Fall 2019 Writing and Teaching

Sonora Desert hills with cactuses Tucson Arizona

As summer temperatures in Tucson finally drop below 100°F and we head into autumn, I’m preparing lesson plans and writing new exercises for two fall workshops at the Writers Studio. My second session of “Crafting Fantastic and Imaginative Worlds“—my online speculative fiction and poetry workshop—will include more exercises based on excellent poems, short stories, and novels by contemporary and classic masters of science fiction, fantasy, and horror. Meanwhile, my face-to-face Tucson Workshop is almost half full. Both classes start Saturday, October 05, 2019.

The second round of NYC Midnight’s annual Flash Fiction Challenge was last weekend. My heat’s prompt was the horror genre, a halfway house, and tap shoes. I think I came up with something really scary, and will find out in November how well I placed and if I get to move on to the third round. In round one, I placed 5th out of 30 in my heat (there are 125 heats and thousands of writers in these first two rounds.) My heat’s prompt for the first round was romance flash set in a tennis court and involving a neck brace.

NYC Midnight recently added a new annual challenge: The 250-Word Microfiction Challenge. Registration ends October 3rd and the first round begins October 4th. Yep, I registered for that one, too. (NYC Midnight also offers screenwriting and short screenplay challenges, if that’s more your thing.)

A cozy corner of Story Land

In publishing news, I just received my first acceptance for a speculative fiction short story! More information soon, but I’m really excited! Yes, dear prospective students of my online speculative fiction and poetry workshop, I will soon be a published speculative fiction writer!


After an extremely busy summer, I’m not slowing down. We’ll offer a free Writers Studio workshop here in Tucson on Thursday, September 26th at 6:30 PM if you want to learn more about our school and try out a writing prompt. Friday, October 18th, the Tucson instructors will read from their latest works at Antigone Books at 6:00 PM. I plan to read a few poems. I’ll be attending poetry and prose readings at the University of Arizona Poetry Center and the Center for Creative Photography (Sandra Cisneros, Aimee Bender, and Matthew Zapruder are just three of the wonderful poets and writers coming to Tucson this fall.) I’ll be sharing works-in-progress for feedback in the fall session of the Writers Studio Tucson Master Workshop, applying for the first time ever to Clarion and Clarion West, and preparing for January and an even more eventful 2020. I couldn’t be happier!

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