Brown Bag
Lunch Series

Come gather at our table.

Not exactly workshop, not exactly lecture, Porch Brown Bag Lunches are opportunities for writers to explore elements of craft and the writing life. Conversations will be designed and facilitated by Porch instructors as well as experts in the publishing industry.

upcoming events

Scrivener 101 with Jen Chesak

Jun 2
12:00 - 1:30 PM CST
Online via Zoom, $15

We get it. Scrivener can look a little scary at first. Maybe you don’t know where to start or are hesitant to leave the comfort zone of Microsoft Word or Google Docs. Just in time for Jami Attenberg's #1000wordsofsummer, an online community writing challenge that begins June 4, join us for an introduction to Scrivener. We’ll cover the platform's benefits over traditional word-processing programs and offer a short tutorial. Think of Scrivener as your writing project’s ultimate Trapper Keeper. Fear not! At any time, you can compile a Scrivener draft into a traditional word-processing document with a quick click. We’ll take the “scaries" out of Scrivener so that you can navigate your writing, research, and notes with ease.

Jennifer Chesak is a freelance journalist and manuscript editor. She  teaches copyediting and media studies in the publishing program at Belmont University and operates Wandering in the Words. Her business helps authors polish their manuscripts for sending to literary agents or for independent publishing. She also shuttles authors through the self-publishing process, from first draft to physical copies. Chesak earned her Master of Science in Journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School and draws on more than two decades of experience as a journalist and editor across the fields of broadcast, print, and online. Her byline as a medical journalist, editor, and fact-checker appears in several national publications, including Washington Post, Prevention, Healthline, Verywell, Health, Greatist, Real Simple, The Daily Beast, Runner's World, and more. She is also the managing editor of the literary magazine SHIFT. In her free time, Chesak is an avid reader, runner, and gardener.


Picture Books That Surprise and Delight with Lisa Bubert

Jul 30
10:00 - 11:30 AM CST
The Porch HQ, 2811 Dogwood Pl., Nashville, TN 37204 - $15

Big red dogs. A mouse saying good night to the room and the moon. Twelve little girls in two straight lines.

The best children’s picture books evoke a sense of play and wonder, surprise and delight. They ask the tough questions (who wet Bear’s pants?) and provide the it’ll-all-be-okay reassurance second only to a loved one’s hug. And despite what many may think, they are notoriously hard to write.

In this lunch, we’ll explore modern picture books—the voices, the subtle tensions, the illustrative play, and most importantly, the readability. We’ll explore the fine line between the didactic and the dramatic. And we'll brainstorm ways to remake the classics.

Come on over—It’s story time!

Lisa Bubert is a writer based in Nashville, Tennessee. Her pitched and published work has appeared in Longreads, Texas Monthly, The Rumpus, Business Insider, and more. Her story, “Kitten,” which appeared in Pidgeonholes, was nominated for Best Small Fictions 2020. Her story, “The Coma,” which appeared in the final issue of Natural Bridge Journal, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize.


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