Author: jane staw

Dealing with Your Nasty Internal Critics

Dealing with Your Nasty Internal Critics

Who cares what you say? You’re a lousy writer! Nobody’s going to read your book. You should be doing something more productive with your time. Writing is selfish. These are just a few of the insults many of the writers I work with hurl at […]

Rewards for Writing

Rewards for Writing

These days writing is its own reward for me. Even if it hasn’t been a fabulous writing day—if I’ve felt a bit stiff, or the words have been slow to find their way to the page—I feel good about having written because I’ve honored the […]

Diving Deeper

Diving Deeper

Reading Ann Patchett’s delightful collection of essays, “This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage,” I was reminded of what I call “diving deeper” into moments in my writing. When Ann creates a metaphor or offers a musing, instead of quickly moving on to the […]

Focussing on Small to Keep Writing

Focussing on Small to Keep Writing

When we are engaged in a writing project, it’s only natural that we think about the whole, from the very first to the very last words. We were taught to do this as early as junior high school, when we learned to write the five-paragraph […]

Creating A Writing Window

Creating A Writing Window

I’ve worked with writers who are full of the best intentions. “I’m here at my desk, and about to begin my writing. I’m optimistic that today will be a good day,” one of them might shoot me an email. “Today was a loss,” another writer […]

The Trouble With Deadlines

The Trouble With Deadlines

Recently, one of the writers I’m working with was given a deadline to produce a document needed by a colleague. “Having a deadline feels like a relief,” she admitted. “Even if I have to stay up all night, I know I’ll get the writing done.” […]

Following My Own Advice

Following My Own Advice

I’ve been needing to heed my own advice these days. As I find myself with a book to appear in the fall, paradoxically, I also find myself not writing. In all my years of creating books and essays, I’ve never before experienced this void. I […]

Remembering to Think Small

Remembering to Think Small

Thinking Small About Promoting My Book I should be thrilled. I just found out that my book “Small: The Little We Need for Happiness” will be published in September or October. I’ve been looking forward to this publication for years—all the years that I’ve been […]

If You Can’t Sit Down to Write

If You Can’t Sit Down to Write

I’ve written about this before, but the problem comes up so often, I think it bears reflecting upon again: What do you do when you find yourself avoiding writing? This situation often arises with the writers I work with. They might willingly commit to writing […]

Taking a Break from Writing

  If you’ve been working on a particular writing project for some time—a story, a novel, or a memoir—and begin feeling uninspired, lackluster, or unable to write, is it a good idea to take a break from writing? This is a natural question for a writer […]