“Girls are trained to say, ‘I wrote this, but it’s probably really stupid.’ Well, no, you wouldn’t write a novel if you thought it was really stupid. Men are much more comfortable going, ‘I wrote this book because I have a unique perspective that the world needs to hear.’ Girls are taught from the age of seven that if you get a compliment, you don’t go, ‘Thank you’, you go, ‘No, you’re insane.’”— Lena Dunham (via thatlitsite)
“A good critic is trying to tell you what she has learned about herself from the reading of a particular piece of literature. A bad reviewer is often trying to tell you how smart he is by declaring whether or not he liked a particular book.”—
“Creative writing involves a deliberate rejection of practicality: To get into the right mood for writing requires short-circuiting our usual calculations of profit and loss, since there is nothing as gratuitous as a poem or story. Waste, as the poet said, is of the essence of the scheme. On a train, time and place are suspended in the name of a long-term goal, getting from one place to another; take away that goal and you have as close to a zone of pure freedom as you are likely to find anywhere in the twenty-first century.”—Amtrak Writers Residency Has Unique Appeal | New Republic
Hey everyone—It brings me joy beyond telling to announce the existence of AGRICULTURE READER #6, the limited-edition arts & poetry annual that I co-edit with my friend Jeremy Schmall. The magazine is a literary anthology and an art-object. Jeremy and I pick the words out and the…
I can tell you that Andri Magnason’s poems about the grocery store are amazing and are in there after Andri read them at Housing Works at last year’s Geek Week which led to the Ag Reader publishing them. Check it out, it’s gorgeous and has good words.
Writing this was hard. I was very lucky to be edited by Chad Harbach, who spent many months (6? I forget. Possibly more) working on it with me. My writing group — Bennett, Anya and Lukas — also read several drafts and helped a lot. I would like to dedicate its appearance on the internet to the memory of Raffles, who cost me a lot of money but was worth every penny. I still miss you, buddy.
A wonderful essay by Emily Gould, whose first novel, Friendship, is forthcoming this summer!
Read this, which is from MFA vs NYC, then come see Emily, Eli S. Evans and Chad Harbach at the book launch tonight.
Last month we presented novels, short stories, and one play as required reading to understand the joys, sorrows, loneliness, contentiousness, betrayal, devotion, and all the human emotion that goes into and comes out of a marriage. Of course, fiction isn’t the only literary domain where we can find tales of monogamy. Here are 11 nonfiction books — from memoir to history, business guide to graphic novel — about real marriages; stories of love lost and love found, of happy marriages and horrible losses, of diving headlong into romance and of coming to terms with your skepticism.
I made you another list.
Hi guys, this is Amanda, I tumble this Tumblr (with help from Intern Colin, of course) and I wrote you a list of books (shockingly! books!) to read before you get married, including a history of debt! Check it out, this nonfiction list is actually way less depressing than the list of fiction.
Our new podcast is up, featuring terrible dating stories and a new voice introducing things (hint: it’s mine)! You can listen here or on iTunes!
This episode features clips from three of our Valentine’s Day events: Never Have I Ever: Stories of Dating Droughts, Disasters, and More; Are You My Boyfriend?: A Playful Approach to Looking for Love; and The OkCupid Show: Stories of Love, Sex, and the Internet.
And thanks so much to jrnny, who started this podcast, for all her help in teaching me what to do and then for answering my calls and Facebook chats when I didn’t know what I was doing. Shouts out to her!
“You should read the book that you hear two booksellers arguing about at the registers while you’re browsing in a bookstore.
You should read the book that you see someone on the train reading and trying to hide that they’re laughing.
You should read the book that you see someone on the train reading and trying to hide that they’re crying.
You should read the book that you find left behind in the airplane seat pocket, on a park bench, on the bus, at a restaurant, or in a hotel room.”—The Millions : 28 Books You Should Read If You Want To
“[As a teenager] I think that if you are away from adults you can be yourself. Again, it’s that rehearsal idea, trying to sort of find the way that you will be as an adult. And when I think about myself, basically, as a teenager — and I’m embarrassed by some of it, like the strawberry body lotion that my friends gave me that I wore every day and sort of stank up the house with, or calling myself Woodstock [after the Peanuts cartoon bird] or rehearsing plays in a kind of bad voice, or being a little pretentious, or having emotional outbursts, or whatever it was — that’s all a rehearsal for adulthood. And I am different, but of course, it’s in the same shell.”—