Sadie photograph by Will Rice


Listen to this Sentence!

November 23, 2016 | Published on 49 Writers 

My wife, a school counselor, came home from work this week with an anecdote about an event called The Battle of the Books, an oddly militaristic moniker for a reading activity, but an undertaking that has the students fired up about literature. She said one of the boys on her school’s team, a fourteen-year-old freshman, …

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On Becoming a Short Story Junkie

November 16, 2016 | Published on 49 Writers 

If I were asked to choose (hypothetically) one book to take with me into solitary exile on an island, I’d ask if I could bring my fishing tackle instead. But if that wasn’t allowed, I would choose the heaviest anthology of short stories I could find. Maybe The Story and its Writer edited by Ann Charter. Or The Norton …

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Who’s Afraid of Revising Work?

November 10, 2016 | Published on 49 Writers 

A number of years ago in a fiction writing workshop, a student turned in the early chapters of a novel she’d been working on for some time. The writing was so good that when the class ended I asked her if I could see more of it. After reading it, I ventured an opinion that …

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Negative Capability

November 23, 2020 | Published on 49 Writers 

One recent restless night, set upon by a familiar coven of worries and regrets, I –having a wife who gets up and goes to work early every morning— wandered down to the spare bedroom and tried to get my mind under control by reading an old book of poems: Stanely Kuntiz’s Passing Through. In spite …

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Chiappone: Kachemak Bay News Flash

May 11, 2011 | Published on 49 Writers 

NEWS FLASH: To celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Kachemak Bay Writers’ Conference, the Early Bird reduced registration fee offer has been extended through the month of May. It’s a bargain for a couple more weeks. What’s in a writing conference for me, you ask?

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Paths Not Taken

February 11, 2011 | Published on 49 Writers 

I’m sitting in the back yard of our house in Phoenix, homesick for my wife and cats, but grateful not to be in Anchor Point too, because the 65 degree sunshine here makes the countdown of days to my impending neck surgery a little more pleasant than the January freeze/thaw cycle ongoing at home might.

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Chiappone: The Accidental Writing Retreat

January 19, 2011 | Published on 49 Writers 

My friend Nancy Lord has long considered herself the Queen of All Writing Retreats, and for good reason. Although I don’t have the actual number right here in front of me, I believe that Nancy has enjoyed the hospitality of various writers’ colonies, enclaves and hideaways in all fifty states, a few American protectorates, several …

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Needs a Little Work

July 29, 2010 | Published on 49 Writers 

Last week, in my blog titled “Will You Read My Manuscript For Me?” I encouraged writers to both give advice freely and to receive it with an open mind. It seemed like a generous and well-intended thing to write about. Today, one week after posting that I got an e-mail from a national magazine informing …

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Gerunds from Hell

July 14, 2010 | Published on 49 Writers 

Recently, at the Kachemak Bay Writers’ Conference, when the facilitator of a panel I was sitting on, my friend Nancy Lord, introduced me to the audience, she added (only half joking), “Rich is a bit of a contrarian.” Of course, I responded, “Am not!”

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