This year, the #100daychallenge started on April 1. I’ve done creative challenges before, and — I should note — have largely failed at them.
Humans spend so much time creating narratives, wanting to string together disparate events into something concrete, something patterned. Story: we crave it. We weave a tale out of bits of information. It’s a kind of electrifying alchemy, to feel as though you’re inside your own real-world choose-your-own-adventure. Does the story we build make us feel important? Does it make us feel like we’re in control? Does it give us a sense of confidence, teach us how to navigate the world better?
"What happens when we juxtapose? Do the unrelated become related based on their placement? Do they share energy, tossing it back and forth, creating a link where one didn’t exist before? I sat at the bottom of the stairs for a while and stared at my hands. I couldn’t remember the last time he told [...]
This year, I immersed myself in reading essays. Not enough, of course (because my self-critic is always screeching "never enough!"), but the good news is I've stayed consistent about it. I created a Twitter thread of 10 of my favorite essays I've read this year, with the understanding that no, it's not an all-encompassing list, [...]
Right now I am re-reading Joan Didion's "Play It As It Lays," a novel she wrote in 1970, and one I return to every year or every other year. One thing that fascinates me this time around is how masterful she is at structure. I think it's something I missed before, how deliberate she was. [...]
... sign up for my TinyLetter. It's called "hello, dearest," and it's really just a way for me to practice essaying in the form of letter-writing, which is one of my favorite mediums. I'll send you love letters about writing, art, creativity, life, grief, joy and all the bits of ephemera in between. >> Sign [...]
Let me get this out of the way: I'm really not a cool kid, so I'm just going to let the awkward fangirl in me hang out. I love Catapult literary magazine, and pretty much all of the work they're doing, honestly. The writing is diverse, engaging, and spans a variety of perspectives and topics. [...]
I’ve fallen in love with my work again. Deeply. In a way I haven’t experienced since finishing my MFA eight years ago. I long for it when I’m at work, or driving, or doing something that takes up most of my mental capacity. I’m always thinking about it, pining for it, itching for the chance [...]
The day after Christmas, I loaded up a rental car and drove back home, alone. Not Ohio home, but original home: the place that bore me, that contains just over a third of my life’s memories.
It’s normal, around each holiday, each milestone, each moment we are expected to come together with family, to remember those who are no longer staunchly in the land of the living.