1. 25. New on The Good Men Project

    I’m happy to say that my essay “Why I’m Teaching My Son That Tears Take Courage” has been published by The Good Men Project, a website focused on illuminating what it’s like to be a good man in today’s society. Read more →

  2. 26. Naming the Dragon: Telling Your Truth When It Involves Real People

    After I started getting published and my parents realized my writing wasn’t just a passing phase, my dad told my sister, “When Colette finally writes about me, ask her to be kind.”  Read more →

  3. 27. Finish That First Draft And Other Writing Tips

    As I discussed in a previous post, UCLA Extension Writers’ Program has a new Writing Tip video series in which Writers’ Program instructors share quick tips about how to keep yourself invested in your own writing. Read more →

  4. 28. 2015 Writers’ Program Publication Party

    The UCLA Extension Writers’ Program Publication Party is one of my favorite events of the year. Read more →

  5. 29. Ma’am

    Recently, a twentysomething girl on an airplane called me “Ma’am.”

    I was on my way to Chicago for a reunion with a wonderful group of women who dubbed themselves the Dowagers years ago in graduate school, when they were far from dowagers. I was more of a dowager than they were. I was one of the oldest in our program, though at the time I was only in my thirties.

    Still, no one called me “Ma’am” back then. Read more →

  6. 30. Buddy Up and Other Writing Tips

    UCLA Extension Writers’ Program is one of my favorite places to teach. It’s run by talented, dedicated professionals who are writers themselves and therefore understand what it takes to put together a successful writing class, as well as how to provide students with the tools to help them thrive as writers.

    The program’s newest way of reaching out to students is its inventive Writing Tip video series. Read more →

  7. 31. Game Face

    Early on, I learned that game faces were not my forte.  Read more →

  8. 32. Highlights: Writers’ Resources, June 2015

    In the past few months, I’ve made some great additions to my Writers’ Resources page, where I curate posts about craft, submission, and blogging advice. It’s time to highlight a few of them. Read more →

  9. 33. Strong-arm

    Lately, blogging has become my obsession. I jot ideas while I’m walking the dog, stopped at a stoplight, in the middle of meetings. I pore over pictures on Flickr to find images that embody the tone or emotion I’m trying to capture. I get excited about writing posts. I write them quickly, with abandon, which I don’t always do with my fiction.

    Still, I find myself wondering whether blogging is worth the effort. My writer crush, Chuck Wendig, whose potty mouth matches my own, recently offered this sage advice about blogging: Read more →

  10. 34. Letter Phobic

    My mother wrote letters whenever she was angry. Pages and pages typed on her electric typewriter, filled with reworked accusations framed by Whiteout and multiple X’s savaged into the paper. Clearly written in a flurry of rage. It was enough to make anyone hate letters.

    At least, it was enough to make me hate them. Read more →

  11. 35. The Cat’s Away

    When I was a lawyer, work weekends were my worst nightmare. They meant several all-nighters in a row, lousy food, sleeping on my office sofa, begging the partner on Monday morning for a half hour to go home and shower, only to have him say, “When you’re done, you go home.”

    These days, the possibility of a work weekend fills me with glee–and fear. Read more →

  12. 36. Anniversary

    My mother died two years ago today.

    Her death was sudden yet unsurprising. She was only seventy, but her body and spirit were so very weary. Weary of weight and pain and medicine and needles and sugar counts. And of the countless limitations that ruled her: limitations on what she could eat, how far she could walk, how long she could sit in a car, on an airplane, in a chair, in a bed.

    By the end, there was no comfortable place for her. Her obesity made even stillness excruciating. Read more →

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Photos (except blog): Bob Ohanesian & Stephanie Keith.

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