We’re pleased to spotlight Jeannette Brown and her writing life. Thank you for helping us spread the word on how the KWG supports our writing community for writers at all stages of their writing journey.
- How long have you been a member of the KWG?
I’ve been a member of KWG both times I’ve lived in Knoxville so, cumulatively, about 10 years. Most of that time, I’ve served on the Board, although not currently. Several years ago, I had the opportunity to co-author one of the Guild’s anthology. That perked up my resumé.
- What KWG program did you particularly enjoy (and why) ?
I enjoy most of the programs and workshops presented by the Guild. Even though I don’t write memoir and write very little poetry, I always learn something from those programs that enhances my writing or my understanding of writing. The most entertaining program lately was the one where we wrote a song. And then sang it in front of everyone. Mixed reviews!
- What kind of writing do you do? Or want to do?
I write short stories and novels, plays, and the occasional poem. I’d love to write a screenplay and a couple of songs. It doesn’t help that I have a tin ear.
- What project are you working on now?
Right now I’m publicizing my new novel, The Illusion of Leaving, and polishing two plays. I should be revising my second novel, but it’s hard to focus under the current situation.
- What is your writing goal?
My writing goal is to keep writing. The genre/form doesn’t matter, I just want to be sure the words keep coming.
- Awards, prizes, or writer feel-good moments?
I am currently jazzed about my novel finally reaching the world. It’s great to answer that eternal question, “How’s your book coming?”.
- Who inspired you to write? How did this person inspire you?
I started out as a journalist, writing feature articles for a regional magazine. I switched to fiction when the magazines begin to go belly up in the late ‘80s. Reading current writings—primarily fiction—inspires me because the genres are blending. Anything goes.
- Do you have any writing rituals, favorite snacks or times/places to write?
Mornings are the best times to write, before the day intrudes. After emails and meditation.
- What helps when you get stuck?
If I get stuck, I call my writing/walking buddy. She’s my first reader, too. We met through the Guild when we formed a fiction critique group with two other people. That group evolved into five people who write whatever is of interest at the moment, YA, memoir, etc. Now three of the five are on the Guild board and doing a fine job.
- What are your favorite excuses for not writing?
I’m very creative when it comes to excuses for not writing: it’s raining; it’s sunny; I need to finish reading this 500-page book.
- What’s the best thing you’ve read lately?
One of the best things I’ve read lately is by Margaret Renkl, Late Migrations. She’s a Nashville writer. The book is part memoir, part nature writing.
A lot of what I’ve read lately is a mix of biography and memoir. That’s an interesting trend.
- What is your secret talent?
My superpower is believing that I’m going to read every book I buy.
My writing has been published in Bellevue Literary Review, Southwestern American Literature, New Millennium Writings, Steel Toe Review, and other publications. I am the co-editor of Literary Lunch, a food anthology. My MFA is from the University of New Orleans. I’ve enjoyed residencies at the Sewanee Writer’s Conference, Rivendell Writers’ Colony, and Hedgebrook/India. My novel, The Illusion of Leaving, is forthcoming from Texas Review Press.
Visit me at jeannettebrownauthor.com