Category Archives: Sheila Bender On Writing

What Makes Getting Started Easy as Starting a Car?

The writer Kim Stafford tells his workshops that it is important for writers to “keep worthy company.” As I prepare to teach a writing workshop this weekend, I remember an article I wrote a decade ago. Reading it now, I add that to keep worthy company means to be worthy company. I once created a daily writing exercise for…Continue Reading

What is Writing the Personal Essay For?

“The hallmark of the personal essay is its intimacy. The writer seems to be speaking directly into your ear, confiding everything from gossip to wisdom, Through sharing thoughts, memories, desires, complaints and whimsies, the personal essayist sets up a relationship with the reader, a dialogue—a friendship, if you will, based on identification, understanding, testiness, and…Continue Reading

Writing the Cause and Effect Essay

Sometimes we think a topic is so important or so big that we don’t know how to begin writing about it. That’s when using age-old styles of organization can help us figure out how to say what we didn’t know we could. One such style you can use for organizing and conjuring material for a…Continue Reading