My Portland Adventures in Storytelling

Storytelling, live literature, oral histories, whatever you want to call it. I’ve been completely hooked on this for a few years now.

I fell in love with the format immediately because it reminded me of hanging around my family when aunts, uncles and cousins would share hilarious stories from long ago. Like the time my cousin inadvertently caught a snake in his mouth or when my sister tried to fly.

Tad's Chicken n' Dumplings' monthly storytelling show has been around for three years.

Tad’s Talks is a monthly storytelling show that has been around for three years.

All … Read more ...

You’re Not Alone: Women, Writing and Online Networking

Writing is lonely, especially that first draft. You kinda know what you want to say, but aren’t sure how to get there and there’s always a surprise blip along the way that throws you off your game.

Then you begin to wonder, is this piece even any good? You need another set of eyes. You need a writing group. A collective of people whose honest opinions and writing talents you respect and who push and inspire you to be a better writer.

Jessica Null Vealitzek reads her debut novel, The Rooms Are Filled.

Jessica Null Vealitzek

Read more ...

Just Write: Bad sax in the suburbs

I am sitting here in front of Potbellys in the suburbs because it’s a nice day and I want to write outside. Admittedly, it’s not an inspiring atmosphere because I’m at a café table on a sidewalk next to a black top parking lot in the middle of a bland strip mall that could be anywhere USA, but hey the sky is blue, there’s a slight breeze and I’m writing.

Image by valeo.

Image by valeo.

So no complaints here.

There is one weird/amusing thing though. There’s this … Read more ...

Storytelling in Chicago: I’m kinda liking this whole stage thing

Driving down the Kennedy Expressway  at a whopping 13 miles an hour, I was white-knuckeling it. It wasn’t that I was running late (surprised?) or that I needed to take a whiz. It was that I was going to tell a story about one of my life’s not-so-proud moments.

Story Club ChicagoI was headed to Holiday Club in Chicago’s Uptown neighborhood to be a “featured performer” for Story Club Chicago, where people stand on stage and tell true stories about their life. I participated in Story … Read more ...

My First #JustWrite Prompt and It Ain’t Purdy…

OK, so a quick disclaimer. I have the evening to myself to write. Earlier today I fantasized about all of the wonderful prose that would come flooding from my fingertips this evening. Then when I sat down to write tonight, I was stumped.

I visited my Twitter cohorts on #justwrite. I wanted to see what the Twitter literati was up to, and I spotted the latest writing prompt. You are suppose to write, no editing, no deleting, just write unapologetically. The prompt this week is … Read more ...