What would Chekhov do? writing exercises: 3rd Installment

What Would Chekhov do?The third installment of John Dufresne’s What would Chekhov do? writing exercises — Free Writing — is ready! Click the download link, below, to get started.

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What would Chekhov do? writing exercises: 2nd Installment

What Would Chekhov do?The second installment of John Dufresne’s What would Chekhov do? writing exercises is here!

Some words of encouragement from John:

Writers do it every day! It’s a job. Don’t punch in, you don’t get paid. So here are a few lists you can use to get your writing underway for the next week! Enjoy.

Get notified when we publish new installments by signing up for our What would Chekhov do? writing exercise mailing list.

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What Would Chekhov do? writing exercises: 1st Installment

What Would Chekhov do?Friday Night Writers is pleased to present the first installment of John Dufresne’s What Would Chekhov do? writing exercises. We will be posting additional exercises here every other week, so please stay tuned. If you haven’t yet done so, sign up to be notified as we publish each new installment.

⇓ Download (PDF, 187 KB)

Local Authors Debut Short Story Collection

Everything's Broken, Too


Miami – January 13, 2016 – Everything’s Broken, Too, the newest collection of short stories edited by popular local author John Dufresne, will mark its official launch January 30 at Books and Books, Coral Gables, at 7 p.m.

“If you like your stories lean, efficient, authentic, and incendiary, you’ve come to the right book,” said Dufresne. “Here are six authors at the start of their literary careers but at top of their form, offering us luminous glimpses into the human heart and the human condition.

“These stories, set in a dental office, a Hialeah warehouse, the front seat of a ’37 Chevy, on Ocean Drive, on a hardscrabble farm, and in a marijuana field, are indispensable guides to the way we live now,” he added.

Dufresne is the author of nine novels and teaches fiction at Florida International University. Everything’s Broken, Too features the latest work by six members from Dufresne’s Friday Night Writers. The group averages twenty-five writers at a typical meeting. Authors in the new book include Christina MacRae, Peter Howard Denton, and Tim Curtis, plus Rosalyn Kaplus, Jason Ehlen, and Jean Salisbury Campbell.

This is the second collaboration between John Dufresne and MidTown Publishing for the Friday Night Writers. A year earlier, MidTown Publishing printed the group’s first anthology of short stories entitled Everything Is Broken.

Everything’s Broken, Too is on sale now!

Everything's Broken, TooThe follow-up to Everything Is Broken has finally arrived! Everything’s Broken, Too is now available in both print and eBook formats from MidTown Publishing.

From the editor, John Dufresne:

We had so much fun with our first anthology that we thought we’d do it again. Everything’s Broken, Too is our second publishing venture, and the stories inside were chosen from the submissions of past and present participants in our Friday Night Writers group.


These are stories about what we’re afraid of, what we’re ashamed of, what we can’t forget about, and what we don’t want to know about ourselves. They are as compelling as they are unsettling: a boy on the verge of manhood, growing up in rural Alabama in the fifties, falls in love with a girl and with stories; a free-spirited entrepreneurial couple go to work for Hawaiian drug lords and find out they may have stepped into a world a bit more violent than they had bargained for; a man living out his dream retirement in Miami Beach gets devastating news from his physician and determines to face his fate with grace and dignity; a young man comes home to Miami Beach to find his destitute and homeless father and discovers an old sweetheart mired in a life of addiction and prostitution; a trip to the dentist is the pretext for a woman’s examination of the marital betrayal that has left her bereft and untethered; a young financial analyst who finds himself out of work, out of love, and out of luck is haunted by the childhood abduction and murder of his brother. In other words: something for everyone.

Get your copy of Everything’s Broken, Too now from Amazon (print and eBook), Barnes & Noble (eBook), Google Play (eBook), Apple iTunes (eBook), and Kobo (eBook).

Only a couple spaces left in John Dufresne’s writing workshop!

JohnDufresneHeadShot-640x640You still have time to register for John Dufresne’s writing workshop that will take place October 22-24, 2015. Hurry, only a couple of spaces are left!

The short fiction workshop will meet from 9 a.m. to noon to discuss the stories you’ve written. Dufresne will address concerns about writing and storytelling and lecture on narrative techniques and the fiction writing process. Writing exercises designed to give imaginations opportunities will complement the workshop. Dufresne will also meet individually in conference with each student. In the late afternoon, students will gather for social time and informal discussions of the writing business. Dufresne says, “You’ll come to the conference with an agenda—what it is you hope to learn—and we’ll do our best to see that your agenda is met.”

Space is limited to 12 writers with short story manuscripts (no more than 25 pages), however, a reduced rate is offered to those who do not yet have a completed story, but would like to attend and experience a workshop.

For more information and to register for the workshop, please visit The Seaside Institute.

FNW 2015 meeting dates announced

John-Dufrense-FNWJohn Dufresne’s Friday Night Writers will be starting up again this coming Friday, September 4th, FIU building 2, Room 110 at 7 PM. All submissions must follow set guidelines. Please contact us for additional details.

The remaining 2015 meeting dates are as follows:

September 18
October 16 and 30
November 13 and 20
December 4

View all of the scheduled events on the FNW meeting calendar.

John Dufresne speaks at TEDxFIU

tedxfiu2014imageThis talk was given at TEDxFIU 2014, produced independently of the TED Conferences. Take a journey inside a writer’s mind and learn his approach to creating a story.

John Dufresne is the author of five novels (two of which were New York Times Notable Books of the Year) two short story collections, and two books on writing and creativity: The Lie That Tells a Truth: a Guide to Writing Fiction and Is Life Like This?: a Guide to Writing Your First Novel in Six Months. The New York Times Book Review wrote of his latest novel, No Regrets, Coyote (available from the MidTown Publishing bookstore), “Dufresne is an original talent. His humor is frightfully dark, but also quite dazzling – even by the exacting standards of South Florida crime fiction.” Dufresne was a 2012-13 Guggenheim Fellow and teaches in FIU’s Creative Writing MFA program.

The old English letter you know so well.

Alphabetical Cover

Alphabetical How Every Letter Tells A Story

The letters “a e” and “o e” were once joined in the English language to appear as one. The advent of the keyboard has assured their absence in contemporary English. However, another Olde English letter has weathered the cut and stayed with us. It’s story is but one of many by author Michael Rosen in his book Alphabetical: How Every Letter Tells a Story (by Counterpoint Press).

A long time ago, when children recited the alphabet, their very last saying was “and per se’ and.” which used the letter “&.” According to Rosen this conclusion of the recitation was a mashup of today’s “ampersand.” He writes that the “per se” portion of the pronunciation meant “on its own,” or “for itself.” Today we might say “and so forth” or “etcetera.”

This little used character above the “7” on your keyboard has this depth of history to chronicle its existence. Not so the “@.”

Remembering Anthony Gagliano: A celebration of his life, career, process, and the publication of The Emperor’s Club


Anthony Gagliano, author of The Emperor’s Club

Please join us at 8pm on Friday, December 5, 2014, at Books & Books in Coral Gables as we discuss the posthumous publication of Anthony’s The Emperor’s Club, celebrate his life and career, and share excerpts from the new book, which Carl Hiaasen has called “Pure hard-boiled, hard-bitten fun,” and Paul Levine has predicted “Will earn a lofty place on the shelf of modern Florida noir.”

More information about the event can be found at the Books & Books event page.