fellowships and Retreats for Writers


If heaven is a writing desk, then what’s a writing desk in a cabin in the woods?  With breakfast delivered to your door? That, my friend, is called a retreat.

Sure you’ve heard of Yaddo’s 400-acre creative community in Saratoga Springs, but what about the Wellspring House in Ashfield, MA, or the Haven Writing Retreat in Whitefish, MT?  Some fellowships also offer peaceful places to write like the WCR Writing Fellowship in the Redwoods in Soquel, CA.

Brené Brown says, the only thing that differentiates between people who go after what they want and those who don’t is that those who do feel worthy.  So go for it!  Ra-ra heavenly writing retreats for all.

More here on the 12 top Fellowships and Retreats. (photo from:

The Rattling Wall: Submission Deadline May 1st

imgresThe three year old LA based literary journal is accepting sophisticated short fiction (yes please!), travel essays (hm, something to think about) and poetry submissions (try something new, anyone?).  

They may be too young to nominate for the Pushcart, but don’t overlook this one.  It’s a style heavy magazine with great writers and a selected artist for each issue.  

Polish up a piece now and send in, snail mail, by the end of the month.