Newest Brief Essays

"Women's Hour, YMCA" featured in Kenyon Review Online

"I Second That Emotion" (craft essay) featured in New Ohio Review


Other Brief Essays

"Advanced Directive to My Future Roommate…"

"Things Gone the Way of Time," recently reprinted in Brief Encounters: A Collection of Contemporary Nonfiction (Norton)


Study with Rebecca this summer

Kenyon Review Writers Workshop, June 18-25


Kenyon Review PODCAST with Rebecca

(on memoir, genre-crossing, writing practice, and more)


Word Painting Revised Edition: The Fine Art of Writing Descriptively

New edition includes over 100 writing exercises for all genres.

Word Painting

The Tribal Knot

Rebecca'a newest nonfiction book, The Tribal Knot: A Memoir of Family, Community, and a Century of Change is now available from Indiana University Press and Amazon.

Tribal Knot

"Our task as writers...

is not only to pay attention to our world but also to use the materials of the world in extraordinary ways. To do this, we must uncover the subtle design, the "figure in the carpet" that is woven into even the most everyday events. Often we must proceed without knowing what form the work will finally take. We write our way into the question, into the mystery. Writing begets more writing; meaning grows on the page."

Writing Groups, Workshops, and Other Sounding Boards
Writing Groups, Workshops, and Other Sounding Boards
Beware of anyone, writer or otherwise, who tells you what he'd do with your draft if it were his. It's not his. It's yours.
What Does Your Draft Wants to Be When It Grows Up?
What Does Your Draft Want to Be When It Grows Up?

Revision isn't an admission of defeat. Nor is it about fixing something that's broken. Revision is re-vision, re-seeing, re-imagining. It's an opportunity to view your work through new eyes.

On Fear, Rejection, and Persistance in the Writing Life
On Fear, Rejection, and Persistence in the Writing Life
If external circumstances wage battle against our writing, they are nothing compared to the war that internal circumstances wage, those demon voices that assault even the most confident writer.
The Best Shape and Form for Your Writing
The Best Shape and Form for Your Writing

"I've just exposed the skeleton of a big squid-like essay I've been working on..."