How Do We Preserve the Vanishing Foods of the Earth?

On biodiversity, wild plants, and the legacy of Russian botanist Nikolai Vavilov.

Source: LitHub
Published: Oct 15, 2019
Length: 12 minutes (3,172 words)

On Finding the Freedom to Rage Against Our Fathers

“Growing up, my mother taught us three girls how to read our father’s moods like the weather, how to discern their ever-shifting winds. How to carve out a childhood at the base of an active volcano. How to survive the flash flood that was my father’s temper, rage like water rising fast. He’d yell, he’d berate, he’d snarl. He’d snatch sentences from our mouths before we could finish them and twist them against us. This was at home. This was at school. This was without notice.”

Source: LitHub
Published: Oct 7, 2019
Length: 13 minutes (3,297 words)

Alix Ohlin: How to Write—and Not—About the Struggle to Have a Child

“The question What kind of writer are you? veered ever closer to the question What kind of woman are you? The world seemed to want to reduce the possibilities of my life to either/or categories—good writer/bad writer; mother/not mother—and I felt suspended somewhere in between.”

Author: Alix Ohlin
Source: LitHub
Published: Jun 26, 2019
Length: 4 minutes (1,160 words)

The Stories We Tell Our Sons About Becoming Men

A mother struggles to raise a son who embodies the values she has fought for as a feminist.

Source: LitHub
Published: Apr 29, 2019
Length: 10 minutes (2,682 words)

Surviving False Dawns: On Joy Division and Life in a Far Distant Suburb

Growing up in what she calls “the bleak Sydney suburbs,” a depressed Australian teenager finds solace in Joy Division and her fellow music fans, which led her to the literature that shaped her as an adult ─ an adult for whom Joy Division and uncertainty continue to define her.

Source: LitHub
Published: Apr 12, 2019
Length: 9 minutes (2,472 words)

When Even The Greatest Of Writers Grapples With Self-Doubt

For anyone that does creative work, Gabrielle Bellot’s poetic piece at LithHub is a salve for the times when we’re plagued by artistic self-doubt. In relaying her own struggles and in deconstructing the work of W.B. Yeats and Derek Walcott, Bellot finds solace and inspiration in two other writers who also sought to shed the “thick coats of impostors.”

Source: LitHub
Published: Jan 28, 2019
Length: 9 minutes (2,435 words)

How Virginia Woolf Taught Me to Mourn

“I couldn’t shake that crystalline, hyperaware feeling one gets on important occasions—on birthdays, for instance, or on losing one’s virginity. My father is dead, I said to myself, my father is dead. Again and again I said it, and still I failed to grasp what it meant.”

Source: LitHub
Published: Jan 25, 2019
Length: 9 minutes (2,400 words)

Into a Crueler America: Two Border Crossings, Thirty Years Apart

A chance run in with a recently-released detainee drives home that the border Reyna Grande crossed into the U.S. with her family 30 years ago doesn’t lead to the same place as the border crossed today.

Source: LitHub
Published: Jan 14, 2019
Length: 8 minutes (2,139 words)

On the Experience of Entering a Bookstore in Your Forties (vs. Your Twenties)

“Are books to us as leaves are to trees, feeding us while we hold them, then decomposing and feeding us again after we’ve let them go?”

Source: LitHub
Published: Jan 3, 2019
Length: 6 minutes (1,722 words)

How to Grieve Your Friend and Mentor

In this moving personal essay, Amy Jo Burns writes about how the death of her writing mentor, Louise DeSalvo, has affected her, and how reading Alexander Chee’s How to Write an Autobiographical Novel, and Sigrid Nunez’s The Friend helped her process her grief.

Source: LitHub
Published: Dec 18, 2018
Length: 7 minutes (1,987 words)