Inspiring teen moments from writing club

I’ve said this before and I’ll say it till the world gives them more credit: my students are awesome.

Every week at our creative writing group meeting, one or more of them blow me away with their compassion, creativity, writing ability, and overall heart. Because I believe the world can never contain too much ambient teen optimism, here you go:

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Flash Fiction contest win and reading

I am honored to announce my flash fiction story “Fish Bones” has been named a winner of the “Get to Work” flash fiction contest sponsored by the SVSU Writing Center. It will be published in an upcoming edition of the community journal Still Life. 

I was also invited to read my piece at “The Work Project,” an evening of creative art centered on the theme of work. The event took place at a REALLY cool local arts collective called Counter Culture, and on top of the joy of reading my work, I got to judge a fun open poetry slam.

My community rocks. 🙂

Words that Move

Books are the best surprises. And the most interesting mysteries.

This book recently showed up at my local library, held in my name. I didn’t request it (at least, not that I recall–I request a lot of books).

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Since I know all the library staff very well, and they all know me and my writerly inclinations, I’m fairly certain one of them saw the book and set it aside for me, knowing I would appreciate it. (I haven’t asked who yet–that’s part of the fun).

This book is a collection of short “stories” by Colum McCann, MFA professor at Hunter College in New York. Each entry, only a couple of pages, is comprised of cuttingly real and relevant writing advice for emerging creatives. I can’t put it down.

One day you might find yourself hating writing precisely because you want to make it so good. Yet this awful truth is just another form of joy. Get used to it. The sun also sets in order to rise. — from Letters to a Young Writer

I am not even a quarter of the way into this book and I already can’t live without it. Pick up a copy for yourself. And support your local library. They are the keepers of words that move.

Story Game – “Without Borders”

beautiful-earth-107499_beautiful-earthHere’s a story game called “Without Borders” I wrote and coded a couple years ago about a doctor who becomes an astronaut rather unwillingly. “Story game” means that it is a choose-your-own-adventure style story where you play as a character and have choices and different possible endings.

There’s a link at the end of the game to give me feedback on what you thought, as well as links to get you started creating games of your own if you are so inclined.

Enjoy!

Disclaimer: Mild language in a couple spots. No endorsements given or received. All photos my own or public domain.

Photo above from NASA, public domain.

My experience with Flash Fiction Challenge and why you should write outside your genre TODAY

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Comedy. Of all the genres they could assign me, it had to be comedy.

Earlier this week, I found out I broke into the 3rd Round of the NYC Midnight Flash Fiction Challenge, meaning I got to advance to the next stage of the competition (a semi-final round, essentially) with the chance to qualify for finals in December. In my year plus of participating in NYC writing competitions, this is the furthest I’ve advanced.

But luck of the draw means a new set of random prompts for each round. And luck decided to stretch my abilities by throwing a genre at me that I’m less than confident in. Continue reading