Finds for Writers

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Most Fridays the Practicing Writing blog shares writing and publishing resources, news, and reflections to peruse over the weekend. But it’s been an excruciating week for so many of us. And frankly, I’ve paid next-to-no attention to garden-variety news from the writing and publishing spheres.

On Wednesday, however, I received an email from Facing History and Ourselves, a Boston-based global nonprofit organization that I’ve admired for many years. The email introduced a “mini-lesson” titled “Processing Attacks in Israel and the Outbreak of War in the Region.”

The resource isn’t perfect. (What resource is?) But one of its segments impressed me as something that, though intended for educators and students, could be clarifying for writers as well, in our work and in the rest of our lives. It’s a section titled “Avoiding Antisemitic and Islamophobic Tropes in Discussing Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.”

Screenshot of text published beneath "Avoiding Antisemitic and Islamophobic Tropes in Discussing Israeli-Palestinian Conflict." Text taken from the website linked within the post.
  • It’s not too early to register for Jane Friedman’s (free) July 16 “Sunday Business Sermon,” for which the focus will be “Spotting Scams and Bad Deals” (including “publishers, agents, contests, marketing and publicity, and more”).
  • “Can Book Critics and Writers Be Friends?”—lots to think about in Jenn McKee’s Brevity blog post.
  • “Sometimes you have to spend a lot of time writing things that people will never see, but it is that writing—that process on thinking, exploring, and excavating on the page—that makes it possible to find the language you will ultimately have in your book.” Not to argue with Clint Smith, whose reflections for Jami Attenberg’s #1000WordsOfSummer project I have found so exceedingly helpful/inspiring, but perhaps I may extend the point: The end result/goal need not be a book. I’ve been meeting my daily 1000-word quota to date with what are effectively “early drafts” for a variety of much shorter pieces. (And maybe some of you are, too?) Frankly, Jami and all of her guest contributors (aka motivators/coaches) are giving us gold with these daily posts, which you can find archived on Substack.
  • Admittedly less inspiring: an essay in which Dan Sinykin explains why the late Cormac McCarthy’s remarkable career “could never happen now.” (Gift link provided.)
  • And icymi, this week’s Jewish Lit Links post on My Machberet features news about an important update for the Association of Jewish Libraries fiction award; a new (and, yes, paying ) call “for super insightful articles about Israel, religion, or Jewish pop culture”; the Jewish Book Council’s call for session proposals for its upcoming Virtual Writers’ Conference; more.

Have a great weekend. And remember that we’re just a week away from distribution of the next issue of The Practicing Writer 2.0. So, if you’re not yet subscribing, please join us (there’s no charge to subscribe). And if you haven’t yet consulted the current issue for the opportunities listed there, you’ll find quite a few that are still open for submissions. Remember, too, that additional opportunities appear every Monday on the Practicing Writing blog. You can find those latest posts here.

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