Even Before Sitting Down

Trusting the Writing Process

Trusting the Writing Process

Trusting the writing process is an ongoing practice. Once you’ve learned to trust enough to complete a draft of whatever you set out to write, you then have to practice trusting the revision process, which includes several stages. Most important here, is to remember that […]

First Level of Trust Needed to Write

First Level of Trust Needed to Write

Have you ever gotten an idea for a story or an essay and dismissed it immediately? Too complicated, too ordinary, uninspired, already been done are some of the condemnations my clients toss at their ideas. “But how do you know without even starting?” I ask. […]

Finding an Ideal Reader

Finding an Ideal Reader

Although I’ve led hundreds of writing workshops, I’ve never joined a writing group. The reason: I don’t care what six, or eight, or ten other writers think of what I’ve written. Over the years, I’ve learned that each writer in a workshop will find at […]

Bad Writing Days

Bad Writing Days

I’ve just come through a few days of bad writing. Or perhaps it would be better if I said a few bad days of writing. While both are true, approaching the territory of judgment is never a good idea for us writers. We all have […]

Writing and Small

Writing and Small

This week, I offer you a guest post I wrote for the blog “livewritethrive,” which has generated much appreciation. Think Small to Avoid Writer’s Block

The Myth of Inspiration

The Myth of Inspiration

Most of us have the wrong idea about inspiration. Popular culture tells us that inspiration is a force that strikes out of the blue, often when we least expect it, energizing us to write, paint, think, make a plan, a decision–even a phone call. And […]

The Long Journey of Book Promotion

The Long Journey of Book Promotion

Since I am spending a great deal of my time these days working toward promoting my new book, I thought I should tell other writers about my successes and failures. Promotion seems to be a topic that gets a great deal of attention, from writers […]

Facing the Blank Page II

Facing the Blank Page II

While limiting their writing time to 15 minutes helps many writers face the blank page, it doesn’t work for others. Even if they give themselves permission to write for only five minutes, some writers cannot sit down and begin. Something else—a phone call, a chore, […]

Writing As Discovery

Writing As Discovery

For well over a month, each time we met, one of my clients repeated that he was almost ready to begin writing. “I’ve got just about another week or so of thinking this through, before my writing will really take off,” he kept assuring me. […]

Writing and Small

Writing and Small

At book parties to promote my book, “Small: The Little We Need for Happiness,” people often ask me about my writing process, something I love talking about. I was once a very blocked writer. Throughout college, I struggled with every term paper, writing the opening […]