Exercising the Writing Muscle

Exercising the Writing Muscle

Contributing writer Laura Brackin gives some advice and tips on how to continue developing your writing skills and getting in that daily writing practice.

Professionals don’t become great in their specialty because they made As in school. While this helps them become the professionals they want to be, developing their skills doesn’t stop once they receive their diploma. Read more

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Accepting Rejection

Accepting Rejection

Contributing writer Savanah Burns wrote this post offering advice on how to accept rejection in the world of writing.

A former creative writing professor of mine once explained said that she received a small card, no bigger than a business card, in the mail. On this little card, were the words, “Your submission was not accepted.” Read more

The (Too) Busy Writer

The (Too) Busy Writer

Contributing writer Laura Brackin gives some tips to help writers manage and maximize their writing time, even when life keeps you busy.

A common image of the writer is one where they sit with their laptop in an oversized, comfy chair, in front of a large picture window—with or without a sheer, gauzy window dressing of some kind, but either way, allowing entry for cheerful sunlight—a cup of steaming something, coffee, tea, on a small table beside them. This writer is happily spending their stress-free hours combining beautifully written sentences into a literary masterpiece. Feel free to substitute a large, mahogany desk for the oversized chair in this scenario; the visual is subjective on this point. The important constant is the leisurely life this image portrays: the writer as engulfed in their art, unperturbed. Read more

Weeding Out the Good Reads

Weeding Out the Good Reads

Contributing writer Savanah Burns wrote this post offering advice and starting points to writers hoping to submit work to contests and literary journals.

My friend has a habit of reading the last page of a book, before ever looking at the first page.

Another friend doesn’t judge a book by its cover, rather they glance at its spine.

Yet another friend does this thing where they looks at a book’s sleeve, reads the author’s biography and pretends to talk to the author by wondering, how did you get from point A to point B? How can I get published? Read more

#Hashtags are your friend: An Introduction to Instagram

#Hashtags are your friend

Contributing writer and social media intern Elizabeth Evans begins a series of posts for authors on working various social media sites and using them to promote their work. The first in the series is on the platform Instagram.

Instagram is a photo-based social media platform that has been around since 2010, and has undergone many changes since being purchased by Facebook in 2012. Instagram, at its heart, allows users to post pictures and videos, as well as record “Stories” and host live chats through Instagram Live. Read more

Insights into True Crime: An Interview with Tannie Shannon

Insights into True Crime

Contributing writer Laura Brackin recently had the opportunity to ask SHSU instructor and author of Seed of Villainy Tannie Shannon about his book and get some insight into his experience writing a nonfiction work about a true crime case so close to home.

On the evening of September 12, 1995, twelve-year-old McKay Everett was kidnapped from his Montgomery County home in Texas and driven to Louisiana where he was shot and left in a swamp. Ex-Sheriff Captain Hilton Crawford was not an investigator on this case, rather he was the perpetrator of a ransom situation gone wrong.

Tannie Shannon’s book, Seed of Villainy, goes into detail about Crawford’s life, allowing the reader to get into his head and see how decisions he made led him, and young McKay, to this fateful night.  Read more

Part II: Taking a Look at Ephemera with Evana Bodiker

Taking a Look at Ephemera with Evana Bodiker

Contributing writer Savanah Burns recently interviewed the 2017 Robert Phillips Poetry Chapbook Prize winner and author of Ephemera, Evana Bodiker. 

Q: Why did you title your book Ephemera? What statement are you hoping to make?

A: When titling the book, I was initially torn between “Fibrosis” and “Ephemera,” which are both titles of poems from the collection. Ephemera seemed far more applicable to more than one specific theme and more representative of the poems in the book. I also was just drawn to the sound of the word. In a way, I think those same sounds are used and repeated throughout my poems. It also is just a beautiful word. Of course, the word itself embodies a feeling of melancholy; ephemera are things only enjoyed for a short period of time. A lot of my poems can be described as elegiac and melancholic. Read more

Part I: Getting to Know 2017 Phillips Prize winner Evana Bodiker

Getting to Know 2017 Phillips Prize winner Evana Bodiker

Contributing writer Savanah Burns recently interviewed the 2017 Robert Phillips Poetry Chapbook Prize winner and author of Ephemera, Evana Bodiker. 

Q: How did you hear about the Texas Review Press?

A: My partner and I both write poetry. We had just completed chapbooks in one of our advanced level poetry writing courses, so we were looking to get some of those poems out into the world. He had read Jesse Graves’ two books from the TRP and through a Google search, found out about the Robert Phillips Poetry Chapbook prize. He encouraged me to submit after we read through some of the past winners’ poetry. Read more