Hi guys, I hope the week is winding down to your satisfaction and you are making plans that please you for the upcoming weekend. Tomorrow I’m going to talk to a bunch of grad students, and the professor who issued the invitation has just sent a list of questions for me to start thinking about, including: “What is The Toast?” “What kind of writers are you looking for?” and “What do you think are the best ways to build a career?” (So far I really only have a working answer for the first question. It will be fine! I’m sure everything will be FINE.) After that I am going to meet one of our delightful Toast writers (I would share her name except maybe she doesn’t want the whole world to know she’s in DC right now), and I cannot wait! There will be hugs; I don’t care if she’s a hugger or not, I’m going in.
I’m waiting to hear back from editors and have, shockingly, no new writing to do this weekend, so I’m planning to spend the rest of it watching Daredevil and baking cookies. Look at this thing I just bought on a whim:
It’s really part baking accessory, part dare, isn’t it? Like just TRY baking less than five dozen cookies at once. YOU CANNOT.
@nicole_soojung is there a way we can pay you for yr writing in baked goods?
you should set up a pastreon
— Emily (@erpurc) March 17, 2016
This week! This week. First, I greatly enjoyed this piece by Laura Passin on the indispensable Gwendolyn Brooks:
Brooks was a remarkable poet in countless ways, but this ability to create a world on the page is perhaps the most singular. If she wrote fiction, we’d say she was brilliant at world-building–but the world she builds is the real one, the part that didn’t used to make it into the pages of literary magazines. Not just Chicago: Bronzeville.
“If Justin Bieber were my son, I would always be three or four fashionable diets behind everyone else. I would still be talking about South Beach; the word ‘paleo’ would mean nothing to me.”
Laura Ortberg Turner’s wonderful tribute to Pat Conroy:
What Elena Ferrante is to many people, Pat Conroy was to me: The patron saint of friendship writing. Ferrante has written to much acclaim about what people call “female friendship,” and while I don’t deny that female friendship possesses an alchemy all its own, it was the man Conroy who first wrote friendship in a way that I recognized. It was Lords of Discipline that first gave me the understanding of friendship as an ongoing act of self-sacrifice for the good of another person; Conroy recognized that, in friendship, we create something redemptive out of the most broken parts of ourselves.
Nicole and I concluded our discussion of House of Cards Season 4:
Shall we wrap up with our wishlist for season five?
Claire Wears One Peplum Skirt
Donald Blythe Turns to the Dark Side
Tom Hammerschmidt Throws Up His Hands And Goes to Work For TMZ
Frank Takes Yoga And Practices Mindfulness
Jackie and Remy Go To Bali
“I’ll cut his hair when I know he’s ready: after he’s bagged his first werewolf, like his grandfathers before him.”
LAST BUT CERTAINLY NOT LEAST, there are some awesome Dad Magazine: The Book launch events coming up next month, and those of you in New York must go so I can live vicariously through you!
Nicole Chung is the Managing Editor of The Toast.