I have made fire! The role of readers vs. the role of mentors


Great post on readers vs. mentors. Enjoy.

BREVITY's Nonfiction Blog

raftBy Sarah Wells

I’ve been striking out into the land-of-new-subjects after completing an MFA thesis of linked essays, or memoir-in-essays, or essays-I-am-pretending-work-as-chapters-in-a-memoir.

It’s scary territory. I’ve written with little direction, about whatever tickles my fancy, reaching here and branching there and juxtaposing this against that, just saying whatever it is I want to say and then slapping “essay” on top of it.

And then it just sits there in my folder of creative nonfiction. No one says I need to send them 10-15 double-spaced pages in the next week. No one digs in with track changes and comments enabled to tell me what’s working or “you might consider…” or “more here!” or “cut the first 80 pages.” (Steven Harvey said that to me. It was okay. I survived.)

No one is asking to read my new stuff. I’ve crash landed on the deserted post-MFA island, and my writing is piling…

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