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What To Do When Your Writing Idea Changes

Feb 29, 2020

Dear Writerly Woman,

I went on a road trip last week, driving north through California. I went to a rest stop, and when I got out of the car, I saw a beautiful scene.

The eucalyptus trees were shining in the sun, and there were trees in blossom behind them.

I thought the blossoming trees were cherries, but when I did a little research I discovered they were almond trees. There were miles and miles of blossoming almond farms on my drive.

When I started writing this post, I was going to...

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What To Do When You Don't Know What To Write

Feb 21, 2020

Dear Writerly Woman,

 

"I don't know what to write."

 

This is the first sentence I write almost every time I write anything - a post, a blog, a story, a novel, anything.

 

When I'm looking at a blank page I often don't know what say, but I do know the only way to get past that is to admit it.

 

I write, "I don't know what to write." 

 

Then I write some things about my feelings and my day. I write truths. I write about the view out my window or the funny thing...

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What Would Be Easier?

Feb 14, 2020
Dear Writerly Woman,
 
I grew up in the Boston area, where the culture was super into toughing things out. The tougher you were, the more social points you got. So, even when you could make things a little nicer for yourself or a little easier, you just wouldn't, because that meant you were soft.
 
But here's the thing about me. I AM soft. I have a tender heart. I don't carry a hard shell around my emotions. I love it when things feel cozy. I always prefer the nice hotel rooms with...
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I Can't Wait To See What You Do Next!

Dec 31, 2019

Dear Writerly Woman,

When it comes to writing, here is what I know for sure:

You get to focus on whatever writing idea makes you come alive.

You get to work on lots of ideas at once, if that is what brings joy to your heart.

You get to focus on only one idea, if that is what makes your heart sing.

You get to do the idea that makes you the most happy, even if it doesn't guarantee financial success.

You get to do the idea that makes you the most interested, even if it doesn't interest your partner,...

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What I had to unlearn about writing after being an English Major

Dec 29, 2019

Dear Writerly Woman,

When I was in college I was an English Major. I wrote paper after paper after paper. Being an English Major is like being a paper writing machine. One after the next is assigned, and you write each one as quickly as you can in order to get it in by the deadline.

I would stress and worry about each paper, but after I turned it in I would forget about it. I’d forget until I got it handed back to me, marked up in red pen, highlighting all the mistakes I had made.

This...

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What My Great-Grandmother's Diary Taught Me About Writing

Dec 26, 2019

Dear Writerly Woman,

My great-grandmother wrote in her diary every day for most of her life.

When she passed away she had hundreds of journals on display in a beautiful bookcase in her living room.

Every member of our family could go to that bookcase, open a journal to their birthday, and find a note about how they were born on that day.

When I was 14, my family went on a road trip from our Boston suburb to the tiny rural town in Michigan where my great-grandmother had...

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How Your Voice Could Change The World

Dec 24, 2019

Dear Writerly Woman,

One of the reasons I am so passionate about helping you become a woman who writes is that I wholeheartedly believe the world will be better when your voice is in it.

I don't know about you, but when I was growing up I was taught my voice was a nuisance.

I heard a lot about how I talked too much, laughed too loud, asked too many questions, needed too much help, cried too much....and on and on and on.

The basic message was - "Hey you, your voice is a big...

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Behind the Scenes of My Writing Process!

Dec 20, 2019

Dear Writerly Woman,

Today, I'm sitting at my desk and writing to you while looking out my window at the magnolia tree in front of the building next door.

The sky is bright blue above the wintery browning leaves that wave slightly in the breeze.

My writing desk is my favorite place in my apartment. It's cozy and sweet. I have just the right monitor, keyboard, table lamp, and view.

It's taken a while to get to this point with my space. I've tried all the other possibilities this...

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How to Become a Writer

Dec 11, 2019

Dear Writerly Woman,

You have truths inside of you that you want to express through writing, but you struggle because you're afraid of getting squashed by other people's criticism.

You have been shown your whole life that when you share your truth, you get squashed.

You get weird looks. You get shamed. You get shut down.

You have practiced, very diligently, hiding your voice, because it's just too damn vulnerable to put yourself out there.

But there's a problem. You...

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Your writing isn't frivolous. It's soul work, and that's never useless.

Nov 28, 2019

Dear Writerly Woman,

Do you ever feel like you want to write, but when it comes down to it, all the other things you have to do are just way more important than taking the solo time to nourish your soul by writing? Do you ever ask what the point of all of this is, anyway?

I recently read Blue Horses by Mary Oliver. If you don't know, Mary Oliver is a Pulitzer Prize winning American poet, who writes about beauty, nature, and witnessing all the wonders of life.

Her work is hugely...

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