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Conversations with the Inspiring Susan Pohlman

Today we’d like to introduce you to Susan Pohlman.

Susan, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
An avid reader since childhood, I am fascinated by the art of storytelling in all of its forms. Though I began my career as a middle-school teacher, I’ve always studied writing as a hobby. I began, as many writers do, with a personal essay and then branched out into screenwriting, memoir, and fiction. When my book, Halfway to Each Other: How a Year in Italy Brought Our Family Home, was published, I decided to retire from traditional education and start a business that combined all of my passions: teaching, writing, and travel!

Now, I am an editor and teach creative writing to adults through private coaching and small group classes. In addition, I conduct workshops and writing retreats around the country and abroad. In the past few years, I’ve taken writers to Italy and Santa Fe, and have served as faculty for the Erma Bombeck Writer’s Workshop, The San Miguel Writers Conference, and the Antioch Writers Workshop. Locally, I teach creative writing at the ASU Emeritus College and recently served as a writer-in-residence for the Arizona Library Association.

The Phoenix Writers Network grew organically from these classes and workshops. Sharing the creative process with others creates lasting friendships and a collegial atmosphere for writers who find themselves alone much of the time. When this group outgrew my living room, it was time to give it a name and logo!

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Of course, not! I don’t know one writer who would claim that it is an easy road. Like any craft, writing takes concentrated study and practice. Rejection is as much a part of the journey as publication. I’ve had both successes and failures along the way.

The best advice for any writer starting out is to read a wide variety of authors, study the craft diligently, and write fearlessly. Find a critique group to sharpen your skills and, for goodness sakes, have fun!

What should we know about The Phoenix Writers Network? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
The Phoenix Writers Network is a community of writers who meet bi-monthly to develop relationships through the exchange of knowledge about the writing life, craft, and publishing.

Each meeting features a guest speaker and provides time to network with other writers. Whether you are a professional writer or just getting started, come to enjoy an evening of camaraderie and craft.

This community is non-genre specific and promotes relationship building in a pay-it-forward spirit. So many of us toil away in solitude, and we often don’t know where to turn when we need guidance or simply, a pat on the back for sticking with a difficult project.

We meet at the Workuity building at 24th and Camelback. Check out our website for dates and upcoming speakers.

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