Q&A: Literary Agent Julie Barer

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Guest post by Megan Mayhew Bergman Q: I used to think agents were really scary, city-savvy people only concerned with the bottom line. However, the more agents I’ve met, the more I realize how many of them truly love literature and care about the authors they represent.   Basics

Thank You, Mr. Venturini

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Guest post by Greg Schutz Thanksgiving is almost upon us. For me, this means a welcome weeklong vacation from teaching: a chance to dig into that stack of student essays awaiting grades; a chance to sort and stow or recycle the countless handouts, worksheets, rough drafts, lesson plans, and

Why Must I Write?

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Guest post by Fan Wu In 2004, I attended the Key West Literary Seminar–my first literary event–where I met Sandra Cisneros, a keynote speaker. Though I had just begun to write and was unpublished, she was encouraging and generous with her advice and wisdom. Later that year, after reading

Writing in a “Phrensy”

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Guest post by Greg Schutz In Book II of his De Oratore, Cicero stages a dialogue between Marcus Antonius, Caius Julius Caesar, and several other figures, one of whose subjects is the evocation of emotion in the audience and the consequences of emotional speechmaking on the orator. According to

The Great Indoors

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Guest post by Greg Schutz I read my friend Sara Schaff’s story “Our Lady of Guazá” in the latest issue of Inkwell with rapt attention, to say the least. This is not simply because the story, about the relationship between two half-sisters in Bogotá in the wake of their

A Powerful Movie: Blind Mountain

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Guest post by Fan Wu When you tell people you are a writer, they often say that they’d love to read your books but just cannot find the time. “But,” they continue, “If they’re made into movies someday, I’ll check them out.” Maybe it’s just a polite way to

Playing Favorites

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Or, My Zealous Adoration of Faulkner’s “The Bear” “The Bear’ is at once so simple and so complex that it surrenders its meaning to the conscious mind only after repeated readings and much brooding,” Daniel Hoffman, Faulkner’s Country Matters, 1989 Guest post by Megan Mayhew BergmanYou’ve read it, too–the

Call and Response

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Guest post by Greg Schutz As a reader, I’m fascinated by those moments when literary influence–which usually has a way of creeping up on an author, sneaking into her writing through some backdoor of the subconscious–moves out of the shadows and into the open, when an author acknowledges her

Anger Management

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Guest post by Megan Mayhew Bergman I’ve never worn anger well, especially the self-righteous kind. Last year I was in a park outside Raleigh, where a beautiful plot of farmland was being developed and new McMansion owners were shooing hikers away from parking on the street. I saw a

Why the Short Story Doesn’t Matter and Why You Shouldn’t Care

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The Lonely Reader, Part Four Guest post by Greg Schutz Three weeks ago, I began this series of posts with a simple question that’s been batted around a lot lately. To paraphrase: “Why, given the novel’s continuing viability and the increasing hustle and bustle of our society, is the