Category Archives: Ploughshares Bloggers

Might we be so bold as to suggest that you subscribe to Ploughshares?

The Ploughshares Round-Down: We’re Over-Reliant on the Bucket List

Having long hated the term “bucket list,” and having nevertheless thought about making one for myself (#MomentsOfWeakness), I was a complete sucker for Rebecca Mead’s recent New Yorker essay in which she questions its merits. In “Kicking the Bucket List,”  Mead asks whether such a list actually helps … Continue reading

Posted in Ploughshares Bloggers, Roundups, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Ploughshares Round-Down: The Calvary Film and the Purpose of Art

“[T]he barrier between one’s self and one’s knowledge of oneself is high indeed. There are so many things we would rather not know! – James Baldwin John Michael McDonagh’s film Calvary begins with priest Father James (played by Brendan Gleeson) preparing to … Continue reading

Posted in Ploughshares Bloggers, Roundups, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Episodia 2.9: I’m Not a Writer, I Just Play One on TV

I’ve spent the past few weeks preparing for the publication of my first book this fall, and a key ingredient of this process is the “public” part. I’ve been updating my website, beefing up my social media presence, and reaching … Continue reading

Posted in Ploughshares Bloggers, Publishing, Publishing Advice | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Ploughshares Round-down: The Problem with Literary Doomsday Laments

We who love literature face an urgent crisis: a gruesome epidemic of articles worrying over the demise of literature, reading, English Departments, and apparently (along with them) culture, art, morality, humanity, and ALL KNOWLEDGE AND CIVILIZATION. We’re in dire need of an antidote for this … Continue reading

Posted in Ploughshares Bloggers, Reading, Roundups | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Indy Spotlight: Engine Books

Based in Indianapolis, Indiana, Engine Books specializes in fiction—novels, novellas, and short-story collections—and the press is also home to the annual Engine Books Novel Prize. Engine Books was founded by publisher and editor Victoria Barrett in 2011, and both she … Continue reading

Posted in Ploughshares Bloggers, Publishing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Best Story I Read in a Lit Mag This Week: “Not Like What You Said” by Debbie Urbanski

The older I get, the more I notice that my handwriting resembles my mother’s. Her cursive is so even, consistent, and precise that her letters and grocery lists look like they’ve been typed up on the computer and printed out. … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Ploughshares Bloggers, Reading | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Ploughshares Round-Down: Embracing Hard Truths About Writing

Okay writers. My last Round-Down was about the impact of self esteem on our creativity. Several readers asked for a followup about how to cultivate said esteem, and for a half-second I was so on it. But I can’t deny that the news around … Continue reading

Posted in Ploughshares Bloggers, Roundups, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Advice | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Retelling Tales: A Writer’s Guide

So much of modern cinema and fiction revolves around the anti-hero and the sympathetic villain. Our culture seems to need our protagonists to be damaged or troubled in some way. It’s as if in some grand pursuit of Nietzsche’s rejection … Continue reading

Posted in Ploughshares Bloggers | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Episodia 2.8: Scott Cheshire & True Detective

In his remarkable debut novel High as the Horses’ Bridles, Scott Cheshire tackles the loaded subject of faith and religious fanaticism in America with the same élan, sophistication, and depth found in HBO’s neo-noir series True Detective. I had the … Continue reading

Posted in Ploughshares Bloggers | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Writers With Responsibilities: Damn the Dog Days!

Dear Sally: In June, when I was running around from school picnics, to award ceremonies, graduations, lacrosse jamborees, school plays and concerts, I longed for the dog days of summer and no morning routine. But now summer is here and … Continue reading

Posted in Ploughshares Bloggers, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment