Jan Donley, Author of The Side Door

My Art, My Writing, and my Teaching


My art is another way in which I tell stories. Please visit my gallery

While there, you can view my paintings, all available to purchase.


Much of my writing is woman centered, often populated by gay and lesbian characters.


My plays have all received productions and readings, and I can make them available to theatre companies, actors, and directors.

Find more information about my plays and read sample pages.


Read excerpts from my short stories and a synopsis of my novel
My novel The Side Door is available at Amazon and at some independent bookstores. Click on the door icon in the upper right corner to follow news about The Side Door.
Spinsters Ink


Visit my journal.
I use the journal to post short pieces of fiction—little story experiments. I have also been drawing pictures and posting those. I have been steadily working on a new novel, and am about a third of the way through a first draft. As always…
Feel free to contact me for further discussion or questions about my work.


For me, teaching and writing go hand in hand. People often ask me about my teaching and my students, and I wanted to have a spot on my site that addressed those questions. For many years, I have taught first year writing courses at various universities and colleges. As part of the class curriculum, I ask students to write letters to me; in turn, I write letters to them. Below are some snippets from student letters:

You helped me understand a bit about my writing that I had never realized, and gave the most constructive feedback I have ever gotten.

I wouldn’t change any part of how you run a classroom and consider any student lucky to be a part of your class, which in my opinion is a great learning environment for young musicians.

You showed us how to make an ordinary paragraph into something unique and beautiful by adding details and better descriptions. When I applied this to my own writing I noticed that I got better feedback from the readers, and the story became much more interesting.

watercolor and pen drawing of a cat, by Jan Donley

I have never had a teacher that was as enthusiastic and supportive about writing in all my years of school. You didn’t restrict us with sharp parameters on our assignments, but instead let us breathe and use our creativity to communicate our thoughts. You also gave us constructive feedback on all our papers, which greatly benefitted our learning process. I took a great deal of experience, confidence, and knowledge from this class. I am now more open to the wonders of writing.

I really feel like your teaching style of looking beneath the surface helped me learn from this experience. I want you to know that I deeply appreciate the time I got to spend in your class and I truly learned in it . . . please know that to those of us who are listening, the material you taught us is something I will hold close to my heart and continue to learn from for the rest of my life.

I know I’ll take what I have learned and try to apply that to many other aspects of my life. I can tell you truly care about your students; a trait not so often found in teachers I have seen in the past. This semester has been great, and thank you so much for all you have done for me and for the whole class.

All writings © Jan Donley 1985-2019
Printed from http://www.jandonley.net/about/my-work