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Workshop Publishes *The* Definitive, Humorous Guide on Sisterhood

Bestselling author Amy Ephron, who knows something about sisters, calls Sisters! Bonded by Love and Laughter, “a tribute to the love, laughter and closeness of family that Erma Bombeck so brilliantly inhabited.”

Published by the University of Dayton’s Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop, the book explores the humorous, nobody-else-could-ever-understand, special world of sister relationships — and friends in your life who are just like sisters. It is available on Amazon, with proceeds benefitting the workshop’s endowment fund that’s used to keep the event affordable for writers.

Sisters! features 21 original, hilarious stories by the winners of Nickie’s Prize for Humor Writing, plus sister stories from and interviews with New York Times bestselling authors Kelly Corrigan, Annabelle Gurwitch, Jenny Lawson, Peggy Rowe, Gretchen Rubin, Carol Saline, Deborah Tannen and Adriana Trigiani; Saturday Night Live legends Laraine Newman and Alan Zweibel; prolific essayists Westina Matthews and Marion Winik; stand-up comic Wendy Liebman; songwriter Stella Parton; and a variety of diverse voices of all ages.

There’s something for Bombeck fans, too — an Erma Bombeck column about her best friend and sister by choice, Mayva, and celebrity writer Nancy Berk’s interview with Andy and Matt Bombeck about their heartwarming memories growing up with their older sister, Betsy.

With Q&As with famous sisters, poems and songs about sisters, quotes from and lists of trivia about real and fictional sisters in books, television and film, Sisters! is a definitive guide on the bonds of sisterhood — and the perfect book for every sister.

“This smart and funny collection captures the essence of sisterhood perfectly — that your sister can be your best friend and your worst enemy on the same day, maybe even in the same hour,” said Lian Dolan, author of The Sweeney Sisters, who created the popular Satellite Sisters podcast with her four sisters. Dolan, who contributed a funny piece to the collection, calls the book “a tribute to the complexity and the simplicity of being sisters.”

Sisters! is co-edited by Marcia Stewart, a Bay Area writer and editor, and Teri Rizvi, founder and director of the Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop. Austin book designer Drue Wagner’s playful, whimsical illustrations capture the book’s joyful spirit.

The book fulfills Stewart’s dream of honoring her beloved sister, Nickie, an aspiring humor writer, who died eight weeks after being diagnosed with lung cancer in 2018. She partnered with the workshop to create Nickie’s Prize for Humor Writing, a contest that drew hundreds of humorous and touching essays about sisters (and sisters of the heart) from writers worldwide. Those pieces make up the heart of Sisters! Bonded by Love and Laughter.

Sisters! achieves the workshop’s mission of encouraging and supporting writers,” Rizvi said. “When we approached famous writers about contributing pieces for the collection, they embraced that spirit and added immeasurably to the book. The result — a showcase of so many funny, gifted writers in celebration of sisterhood.”

For more on Sisters! Bonded by Love and Laughter, visit

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