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As long as I’ve been able to write, I’ve wanted to be a writer. But as we all know, the desire to be a writer doesn’t create books alone. I’ve started writing novels, only to give up three chapters in. I’ve hidden my writing so that the world would never see my scribbles. I had aspirations of being a famous novelist, but didn’t know how to get there.

I was in my mid-thirties when I finally published my first novel. Seven years later, and I just published my eleventh novel, and have plans to publish two more this year ……


But the red flags of her abuse were clear. I know because it happened to me.

Photo: Moab Police Department

The cops were called to my apartment when I was 18 years old. My boyfriend answered the door, offering pleasantries as well as confusion over why they were there. The collar of his t-shirt was stretched, and distinct scratches lined his chest. I hid a bloody tissue in my fist.

Someone in the parking lot next to us heard screaming, the cops said. Neither one of us could say what happened.

They talked to us separately, wanting to hear our sides of the story. I didn’t know what my boyfriend was saying, but I maintained confusion. …


From social media to your blog, where’s the line between public and private?

Photo By Matej Kastelic / Shutterstock

Years ago, I was a single mom who blogged about our family, and my kids were the shining stars. I changed the kids’ names, giving them cute nicknames to offer them a sense of anonymity. They were young enough that their “issues” were still funny and adorable, and I couldn’t believe how much fun it was writing about our regular old life.

The blog was a hit. It earned me a job in the newsroom at our local newspaper, and my stories became a regular column in print. Soon, people knew my name, along with the nicknames of my kids…


Everyone is talking about “Beautiful World, Where Are You,” including me.

Image: Penguin Random House

I have to admit, Sally Rooney’s new (and highly acclaimed) novel, Beautiful World, Where Are You, was almost a DNF (did not finish) for me. From the way the book was written (no quotation marks, hardly any sensory details, paragraphs breaking all the conventional rules) to the way the story and characters were held at arm’s length.

What do I mean by “arm’s length”? We get to know each character as “a man” or “a woman”, then eventually learn their names. We don’t learn of their inner thoughts at all (until we read the letters two friends write to each…


Dear applicant, you will not be doing the job we hired you to do

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Dear Applicant,

Thank you for your interest in the position at XYZ Company. This is the only time we will tell you the expectations for the position you are applying for. It is up to you to remember everything we require of you, as we will forget what we hired you for as soon as you walk in the door. If we choose to train you, it will be for one day with unclear instructions that we promise you’ll understand once you’re doing the actual work. …


Uncommon signs you’re dangerously dehydrated, and how to fix it fast.

Photo by Kate Joie on Unsplash

I’ve known I haven’t been drinking enough water for a while now. There are times when I’m really great about it. But then I fall out of the habit. When that happens, I actually dread drinking water! As if drinking water is hard!

If you’re out of practice, drinking enough water IS hard.

There are so many interesting things to drink out there, starting from your morning coffee to your evening glass of wine, fitting in your 8+ glasses of water a day can feel like a chore, especially when you haven’t made it a habit.

For me, it was…


Hint: It’s not the traditional gatekeepers.

Photo by Aziz Acharki on Unsplash

My latest book will be done once I transcribe the final edits from the printed manuscript. I have a rough draft of a query letter written, and all I need to do is apply the suggestions my writing critique offered to make it better. Once I’ve completed these two tasks, I can begin the process of querying agents, hoping that one of them will find something in what I’ve written to request more, and eventually find the book its perfect publisher.

And yet, I’m letting that manuscript collect dust in a corner of my office. I’ve even started writing another…


31 days without alcohol. Who’s with me?

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It’s Day 1 of Dry July, and I’m already thinking about ways I can get around it and still drink, just not as much, which kind of defeats the whole purpose. I told my husband about my decision to go dry for 31 days, and he was like Why? I suppose if my skinny husband decided he was going to count calories, I’d have the same reaction. He doesn’t understand breaks from alcohol when I don’t have a problem.

But I do have a problem. Not an addiction problem, since I can have my one glass of wine and be…


The four tools that saved my writing life, even while working a 9–5.

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Years ago, I was adamant that to be a writer, you needed to wake up two hours early and get your writing in first thing in the morning — every morning. This was me with a full time day job, and my goal was to cram in 2,000 words a day before I had to start the job that paid me money.

And for years, I did this. My daily habit allowed me to publish two books a year. …


She thought I was rude. She wasn’t wrong.

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“They are sort of rude.”

That was the reason a member of my newsletter unsubscribed. They thought I was rude.

I try not to let these things get to me, but I was already wallowing in self-pity over a failed book sale campaign where I made every mistake in the world. The cost of my mistakes was only a handful of sales and a wasted opportunity, plus a bunch of questions about my self worth as an author.

And then this person rejected me because she thinks I’m rude. She doesn’t even know me!

I think the salt in the…

Crissi Langwell 🦋

Romance & women’s fiction author. I write on Medium about a variety of topics because I’m not good at staying in one lane. Find me at crissilangwell.com

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