Happy New Year!
I have some goodies for you:
I just completed Annette Gendler’s Writer’s Workbook for 2023 and highly recommend it.
Although I find the workbook extremely helpful, I am always unnerved as well. The time slips by and I never accomplish as much as I want to in any given year. I’ve been struggling with a novel for a long time, and my large stack of year-end assessments highlights how long I’ve been wrestling with the monster….
I’m also reassessing my relationship with Submittable in 2023. As I was listing my submissions on Gendler’s worksheet, I realized that although I didn’t submit as much this year, I still have 21 “in progress.” Two have been in limbo for over a year! I’d be curious to hear about other experiences. Are people noticing submissions taking longer these days?
Below you’ll find a list of everything that inspired me in 2022. I took a lot of classes–many of them for free–or very close to it!
- Story Club with George Saunders. For $50 a year, you get to study with George Saunders. Need I say more?
- A great resource during the pandemic was the Off Campus Writer’s Workshop based in Winnetka, Illinois, and my big fear post-pandemic was that they would return to in-person programming. Instead, they’ve gone hybrid! You can join for a minimal yearly fee and all of the classes are $10 apiece. I’ve taken excellent in-depth classes with Rebecca Makkai, Peter Orner, Taylor Byas, Rachel Swearingen, Charles Baxter, and more.
- Zine Lunch presented by Sarabande Books. So fun! And FREE.
- I’m so reluctant to share this next one, but I will resist the urge to go Gollum on you:
The Poetry Foundation offers monthly poetry book clubs and if you sign up, they send you the book for free.
5. Another Substack for those writing through illness: Suleika Jaouad’s Isolation Journals includes tons of fun interviews with writers and artists and a monthly online meetup.
6. Look out for any upcoming classes with Emily Sernaker, of Your Favorite Poet’s Favorite Poet. She’s amazing. Also, check out her upcoming anthology of the same name.
7. Another person who got me through the pandemic is Michigan poet, Emily Stoddard. She’s starting a new substack in 2023: If you are a poet, it will definitely be worth your time.
8. My good friend (and amazing writer) Desiree Cooper is working with Katey Schultz on monthly mentorships. FYI for your longer projects.
9. I spent two weeks at VCCA in December where I finally finished that novel. I highly recommend it. Here are some of the artists/writers I was inspired by while I was there. If I forgot anyone, mea culpa. I have a mind like a sieve:
10. Austin Kleon’s substack never disappoints.
I think that’s it for now except for these last thoughts:
I Have the Answer, the audiobook will be out in February 2023. I am producing it independently as WSUP doesn’t put out audiobooks and I love them. You can pre-order here.
I run a podcast called Let’s Deconstruct a Story and the whole archive is available on my website. I have a few more guests lined up for 2023, but we are on hiatus until March. Do you have any thoughts/suggestions for me? Guest ideas? I’d love to hear them! Here’s a link to my interview with George Saunders as a starting point.
Here are some Bookshop suggestions for you. This list is NOT up to date but there are some good books on here, and all purchases indirectly benefit Pages Bookshop in Detroit, which I suggest visiting if you are in town.
Independent bookstores need us.
Please let me know what rocked your artistic/writing world in 2022. I’d love to hear!
Happy New Year again!