Writing in the age of distraction

I was hanging out with my nephews the other day (they are ages 4 and 6), and they navigated their way to Amazon.com on their iPad to show me which Legos they want. They were clicking around, zooming in and out, tapping the shopping cart. I feel like an old person saying this, but it’s crazy — Read More

My one New Year’s resolution

I’m not big on resolutions. I appreciate that the start of a new year offers an opportunity to take stock, but I usually shy away from all-out resolutions. Over the last few years, life has taught me that plans get interrupted, shit happens, and priorities change. And that’s okay. I guess that means I’m resolving to — Read More

Why stories matter: Practicing empathy with fiction

I worry that people think dust has settled after the election. It shouldn’t settle. There is so much that is (and should be) very unsettled. Regardless of your political opinions, the election was a 9.0 on the Richter Scale. It shook us. We realized we are not as united as we thought. People we assumed were on — Read More

Famous authors on why they write

Every now and then, I ask myself why I write. I mean, it’s such a strange thing–creating these all-consuming alternate realities and fretting about them for months on end. It calms me to see how other writers describe their need to write. I’ve collected some favorite quotes here: “I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what — Read More

In defense of unlikable characters

Generally speaking, the reviews for People Who Knew Me have been good. I try not to make a habit of reading them, but I get the general gist when I visit Amazon or Goodreads. If people don’t like the book, it’s usually because they don’t like the main character, Emily (who fakes her death on 9/11 — Read More

The 5 stages of grieving Donald Trump

This is a blog about fiction writing. I know. And I’m sorry if you’re here to read about fiction. For the first time since I started this blog six years ago, I feel compelled to talk about real life. I am grieving. There’s no other way to describe it. On the evening of the election, — Read More

Spotlight on: Donna Tartt

I fell in love with Donna Tartt’s writing when I read The Goldfinch. For some reason, it took me a year or so to get to The Secret History, her first book. The book she wrote between the two, The Little Friend, is next on my list. She writes the kind of books I dream of — Read More

Book clubs, I’m coming for you

I’m embarking on a virtual book club tour, talking with readers in cities where my characters stopped on their road trip from California to New York. No matter what city you’re in, contact me if you’re interested in an author appearance (via phone, Skype, or in person) at your club meeting. If you’re looking for questions — Read More

A chat with Suzanne Redfearn

One word I really hate: Networking. It gives me chills in that nails-on-a-chalkboard kind of way. When you’re trying to make it as a writer, people will tell you to “network.” For years, I resisted this, and then I realized that I didn’t have to “network”; I could just talk with fellow writers, like group — Read More