Readings for Writers: Pick of the Week 12/12/14

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Every few weeks, a member of the Grub community recommends a book they find helpful or inspirational from a craft perspective. This week, instructor Chip Cheek recommends one of his favorite craft books. 

Reading Like a Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them, by Francine Prose: The title says it all. This is a fantastic book, a bestseller, published in 2006, by a wonderful novelist. The single best way to learn how to write is to read widely and deeply and closely, and Prose is excellent at teaching the craft ...

December 12, 2014 | Chip Cheek

Craft Advice

My Firing Squad

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In Jorge Luis Borges’ story “The Secret Miracle,” a writer, Jaromir Hladik, faces a firing squad. This is in Prague, during the Nazi occupation. Hladik has started writing what may be his masterpiece, a tragedy in verse, but at the time of his death sentence, the play remains unfinished. “Like every writer,” the narrator says, “he measured other men’s virtues by what they had accomplished, yet asked that other men measure him by what he planned someday to do.”

July 19, 2012 | Chip Cheek


The Clock Is Ticking

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By Chip Cheek

I’m currently making my way through the first draft of a novel. As I wrote in a post earlier this summer, I recently left my job at Grub Street to do this, and so I have all the time in the world. If this makes you envious of me, you should also know that I have no idea where the hell my next paycheck is coming from. But that is another topic.

Most days, the work goes well

September 15, 2011 | Chip Cheek


It’s Not About the Money

By Chip Cheek

Friday is my last day on the Grub Street staff. I plan to go home that evening and cry myself to sleep, because this has been the best job I have ever had. Chris, Eve, Sonya, and Whitney, in addition to being people I love so much it is probably inappropriate, are the coolest, most generous human beings I have ever worked with. And it has been a joy working every day with our instructors and students, many of whom have become great friends. I love you all.

July 12, 2011 | Chip Cheek

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