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And also a columnist…

Heyo! Big writing happenings going on. My first post in a mini-series on Alt Magazine about things you don’t have to do is is up.

Kelly Rizzetta is in many ways a typical American twenty-something woman. She has an iPhone and a LinkedIn account. She has kept in touch with friends from each of her jobs and from college, mostly via email and the occasional online chat. She is very good at remembering birthdays. Kelly lives at home with her parents and goes into the city often to visit her sister and friends who live there. But she’s not on Facebook.

This may not seem like a big deal to you—Facebook is not the be-all, end-all social media platform it was just a few years ago. But chances are you feel pressure to participate in some social media. Maybe you are an aspiring writer, and the world is telling you to have a blog.


Shout-out to myself in the last line there. Check out the full article here and share it wherever you share things (not that you have to do that!) with #ydhtdt.

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DIY Writing Retreat for sale

Hi everyone, thanks for playing along with me during the launch of DIY Writing Retreat. It’s now officially for sale right here and on Amazon for $4.99. If you’re looking for a guide that will give you a schedule, writing prompts, ideas for ways to unwind, and even recipes to take a weekend away, then grab a copy for yourself! It’s less expensive than a residency application, not to mention a lot less time-consuming!

Back to our regularly scheduled programming next week! I’m working on a post about how I’ve started getting “involved” at Valley and Mountain.

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Get DIY Writing Retreat free

Yay! It’s here!-Cover

I got the idea to write a guide to running your own writing retreat after I realized that I had run my own writing retreat after I graduated from my MFA program. It was super fun to write–it has tables and lists and recipes! But, alas, the formatting and the glyph-designing and the editing (once again, mil gracias to my BFF Kel and KMR Publishing!) took a while. And then there was summer camp. So, I came up with this idea back in…April? And it is now (finally!) ready for your perusal.

Here’s what DIY Writing Retreat is:

  • A guide to running your own personal retreat to write for one weekend.
  • A schedule (down to the minute) with when to write, eat, relax, and write some more.
  • Motivational writing that will get YOU writing.
  • Lots of writing prompts (if you don’t know what to write) and ideas for how to make a writing goal (if you do).
  • Easy recipes and a shopping list so that you don’t have to think about eating.
  • Ideas for adventures to take in between writing sessions.
  • Instructions for fun unwinding activities, like how to make a God’s eye, for you to do in the evenings.

And it works–following this schedule for three weeks, I wrote all of the text for DIY Chick Lit. Yes, all of it!

DIY Writing Retreat is going to be available here and on Amazon starting Oct. 3. If you’d like to download it RIGHT NOW, great news, you can! Sign up here and I will send you a link to get the guide for free. You’ll also get my monthly updates AKA ezine “Greetings from Bookland” where I share all of my deepest darkest secrets and occasionally a recipe for cupcakes.

So, to recap, you can sign up here to get updates from me, and then I will send you a link to download DIY Writing Retreat.

Thanks, friends!

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A brief commercial break

a pink cover with a cupcake in the center, title: DIY Chick Lit/A Writing GuideI just got back from two weeks in Central America with Andrew. We traveled around Guatemala and Belize and saw mountain lakes, old cities, lots of cathedrals, geckos, cave roaches that will haunt me for the rest of my life, and many Maya ruins. It was awesome. I was so hot.

Now that I’m back in Seattle, where it is FINALLY STARTING TO COOL OFF, I’m trying to get back in the swing of things. This summer was ultra-busy, with lots of tutoring work and moving stuff. Our house is pretty much settled into now, especially since we decided not to paint anything. We have things to do but nothing urgent, things like curtains for some random windows and maybe that frosted glass stuff for our door.

I am so happy to be wearing a sweatshirt as I type this.

So, here, in no particular order, are the projects I’m working on for the rest of September:

  • A new cover and title for The Chick Lit Cookbook. It is now DIY Chick Lit. Almost Also available on Amazon (again)!
  • A fun new guide to running your own writing retreat–DIY Writing Retreat (get it? There’s a theme!). It was super fun for to write, like designing a workbook for writers–it’s the nuts and bolts of getting away for a weekend to work on your own writing. There’s a schedule, writing prompts, and lots of inspirational JUST-DO-IT paragraphs to motivate you. It even includes recipes and how to make a God’s Eye, as if you were at writing camp. And it tells you when you are allowed to drink wine. Once my darling editor Kel finishes our final tweaks, I’ll be putting it up for sale here and on Amazon. Sign up here if you would like to be notified when it hits the so-called stands.
  • More writing about Valley & Mountain, forthcoming.
  • Another project that I am not sure how to launch yet, but I will be sharing on here for sure. It’s a book for women called You Don’t Have to Do That. It’s all about things you don’t have to do. I don’t know what else to tell you yet, except that in the course of my research I’ve discovered that you pretty much don’t have to do anything.
  • Various short stories, a short novel (I hate the world “novella”) and ooh ooh ooh! My first short story is going to be published here for winning an Editor’s Choice award for this prize. It’s called “Flask Dress,” and it’s about a girl who gets drunk at her fundamentalist Christian father’s house on Christmas Eve while wearing a dress that conceals a flask that she made herself. Like my mom said, this story is about all of my interests.
  • Posts on two sites: a column on We Heart Writing, where I’ll be contributing monthly, and an interview on Tara Swiger’s blog. I’ll link when they’re up.

Whew, I feel accomplished already. Or terrified.