First Drafts Archive

Octavia Butler’s Notebook Represents All The Anxieties Of Writers Of Color

Author: | Categories: Reading, Writing No comments
On its blog last week, the Huntington Library released previously unseen photographs of some of the late Octavia Butler’s papers, which the library catalogued after Butler’s untimely death nearly ten years ago. Included in the collection are some of Butler’s early science fiction stories, contracts, drafts, and notebooks, one

One Year In—Writing The Novel

Author: | Categories: Writing, Writing Advice 6 Comments
After one year of writing my novel, I took stock of what I’d accomplished—which seemed like very little. Would writing always feel like flailing? How do novelists find their way through? For guidance, I turned to published novelists, whose interviews are presented in the One Year In: Writing the

Writing Lessons: Brendan Mathews

Author: | Categories: Uncategorized 1 Comment
In our Writing Lessons series, writing students—and this month, writing instructors!—will discuss lessons learned, epiphanies about craft, and the challenges of studying and teaching writing. This week, we hear from Brendan Mathews, a writing and literature instructor at Bard College at Simon’s Rock. You can follow him on Twitter @Mathews_With1T. —Andrew

“Dear Lucky One”: The Westing Game Invites Us to Play

Author: | Categories: Reading, Writing, Writing Advice 4 Comments
Thirty-five years after the publication of Ellen Raskin’s novel The Westing Game, readers still rave about it. As one literary agent tweeted recently, “if I could find the new Ellen Raskin, I would be the happiest agent ever.” Bestselling novelist Gillian Flynn ventures that in Gone Girl, she maybe,