Feedback from readers
Thank you for Sarah Ruhl’s encouraging article “Writer’s Block: Variations on a Superstition” (January/February 2020). It was perfect for a fresh start to the new roaring twenties. I had placed many of my writing projects on the back burner after allowing my writer’s block to take over. I also recall Ingmar Bergman’s advice about how you must discipline yourself to spend three hours per day writing, sitting at the same place and at the same time each day. After reading Ruhl’s article I clearly see how viewing instances of writer’s block within her thirteen categories will help me succeed in the completion of my work.
Alex Louis Meza
Grant Faulkner’s article “Rejection’s Gift: Divine Dissatisfaction” (January/February 2020) was worth the price of a subscription. I plan to reread it regularly as needed. Several times I have been grateful for rejections that have led to much-needed revisions. A lot of wisdom on those pages.
I *loved* this @poetswritersinc article about literary agent assistants (“Inside Publishing: The Literary Agent Assistant” by Michael Bourne, January/February 2020), who are key to the business and excellent author advocates and allies. Never forget: In a few years that assistant will likely be a power in their own right.
Checking in with recent contributors
Sarah M. Broom has been busy since her essay was included in our annual feature on debut creative nonfiction, “The New Nonfiction 2019” (September/October 2019). In November she won the National Book Award in Nonfiction for her New York Times best-selling memoir, The Yellow House. In December, President Barack Obama included her memoir on a list of his favorite books of 2019, and in January she was named a finalist for a NAACP Image Award alongside Toni Morrison, Imani Perry, Henry Louis Gates Jr., and Damon Young. A few days later the National Book Critics Circle announced she had won the 2019 John Leonard Prize for Best First Book.
Three of the most popular posts from pw.org
1. “Poetic Lenses: Our Fifteenth Annual Look at Debut Poetry” (January/February 2020) by Dana Isokawa
2. “Inside Publishing: The Literary Agent Assistant” (January/February 2020) by Michael Bourne
3. “An Indie Alternative to Amazon?” (January/February 2020) by Gila Lyons
Lines from the previous issue that got readers talking
“There’s an old saying: ‘The strongest fish is the one that swims upstream.’ Rejection’s gift is that it gives us something to push against, a necessary pressure that can help a writer sharpen focus, define vision, and accept (and perhaps even relish) the discomforts required to make a work better.” —Grant Faulkner in “Rejection’s Gift: Divine Dissatisfaction” (January/February 2020).