A collection of midnight monologues and coffee-fueled ramblings

A Writer’s Defense of J.K. Rowling

Rowling is under extreme scrutiny for “retconning:” adding details that weren’t in the books via tweets and interviews. This has ruffled many people the wrong way. Some fans say what’s written is law and Rowling shouldn’t add to her own canon. Some fans claim she’s forcing detail in an attempt to complete a diversity checkbox because, let’s face it, Hogwarts is very white. Now, I don’t agree with everything Rowling has said or done. I was not a fan of The Crimes of Grindelwald for many of these “retconning” reasons (not to mention its bloated spaghetti plot). But Rowling – while a personal inspiration and someone I’d very much like to have coffee with – has never been a literary god to me. I don’t believe in literary gods because writers, like me, are human. We forget this too often and crucify our idols the moment they stumble. Rowling has stumbled for sure, but I think there are a few literary areas where the criticism surrounding her is inappropriate at best and harmful at worst. I’d like to talk about four of them.

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Tips for Bad Writers Like Me

Are you a bad writer? Do you wake up at night in a cold sweat, stories dripping through your veins? When you return at dawn to your midnight ramblings, are you left scratching your head? Or, have you ever had a heart-pounding plot assault your morning commute, leaving only the lingering taste of action the moment you try scribbling it down later? Perhaps you’ve gotten lucky: you’ve collected a few of those wiggling wisps of inspiration. You’ve trapped them in a notebook, your phone, your laptop, in blue pen down the back of your hand… You’ve got em’! Now it’s time to sit down at your computer with limber fingers and a cup of coffee. Except…  Hours, days, even weeks later all you’ve written is: shit. There’s no way around this: you’re a bad writer –but that’s okay because I’m a bad writer too.  A bad writer is not the

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Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

Last night, I saw Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald with friends. I want to share my thoughts on this movie. I don’t usually review movies as I don’t consider myself a movie buff or anywhere near qualified to write about films. So, I’m deciding to talk about this film in a blog post instead of a review. I’m going to be upfront and let you know I did not like the movie. The experience was very disappointing for me as both an audience member and a long time Harry Potter fan. I want to love this movie – I love the first one – and I’m fairly forgiving when it comes to movies in general. Unfortunately, I left the theatre making bad jokes to my husband about Credence’s teenage angst and Johnny Depp’s haircut. The Crimes of Grindelwald was not the movie I expected. Nor was it the movie

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When I Grow Up

When I was a little girl, I used to fill notebooks with the stories whispered to me in my dreams. Crafting their covers out of construction paper, I couldn’t wait for the day I would see them on the shelves next to my favorite adventures.

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9 Reasons I Don’t Care If My Book Sells

The other day, one of my clients emailed me worried about his most recent manuscript. We’ve been working together for over 6 months, but the project is wrapping up. It’s almost time for him to start submitting his work to publishers. He’s apprehensive and asked: Is it any good? Will anyone read it? Will my book sell? I think, as writers, these questions tend to linger in our minds, burrowing deep into every dark corner of self-doubt. During the day, we can silence them with reassurances from friends, family, fans, and writing groups. But at 3 a.m., whispers of insecurities shatter the silence and leave us feeling like maybe we shouldn’t write at all. I told my client that, as his editor, I couldn’t guarantee his book would sell. In fact, I can’t guarantee anyone’s book will sell – not even mine. The market is turbulent right now; self-publishing has

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Don’t Shut the Wardrobe Door

I love to revisit the childhood classics that have shaped my writing and my life. Over the years, I have returned to C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia many times, enjoying the familiar, fantastical world of magic and adventure. But I wasn’t prepared for how different Narnia felt when I wandered through the wardrobe holding my daughter’s hand.

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