A Writer's Life

By subscribing to receive A Writer’s Life, you’ll also be joining Valerie’s mailing list.
So, in addition to the monthly column, you’ll also receive recommended reads



People often tell me that they wish they had my life—
especially when they hear about my latest trip to Nashville, New York or Los Angeles. 

So, I’ve created A Writer’s Life to give you a chance to peek behind the curtain and see what it’s really like to be a professional author. Is it as glamorous as it sounds?

Once a month I’ll post a glimpse into my world; the good, the bad and the ugly.
This is what it looks like when we step out and bet on ourselves.

make good art

I’ve been working on this post for over a month. Many drafts have gone into the bin and it’s taken me thousands of words to find the three I needed, and the three words aren’t even my own. They’re Neil Gaiman’s and they’re simply this; make good art. During this

Read More »

Shakespeare didn’t have toilet paper

As I was thinking about how to frame this month’s post, I came across the following tweet from Roseanne Cash.  Shakespeare also didn’t have laptops, central heating or electric lights. What he did have was free and easy access to his imagination.  Kinda makes you think, doesn’t it? Many writers

Read More »

good enough

I’m always pressed for time at Christmas, but this past season seemed worse than usual. I ended up with a very small window in which to get my tree up and decorated. That meant I had to skip steps in order to speed up the process. I dragged the tree into

Read More »

state of emergency

As I write this, my hometown is under a State of Emergency. Yesterday we got hit with a massive, 17-hour blizzard (a Category 2 hurricane that dropped three feet of snow, in addition to what was already on the ground) and right now, a second blizzard is raging. (If you

Read More »

pee on the seat

I just got back from a trip to New York City with my daughter. We saw four Broadway shows in three days, so there wasn’t a whole lot of time to do much else. We did, however, find time to swing by Saks Fifth Avenue. Two important takeaways from that

Read More »

in training

It’s marathon Sunday in Chicago. My sister, Diana, ran the race this morning, and yesterday, I ran the Chicago International 5K—my first race in 18 months. Humbling. And before you ask: no, I have no plans to run a marathon anytime soon. I write novels, and that’s basically the same

Read More »