Just Write

What informs your writing?

Excerpt from “The Dream Lover,” by Elizabeth Berg: “What once had been random observations and journal entries were becoming pieces of fiction that took on a kind of authority of their own. I learned that wind informed, that memory informed, that hopes and dreams did. So too, a fork on a plate, an unopened letter, the shine of wet on cobblestoned streets — all of these could help shape a story.” What informs your writing? Just write! #amwriting #justwrite #iamawriter


Dream Weaver

Memorable writing that sparks imagination. Lean in. Hear the writer’s voice on the page. Dream Weaver By Sarah Horton I dreamed the world was a place of love and harmony . . . Dream Lover . . . What dreams may come You are my dream lover – thinking of my love, my sweet heart . . . (song pops into my head) Dream The snow is falling . . . hard. The air is thick with it . . . in my nose. I wander on the path while the winds blow.  I slip, and almost lose my footing.  The pathway is blurred from the flakes and wind blowing. Soon, there is no side view or peripheral vision.   Instantly, only one foot in front of the other and I think— if I keep moving it will clear.  Clearly, I now step ahead — one foot, then another, and another.  …


What have you forgotten? . . . Prompt #766

Excerpt from “Happy to be Here,” by Elizabeth Berg. “Last time my friend Phyllis visited me, she said, ‘Don’t you ever comb your hair?’” “’I forget,’ I told her.” I laughed at that moment of recognition. Sometimes, during the day, I’ll glance at a mirror as I walk by and realize, “forgot to comb my hair.” Writing prompt: What have you forgotten? And then (obviously) remembered. Or: What might you have forgotten? Just Write!



Memorable writing that sparks imagination. Lean in. Hear the writer’s voice on the page. Shears by Marian Van Horn I have been working on letting go of things that no longer serve me. Past hurts, painful experiences, things that cause me resentment or anger. Then I had this dream the other night.                                                          A small 5-year-old child is floating around a room. I am watching her. She is about a foot above the ground and moving effortlessly. She is focused on doing that and nothing else; enjoying the simple movement as children often do when absorbed in the present moment. When she floats by me, I ask, “How do you do that?” She looks down and says, “With these.” She pulls out a huge pair of silver shears. I am a little shocked because they are quite large and sharp and she’s only five years old, so I worry a bit,…

Guest Bloggers

A New Beginning

Guest Blogger Tamara Belinfanti writes about a new beginning. A few years ago, I found myself called to write exuberant, colorful stories with riotous characters that defied rational thinking and did not fit the mold of legal academia, which was my background. At first, like so many, I ignored the inner whisper to explore new territory. But the thing about callings is that they get louder when you get really still or something shakes your world. For me, the latter forced the former: my closest mentor in the law field passed suddenly, and alongside intense grief, a new beginning emerged. In academia, I had a built-in community of mentors and colleagues, plus the academic publishing path was fairly straightforward. My tenure process was not a walk in the park, but overall it was relatively hitch-free and went according to plan. Creative writing was a whole new terrain. I had to…

Places to submit

Good Housekeeping wants your story

From The Good Houeskeeping Magazine Website: We’re always on the lookout for great writers with great ideas, in an effort to deliver a unique mix of voices and perspectives to our readers. When it comes to freelance pitches, we’re interested in long-form narratives, deeply reported service pieces and personal essays that offer a compelling point of view, a personal story that will help improve readers’ lives. Email pitches to: ghdigital – at – hearst.com. Include: Email subject line: “Story Pitch” and a short summation of your topic. Please include your name, contact info, a brief description of your experience as a writer and links to your past work. Headline: Include a working headline for your story. Brief description/outline: We find that the best pitches are timely, well written, appropriately researched and have a strong working outline. We accept all pitches for Good Housekeeping on a rolling basis. Please note that due to the volume of emails…


The challenge of freewriting . . . Prompt #765

The challenge of freewriting is getting Self out of the way. Let your writing flow with no judging. Release your worries about your writing. Allow your creative mind to play with words.  With freewrites, you are writing for yourself, not for an audience. Give yourself permission to be open to whatever comes up while you are writing. A freewrite is a way of writing freely, with no worries about the outcome. Choose a time when you will not be interrupted. Select a prompt. Set a timer for 15-20 minutes and write without pausing to think. If you run out of things to say, write “I remember” and go from there. Or, write “What I really want to say . . .”  Give your inner critic time off during this writing. Lists are a great way to inspire freewrites. ~ Make a list of issues and experiences, important or trivial, in…


Simple Joy

Memorable writing that sparks imagination. Lean in. Hear the writer’s voice on the page. Simple Joy By DSBriggs Joy is . . .   Hearing a tail thump when I walk in the room. Watching my dog at the dog park as he smiles and checks in before running off again.   Talking to my sister after a long period of silence. Being with my niece and her family.   Today, joy was sitting with a close friend, talking about family recipes, remembering how thankful I am for our friendship.   Shared laughter is joyous.   Some days joy is being outside on a good weather day. You know, warm but not too warm or cold but not too cold. The “why we live in California “ type day.   Joy, is seeing a tree in a different way and the interaction of sunlight and leaves. Joy is watching the mad…


Hocus Pocus . . . Writing Prompt #764

The night before Halloween, I wanted to watch a Halloween movie. I chose “Hocus Pocus.” Around 7:40 pm I began to search how to view it for free on TV. I couldn’t find it in the free movies category and didn’t want to pay for it.  I looked at the TV Guide. “Hocus Pocus” would be playing on a major channel at 8:00 pm. The time at this point: 8:00 pm. Writing Prompt: What are the chances? Or: Has this ever happened to you? Or: Hocus Pocus


Offer It Up

Memorable writing that sparks imagination. Lean in. Hear the writer’s voice on the page. Offer it Up By Tracy L. Wood It was a catch phrase of my mother’s. Whether our sweater was itchy, or our new church shoes gave us blisters, or a sibling was teasing us, Mom’s standard reply was Offer it Up.  As a young person, this response was unsatisfying. It didn’t fix anything, and it felt dismissive. More often than not, I wanted her other catch phrase, which similarly didn’t fix anything. But at least Oh Honey came bearing sympathy. This was before Mom got involved in Al-Anon where she learned about the Serenity Prayer and to Let Go and Let God. In many ways those adages offer the same comfort, or challenge depending on one’s state of grace, and were simply another way of saying Offer it Up. I like Mom’s version better. I often hear Mom’s voice nudging me to…