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Chris Plumb

Chris Plumb is a former journalist turned teacher turned author/blogger. He has his BA in History from the University of Oregon, His MA in Education from Pacific University, and his degree in common sense from being an observer of life. He enjoys his family, playing softball, collecting Legos, making jokes, building furniture, writing stories with a moral, playing instruments and listening to music. He spends his down time reading classic literature from the 20th century and watching movies about WWII.

Story: Summoned to the Principal's Office


Each week authors will be given a new question to answer which will lend additional insight into their story and writing process. Do you have a question you'd like to see the authors answer? Tweet it to @aNextAuthor!

What is the best writing advice you've ever heard?
Hemingway said, "there's nothing to writing, you just sit at the typewriter and bleed." Hopefully people enjoy reading about my thinly veiled soul.
When you start a new story do you prepare an outline in advance or do you just jump right in?
The idea is usually very well thought out, but I don't storyboard or make diagrams. I do, however, edit, cut, rearrange, and edit again, then edit some more.


Margaret Alice

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This was a great story! I thought it was an interesting and modern take on obsession and guilt. You expressed a good lesson to be learned about thinking before speaking and how one moment can make a big difference. Great job! Could you check out my story, "The Fate Continuum?" Good luck!

Lisa Rose

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Did you ever feel that you were one idiot away from losing it? Both of your characters were and they just happened to be each other's idot. Teachers are regular people too, they are just expected to put up with more garbage than the rest of us. I doubt that I would have the patience for it. If you have the time, please read my story 'Drift Away' and leave a review to let me know if you liked it.


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Loved it! Chris, you're a true teacher and can do student talk too. You're so good!

Entertain Me

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I would advise developing your teenager a bit more so that we believe he is capable of writing the heartfelt note at the end. Yes, he is going through a rough patch, but there was so much of your story dedicated to the video that you could have sacrificed that. Family Guy, Gangnam Style and Ickey Shuffle--you are a good enough writer that you do not need to rely on pop culture to get your message across.

Jesse James

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I'm surprised a teacher never said something like this to me in high school (at least to my face), as I probably deserved it. I probably wouldn't respond nearly as maturely as the character in this story. And throwing up in the bathroom when nervous is kinda of my MO. I really enjoyed this story, and the emotions the characters go through. Like real life only more meaningful.

Literature Lover

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Fantastic Read!! The strength of this story lies in the moral gray area that every person experiences. We all get burned out and pushed to our end. However, as a teacher, we have to constantly keep ourselves in check because we never know what our students are truly reacting to. Many times what we believe to be boredom is not a personal insult to our person or the efforts we extoll to create meaningful and relevant lessons, but merely a reflection of a student who is trying to make their ends meet despite family trauma, illness, abuse or simply stayed up too late the night before. I love that the characters each experience epiphanies of reality. This is an accurate story and one whose depth lies in the gray reality we all live in.


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This was a very realistic glimpse into the feelings the main character has surrounding the conflict. Something that might outwardly seem insignificant might actually affect us in some very deep, meaningful way. A couple tiny typos can be overlooked. I was impressed by the description of the video, but it went on long enough that I was beginning to think that WAS the story. But once the description was done, we start to really get into the main character's head and heart.

tiny tim

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Love this story... the writing style is exquisite, and it's a believable scene and realistic interchange between the teacher and the student. I liked the complexity of the characters and the way an unfortunate situation, that could have sent two good people on a downward spiral, was redeemed.

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Not a great read
December 18th, 2012
The winner of America's Next Author 2012 has been announced! [...]
December 7th, 2012
Questions and answers about the Battle Round. [...]
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