Category Archives: voice


Years ago, when I first started teaching, a woman signed up for my class at the John C. Campbell Folk School in the N.C. mountains because her doctor had told her that if she didn’t do something for herself soon, … Continue reading

Posted in creativity, depression, emotion, Energy, Magic, Process, Prompts, Self-worth, soul, spirit, Story, survival, Telling our stories, Transformation, Uncategorized, Visibilty, voice, women | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Day Without Devices

On my walk this morning I found a nub of purple chalk a child had used to scribble on the pavement. I picked it up, an opportunity in my hand. What would I write? I thought hard about it, and … Continue reading

Posted in creativity, Day by day, Energy, fiction, fun with what we do, Gratitude, happiness, home, Journaling, Magic, Maintenance, privacy, Process, Self-worth, spaciousness, Story, Uncategorized, voice, what artists need | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Writing Fiction

Writing fiction is always about relationship, and the first relationship that must be established is between the author and the main character. There’s got to be a certain intimacy in order to proceed. I can’t just write. I don’t just … Continue reading

Posted in Comparison, Competition, Completing a novel, creativity, Day by day, Decisions, Drafts, emotion, Energy, Exploration, failure, fiction, Journaling, Magic, Process, Public appearances, Publishing, Starting a new work, Story, Visibilty, voice, Wildness | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Distorting American History

Dear Karen, I am not living the life I was raised to live. I was raised to be a housewife, to not work, to have children and stay home. My mother wanted me to go to college so I could … Continue reading

Posted in fiction, History, research, Story, Telling our stories, truth, Uncategorized, voice | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Whose Story Matters?

Dear Karen, During my first book tour I gave a reading at a conference held in the auditorium of a university. I was terrified of public speaking, and to make it worse, I was completely intimidated by the people I … Continue reading

Posted in creativity, Day by day, Elitism, Passion, Public appearances, Self-worth, Uncategorized, violence, Visibilty, voice | Tagged , , , , , , , | 6 Comments


Dear Karen, It is two days past Thanksgiving, 2014. At the start of the week we learned of a grand jury’s refusal to indict a policeman for the shooting of an unarmed black man. There were riots. Cars were burned. … Continue reading

Posted in class, economics, Elitism, emotion, Grief, Story, Telling our stories, Uncategorized, violence, voice | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment