On Writing about the NSA and Terrorism on September 11, 2001

As the nation tried to collect itself in the hours, minutes, and days after the terrorist attacks, our president rightfully spent a great deal of time and energy reassuring the public. What I didn’t believe, though, was the insistence that we could adequately monitor digital communications in order to find out if there were looming threats.

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Things That Happen in a Writer’s Mind

After months and years of research, I’ve finally started outlining So Far Appalachia, my next book project. The early part of the writing process involves organizing my anecdotes, inserting them within chapters, and arranging the chapters in a way that will elicit the reader to consider certain themes. It looks like this:

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The Year of Focus

I think thematically. As each year comes to a close, I spend December sitting with the work of my previous year. I sift through what I’ve created, I look at what I didn’t create, and conceptualize what I want my next year to become. I’ve always been methodical and particular in my thinking, but I’ve become much […]

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