Panel: Motivation & the (Post-)Pandemic Writing Life



We don't need to tell you: 2020 was challenging on so many levels. As we wrap up HippoCamp 2021, we'll reflect on what it meant to be a writer (among all the others hats we wear in our lives) in the time of COVID-19 – and look ahead to how we can stay motivated moving forward.

For this panel, we'll gather a few writers and publishing professionals who will share how they powered through (or how they didn't) and what they learned in the process. An audience Q&A will follow.

Moderator: Donna Talarico



  • Donna Talarico

    Pronouns: she/her
    Founder & Publisher, Hippocampus Magazine and Books

    Donna Talarico runs an independent content marketing/strategy agency for higher education, healthcare and technology clients. Her journalism has been published in The Guardian, The Writer, Games Magazine, and a variety of alumni and trade magazines. Her creative nonfiction has found homes in The LA Review, Superstition Review, The LA Times,...

  • Ashleigh Renard

    A former figure skating coach and choreographer, Ashleigh Renard has built a committed mass-following who tune in daily on social media for her fresh, no-fuss advice on everything from keeping monogamy hot, to renegotiating a marriage, to getting kids to clean the house (because nothing makes her prouder than child...

  • Erin Dorney

    Pronouns: she/her
    Co-founder, Fear No Lit

    Erin Dorney is the author of “I Am Not Famous Anymore: Poems after Shia LaBeouf” (Mason Jar Press, 2018). She is the co-founder of Fear No Lit and lives in Pennsylvania. Erin's writing has appeared in HAD, Passages North, Paper Darts, Juked, and elsewhere. Her literary artwork and installations have...

  • Athena Dixon

    Pronouns: she/her

    A native of Northeast Ohio, Athena Dixon is the author of The Incredible Shrinking Woman (Split/Lip Press) and No God in This Room (Argus House Press). Her work also appears in The BreakBeat Poets Vol. 2: Black Girl Magic (Haymarket Books) and in various publications including GAY Magazine and Narratively.

  • Dinty W. Moore

    Founding Editor, Brevity

    Dinty W. Moore is author of the memoirs Between Panic & Desire, and To Hell With It, the writing guides The Story Cure, Crafting the Personal Essay, and The Mindful Writer, among other books. He has published essays and stories in Harper's, The New York Times Magazine, The Southern Review,...