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Vol. 41, Claiming It

Posted on 11 March 2004

Brooklyn, NY As I find myself mired in my perpetual 9-to-5 depression and overwhelmed by the lack of brain space to successfully ponder the distinctions between genres, the secrets of various writing processes, the difficulties of artist development and the importance of craft; I’m just plain exhausted. Under the oppression of this malaise, my thoughts… »


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Vol. 37, Building Your Life Brand

Posted on 29 September 2003

My coworker was recently reading Stedman Graham’s Build Your Own Life Brand! She is eventually interested in opening her own day spa and found it helpful in the work she was doing. She passed it on to me and I’ve been finding it instructive in helping me focus my goals. Every time I mention I’m… »


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Vol. 31, Seeking and Receiving Critiques

Posted on 1 March 2003

In writing an essay for an upcoming anthology, I was recently stumped. The topic seemed unwieldy and I couldn’t get the tone and feel of the piece. The content in the first draft was too personal. The content in the second, too dogmatic. I put both the first draft and the second draft to the… »


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Vol. 29, Keeping It Real

Posted on 24 November 2002

Thoughts on Artistic Expression I was recently, once again, in discussion with my father about the students in his high school video production workshop. He teaches one segment to a student body in an impoverished high school and another in a more privileged magnet school. He mentioned that his students at the poorer school had… »


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Vol. 25, The Alchemy of Writing

Posted on 2 July 2002

A True Story She is a high-minded woman, and hates complaining, so she suffers the demands of her craft with little comment. She bows down to each of writing’s demands, barely stopping to consider the rationality of the requests. She works hard to save thousands, then blows it all on an intimate trip for two:… »


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Vol. 24, At Nommo Writing Workshop

Posted on 25 May 2002

New Orleans, LA Every time I come home to New Orleans I sit in on my father Kalamu ya Salaam’s writing workshop. It’s called Nommo and usually has a diverse group of six to eight active members at every meeting. The workshop is not for sissies. The evenings are long and the meetings are frequent…. »


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Vol. 18, Pitching: A Study in Frustration

Posted on 6 February 2002

New York, NY Pitching is a skill in and of itself. To be able to look at a magazine and create story ideas that fit with their thrust is a talent I haven’t mastered. Admittedly I haven’t tried very hard to master the technique. For me, the act of pitching steals away valuable writing time… »


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Vol. 17, Contemplation on Completion

Posted on 28 January 2002

¬†Brooklyn, New York A few months ago, someone suggested I pitch the KIS.list to print publications. They envisioned a syndicated column in magazines and/or newspapers nationwide. This idea interests me, and I thought I’d put it off until later, but then I decided, why not do it now. It took more work than I expected… »


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Vol. 12, Process

Posted on 26 November 2001

Conversations on the F-train with a Writer Friend Manhattan, NY to Brooklyn, NY I hadn’t seen a friend of mine in a while so we decided to take the train home from work together. My friend had just finished her first professional short story and had it picked up for publication. She was so inspired… »


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Vol. 10, The Universe’s Ripple Effects

Posted on 2 November 2001

A Ms. Magazine Intern’s Apartment New York, NY My parents brought me and my siblings up with a reverence for ancestors and a thankfulness for life, but with no real religious structure. They never set out to define God for us, nor did they even suggest to us that there was a God. Religion just… »