Dear Jennie

Posted on August 28th, 2014 by Jennie Shortridge

As a Hedgebrook alum, I feel a little like Dear Abby, because I’ve received quite a few letters like this:


Dear Jennie,

I’m applying for a Hedgebrook residency and I’ve heard they’re nearly impossible to get! Do you have any advice, or tips or tricks for improving my chances to get in?


Ima Writer Read the rest of this entry »

A Sentence

Posted on August 21st, 2014 by Allison Green




“This, too, is America: two middle-aged women, one North American and one Central American, eating cheese and apples in campsite #4 of the Mountain View Campground on Little Redfish Lake.”

I wrote this sentence in a notebook six years ago as I began a writing project that would become the soon-to-be-published Trout Frying in America: A Literary Pilgrimage (Ooligan Press, spring 2015). The sentence did not make it to the final manuscript. It did not even make it into the first draft because, by the time I sat down to write the scene in which Arline and I picnicked in the campsite where Richard Brautigan and his wife and baby stayed in 1961, the idea I was trying to express no longer fit the scene. Read the rest of this entry »

Cooking Up Stories

Posted on August 14th, 2014 by Hedgebrook



We asked Betsy Andrews, food writer, poet, Executive Editor of Saveur Magazine, and Hedgebrook alumna, to answer five questions. Here’s what she had to say about herself, her work and her upcoming Master Class:


1) What is the most memorable meal you’ve experienced?

There’s not one! There are so many. And, of course, when we talk about food, we are not just talking about the aroma, the taste, the texture of the edible stuff you put in your mouth and chew and swallow. We are talking about a meal—a social and cultural and emotional event. Eating is very personal. It’s just about the most primal thing we do, and so it is, for a writer, a vehicle for the evocation of experience, of feeling and knowing oneself and the world. It is metaphor, and it is fact. Every story we tell about food is also a story about something, or many things, else. Read the rest of this entry »

On Facing my Creative Self, Cushioned by Love

Posted on August 7th, 2014 by Barbara Mhangami-Ruwende



Mid December I got the news that I had been accepted for the 2014 Hedgebrook Writers’ Residency. I was over-the-moon ecstatic. For a mother of 4 energetic daughters and a wife, this was a precious gift and as the months rolled on I lived for those two precious weeks in July. After a 6 hour flight from Detroit on July 3, a shuttle ride from Seattle, and a ferry ride onto Whidbey Island, I was met in the town of Freeland by warm hearted Julie, who drove me to Hedgebrook farm. More warm and open hearts welcomed me. I met Laurel, a writer from the Philippines sitting contentedly on a swing with her computer enjoying the outdoors. I later learned that this was her favorite spot. I was given a tour of the property, through the farm house which housed a library in a cozy family room, a kitchen and the revered farm house table. Read the rest of this entry »

Lifting the Self-Imposed Silence

Posted on July 31st, 2014 by Louise McKay

It’s hard to write.

After working for Hedgebrook for nearly six years, I’ve come to realize that in fact it’s hard for everyone—even writers—especially writers.

I’ve been writing in one form or another my whole life: as a student, as a dramaturg, as an academic, as a teacher, and now for Hedgebrook. And yet, I’d never call myself a writer. Writing is a process, an action, but it’s also an identity. It’s a name that invokes power. The writing I’ve done has always been “in service of” something else. I wrote for assignments, for program notes, for critical analysis, for marketing. For me, writing was a means to an end, but “real” writers write because they have something to say. Read the rest of this entry »