Tag Archives | Cheryl Strayed

A Time to Eat: On Making a Living as a Writer

A pleasant simple habitual and tyrannical and authorised and educated and resumed and articulate separation. This is not tardy.

A pleasant simple habitual and tyrannical and authorized and educated and resumed and articulate separation. This is not tardy.

Slate had a review of a new book called Scratch: Writers, Money, and the Art of Making a Living with has some great observations and information about writers such as Cheryl Strayed and the nuts and bolts of how much they earn from publishing their books.

I spent my twenties in writing programs. A small press published my first book in 1999, and have published eight books with a ninth coming out later this year. I spent my thirties teaching creative writing in a continuing education context (University of Washington Extension, Richard Hugo House, The Writing Center in Bethesda) or as a volunteer, and then spoke at the Associated Writing Program (AWP) on panels over a couple of years (2012-2015).

I learned that the writing industry (when it comes to prose) is predicated on – like acting – the starry-eyed concept that you too can MAKE IT as a writer. This means if you have the skills, you will pay the bills with publishing books. Conversely if you do not have the skills, you will not pay the bills.) Sitting at the book fair table at AWP  I could overhear the gaggle of graduate students strolling past the small press table where I sat talking about agents, book advances, about getting out of school and really getting down to writing once they got a book contract. Some of these students had paid a lot of money for the training to be a novelist. Many programs cost more than 50,000 a year. They were looking at coming out of a two year program in debt more than 100K. They were going to be need a pretty generous advance on their first novel.

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Jack Straw Writers 2007 – May Readings

Jack Straw Writers 2007

Beginning on Thursday next week I’d like to invite you to the performances and recording of the 2007 Jack Straw Writers. Musicians Paul Rucker (5/24) and Dennis Driscoll (5/31) will play music. Writers Willie Smith, Kathryn Trueblood, Laurie Bluaner, Doug Nufer, Anna Maria Hong, Howard W. Robertson, Charles Potts, Susan Landgraf, Cheryl Strayed, Corrina Wycoff, Molly Tenenbaum, and Vis-A-Vis Society will read. Each event will happen at the Jack Straw Studios (4261 Roosevelt Way NE; Seattle’s U District) at 7 P.M. May 17, 24, 31. The 2007 Jack Straw Anthology will be available. In addition, a podcast and blog featuring these writers is already underway at: http://www.jackstraw.org/blog

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Jack Straw Writers 2007


The Jack Straw Writers blog has just posted the list of 2007 Jack Straw writers:

Laurie Blauner (Seattle)

Anna Maria Hong (Seattle)

Susan Landgraf (Auburn, WA)

Doug Nufer (Seattle)

Charles Potts (Walla Walla, WA)

Howard Robertson (Eugene, OR)

Willie Smith (Seattle)

Cheryl Strayed (Portland, OR)

Molly Tenenbaum (Seattle)

Kathryn Trueblood (Bellingham, WA)

Corrina Wycoff (Seattle)

Vis-�-Vis Society: Sierra Nelson and Rachel Kessler (Seattle)

They will read this spring in May (May 17, 24, 31), appear in the Volume 11 of the Jack Straw Anthology. These events will include music. Dennis Driscoll is playing! They will also include these excellent writers. Check out Jack Straw for more info.

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