Teaching the Craft

  • Blue Pen on Yellow Paper: A Pocketful of Advice for Young Writers by Marlin Barton

    Editor’s note: Marlin “Bart” Barton delivered these remarks at the 2012 Alabama High School Literary Arts Awards ceremony.

    I teach creative writing every week to my students at Mt. Meigs juvenile facility and to my students at Converse College, who I work with face to face twice a year and then long distance during the semester that follows. Some days I feel like I know what I’m doing; other days, when I struggle with my own writing, I wonder if I know what I’m doing at all. (This isn’t hyperbole.) But I think it’s good for me as a teacher to have these struggles and doubts because it helps me remember what my students are going through. Read More

  • Writers, Write! Right Now! by Jim Reed

    As the images of storms past hover and sink deeply into our minds, many of us tend to rearrange our memories and allow them to fade.

    This is unacceptable behavior.

    The only plea a teller of true tales can make that is worth making is: Please don’t let this happen. Write down/record each detail of your experience, whether you were in the eye or whether you escaped physically untouched. Fact is, we were all touched, deeply and irrevocably. Read More

  • Metrophobia: Its Causes and a Possible Cure by P.T. Paul

    I’m not a doctor, but I am constantly surprised at the number of people who suffer from metrophobia. I’m talking about educated, literate professionals in many writing related fields of endeavor, who–if asked–involuntarily gasp and stammer, “Oh no, I can’t…. I don’t…. I could never do that!” Read More