Don’t Write Alone: Columns

How’s the Writing Going, Deesha Philyaw?

“For me, getting better as a writer is learning how to get to the essence of things and boil down all of that exposition and backstory.”

Jul 26, 2022
The Intimate Relationship of Telling Someone Else’s Story

Nonfiction writers can get so consumed by investigating that we lose track of the story. Narrating my audiobook brought me back to the real person at the heart of it.

Apr 07, 2022
I Read My Own Audiobook Like It Was Someone Else’s

I expected that inhabiting the roles of both the author and the narrator at once would bring me closer to the text than ever, in a way that might feel uncomfortable.

Mar 17, 2022
The Poetry of Comics: A Conversation with Collage Artist Mita Mahato

“Comics made the confusion and desperation feel contained. By ‘contained’ I don’t mean controlled—more the feeling of ‘I can deal with this piece of my grief, explore it, turn it around, and add context to it.’”

Feb 08, 2022
How’s the Writing Going, Jen Doll?

“I think I’m trying to reconcile the need to write and have a deadline with the need to be a human? And right now, the human is winning.”

Jan 06, 2022
Trans Voices Belong in the Recording Booth Too

Contributing to the small body of trans-narrated, trans-written audiobooks felt both personally affirming and politically necessary.

Dec 20, 2021
Book Contracts: Let’s Talk Surprises

In the final installment of her column, Kate McKean tells us about the things authors don’t expect to be in a book contract.

Nov 23, 2021
“I thought my way through the puzzle of the poem”: A Conversation with Niki Herd

Jessica Wilbanks discusses the craft choices Niki Herd made while writing her poem “Bird.”

Nov 22, 2021
Writing the Senses: Smell

In this five-part column, Hannah Howard explores the senses from a craft perspective.

Nov 18, 2021
Writing Richer Characters By Writing Kink

In the second installment of her column, Megan Pillow examines a short story by Carmen Maria Machado to demonstrate how some of the best examples of contemporary writing craft can be found in writing about sex.

Nov 15, 2021
How’s the Writing Going, R. O. Kwon?

“I know that when I’m really writing, when I’m really, really lost in a sentence, I forget I have a body, I forget what time is. I forget to eat.”

Nov 09, 2021
Writing Sex Was Easy Until I Had to Read It Aloud

I had one male audio engineer in the room with me, politely waiting to hear me record a graphic essay about youthful sex.

Nov 02, 2021
When Is It Time to Give Up on an Old Project?

In the fifth installment of our Tarot + Craft column, Sarah Elaine Smith gives advice to a writer who is growing tired of working on their manuscript.

Book Contracts: Let’s Talk Rights

In the second installment of her column, Kate McKean tells us all about the rights and subrights that could appear in your contract when you sell your book to a publisher.

Oct 26, 2021
When Do You Stop Writing?

Let’s give answering this difficult question a shot.

Oct 21, 2021
Reading My Audiobook Was an Act of Letting Go

You cannot grow, or heal, or whatever it is we’re trying to achieve when we write though trauma, by distancing yourself from your own pain.

Oct 19, 2021
On Craft, Rhythm, and Writing About Sex

In the first installment of her new column, Megan Pillow shows us how some of the best examples of contemporary writing craft can be found in writing about sex.

Sep 30, 2021
Narrating My Audiobook Felt Like Doing an Impression of Myself

Even the most authentic voice on the page is a translation, a refraction, an altered version of the author’s actual speaking voice.

Sep 28, 2021
How’s the Writing Going, Michael Seidlinger?

“I always battle with the realization that the stuff I write doesn’t need to exist, and I wonder how many people actually want to read the horror and speculative fiction that I write.”

Sep 22, 2021
Book Contracts: Let’s Talk Money

As part of our Money Week series, literary agent Kate McKean shares the first installment of her column on book contracts, this one addressing advances, payouts, and royalties.

Sep 16, 2021