Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Literary events and writers conferences coming up


I've been meaning to post this list of events of interest to writers.  I'll be participating in all but the Biographer's Conference (which I plan to attend).

 March 6 Pen on Fire Writers Salon with Dennis Palumbo and me, in conversation. More here.

April 2  The Laguna Playhouse presents a conversation with Dean Koontz. I will introduce Dean.  It's a fundraiser for the Playhouse.

April 14 Literary Orange with Lisa See as keynote. I'll be moderating a memoir panel with James Brown and Matt Logelin.

April 21-22 Los Angeles Times Festival of Books    I'll be moderating a panel, but just don't know which one yet. Stay tuned....

April 26 - 28 American Society of Journalists and Authors   I'm co-chair of the ASJA Awards and will most likely be in New York on the 26th to present awards. Fantastic panels for any aspiring writer.

May 15 Pen on Fire Writers Salon with memoirists James Brown and Claire Bidwell Smith, in conversation with moi!  More information on the authors to come, soon!

May 19 Biographers Conference

Check back here often as I'll be updating the listings and providing more links.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Marrie Stone talks with Naomi Benaron, author of Running the Rift, and Meg Rosoff, the widely banned young adult author of There is No Dog.

(Broadcast date: February 2, 2012)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Keija Parsinnen and Eric Weiner, on Writers on Writing: Podcast is up!

Keija Parsinnen, author of the novel,The Ruins of Us, and Eric Weiner, author of the narrative nonfiction book, Man Seeks God, talk about their books, read from their books, and discuss the art and craft--and business--of writing with me. I loved talking with both of them.  It's a week later and I'm still thinking about Keija's novel. Such a different culture and place.  The closest I may ever get to the Middle East is via novels and The Ruins of Us took me there.

Download audio.

(Broadcast date: February 8, 2012)

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Thrity Umrigar & Vicki Goldberg

Marrie Stone talks with Thrity Umrigar, author of The World We Found, and photojournalist Vicki Goldberg, author of The White House: The President's Home in Photographs and History.

(Broadcast date: January 4, 2012)

The Weekend Writer

Little Corona beach, early.
It's Saturday morning, and what are most normal people doing? They're sleeping in, or going for a walk or a run, or to the Farmer's Market, drinking coffee, reading the paper, taking it easy.  I love doing all this too, and I do, too.  But writers aren't normal people.  Writers are a strange, wonderful breed, amongst my favorite people. 

So live up to your vocation or avocation.  Don't act normal. As literary agent Betsy Lerner (author of Forest for the Trees) said when she came on my show, nurture your quirks, exaggerate how you're different from others--in looks, in behavior, in your writing. And write on the weekend.  While everyone else is relaxing, drinking beer and watching the game, and just generally taking it easy, use a bit of your weekend days to write.  Even if you only visit with your writing, even if you've only spent 15 minutes writing, you will have written and you'll feel better about yourself for it. 

Don't know what to write?  Here's a prompt: Wherever you are, at this minute, write from where you sit.  What's going on around you? What do you see? Smell? Hear?   Is there a window nearby? Or maybe you're outside, at a cafe. What's going on? What do you hear?

Write 250 words and post it here. I'd love to read it.

Friday, February 17, 2012

No disclaimers, no doubts: writers, listen up....

All of us are plagued with doubts at one time or another--or all the time.  Writers suffer from this as much as anyone else--maybe more--because most of us are too sensitive, neurotic, obsessive, reactionary, on and on.

But when you're sitting down to write, or even contemplating writing or planning to write, this is the worst time to let doubts creep in: I'm no good, Why me? What's new about what I have to say? I'm horrible at plotting! My dialogue sucks! My vocabulary is teensy weensy....The list goes on!

In my Literary Posse workshop, I have an aqua Bell jar that my students have to stuff with money when they let a disclaimer drip from their mouths.  Disclaimers and keeping that negative self-talk does nothing--nothing at all!--for you as a writer, or you as most things.  All doubts and disclaimers do is keep you from writing and send you hightailing it to clean the grout or feed your face or whatever it is that you do as a lovely distraction.

So when you hear that negative self-talk or think about how bad (not good) a writer (or singer or photographer or artist or musician... you are, here's what I want you to do. I want you to get out your notebook (or camera or easel....) and start creating.  Writers write. Writers progress by writing. Ideas are great, but ideas aren't writing. 

Get out a timer, set it for 15 minutes, and start writing. Freewrite about a character in a story, write a scene in a story, a scene in your memoir, or whatever interests you. Don't stop writing. 

I promise you that the more you do this, the more the doubts and disclaimers will stop and the more you will progress in your writing.

What's your negative self-talk and how do you get past it--or do you?

Thursday, February 16, 2012

President Obama is in our hamlet of Corona del Mar this morning

All right, this isn't about writing, but it's something to write about. President Obama is in an adjacent neighborhood at a fundraising breakfast. My friend Deb and I walked down at 6:15 and joined the gathering crowd. Overheard: "Anyone who likes Obama is on welfare."  O-kay! 

 Here's what it looked like on Pacific Coast Highway, in Corona del Mar, this morning prior to 8 a.m.  

Thursday, February 09, 2012

Dani Shapiro talks about her memoir "Devotion"

Dani Shapiro, author of Devotion, in conversation with Barbara DeMarco-Barrett. 

Download audio.

 (Broadcast date: 2/10/11)

Saturday, February 04, 2012

Luis Alberto Urrea and Peter Orner

Marrie Stone interviews Luis Alberto Urrea, author of Queen of America, and Peter Orner, author of Love and Shame and Love.

(Broadcast date: December 14, 2012)

Carolyn See

Carolyn See, author of There Will Never Be Another You.

Download audio.

(Broadcast date: Aug 10, 2006)