May 31, 2019 • 43M

161: #WritingAtMyNightmare

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Entertaining, actionable advice on craft, productivity and creativity for writers and journalists in all genres, with hosts Jessica Lahey, KJ Dell'Antonia and Sarina Bowen.
Episode details

We welcome Shane Burcaw. You thought writing was hard? Try doing it with no muscles.

Shane Burcaw is the author of three books: Laughing at My Nightmare, the picture book Not So Different: What You Really Want to Ask About Having a Disability, and his new book, Strangers Assume My Girlfriend is My Nurse. Shane and his girlfriend, Hannah Aylward, host the YouTube channel, Squirmy and Grubs, with nearly 400k subscribers. Their YouTube channel reads: “Once upon a time, a boy with no muscles fell madly in love with a beautiful girl who had plenty of muscles to spare. The townsfolk gasped with horror at the sight of their disgusting interabled relationship, but they didn’t care.”

Kirkus calls Strangers Assume My Girlfriend Is My Nurse, "An accessible, smart-assed, and unexpectedly tender exploration of life, love, and disability."

We talked about the how of writing for Shane, (which included a shout out to the Remote Mouse App) but even more about the why--and why Jess's students in particular (along with many many others) have loved Shane's books since his first. Think "trademark acidic wit" which is also fully present here.

Shane’s nonprofit, Laughing at My Nightmare, funds adaptive technology for people with muscular dystrophy:

Squirmy and Grubs on YouTube:

Shane’s instagram:

Shane’s Twitter:

Hannah’s instagram:


This Is Not a Love Scene, S.C. Megale

A Season of Dragonflies, Sarah Creech

Beeline: What Spelling Bees Reveal About Generation Z's New Path to Success, Shalini Shankar


Wild Rumpus in Minneapolis, where they mix chickens and lizards in with books for kids and young adults.

This episode was sponsored by Author Accelerator, the book coaching program that helps you get your work DONE. Visit for details, special offers and Jennie Nash’s 2-tier outline template.

Find more about Jess here, and about KJ here.

If you enjoyed this episode, we suggest you check out Marginally, a podcast about writing, work and friendship.