d e c e m b e r
december is the held month, the waiting month, the month in which the sunlight is fleeting and we chase it endlessly, shaming the chill from our bones and the ache from our chests.
if you’ve spent any amount of time with me, you know that december sends me into a stress spiral like nothing else. there are so many reasons for this, none of which i want to get into, but that is to say: i hope that this is the most relaxed newsletter you’ll receive all year. let’s grab december by the teeth and pull hard & without hesitation or relent.
peeling the yellow wallpaper has had a marvelous first print run, and i’m very grateful to everyone who has purchased a copy, read it, reviewed it, posted about it, attended the events for it, etc!
i mention all of this because i’m preparing for the second print run (dates coming soon!), which is happening because i’m switching printers. with inflation and rising costs of supplies, Lulu is no longer viable if i want to continue to offer my work at an affordable and accessible price. because of this, “peeling the yellow wallpaper” will also be getting a true Amazon release, with an ISBN and all.
i hate Amazon as much as the next person, and i hope that people continue to purchase my books through The Spiral Bookcase or their local indie! however, i am really excited about being able to keep costs down. i don’t need to make any money as an author, but it is ideal if the book can pay for itself, so that i can continue to purchase copies wholesale and put them in bookstores and on shelves.
that said, please continue to purchase my work through indie bookstores! Amazon might get me a handful of new readers, and that’s great! but my literary home will always be with Spiral, and ultimately, this is just another tool in the grand scheme of tools this poor poet entrenched in capitalism must rely upon in order to survive.
things i loved this month
The Mad Women’s Ball by Victoria Mas, a gothic historical fiction novel about liberation in women’s healthcare with a healthy dose of talking to ghosts. new in translation from the original French! do not read this if you’d actually like to experience joy.
Mary Oliver’s Devotions, which is a favorite of mine that i tend to return to every year about this time for a little bit of nostalgia, sadness, joy, love, etc, all wrapped up in one beautiful poetry collection
this Magical Gift Guide from Sword & Kettle Press, which has some truly wonderful thoughts about what it means to shop sustainably from a place not only of environmental and ethical sustainability, but also from a place of financial and emotional wellbeing, putting the sincerity into gifting your loved ones with things they’ll actually use and enjoy!
as the world caves in, my latest (mostly) instrumental fantasy writing playlist.
my Spotify Wrapped. i may regret this down the road, but i’m just going to share it and let everyone judge me as they see fit.
KWT Designs, an incredible woman owned-and-run design business that just did a pop-up at The Spiral Bookcase this past weekend! her designs are incredibly unique and distinct, and everything is handprinted in Philly. & the shirts are so, so soft, i promise.
Naseem Jamnia’s Tuesday Telegram’s, which lately have been my source of trusted information and opinions about the current Iranian conflict and the history of the Iranian Revolution (without the mainstream media fearmongering). Naseem is an incredible Persian-American author and individual, and someone i’m very grateful to call a friend.
USPS’s Operation Santa, which allows you to adopt Santa letters sent to USPS throughout November and December and fulfill the wishes in the letters! apparently the response has been really overwhelming this year, but there will be more letters to adopt on the site soon.
approaching this one again — what experiences do you have with the red string of fate, literary or otherwise? i'm interested on everyone else's take on this subject i'm currently delving so deeply into.
email me with your poems, your prose, etc and let me know your thoughts!
the poet will be offering typewiter poems at The Spiral Bookcase 12/9 & 12/16 from 2pm-6pm! look no further for all of your holiday gifting needs.
& don’t forget, i also offer custom poems online in my Etsy shop if you can’t make it out in person! (or are devoted to staying home. i get it.)
the common rhetoric pushed in december tends to be “rush to the finish line” and “resolve to be better next year”, and both of these sentiments feel incredibly stressful for a myriad of reasons. in nature, december is when we prepare for the long winter ahead. this is when we stock up, ready ourselves to hibernate, settle in with good meals and loved ones for a great rest.
humans don’t get to hibernate, even though i wish we did, but i just want to reiterate that i, at the very least, will not be making any new year’s resolutions. i haven’t, at least for the past three or four years. Addison and i tend to sit down and decide upon a word for each of us that we hope will encompass our upcoming year, but i find that resolutions tend to throw me headfirst into the new year without any preparation, when truly, winter is long and hard and i want to enter into the new year with ease and grace.
i hope you treat yourself with ease and grace throughout the holidays and beyond. existence is a very unique experience, not one size fits all, and though a majority of the world is very forward focused through december and january, you don’t have to be! all you have to do is survive and take care of yourself in the ways that matter most.