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Jill Jepson's Blog

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May.22.2013
With my classes over for the term, here are some of the things I'm reading and watching as my summer commences. None of these books are new—in fact, they've all been around for years—but they're worth mentioning anyway for those who, like me, haven't already read them.  The Seven Storey...
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May.21.2013
Last Tuesday, I wrote about the three ways writers approach the submission process. I described three basic types of submitters: The Humble Offerer, The Great Benefactor, and The Contributor. Most of us are a mixture of all three types, but often one or the other will dominate,...
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May.20.2013
As I mentioned last week, I’m doing a bit of final polishing before I send my novel off to my agent. I’ve posted earlier about the difficulties writers face in the last stages of long projects—the feeling that you’ve been running a four-year-long marathon and barely have enough energy to cross the...
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May.17.2013
I was tempted to title this post “The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner,” because that’s exactly how I’m feeling this week. When I’m writing for print publication, I become a very careful writer. I hone my prose. I go for precision. It’s the way I was taught, by writers like David Jauss, Sue...
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May.15.2013
Last week, I wrote a little about Michael Krasny's book Spiritual Envy: An Agnostic's Quest. In that post, I wrote that Krasny and I were "coming from the same part of Limbo." But later, as I reread the post, I thought, that's not right. Limbo suggests a nothingness, an emptiness, a place...
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May.14.2013
I am getting ready to send my current novel out into the world, so I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the process of submission. I don’t mean just the physical process of manuscripts, cover letters, and plot synopses, but the emotional process. The complex mass of conflicting feelings writers...
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May.13.2013
  I’m putting a few finishing touches on my young adult fantasy novel, and soon the work I’ve been laboring over for four years will be on its way to my agent, so naturally, I’m worried I’m going to die. I do this every time I wrap up a long-term project. I start getting scared that, before I...
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May.09.2013
This is an oldie but goodie. I came across a version of it recently in an article in Writers Digest by Leigh Anne Jasheway, and thought: It’s time I pulled this out of the cabinet under the sink and played around with it a little. Here’s how it works: 1. Open a document on your computer and divide...
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May.08.2013
Reading Michael Krasny’s Spiritual Envy: An Agnostic's Quest. Krasny says: “Asking the right questions is at the heart of agosticism, for it is essentially about uncertainty. . . Agnosticism welcomes proof, craves it, demands it. It does not say there is no God. It also does not say there is...
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May.07.2013
I don’t believe in hell and, if I did, I wouldn’t believe vanity would send you there. Murder, yes. Theft, possibly. But vanity? Who’s it hurting? It’s a good thing I don’t believe in such things because, if I did, I’d be worried about spending eternity as a marshmallow at God’s campfire.Vanity,...
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May.06.2013
If you are unfamiliar with Celebrate the Stuff You Suck at Day, let me introduce it to you. This festive annual holiday was invented by me one day when I was pondering the difference between: a) Stuff I’m good at (writing, languages). b) Stuff I’m getting better at (playing recorder). c) Stuff I’m...
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May.03.2013
This is Great Stuff Day at Writing as a Sacred Path, in which I offer up some of the gems I’ve come across in my recent explorations. This week, I’m sharing three especially powerful blog posts. Check them out this weekend, then let me know what you think. “Filling the Void” from The Journal of...
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Apr.30.2013
I have been a nearly lifelong doubter. Not a nonbeliever, but not a believer, either. I’ve dipped my toes into more faiths than I can count, but never dived in. There’s always just been too much chill to that water, too many biting fish swimming around. It’s taken me a long time to get to the point...
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Apr.29.2013
Here's the third post on my spring-break trip to Morocco.  Here I am, looking out the window of a room at the Ben Youssef Medersa in Marrakech   John and I are making our way through a maze of narrow, crowded alleyways angling off in all directions, crammed with tiny, nearly identical...
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Apr.27.2013
As I've written before on this blog, anger is one of my negative emotions of choice. As far back as I remember, I've struggled with feelings of anger at the world around me and a tendency to get easily and intensely frustrated. Fortunately, in recent years, much of that struggle has eased. I move...
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