In Review: Watch Me Go

Almost a year ago, I read Mark Wisniewski‘s short story “Straightaway” and was bowled over by how he created white-knuckle tension. Well, have I got good news! That conflict packed tale has grown into a novel titled Watch Me Go and it’s even more hair raising than the original short story.

In “Straightaway” our main character, a young black man from the Bronx, is hauling junk for cash and gets tangled up in the removal of a 55 gallon drum from the crawlspace of house in the middle of nowhere. The premise alone is enough to elevate your blood pressure. Now, enter the extended version, Watch Me Go, and Wisniewski introduces the horse racing culture of upstate New York, and a new character, Jan, whose father was a renown jockey until his early death.

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2014 List of Books That Changed How I Write

Every year, I attempt to read one book per week, and I’m sad to report that this year I didn’t make it despite giving it my best try. Inevitably, some of the books I read will inform my own writing, and the ones that do tend to shock the pants off of me. This year, was no different. Yes, I read more than four books this year, but these represent the books I read in 2014 that changed how I write.

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Why Writers Are Baristas

Last year about this time, I graduated with a B.A. in Creative Writing. This past weekend, plenty of my writer friends walked across that same stage to grab their diplomas as well. Creative Writing MFA programs are flooded with applicants, and the recent trends predict that the number of undergrads majoring in creative writing will soar over the next ten years. I know plenty of people (who, graciously, I won’t name) shake their heads at this degree choice. They inevitably say the same things: So you’re going to be a teacher? OR, My coffee barista is a writer.

Yes, I’m sure she is. And there’s a brilliant reason why writers are baristas, and once you hear my philosophy, you’ll never look at a creative writing degree the same.

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