ASJA Direct - Lisa Bonos

Lisa Bonos is the lead writer and editor for Solo-ish, a Washington Post blog about single life. Before launching Solo-ish in 2015, she spent 10 years as an editor on The Post’s opinion and business desks.

In the podcast, Lisa spoke with journalist, Writing Professor for NYU and Writer’s Digest and writing coach  Estelle Erasmus about the following:

  • How she created Soloish
  • What she looks for in an essay
  • Submission tips
  • Her background in publishing
  • Some of her most popular essays
  • How to contact her

Click here to access the recording

Read Estelle’s blog post on Lisa Bonos

Follow Estelle Erasmus on TwitterFacebookInstagram and on her website for publishing advice and editor interviews

Register for Estelle’s Writing Parenthood course for Spring 2019 at New York University’s School of Professional Studies

Register for Estelle’s Writer’s Digest classes:

Writing the Personal Essay

Getting Started in Writing

Pitch an Article (2 week bootcamp on pitching)

Lisa’s Links from Soloish:

Some popular essays:

I tried to fall in love with myself…it was harder than I expected
When my girlfriend was groped right in front of me, I didn’t believe her
I was judged for having sex after my husband died. I think he would have understood.
‘It’s tough for me to know where the line is’: The #MeToo era is making dating more confusing
No one tells you life as a 40-year-old single woman could be this good

The pieces Lisa wrote about the sexual misconduct allegations against Aziz Ansari also did well:

Aziz Ansari fashions himself a dating expert. But clearly he’s still learning.
What’s in Aziz Ansari’s dating book, ‘Modern Romance’? Not much sex talk.
Here’s how Aziz Ansari could use ‘Master of None’s’ next season to rebuild his image

Follow Lisa on Twitter:@lisabonos [].


  • A blank piece of paper is God's way of telling us how hard it is to be God.
    – Sidney Sheldon
  • A critic is a man who knows the way but can't drive the car.
    – Kenneth Tynan
  • A good many young writers make the mistake of enclosing a stamped, self–addressed envelope, big enough for the manuscript to come back in. This is too much of a temptation to the editor.
    – Ring Lardner
  • A young musician plays scales in his room and only bores his family. A beginning writer, on the other hand, sometimes has the misfortune of getting into print.
    – Marguerite Yourcenar
  • All the words I use in my stories can be found in the dictionary – it's just a matter of arranging them into the right sentences.
    – Somerset Maugham
  • Asking a working writer what he thinks about critics is like asking a lamppost how it feels about dogs.
    – Christopher Hampton
  • Being a writer is like having homework every night for the rest of your life.
    – Lawrence Kasdan
  • Copy from one, it's plagiarism; copy from two, it's research.
    –Wilson Mizner
  • Everywhere I go I'm asked if I think the university stifles writers. My opinion is that they don't stifle enough of them.
    – Flannery O'Connor
  • I just wrote a book, but don't go out and buy it yet, because I don't think it's finished yet.
    – Lawrence Welk
  • I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.
    – Douglas Adams
  • I'm writing a book. I've got the page numbers done.
    – Stephen Wright
  • It took me fifteen years to discover I had no talent for writing, but I couldn't give it up because by that time I was too famous.
    – Robert Benchley
  • It's a damn poor mind that can only think of one way to spell a word.
    – Andrew Jackson
  • Most writers can write books faster than publishers can write checks.
    – Richard Curtis
  • No fathers or mothers think their own children ugly; and this self–deceit is yet stronger with respect to the offspring of the mind.
    – Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
  • There are three rules for writing the novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.
    –Somerset Maugham
  • Writing a novel is like paddling from Boston to London in a bathtub. Sometimes the damn tub sinks. It's a wonder that most of them don't.
    – Stephen King
  • Writing a novel is like spelunking. You kind of create the right path for yourself. But, boy, are there so many points at which you think, absolutely, I'm going down the wrong hole here.
    – Chang–rae Lee
  • Your manuscript is both good and original, but the part that is good is not original, and the part that is original is not good.
    –Samuel Johnson