How to Write a Novel in 30 Short Years: An Interview with Literary Veteran & Grub Debut Novelist Steve Almond

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Steve Almond taught his first class for Grub back in 1998 as one of the organization’s earliest instructors. In the years since, he has taught hundreds of classes, not just at Grub but at Emerson, Boston College, and, most recently, Wesleyan and the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard. He’s published twelve books, including the New York Times bestsellers Candyfreak and Against Football. His short stories have appeared in the Best American Short Stories, Best American Erotica, Best American Mysteries, and the Pushcart Prize; and his essays have appeared everywhere from the New York Times Magazine to Playboy. …

April 28, 2022 | David Blair

Grub News Interviews New Writing

Can an Editor "Fix" Really Bad Writing?

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By Katrin Schumann

Editors often see projects at radially different stages of development. Truthfully, we sometimes see writing that is really, well, bad.

But does this mean it’s hopeless? When do you know if something is too "bad" to be worth fixing?

Of course, "bad" is a highly subjective term. Writing might seem "bad" to one reader, while another reader loves it

December 2, 2020 | Katrin Schumann

Craft Advice New Writing The Writing Life

Get Inspired: Time to Strategize for Writing Success

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Are you finding it hard to write? We live in deeply unsettling times, and it's easy to get distracted by all that's going on in the world. Here's a brief list of ideas to jumpstart your writing and help you get out of your own head for a moment:


1) Apply to a writing contest. Years and years ago, I won a local short story prize, and it gave me the confidence I needed to keep plugging away at my writing

September 2, 2020 | Katrin Schumann

Books & Reading Craft Advice New Writing The Workshop The Writing Life

Reading Novels While Writing Novels: Yes or No?

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I'm amazed by writers who stop reading in their genre while writing their own books. The majority of them seem to be worried about becoming overly influenced by the voice, themes and even plot of the book they're reading.

Personally, I can't imagine not reading fiction for the many years it takes me to complete a novel. And in terms of being influenced: I'm actively looking for inspiration and ideas. I want to be influenced.

August 5, 2020 | Katrin Schumann

Books & Reading Craft Advice New Writing The Workshop The Writing Life

What You Need to Nail in the First Pages of Your Book

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By Katrin Schumann

Last month, feeling unmoored and wanting to build community during self-isolation, I launched something I called #fivefreepages, in which I offered to critique five pages at the beginning of a nonfiction book or novel, free of charge

May 6, 2020 | Katrin Schumann

Books & Reading Craft Advice New Writing The Writing Life