• Author Dani Shapiro has a terrific blog about her writing process, and I especially like what she said about approaching writing with a certain "looseness":
"The worst thing a writer can do when she sits down to write (other than to not sit down to write) is to think to herself: now I am writing. Because from there, at least for me, it spirals into a chorus of useless thoughts: I wonder if so-and-so will like it; I hope my publisher thinks it's good; gee, will this excerpt well in The New Yorker? Maybe I should show so-and-so and get feedback. And on, and on and on. Those thoughts are such a waste of time and creative energy. What's more, they're the enemy of looseness. By looseness I do not mean laziness. By looseness I mean a creative undertaking that is flexible, without self-censorship, focused but light. I think of great athletes and the way they warm themselves up, shake out their limbs. They maintain concentration but avoid seizing up."
• So are you fiction writers out there producing – and submitting – more fiction than usual since the bottom fell out of the stock market (and seemingly everyone's financial life)? Fiction editors at The New Yorker seem to think so. Or maybe it's that the recession has turned every laid-off (creative) person into a hopeful short story writer?
• Have you found a favorite writer or celeb on Twitter? But how to know if the tweets are twue? Some fans of Maya Angelou were duped. On the other hand, Jane Fonda announced her own bona-fide Twitter feed and blog in a NY Times interview.
• Over at Hachette Filipacchi Media U.S., publishers of a dozen-plus major magazines, henceforth all Editors-in-Chief will be known as Vice Presidents of Brand Content. Huh. I graduated with a degree in magazine from one of the country's top journalism schools (Syracuse) and I really can't think of any classmate who said, someday I really want to be a VP of branding.
• Searching for a writing residency, retreat, colony, fellowship? Start here.
• Courtesy of The Writers Studio, you can download a free class on J.D. Salinger, taught by Pulitzer Prize winner Philip Schultz, on what it means to read as a writer.
And here's a request. I'm updating my Submission Smarts seminar for a mid-month presentation. I'd love to hear your most unusual tips – and also the unexpected things you never would have learned if you hadn't been submitting. You can leave it in the comments, or email me privately (LisaRomeoWrites (at) gmail (dot) com). After the class, I'll write a post or two about the topic.