June 15, 2021

“Books for Writers,” An Editorial by Lorraine Martindale

“Books for Writers,” An Editorial by Lorraine Martindale

Books for Writers Though writing is solitary art, it’s also communal, and we all have favorite authors that teach and inspire us. Here’s a list of books I read often to gain deeper understanding how to write and edit my work. The Writing Life by Annie Dillard What is this writing life? Annie Dillard asks. “You climb a long ladder until you can see over the roof, or over the clouds. You are writing a book. You watch your shod feet step on each round rung, one at a time; you do not hurry and do not rest. Your feet feel the steep ladder’s balance; the long muscles in your thighs check its sway. You climb steadily, doing your job in the dark.” Like her celebrated work, Dillard illuminates the writing life with intelligence, humility,…

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April 21, 2021

Jennifer Green & Lorraine Martindale: New Baristas

Jennifer Green & Lorraine Martindale: New Baristas

Please join us in welcoming our two newest Baristas, Jennifer Green and Lorraine Martindale! We are excited to add these two talented editors to our team. You may have noticed their contributions already, but if not, check them out here and here. You can learn a little more about them on our Baristas page or just keep reading! About Jennifer:Jennifer is our Publications Barista. An English teacher by day and freelance editor by night and weekend, she loves helping writers find their voices and refine their craft. In addition to completing the editing certificate through the University of Chicago Graham School in 2020, Jennifer holds degrees in psychology and English from North Carolina State University, Meredith College, and the University of Nottingham (UK). When she’s not teaching or deep into a developmental edit, she can be…

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March 17, 2021

“Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life,” A Book Review by Lorraine Martindale

“Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life,” A Book Review by Lorraine Martindale

Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life is a biography of horror fiction writer Shirley Jackson by Ruth Franklin. My first encounter with Shirley Jackson was reading “The Lottery” in junior high. It was the first story that truly disturbed me; the stoning of an innocent woman was a shock. The culprits were not villains. They were regular people, going about their regular lives in their bucolic village. Jackson was confronting conformity at a time when the individual wasn’t valued. I could have been one of them. I wasn’t the only one implicated. After it was published in The New Yorker in 1948, the magazine received letters calling “The Lottery” “outrageous, “gruesome,” and “utterly pointless.” The New Yorker had never received so much mail in response to a work of fiction. Jackson received letters as well,…

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