As of this morning I was still feeling frustrated over not having a handle on how to write the “southern sin” contest essay. The journalist in me wants to keep myself out of a story altogether, but I realize that’s not how creative nonfiction works. Finally, I FB messaged a Goucher grad and asked her advice and she was soooo helpful! She explained to me that in a class she took with Lee Gutkind she had learned that the idea is to combine my personal experience or viewpoint with the larger issue, then go back to me, and so forth – all within the framework of the bigger theme. Mental breakthrough! I started scribbling notes, got inspired, and now I know where I’m going with the story.