All About Write Despite

So if you’ve landed on this blog, you must be interested in doing some serious writing. Hey, so are we! And we’re glad you’re here.

cathy & karenWe are Karen Guzman (at right in this picture) and Cathy Cruise. In 2013, we started Write Despite with a simple (ha!) challenge: Write for 20 minutes a day for one year. Now that challenge has evolved into continuing to write every day, or as often as we can, as much as we can, as well as we can, and to inspire others to do the same.

Between us, we’ve published short stories, flash fiction, essays and even a few novels. It’s been a long journey, and we’ve still got a long way to go. Won’t you join us? We dish up writing advice, interviews with debut and established writers, and a dose of encouragement. Who doesn’t need that?

Write Despite is a space devoted to helping writers succeed despite the many obstacles, both internal and external, that get in the way. We invite writers of all stripes—devotees of fiction, poetry, nonfiction—whatever does it for you, works for us. There’s plenty of room beneath the Write Despite tent.

Our logo is a tribute to the wonderful David Sedaris, who said:

  • “Write every day … with a pen that’s shaped like a candy cane.” Sedaris

And here are more favorite quotes, in case you need a quick hit of inspiration:

Neil-Gaiman-Quote-1“I only write when I am inspired. Fortunately I am inspired at 9 o’clock every morning.”  ―William FaulknerTyler

  • “In twenty years I’ve never had a day when I didn’t have to think about someone else’s needs. And this means the writing has to be fitted around it.”  ―Alice Munro
  • “Every day, every day, every day I write the book.”  ―Elvis CostelloCostello

We wish all of you much success in your work, and we are humbled and grateful if we can be even a small part of it!

―Cathy and Karen


31 thoughts on “All About Write Despite”

  1. Hi Karen and Cathy, I think your site’s got beautiful design and such interesting pieces, so I’m following! 🙂
    I really enjoy your posts and look forward to your next.
    Feel free to check out my writing about publishing:

  2. Yaaay! I am so happy and motivated now, just by joining this site! Thank you so much! I have had this story in my mind for so long that is has become real and I need to get it out so I can start a new one!

  3. I’ve tried to follow the blog, but when I click the Follow button, I get a message that it didn’t succeed. And there’s no place to put my email address. Any other way I should be doing this?

    1. So sorry you’re having trouble. I ran a search for this issue and did come across someone who had the same problem. Another WordPress user suggested using Firefox or Chrome browsers. I know I’ve had some trouble managing this blog myself using Explorer, and Google Chrome definitely works best for me. It lso might help to empty your cache and cookies, etc. You can read about it here: : I hope this helps, but please let us know if you’re still having any problems! –Cathy

  4. Great idea and thanks for sharing the encouragement … I just saw this (day 12), but will work on it…I think I am going to do a modified version (if you can forgive me), and do 20 minutes a week to start…if this disqualifies me from the “club”, I accept it; otherwise, I’m in…and I appreciate what you are doing!

    Best Wishes! check in later (hmmm….on second thought, if I keep droning on here, this could qualify as my day’s “20” !!!!) :o) Linda

  5. I rarely take the time to just write but I do read a lot (my goal is 2 books a week). But I’m in. It’s time to turn a new leaf.

  6. So, joining a bit late (but only because I just discovered it today!), but I’m in! Starting tomorrow because it’s late and I’m an exhausted mother of a newborn. 🙂

    1. Holy cow! Kudos to you, Kris. We bow at your feet. And there is no joining late–start when you start, and work from there. We wish you much luck, and strength, and caffeine. Congratulations!!!

    1. No blog badge as yet, but that’s a great idea. For now, you can follow us by clicking on “Follow Write Despite via Email” above. We’re also on Facebook ( and Twitter @write_despite. Thanks so much for mentioning us on YOUR blog today!!! Best of luck with your writing!

  7. After blogging about not setting super-specific goals after a stress-filled 2012, I think I’m in. I can do 20 minutes, it will keep me going, and I’m going to commit for a week at a time. How’s that?

    PS – your FAQs are hilarious!

  8. I am a new author, and still learning so much. However, the past few weeks have taught me just how easy it is to get away from writing, and to lose focus and even the desire to write. The need for a daily goal has weighed heavily on my mind this past week, and then I stumbled across your page. Word counts discourage me, especially when I get blocked, or have to do more research than writing. I can do 20 minutes. I’m in!

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