Just Write

Writing is intimate . . .

Excerpt from The Sun November 2003, “Keep The Hand Moving,” Natalie Goldberg interviewed by Genie Zeiger: Zeiger asked Natalie, “What is the difference between speaking our stories and writing them down?” Natalie: Writing it down is more intimate because, first of all, you are developing a relationship among your hand, your arm, your shoulder, your heart, and your mind. Then, because the story is recorded, you have a chance to read it later, so you can see who you are and come home to yourself. I tell students to read deeply—which doesn’t mean reading all the great literature but just reading carefully, studying the mind of the author rather than whipping through the book. Reading is important because when you read, you enter the mind of the author, and so you get to study a practiced mind. Notice: How do writers create structure in a book? How do they turn…


Fortunes I Did Not Get In Cookies

Memorable writing that sparks imagination. Lean in. Hear the writer’s voice on the page. Fortunes I Did Not Get In Cookies By DSBriggs A wise man marries a wiser woman. You will get good news; and you will recognize it. If you miss your bus, start walking. A book returned is a friendship kept. Get a dog, it will save you. Blood is thicker than water but only Vampires should care. Delight in today; for tomorrow is no guarantee. Buy a car for its usefulness; not for its beauty. The One that got away is not the One for You. A blind man cannot see beyond his fingers. Asking for help is a sign of strength but ignoring it can be a weakness. A half full glass can be emptied and refilled. A wise animal is better than a noisy friend. Luck is knowing when to walk away. Keep a…

Places to submit


Panoplyzine is a fresh new look at poetry and short prose. “We seek to publish lively new insights in creativity, outlook, perspective, and analysis. Issue 1 debuted in August 2015. We’re edited by three friends located around Pensacola, FL who got together to offer a new look and a new option for readers and writers and lovers of good writing worldwide. In January 2022, we welcomed a new editor based in Romania to enhance our viewpoint and feel. Our mission is to share the best in contemporary poetry and short prose, to enlighten and entertain, and to touch our readers’ hearts and minds.” Submission Guidelines Guy Biederman had success with “This isn’t the story I intended to write” being published in Panoplyzine. Guy’s piece “Send It!” encourages writers to submit their writing. “I record where, when, and what I send, and of course, the results. I record quality declines if…


Cozy mystery writing . . . Prompt #631

Pretend you are a mystery story writer. Or maybe you actually are a mystery writer. For this prompt, think cozy mystery.  One of your characters has met his/her demise. How did it happen? Who is the surprise character who did the deed? Why? OR: Write about a book or an author you especially like. Cozy Mysteries are a subgenre of crime fiction taking place in a small, socially intimate community. The detective is an amateur sleuth. Examples: Nancy Drew books Donald Bain & “Jessica Fletcher” in “Murder, She Wrote” Bree Baker: Seaside Cafe Mystery Series Lilian Jackson Braun: The Cat Who… series Rita Mae Brown: Mrs. Murphy and company

Guest Bloggers

Do you need a developmental editor?

Guest blogger, dev-editor, and author Shirin Yim Leos, answers the question she’s most often asked: What is developmental editing, does it really make a difference, do I need it and how much—HOW MUCH?!?!—can I do for myself? What is Developmental Editing? It’s the big, high level, Is the book working? edit. Does it make a difference? Resoundingly yes. Ask any author with a career. Do I need it? No writer can accurately see their own work. It’s a fact, like refraction through water or distortion through atmosphere. How much does developmental editing cost? It varies, but here are some recently published rates in The Write Life. How to be your own Developmental Editor Can I do it for myself? Try to duplicate a dev editor’s distance. They come to your pages cold and you can replicate that: Put your writing away in a drawer for 3-6 months. I can hear…


Luck . . . Prompt #630

Luck! Do you make your own luck? Definition of luck: ~Success or failure brought by chance rather than through one’s own actions. Good luck symbols: From pigs in China to shamrocks in Ireland, different cultures have their own good luck charms: Conch shells ~ Elephants ~ Oranges ~ Bamboo ~ Rabbit’s foot Write about luck and or write about a good luck charm. #amwriting #imawriter #justwrite

Book Reviews

Children of the Decree

Children of the Decree: A Journalist’s Battle to Save Romanian Children and Herself by Maria D. Holderman. Review by Janis Couvreux Many of us remember the children’s adoption scandal in Romania of the late 1990s. Thanks to the dogged efforts of journalist Maria Holderman, this scandal came to light. However, this is only a fraction of her story, as Maria sorts through the social, political, and ideological events and issues of Romania’s Communist regime during her childhood and the post-1989 Communist bloc break-up. Through her personal story that intertwines with a 40-year timeline, Maria reveals how she became passionately involved in seeking and bringing about changes through her investigative journalism. Then suddenly it all comes to an abrupt halt. Like a cat’s nine lives, Maria has lived several as well, vanquishing tragedy to fall back on her feet. This is a story of a remarkable woman told through her own…

Places to submit

MacQueen’s Quinterly

MacQueen’s Quinterly : Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature publishes writing of a thousand words or less. “Short forms are deceptively difficult to write well, and although they take only a few minutes to read, the best resonate far longer than that. Perhaps for a lifetime. We’re dedicated to publishing such gems—please dive in to see the latest we’ve found for you.” Submission Guidelines Bonus Info: Guy Biederman is a successful contributor to MacQueen’s Quinterly. May 5 and May 19, 2022: Guy will be teaching free flash fiction writing classes on Zoom through Recovery Writing of Idaho. Register for Recovery Writing.