New Interviews, New Tips, New Ways to Write in 2021

I'm full of writing tips and ready to share them

Happy first month of 2021, writers. Is life better yet? Perhaps you breathed a sigh of relief when the political landscape changed in January. Maybe you are still waiting to draw that breath. Life is still immeasurably strange and difficult. But you still deserve to draw that breath. Go ahead and take one now. Let it out slowly. And turn your thoughts to the writing you want to do this year.

The Writerly Bites Podcast is in full swing for the new year, and we’ve already had some great episodes and interviews to help you get your writing going in 2021. I interviewed Rachel Lyon and the vocalist and songwriter Iva, for starters. And if you’re looking for more prompts and exercises, how about finding the strangest sentence in your draft? Or giving a gift no one wants? Or sketching your lean layer? There are so many ways you can get a page of writing today — or make a page of your writing better. There are so many reasons not to prioritize your writing. But there’s one singular reason to go ahead and do it anyway: the story, the page that calls, your writing life, silently waiting for you.

I’m busily writing short stories and revising my second novel these days, and teaching up a storm. You may see me online in various capacities, teaching about building compelling scenes or finding your story’s ending; you can learn more about what I teach by visiting my personal website at

I’m eager for the community around Writerly Bites to grow, so if you’re enjoying the podcast, please rate and review it on Apple Podcasts; it really helps the podcast grow.

What I’m Reading

The Tale of Genji, by Lady Murasaki. This is my yearlong big novel quest, and I’m enjoying it immensely. Look out for more thoughts on my reading adventure with the world’s first novel in a future newsletter.

The Lost Book of Adana Moreau, by Michael Zapata. This is a rich, exciting, multi-generational saga with a book-related mystery at its core. It’s wonderful already.

Bonus Writing Tip

Describe something three things in your story today: get rich and detailed and specific as you make that tea kettle, that sunset, that failing relationship, come to life. Then pick the best of the three, and cut the others.