Monday, July 07, 2008

Now I'm Finding Things In My In-box

I'm having a transition day, during which I'm closing the books on the last few months of planning for school appearances, studying, and interviews and hacking away at the undergrowth covering the writing path so I may proceed down it, to mix a couple of metaphors. At least.

I finished reading two of the three books on writing that I was working on during my so-called study month that stretched into...I don't know...a study quarter of a year? (I also waded through a bunch of magazines and articles, by the way.) Anyway, before I put it away on a shelf, I wanted to mention that What If? by Anne Bernays and Pamela Painter has a really good (and blessedly short) section on revision.

Then I was cleaning out my e-mail in-box this morning, and I found an announcement informing me that Elizabeth Stuckey-French and Janet Burroway have won first- and third-place in Narrative Magazine's Love Story Contest. But, Gail, you are probably thinking, as a general rule, you're not fond of love stories. Why are you telling us this? And what does this have to do with closing books and hacking at undergrowth?

Well, Janet Burroway and Elizabeth Stuckey-French are co-authors of Writing Fiction: A Guide to Narrative Craft the second book I read during my study period. A very, very good book.

Look back at that Narrative Fiction announcement. The second place winner is Maud Newton who is...well...Maud Newton.

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