20 Poetical Considerations in Honor of National Poetry Month #NaPoMo

April’s National Poetry Month (hashtag #NaPoMo on Twitter). That means I get to tell you everything I know about reading poetry. I only know 20 things, though, so don’t be overwhelmed. 1. Poetry is best read quickly and with total immersion. Also, read poems slowly. Is that a contradiction? Good. Ask Walt Whitman about contradictions. Read …

Writing About Writing: Five Noteworthy Stories and Poems

This is an essay by Erika Dreifus. A funny thing happened as I immersed myself in the study and practice of writing: I found myself appreciating stories and poems about writing—works in which central characters are writers or central themes or actions involve aspects of craft, process, or business of writing—more and more. I say …

Cheating on Your Genre

This is an essay by Susan Sundwall. It’s an interesting word, genre, a bit snooty sounding. It means kind or type. If someone asks what sort of writing you do, they expect a genre answer. The question frequently stumps me. My first mystery was recently published, so you’d think I’d answer “mystery,” but the word …

The Long and Short of It: In Praise of Little Stories

This essay was written by Amarie Fox. Since Alice Munro was announced as the winner of the 2013 Nobel Prize for Literature, I’ve seen such a tremendous, albeit much deserved outpouring of love for the “master of the contemporary short story.” Following the news came a lot of interesting discussions. How rewarding it was for fans, especially since …