Feb 17 • 36M

Writing Three Books Without Typing a Word: Episode 350 with Leslie Hooton

Dictation, inspiration, deleted fragments and where the real work begins.

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Appears in this episode

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.

As Leslie Hooton told me, “Some writers have a stroke of luck, I had a stroke at birth,” which left her paralyzed on one side of her body. Thanks to Dragon dictation (not sponsored, we’re just fans!), she’s learned to train her Dragon and “penned” three novels including her most recent release, After Everyone Else. As Jess hosts this episode, we delve into plenty of tangents on dictation, deleted text fragments, inspiration, and the wisdom of Wendell Berry.

It may be that when we no longer know what to do
we have come to our real work,

and that when we no longer know which way to go
we have come to our real journey.

- Excerpt from “The Real Work” by Wendell Berry


Leslie: Olympus, Texas by Stacey Swan and Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt

Jess: Unraveling: What I Learned About Life While Shearing Sheep, Dyeing Wood, and Making the Ugliest Sweater in the World by Peggy Orenstein

Leslie’s links:

Her website

Her Facebook

Her Instagram

If you’ve been intrigued by all the talk you’ve heard about book coaching over the years here at #Amwriting, maybe this is your year to explore becoming a coach yourself. Author Accelerator is GOOD AT TEACHING YOU TO DO THIS. And supporting you in making a business or side-gig out of it, we swear. Here, they even made you a quiz to see if you have what it takes. Quizzes are fun, people! Go check it out!

Take the Book Coach Quiz

Pssst: Do you follow Sarina on Instagram?

Find her here!

Calling all freelancers! On March 9 and 10, the Institute for Independent Journalists is offering an online freelance journalism conference with 12 information-packed interactive sessions on everything from pitching, negotiations, and contracts to podcasting and developing new revenue streams. Speakers include editors for The Atlantic, The Guardian, The New York Times, Wired, The Verge, The Emancipator, and more. 

Registration costs $69 for 12 live, interactive sessions, delivering 15 hours of learning. For more information and to register, see: theiij.com All sessions will be recorded and available to view for one month after the conference.

The IIJ is a new organization whose mission is the financial and emotional sustainability of journalists of color. Everyone is welcome at the IIJ’s public programs, like the conference, although some future opportunities will be limited to BIPOC freelancers.