Monthly Archives: September 2010

Rowan Williams

Writers’ Trigger: I’m reading Anne Tyler, the Pulitzer prize-winning author of Breathing Lessons. She has written many books – not one second-rate. At present, I’m reading Celestial Navigation. I had never heard of this title (one of her early ones, 1974), but her … Continue reading

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Henry VIII and Cardinal Wolsey

Writers’ Trigger: If you don’t already have a picture file, you should start one today. Picture files are particularly handy if your morning pages loom like a rainy day. If your writing looms, go through your picture file until a photo catches your … Continue reading

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Alvin Ailey

Writing Trigger: Lucky me. I saw the Alvin Ailey American Dance theatre at Sadler’s Wells last night and I can now die a happy woman. The English do not do standing ovations. They clap. They might clap heartily, their hands face-high … Continue reading

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Tango Fever

Writers’ Trigger: Fresh from London’s Tango Festival weekend, I am consumed by thoughts of dance- a good trigger if there ever was one. Write about learning to dance. Write about going to your first dance. Write about being a wallflower, … Continue reading

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The Pope Addresses Secularism

Writers’ Trigger: One of my favorite triggers is to jumpstart a story with objects.  Consider that you are looking at the following objects: a camera, a steak knife, a timetable, a hat, an empty wine bottle and a passport. Use any four of … Continue reading

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My Inner Latina

Writers’ Trigger: I’m reading Barbara Kingsolver’s The Lacuna.  The story starts in Mexico in 1929. The first paragraph begins: “In the beginning were the howlers. They always commenced their bellowing in the first hour of dawn, just as the hem of the … Continue reading

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Beyond Hope and Glory

Writers’ Trigger: Some writers start without a plan, and as their characters take on a life of their own, a plot evolves; others make elaborate schematic plans from the very get-go. Neither way is better than the other. It is … Continue reading

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