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Mentorship For Writers in the PNW

I encourage writers of color from Seattle and Tacoma, as well as writers from other underrepresented groups, to come get the support you need to get your voice and your story out there.

Little (White) Women

A few months ago, I read a profile of Greta Gerwig in The New York Times that triggered me so deeply, I wrote a thousand page journal entry about it — which I won’t share here because, like most emotionally fraught journal entries, it’s got some valid points, but would also be very embarrassing. However, Gerwig’s film, “Little Women,” is in theaters now and I can’t turn on my laptop without seeing yet another article about how Gerwig has restructured Louisa May Alcott’s masterpiece to brilliantly comment on the experience of women in the arts. Which she probably has; I haven’t…

To Find Your Story, Try Starting From The End

We’ve all got things we’ve learned along the way, and when we’re in the public eye, people expect us to deliver our nuggets of wisdom in ways that are entertaining and engaging. But they don’t want a dry lecture, they want to hear our story. When you’re wondering what stories you have to tell, try starting from the end. Think about something you’ve learned along the way and remember back to how you learned it. What was happening in your life? What was important to you at the time? And did you learn from success or failure? You may surprise…

Origin Stories

What’s Yours? We all come from somewhere and we all have a story to tell. Do a quick Google search and you’ll quickly discover that storytelling for brand-building is hot in the corporate world. But that’s not my jam. I’m about people. As an editor, I help people perfect what they want to say and give them the confidence to get it out in the world. And as a writing instructor and workshop facilitator, I support writers and non-writers alike to find their stories in the first place. Unless you were blessed with a robust storytelling gene, it’s not always…

Wanna make a room of white people feel awkward…?

Books by writers of color are more likely to be banned. That’s right. In the above Bitch Media interview with Kristen Pekoll from The Office of Intellectual Freedom with The American Library’s Association, she states that more than three quarters of the books banned by school libraries in 2017 were by, or about, people of color.  “What does it say about our culture that people don’t want these books on the shelf?” she asks. Even though offended parents, teachers and administrators claim that they object to these books due to religious, political, sexual, or other “controversial,” content,  what they all…

5 Things Writers-of-Color Should Look For In Their Book Editor

I recently attended a Northwest Editor’s Guild event called “Authors on Editing,” during which three writers spoke about their experiences working with editors. I gleaned a lot of useful information from the panel discussion, and it’s always great to meet other editors. But as great as the event was, I couldn’t help noticing what was not said, and the editors and writers who were not there. If you’re a writer of color, you know what I mean. That’s right. This room was almost entirely white — except for me and, even though I’m a Latina, I look white — and there was not a single mention…

The Self Publishing Revolution…

  https://soundcloud.com/guardianbookspodcast/self-publishing-revolution By now, every writer — and probably ever reader — knows that the publishing world has undergone a radical makeover in the last ten years or so. Thanks to Amazon and a variety of self-publishing platforms like Lulu and CreateSpace, writers no longer have to rely on “the big 5” to get their words read. But there are pluses and minuses to every revolution, and this podcast from The Guardian presents a great overview of all of it — featuring interviews with self-published authors as well as agents, editors and big-time publishers. If you’re curious about how the…

Eliminating the Headache of Writing Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) Manuals

Standard operating procedures (SOPs) are step-by-step instructions that act as guidelines for employee work processes. Whether written up in numbered steps or formatted as flow charts, effective SOPs are complete, clearly written, and based on input from the workers who do the job. When employees follow the SOP for a particular job, they produce a product that is consistent and predictable. If creativity is key to your business functions, SOPs may not work for you. Strict adherence to standardized rules can restrict creative flow. However, if your goal is to produce the same product over the long term and increase…