Don’t Start Something New in 2014 (Finish Something Old)

JordanCraft, Fiction Writing, Writing. Practice.

I know the temptation of the New Year to clear the slate, push all those half-finished projects and goals of last year to the side and start fresh. The pressure of everyone slapping on new resolutions like fancy new outfits could make anyone feel like a slacker. Consider instead finishing something “old” or “in-process” at the New Year instead. Here’s why I suggest it. That half finished novel, the short story you intended to send to that contest, the stack of essays you think might make a memoir—they may only physically live on your desk or your desktop, but here’s what you may not realize: unfinished projects also live inside you, in all their impartial nature. They take up psychic … Read More

JordanDon’t Start Something New in 2014 (Finish Something Old)

Why Attend a Writer’s Retreat vs. Conference?

JordanClasses, Craft

Artists of all stripes, but writers especially, need scads of time to enter the silence where art is created. It’s hard to do in the bustle of family life, at work, and surrounded by friends. Visual artists often go on “residencies” but writers are generally pointed in the direction of conferences where you are exhorted to improve, refine, better your craft and hone your  path to publication.  This is, of course, a good thing–where else can you meet literary heroes and experts in a quick, intense setting? But having been to enough conferences as both participant and presenter, I can tell you that I often return home spent to my very last. There’s a driving energy at the conference scene … Read More

JordanWhy Attend a Writer’s Retreat vs. Conference?

Guest Teacher: Amy McElroy. Luscious Language & Memoir Fundamentals!

JordanClasses, Craft

I’m excited to announce a guest-teacher here at Write Livelihood. In her own words, I introduce Amy McElroy, writer, teacher and editor. Follow the link below her introduction to take one of two fabulous classes in January. Early-bird specials through December 20th, 2013. * * * Amy McElroy writes: I believe in truth. Things like trees and nature and children, especially toddlers who waddle around like tiny fountains of truth. But, I believe in kindness, too.  Toddlers tell the white, blunt truth, but it usually comes with a kiss. But, most of all I believe in honesty and integrity. If you’re looking for a writing teacher or editor who gives it to you straight, even if that means sometimes you have … Read More

JordanGuest Teacher: Amy McElroy. Luscious Language & Memoir Fundamentals!

Writing Your Truth

JordanCraft, Fiction Writing

                                For years people have said to me “You should write about your childhood!” And from their points of view, I understood why: raised by hippies in a culture of drugs, art, intellectualism and hedonism in Northern California, there’s a lot of rich ore to mine. But my childhood was not something I could write about directly; every entry point upset me, bored me, or filled me with anxiety. That’s partly because the story of my childhood is not just mine. There are a lot of people involved, not the least of whom are my parents, with whom I still have contact and love a … Read More

JordanWriting Your Truth