R141. Worry about It Later: Strategies to Finish What You Start

Room 303, Henry B. González Convention Center, Ballroom Level
Thursday, March 5, 2020
9:00 am to 10:15 am


Starting is often the easy part—it’s what comes after that’s so difficult for many writers. In this panel, we’ll discuss strategies for completing the first draft, along with our experiences of sending out and eventually publishing work that in some cases went through many drafts. We’ll also discuss how to deal with self-doubt and how to write through potential problems. Lastly, we’ll share advice about when to set a project aside.

Outline & Supplemental Documents

Event Outline: Worry_About_It_Later_event_outline.pdf
Supplemental Document 1: Worry_About_It_Later_Strategies_Handout.pdf



Juan Martinez is an assistant professor at Northwestern University. Best Worst American, his story collection, was released in 2017, and his work has appeared in Huizache, Glimmer Train, McSweeney's, Ecotone, Selected Shorts, and elsewhere.

Christine Sneed is the faculty director of Northwestern University's graduate writing program; she also teaches for Regis University's low-residency MFA program and was an AWP W2W mentor. She has published four books; her first, Portraits of a Few of the People I've Made Cry, won the Grace Paley Prize.

Sarah Kokernot’s fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in The Best American Short Stories, Michigan Quarterly Review, Crazyhorse, Front Porch, West Branch, Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, decomP, and PANK. She is the program curator at StoryStudio.

Kendra Fortmeyer is the prose editor for Broad! magazine with an MFA in fiction from the New Writers Project at UT Austin. Her stories have appeared in One Story, Black Warrior Review, the Literary Review, the Toast, and elsewhere, and her debut novel is forthcoming.

Amy Gentry is the author of thrillers Good as Gone and Last Woman Standing, as well as Boys for Pele, a book on the gendered experience of taste. She has a PhD in English from the University of Chicago, and her criticism has appeared in the Paris Review, Chicago Tribune, and LA Review of Books.


March 23–26, 2022
Philadelphia, PA

Pennsylvania Convention Center