Episode 4: Resources

In episode four of borrowed solace: the podcast, we heard Kelly A. Dorgan’s nonfiction piece, “Taking Care” read aloud on the show.

“Taking Care” was published in borrowed solace issue 1.1, Hinterlands.

If you liked today’s story, you can find out more about Kelly A. Dorgan and her work below:

Kelly A. Dorgan’s nonfiction work has appeared in books like Performing Motherhood, research journals like Women and Health, as well as online publications like Not Your Mother’s Breast Milk, borrowed solace, Nasiona, and Motherwell Magazine. A Pushcart Nominee who calls Southern Appalachia home, she’s a writer, researcher, and professor, specializing in the study of culture, gender, and illness. 

 To connect with Kelly, visit her website and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

“Taking Care” was read by Candy Bryant. Find out more about her below:

Candy Bryant is a veteran radio personality who lived up and down the dial and across the country. Before accepting a position, teaching and managing the student radio station, at East Tennessee State, Candy worked in television news, wrote and produced documentaries, and performed voice talent for many commercial and educational programs.

And, as always, we want to hear from you!

Imagine we’re savoring the last few nights of summer by gathering around a campfire. Amidst the scent of wood smoke and taste of burnt marshmallow, conversation turns to the latest episode of the podcast. Please comment below and join the discussion!

Episode 4: Taking Care

It’s storytime this week on the podcast. Take a moment out of your day to hear the written word brought to life in a whole new way! Plug in your headphones and crank up the volume to listen to Kelly A. Dorgan’s nonfiction piece, “Taking Care” read by Candy Bryant.

Riding the Creative Wave

Like most things in my life, I find that creativity comes in waves.  Perhaps it is the human part of me, or just part of my personality in general, but I find that I go through spurts where I am into crocheting, or waves of interest in scrapbooking (I now have more hard copies of pictures than I care to count), or weeks where I workout every single day (those are too far and between for my liking, if I’m being honest).  Creativity certainly works that way for me, too.  I would like to say that I have a fabulously in depth reason for why this is the case, but, alas, I do not.  I’m not always sure where inspiration to be creative even comes from–sometimes I feel like creating something—anything—is crucial to having a good day or week, and other times I can’t bring myself to even open my lap top and edit an old piece of writing.

I’m starting to learn, though, that this is perfectly normal and perfectly okay.  We can’t all be turned on all the time.  Both literally (we need sleep) and when it comes to creativity.  I like to think of my creative side as a faucet—some days that faucet is turned on full force, and other times it is turned off.  If it were turned on all the time, that would be a big waste of water and a drain on resources.   See, that’s the thing—there’s always only so much of a resource to go around.  I think that even includes creative power!

As I’m learning about these waves and coming to accept the ebbs and flows of creativity, I’m learning how to ride the creativity wave.  When I’m feeling creative, I go for it!  Sometimes that means writing a dozen poems in a week (you’ll hear more about that in an upcoming episode of the podcast) and sometimes that means scrap booking every free evening I have for a week or two.  There’s no one way that the creativity wave comes, but when it arrives I grab by surfboard and head to the beach.

I think that many of us, as writers and creatives, expect our brains to be turned on to creativity all the time.  That’s simply not plausible!  If you’re anything like me, you have a lot going on in life that isn’t particularly creative.  There’s work, said (nonexistent) workout routine, pets, kids, family, taxes, laundry, and lots of other things that take time away from creative pursuits.  Sometimes that means that you don’t get to be creative everyday—and that’s okay.  I’ve slowly comes to terms with the fact that the waves sometimes come crashing in when I’m unprepared, and when I would like to be in a more creative mindset, the waters are calm.  Because of this, I’ve slowly started to just accept that fact and move with the water.  It’s much easier that way—trust me!

So whether you are riding the crest of a massive wave of inspiration or currently just getting through the day to day, roll with it!  It may not be what you were planning on, but that’s okay.  Learning to float in the shallows is just as important as cresting a massive swell, so get ready.

Are you currently riding high on a creativity wave or biding your time on your pool floatie until inspiration strikes?

Episode 3: Resources

In episode 3 of borrowed solace: the podcast, Addey and Amber discussed all things horror and suspense.

If you are interested in learning more about utilizing suspense and horror in your own writing, check out some of the resources listed below:

Suspense | Literary Devices

How to Create Suspense in Writing

9 Tricks to Writing Suspense Fiction

The Horror Genre: On Writing Horror and Avoiding Clichés

Horror Writers Association

And, as always, we want to hear from you!

Pretend we’re at a summer barbecue together, melting in the heat while in need of some good writerly discussion to pass the afternoon, and leave your comments below! Discussions only work if there’s input from all sides, and we can’t wait to hear what you think.

Episode 3: Oh, the Horror!

This episode of the podcast, join Addey and fiction editor, Amber Porter, as they discuss utilizing horror and suspense in writing–what makes a reader’s skin crawl? What keeps horror and suspense from being cringe-worthy? Tune in to fine out!

Episode 2: Resources

In episode 2 of borrowed solace: the podcast, Addey and Nicole discussed pen names and all the good, the bad, and the ugly that comes with choosing to use your real name, or opting to use a nom de plume.

If you are interested in learning more about pen names and exploring some of the resources we mentioned, visit the links below:

BehindTheName.com (a great resource for picking your pen name!)

How to Choose the Perfect Pen Name

How to Choose a Pen Name (and examples of some famous pen names to get you thinking!)

Author Pen Names: 5 Reasons they’re a Bad Idea in the Digital Age

The Purpose of Pen Names

Why Nonfiction Writers Shouldn’t Use a Pen Name

And, as always, we want to hear from you!

Pretend we’re sitting in your living room drinking some tea (Addey’s beverage of choice) or a cappuccino (Nicole’s potable pick-me-up) and leave your comments below! Discussions only work if there’s input from all sides, and we can’t wait to hear what you think.

Episode 2: Double Agents

This week on the podcast, hear from Addey and Nicole as they discuss all things pen-name related: To pen name, or not to pen name? How do you pick a pen name? Who uses a pen name? Should pen names be used in nonfiction? …and more. Take a moment of borrowed solace to listen and dive into another writerly topic with us!

This episode will be live wherever you listen to podcasts shortly. Thanks for listening!

What If I Told You That the Only Way to Be Accepted Is to Be Rejected?

I think that if there is something in my life that has rung true over the years it is exactly that.  The way to acceptance is through rejection.  It seems counter intuitive, doesn’t it?  But I have found this to be the case time and time again.

You can look at it from many different angles.  Unfortunately for us all, in life, there are many forms of rejection.  There are job rejections, love rejections, school rejections, friendship rejections, apartment application rejections, driver’s permit rejections, you name it.  As writers and creatives, we are uniquely suited to being rejected even more than the average human.  It’s an encouraging thing, right?

You might be thinking that the answer to that is “wrong,” but I beg to differ.  Rejections are hard.  They are so, so hard, and when rejections keep stomping on you one after another, after another, it’s easy to let each stomp push you down further and further, but I’ve finally come to a point in my life where I can re-frame how I view rejection when it inevitably comes around.  It’s still painful being rejected, and that re-framing process is painstaking and brings up all sorts of old buried thoughts and emotions, but it’s worth it.

Each rejection – each blaring no that seems to outweigh even the most resounding of yeses, is a turn in your path that will ultimately lead you to the person you are meant to become.  With writing in particular, each no from a literary journal means that your piece is one step closer to finding the yes that the writing deserves.  You don’t want your piece to show up in a journal that won’t tout it to the ends of the Earth because it wasn’t quite the right fit, but it got a yes to meet a page count.  Similarly, you do yourself a disservice by publishing a piece that still needs work – the fine tuning and re-assessing that happens during the final stages of the writing process are where words on the page really start to come to life.

I have experienced an exorbitant amount of rejection in my own life (you can read more about that here) involving everything from grad school applications, to jobs, to freelance work, to a story that is still one of my absolute favorites that I’ve ever written but has been rejected by close to thirty literary magazines at this point.  Rejection is part of life, and to take a leap of faith by clicking “submit” or showing up for that interview means that you could hear a yes or you could hear a no, but either way you are hearing something great (trust me, I don’t even believe it half the time) because whatever the answer, it helps illuminate your next step.

One of the hardest rejections I ever got was for my current job (yes, I, and all of the other borrowed solace editors all have day jobs – this journal doesn’t pay the bills but it feeds our collective creative spirits).  I didn’t get my job the first time around.  I had two rounds of in person interviews (which are incredibly nerve-wracking for even the most seasoned interviewer) plus a phone interview and then got a call where all I got to hear was a big fat no.  I was devastated having already played out a scenario in my mind of future me in my fancy new job, but that initial no gave me some time to evaluate what it was that I really wanted.  So when that yes finally came through – out of the blue, and more than a month after that first no – I knew that this was where I was supposed to be.

So maybe you are getting a lot of no’s right now – putting yourself out there only to be rejected time and time again – but don’t give up.  It takes a lot of no’s to get to that one yes that really matters, and it’s only after learning who we really are through the process of being rejected that we are actually ready for the yes.  And when it comes, it will be a big, resounding yes – even if it seemingly drops right out of the bright blue sky.

Episode 1: Are Your Pants on Fire?

In this episode of borrowed solace: the podcast, you’ll get to hear from all of us editors and learn some fun personal tidbits from each of us — about both writing and non-writing topics — and you’ll also get to hear a little bit more about the idea behind the podcast.

This episode will be live wherever you listen to podcasts shortly. Thanks for listening!

An Exciting Announcement

Drumroll, please…! 

We are thrilled to announce that borrowed solace: the podcast will be coming to a listening platform near you this summer!  This is something that has been, and still is, in the works over here at borrowed solace.  We believe in creating a writing community and immersing ourselves in writing in any way that we can, so what better way to do that than through a podcast?

borrowed solace was founded on the idea of cultivating a moment of time out of our reader’s day-to-day lives to discover solace in writing and literature.  Most of us live hectic non-writing-focused lives and try to squeeze writing in here and there as we have space to do so.  We thought of starting a podcast as a way to make even more space for writing in your life.  With this podcast, our hope is that you are able to dwell in ideas, conversations, and stories centered on creativity while you go through the motions of the day-to-day.  This podcast will allow for moments of borrowed solace while you get ready in the morning, while you’re in the pickup line waiting for your kids to get out of school, or while you scurry about in the kitchen cooking dinner.  It will allow your mind to wander to writing during moments where you might otherwise be focusing on the day’s schedule, or while you work on your non-writing career, day in and day out.

Ultimately, we want this podcast to be for you!  We want you to have a role in this thing, too, because borrowed solace is all about creating a creative community.  From you, dear readers, submitters, writers, dreamers, we ask for your thoughts and questions.  Our goal is to come out with podcasts twice a month and to devote a few moments of each episode to answering your questions or focusing on topics that you care about while also sharing interviews with writers, artists, poets, and other editors.

To submit your thoughts to us, or let us know if you are interested in being featured on the podcast, we have added a brand new page to the journal’s website all about borrowed solace: the podcast. On it, there is information on how you can submit ideas to us.  No submission is off limits, but be forewarned that we may not answer everything that comes through to us on the podcast if it is something very narrow in scope or that we really aren’t knowledgeable about enough to answer. Please also submit your stories, poems, and nonfiction works to us if you are interested in having it read, or reading it yourself, on air!

We have already planted the seeds of a wonderful writing community here amongst our readers, editors, and contributors, and can’t wait to further water the borrowed solace garden with the addition of this podcast!

As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to email us. All podcast-related questions can be sent to podcast@borrowedsolace.com.