A collection of provocative quotes, and the articles that contain them, stoking the fires of inspiration


I'm in the thick of MFA semester work again, wrestling short stories and reading, reading, reading--and this time I have the added joy of research. That's because in a couple of months I'll begin work on a novel. Why a couple of months? I want to finish up these short stories first--or at least buff out some of their scuffs and make them a little bit more presentable.

I've just returned from a ten-day MFA residency at Vermont College of Fine Arts in Montpelier. I wrote about the experience here.

I know some of you are curious about my writing projects, but like a love scene in a PG-13 movie I shall leave the details to your imagination.
— Me

Why not tell all? In the early stages of a project, inspiration is very tender. Ideas are tentative and they need my perhaps deluded excitement to turn them out on the page. Let's say my big idea is to write about a herd of talking zebras. The last thing I need is to hear the pause in your voice or see the blink-blink-stare as you try to grasp why on earth I'm so passionate about this non-starter of an idea. Right? 

But I will tell you this: the novel is set in the Napa Valley.

Art Appreciation