Making Every Word Count: How to Write Short

GrubStreet Instructor and Consultant Cara Benson offers us tips and tricks for writing flash fiction. Learn how to bundle entire worlds or capture vivid moments into 1,000 words or less. Plus, you can work with Cara in person! She'll be teaching Writing Flash: Fiction and Nonfiction on Saturday, June 23rd at Grub HQ.

June 7, 2018 | Cara Benson

Craft Advice

6 Tips: How to Stay Motivated for Big Creative Projects

GrubStreet Instructor and Consultant Cara Benson on what it takes to stay focused on a long-term project in our hyper-stimulated times.


It’s news to no one that we live in a hyped-up, hyperlinked world that operates at the speed of the scandal-driven media cycle. Our phones alert us to the latest attention-grabbing incident the instant the headline is written, often without our bidding (just how do you turn that function off?). The internet, where the majority of us receives our news, traffics in trending topics, jump-cutting GIFs, and LIVE streaming videos—all literally blinking in an effort to get us ...

March 15, 2018 | Cara Benson

The Writing Life

Why We Write When The World Is On Fire

We’ve all heard the saying or seen the bumper sticker, “Make Art, Not War.” But when war is literally all around us, is it already too late? And by “war” I mean not only the military wars in Afghanistan and so many other geopolitical regions, but also war on the environment, immigrants, women, people of color, civil liberties—the list is long. What can our poems, short stories, or novels do in the face of such overwhelming political circumstances? In challenging times, should we be doing something more than making art?

October 26, 2017 | Cara Benson

The Writing Life

Returning to Pen and Paper: The Art of Revising By Hand

As a young adult, I found my own writing practice after university by scribbling randomly on napkins or on the backs of overdue rent bills. I loved looking at all sorts of materials as a possible canvas and feel now that these artifacts can exist as works in and of themselves. With the digitization of, well, everything, these handmade words exude an aura of an original, as one of our most original cultural critics so famously put it, that Times New Roman could never emulate.

July 1, 2015 | Cara Benson

Craft Advice