Write the Damn Book Already

Ep 65: Novel Writing with Donna Hemans

November 29, 2023 Elizabeth Lyons
Write the Damn Book Already
Ep 65: Novel Writing with Donna Hemans
Show Notes

Every novel writer has a different process, a fact I love because it reminds me that my own process is neither "right" nor "wrong."

This gives me comfort for a whole eleven seconds before I again automatically wonder, "Am I doing this right?"

Talking with Donna Hemans, author of The House of Plain Truth (Zibby Books, January 2024), further reinforced that all authors have their own process, and that process often evolves and shifts within and between books.


  • What changed about her writing process between books 1, 2, and 3?
  • Not being able to get the story “just right”
  • Where her plot process starts
  • Her second book was featured in “O” magazine - how that came to be and the end result
  • What success means to Donna in the area of book writing 
  • How she decides when the draft is “good enough” to send to her agent or editor
  • The co-working space for writers she runs in DC (DC Writers Room)


    Donna Hemans is the author of three novels, River WomanTea by the Sea, and The House of Plain Truth (forthcoming in February 2024). Her short fiction and essays have appeared in Slice, Electric Literature, Ms. Magazine, The Rumpus, Crab Orchard Review, among others. She received her undergraduate degree in English and Media Studies from Fordham University and an MFA from American University. She lives in Maryland, and is also the owner of DC Writers Room, a co-working studio for writers based in Washington, D.C.


    Website: donnahemans.com 

    Instagram: instagram.com/donna_hemans

    Facebook: facebook.com/DonnaHemansWriter

    Book: The House of Plain Truth

    Book: Tea by the Sea

    DC Writers Room


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