Motherhood & Words

For me, 2017 was not a writing year. Certainly the state of our country was a huge distraction, and it took me too long to realize that I could not check my news feeds first thing in the morning. It was also a busy year work-wise, so my creative time was limited. And the creative time I did have I spent learning how to play the bass guitar. I’m still taking lessons and I still have lots to learn, but it no longer consumes as much headspace as it did while I was trying to master the basics. Which is all to say that I’m back to writing.

One of the things I realized, though, that in order to meet my 2018 writing goals (and I have a long list of them, including blogging again regularly), I need to work outside of my house more often. I love my tiny office, love working on the couch with sweet Aguita at my feet, but I need to be around other creative people (and away from small household tasks that “just take a minute”).

So last week I joined ModernWell, the new co-working space for women in Minneapolis. I was already scheduled to teach an 8-week women’s memoir class there beginning at the end of January—Join me! You can learn more about it here!—but when I visited the space, I fell in love with it. And after my first day working there, I couldn’t wait to go back. My goal is to be very deliberate about spending time on my own creative work while I’m there.

I will also be moderating a panel at ModernWell’s kick-off literary event, which is from 1 – 7 p.m on January 28th. And I have a pair of tickets to give away here!


If you’re interested in being entered in the drawing, leave a comment below. I’ll draw a winner on January 15th.

And tell me about your own writing! How are you feeling about your creative work? What are your goals for 2018?

Posted in ,


I have been teaching creative writing for almost twenty years. Reading about other women’s lives and experiences has expanded my world. To be able to walk in someone else’s shoes, whether it’s for a moment or an hour or a few days, is an incredible gift, providing me with insight into the human experience. It takes courage to write your truths, especially if it doesn’t seem as though anyone cares, as though anyone is listening. Let me tell you: your stories matter, I’m listening, and I’m here to help you find the heart of those truths, to get them down on the page, to craft them, and to send them out into the world. Together, we will change the world, one story at a time.


  1. Tracy on January 8, 2018 at 2:00 pm

    Pick me!

    • Kate on January 8, 2018 at 4:48 pm

      Tracy, you will love the space!

  2. Vikki on January 8, 2018 at 3:21 pm

    One of my goals is to deepen my connections to a writing community because that connection keeps me inspired and working.

    Also hope to get together for another happy hour with you sooner than later!

    • Kate on January 8, 2018 at 4:49 pm

      Vikki! Yes! I said I was going to email, so I’m on it! I would love to see you!

  3. Myrna Mibus on January 8, 2018 at 5:15 pm

    Ooh, enter me in the drawing! I so love the idea of a co-working space and have thought about either joining one or starting one in my own community.

    I’m taking an online writing class at The Loft that’s all about writing goals and a sustainable writing practice. So I don’t have a specific goal for that yet but will soon. It’s also a goal to get an essay published. And I’m attending a writing retreat taught by you!

    • Kate on January 9, 2018 at 9:02 am

      Myrna, you should! You can make it happen! And I know you can get an essay published this year! I look forward to spending some time with you in February!

  4. Collette Miller on January 8, 2018 at 6:24 pm

    Hi Kate! Thanks for offering two free tickets to the wonderful Modernwell event. I love your writing.
    Collette Miller

    • Kate on January 9, 2018 at 9:02 am

      Thank you, Collette! You just made my day!

  5. Patricia on January 8, 2018 at 6:25 pm

    Kate, I’m so happy to see you writing again here! ModernWell sounds like an amazing place–I’m envious! (I have a book recommendation for you. Have you heard of Deep Work by Cal Newport? It’s about making time for deep, focused work in your day, and it’s been incredibly helpful to me. You could combine it with your time at ModernWell and really make the most of it.)

    I’m utterly thrilled about getting to see you in February.

    Wishing you a very productive 2018!

    • Patricia on January 8, 2018 at 6:28 pm

      P.S. Don’t enter me in the drawing, obviously, for geographic reasons.

      And oops–my goal is to get the mentorship I need so my writing can really develop this year. Looks like you’re first up to help me with that! 🙂

      • Kate on January 9, 2018 at 9:03 am

        And I can’t wait!

    • Kate on January 9, 2018 at 9:03 am

      Patricia, thank you for the recommendation! I’ll check it out. It’s sounds like the perfect book for my time there! And I can’t wait to see you next month!

  6. Lucinda on January 8, 2018 at 8:05 pm

    Hurray for writing in 2018! Please enter me in the drawing.

    • Kate on January 9, 2018 at 9:04 am

      I will, Lucinda! It would be a great space for you–not too far from your house. Looking forward to seeing you soon!

  7. Emily B on January 8, 2018 at 8:11 pm

    I too have big writing goals this year (finishing an essay manuscript while working full time and mothering two little ones. Gulp.). I’d love to start 2018 off with an event like this! I’m heading over to their website now…

    • Kate on January 9, 2018 at 9:05 am

      Emily, I love that goal! Your plate is full, but you can do it! And this would be a great event for you!

  8. Jennifer Wolfe on January 9, 2018 at 8:48 am

    What a great start to the year! I finally wrote the first three chapters of a novel at the end of 2017- I will continue working on it in 2018. For me that means actually leaving my day job before dark, and getting up early to write and think.

    • Kate on January 9, 2018 at 9:05 am

      Brava, Jennifer! I love that you’re working on a novel. Getting up early can be so hard, but it’s worth it! You go!

  9. Jenny Tufford on January 10, 2018 at 8:16 am

    I love that you’re involved with this! So many strong and smart women there.

    Like you, 2017 was, for me, almost barren as far as writing is concerned. I’m trying to get a book going but it feels like trying to complete a puzzle in the dark: I can feel all the pieces and kind of get them to fit but I cannot tell if it’s “right”.

    I’d love a chance to visit Julie’s place. Money wise, it’s not in the cards for me so I’m throwing my hat into the ring for those tickets!

    PS one of my biggest regrets of 2017 was missing out on your show! Please keep us updated with any more performances ❤️

    • Kate on January 10, 2018 at 12:47 pm

      Jenny! So great to connect with you! You’re in the running. You would love the space and people. And I hope 2018 brings more writing time and a chance for us to get together! xo

  10. Ellen Burkhardt on January 11, 2018 at 6:41 am

    Very excited to see what you produce this year! I, too, have a goal of writing more in 2018. I *worked* a lot last year, but didn’t produce the number of articles or essays I would have liked. Dusting off the pitching skills and crossing my fingers I remember how to do all the things! Attending the ModernWell would be an excellent way to get a jump-start 🙂

    • Kate on January 11, 2018 at 9:37 am

      Oh Ellen, you will love it! And here’s to a productive year!

  11. Andrea on January 11, 2018 at 10:15 am

    I’d love to win tickets to the event! 2018 is a writing year for me, too. 🙂

    • Kate on January 11, 2018 at 5:11 pm

      Wonderful, Andrea! I have you down!

  12. Kate on January 16, 2018 at 8:41 am

    Stella picked the winning name from the jar last night and it is Myrna! I’ll send you an email, Myrna. I look forward to seeing you there!