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Subscribe to Daily Drafts and Dialogues for daily and weekly writing inspiration, to engage your inner philosopher or philanthropist, and to encounter behind-the-scenes posts related to my writing process and the current book I’m writing. 

Here’s what a typical weekly lineup of posts looks like, so you know what to expect:

  • MONDAY: Writing prompt or action item to complete for the week
  • TUESDAY: Thought-provoker post related to the writing prompt or action item for the week, to get the creative wheels spinning
  • WEDNESDAY: Inspirational quote or passage related to the writing prompt or action item for the week
  • THURSDAY: Behind-the-scenes look at what I did, read, or researched to complete the writing prompt or action item for the week
  • FRIDAY: My draft of the writing prompt for the week, or information about the action item I completed
  • SATURDAY: Reviews of the books I have read over the course of the week
  • SUNDAY: Weekly recap of blog posts, book reviews, with an update on notable published articles and the progress of my current book project, thoughts and information about notable current events, and other valuable information or resources.

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Dialogue on Writing: Chick Lit or Women's Fiction

What Exactly Is “Chick” Lit” or “Women’s Fiction”? Are Their Designations Sexist?

Before I began writing a draft for this week’s writing prompt, Write a Few Paragraphs or More Of Chick Lit or Women’s Fiction… After Learning More About Each Genre, I needed to learn more about what exactly “Women’s Fiction” and “Chick Lit” are first. And what I discovered wasn’t too surprising. But did prompt some important questions that need to be asked.  

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Writing Prompt: Chick Lit or Women's Fiction

Write a Few Paragraphs or More Of Chick Lit or Women’s Fiction… After Learning More About Each Genre

As we begin the first week of Women’s History Month, I’m interested in understanding more about Chick Lit and Women’s Fiction, and their histories. I don’t typically read either genre… I don’t think… so I want to know more about both of these genres and what exactly it is that designates a piece of writing as “Chick Lit” or “Women’s Fiction.” And what better way to do that than by attempting to write a sample of one or the other (or both?) myself. After learning more about what each genre entails, of course.  

I’m hoping this week’s writing prompt (Write a Few Paragraphs or More Of Chick Lit or Women’s Fiction… After Learning More About Each Genre) will help me check my own likely subliminal and subtle yet not-so-subtle passive-aggressive, misogynistic assumptions and biases about what Chick Lit and Women’s Fiction are— at the very door to the vault of our “literary canon,” where only what’s deemed as “valuable” in society and academia is let in, revered, saved, and preserved.

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Musings on Reading Four Hundred Souls for Black History Month

Musings on Four Hundred Souls

Below is my journal entry about Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America 1619-2019 edited by Ibram X. Kendi and Keisha N. Blain, for this week’s writing prompt

If I’m being honest about my experience reading this book, I should say that I’m still processing and reflecting on a lot of what I’ve read from it. 

I’ll try to keep the journal entry below brief because I don’t want to spoil the reading and learning experience for those who haven’t had the chance to read the book yet, as this book should be required reading for everyone. 

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Black History Book Quote

Notable Passage About Black History in Four Hundred Souls

I still have about half of Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America 1619-2019 left to read this week. But I’m still thinking about one particular passage from one particular piece included within its choir of voices, “Whipped for Lying with a Black Woman” by Ijeoma Oluo. This piece holds a passage that illustrates a part of Black History we so often willfully forget or purposefully neglect to remember: how racism was codified into the very laws of our nation since its very inception, as far back as 1630 when the colonies were still taking shape. 

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Writing a Journal Entry on Black History

What Makes a Written Black History Come Alive?

As I read Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America 1619-2019 to complete my journal entry for this week’s writing prompt, I really do feel as if I’m reading a “cohesive and connected narrative with strikingly different—yet unified—voices. A choir.”(p. xv) And as I read Four Hundred Souls, I sense how this is an attribute of written Black History that can make it truly come alive in the present— this profound quality of an extremely diverse yet connected community with distinct yet unified voices, the attribute of a choir of voices. A choir filled with “sopranos”, “altos”, “tenors”, and others, who come together to make history soulful, and a soulful history.

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Write a Journal Entry for a Book on Black History

Write A Journal Entry About A Book You Read On Black History

This week is the last week of Black History Month in 2021. And I want to acknowledge and observe Black History Month this year by writing a journal entry about a recently published book I’ll closely read on Black History. The book I’ll be reading: Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America 1619-2019 , edited by Ibram X. Kendi and Keisha N. Blain. 

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Essay on Trump's Second Impeachment

A Short Essay on Trump’s Second Impeachment Trial

This week’s writing prompt, Write an Unbiased Essay on Trump’s Second Impeachment Trial, was extremely challenging. Why? Because our deeply partisan situation in the United States, further propagated by a deeply partisan Congress and other deeply partisan public and civic leaders, makes an inherently political impeachment trial, well… deeply political. Not necessarily fair or just. And a deeply political trial is challenging to write about without referring to or alluding to biased, deeply partisan party politics or rhetoric because partisan politics and rhetoric is its lifeblood. 

Below is the draft of my unbiased essay on Trump’s second impeachment trial. It’s unbiased because it doesn’t include references to political parties, or include overtly political or rhetorical terms or phrases—which also ended up making this essay short and difficult to write. Because without such political references and rhetorical language, there ultimately isn’t too much to say about an inherently political trial. Or is there? 

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Writing an unbiased political essay

Writing an Unbiased Essay on Trump’s Second Impeachment Trial

My process for drafting this week’s writing prompt is simple and straightforward, yet not so easy to do, as it’s been time-consuming and has required a lot of attention to detail. And, if I’m really being honest, it’s forced me to check a lot of my own biases and beliefs and things I thought I knew, which was uncomfortable at first but ultimately necessary and liberating. 

Here’s the process I carried out, and what I did, as I completed my draft of an unbiased essay on Trump’s second impeachment trial this week. 

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