Reading Tonight: CSU-Pueblo 7PM MT

Reading from my memoir-in-progress

Happy Monday, friends! I wanted to let you know that I’ll be reading from my memoir-in-progress for CSU-Pueblo’s SoCo Reading Series tonight at 7PM MT. The Zoom link for the event is: https://zoom.us/j/84796593076

I hope to see some of you there!

Erasure Prints for the Holidays

and a daily NaNoWriMo Zoom group!

It’s been a month! I needed to take a bit of a screentime break due to an abundance of Zoom meetings burning straight through my eyeballs. I have also been dealing with depression, something I have dealt with for my entire life, and when it enters the picture my energy takes a nosedive and it’s hard for me to find motivation to do anything but the bare minimum (work, eating, etc). I’m sure many of you can relate to that experience, and we simply carry on as best we can, hopefully without shaming ourselves about a lack of productivity. We are all more than our ability to generate capital, and I’ve had to realize again and again that mental health *should* be prioritized above all else, as much as that is possible in this society.

Speaking of the dreaded productivity, I intend to hold a daily Zoom meeting at 3PM MT throughout the month of November to encourage friends to set aside time for writing, whether you are starting a new project for NaNoWriMo or finishing one you started last November (that’s me!) - if you are interested in joining this Zoom group, let me know. It’s completely free. Just reply to this email or leave a comment on the Substack website with your email address and I will email you the Zoom link before November 1st!

We’ll have some time at the beginning of meetings to check in, chat for a few minutes as people enter the room, and then we’ll get down to writing toward our personal word count goals.

I’ve recently received a few requests from people on Instagram who would like to order erasure prints from me, especially of erasures I’ve made over the past few months, so I decided to set up a Redbubble shop to make that easy for everyone! So far I have five erasures listed, all from my collection all this can be yours, and over the coming week I’ll be scanning and uploading newer erasures.

Each design can be ordered as art prints of various sizes and materials, stickers, and magnets, and some of them (depending on the erasure format) can also be ordered as t-shirts, tote bags, coffee mugs, and even pillows! I’ll let you all know when new erasures have been added to the shop, and I hope you find something you’d like to pick up for your loved ones this holiday season.

One of the best things that has happened during the pandemic is that I got reunited with a lovely ex-boyfriend who has been involved in the development of a fun artistic project: Telephone: An International Arts Experiment - once you have signed up, you wait for your “assignment” to arrive, which will be two pieces of art in any medium, and then you work to create something that “translates” those pieces into a work of your own. Your work is then paired with another piece and sent to another artist to be “translated” itself. You can browse through the map and the archives on the site to get a feel for how this game started, what piece kicked it off, and how the work continues to evolve through each artist’s particular way of seeing. I received my assignment three weeks ago and sent off my “translation” last week. You’ll have to wait for it to appear on the Telephone website to see it.


READ / WATCH / LISTEN

Scare Me (on Shudder) is like Misery if both characters were writers. Honestly, it’s delightfully bonkers and hilarious, and Chris Redd is the highlight of the film for me. It’s a great watch if you like milder scares during the spooky season.

Horror Noire (on Shudder) is a history of Black horror (both films with Black directors and films throughout history that have depicted Black characters). This doc goes way back into film history and gave me a list of classics I’d never seen. Plus you get to hear from Rachel True, Tony Todd, Keith David, and many others about their experiences working in film, their critiques of the industry’s portrayals of Black people, and their hopes for its future.

After I finished reading The Haunting of Hill House, I watched the Netflix miniseries and fell in love with its version of Theo. I found much to love in its apparitions and use of non-linear time, and I always love a good haunted house as metaphor for haunted family, and all the opportunities that creates for explorations of grief and generational trauma.

Once I finished Hill House, I took a dive into The Haunting of Bly Manor, and I loved that one for all the same reasons and a few more. Despite the doomed lesbian romance trope, it also felt to me like it had a San Junipero feel mixed with the spookiness, so of course I adored it. One review I read responds to critiques that the follow-up isn’t “as scary” as Hill House by asserting that it is actually scarier, and I think I agree. It lacks the abundance of jump scares Hill House provides, but it forces the viewer to reckon with the amount of time they spend living inside their own memories, and at a time like now when memory and nostalgia reign supreme, it’s oddly prescient.

Tsunami Spirits” - this is an episode from the newly released second season of the reboot of Unsolved Mysteries, and it’s my favorite one from the season (yes, I have already seen them all because of the aforementioned depression, thank you for asking). It’s a beautiful exploration of ghost sightings from multiple perspectives, and it asks us to reflect on whether the reality of ghosts is as importance as the reality of those who claim to see them; it requires us to imagine grief in new, physical, all-encompassing and embodied ways.

In the Dream House by Carmen Maria Machado is one of my favorite recent reads. A memoir told in vignettes, Machado shares the story of her experience in an abusive relationship with another woman. She acknowledges her own trauma as well as the villainizing of traumatized queer people, and particularly women, whose experience as “villains” erases their own formative trauma.

So you see, there are many haunted houses to dive into through these recommendations. I hope you do and that you find something that brings meaning to your personal spooky season this October.


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Like a dream in the night

who can say where we're going?

Welcome to Libra season, friends.

I’ve been making these things I call Erasurescopes over on my Patreon page. Each month, the folks who’ve subscribed to the Analog Erasure tier receive an original erasure I’ve made specifically for them with their sun sign in mind, and I’ve got a Digital Erasure tier as well where you can get a monthly horoscope in the form of a digitally created erasure sent to your email.

The digital ones are broadly based on your sun sign, so everyone with that same sign will receive the same erasurescope, whereas the analog erasures are made just for you. I’ve included a photograph of one I made for a Libra patron at the beginning of September, and I look forward to playing around with some new (and more colorful!) materials for the October erasurescopes.

One of my favorite famous Libras, Bryan Ferry of Roxy Music (the namesake of my sweet tabby cat Ferry) turns 75 in four days, so please join me in chair-dancing to my favorite video of a musician watching a video of himself dancing. You know there is nothing more than this. Nothing.


Thanks to everyone who came out for both of the Zoom launch events for Erase the Patriarchy last week! We had 23 readers total share their work between the two events, which doesn’t account for even half of the contributors to the book. It was wonderful for me to see some of the erasure artists’ faces for the first time and to celebrate our book together.

Recordings from both events will be available to watch at the following links until the end of September:

September 15 Launch

September 20 Launch


READ / WATCH / LISTEN

As you might already know, my friend Kenning and I watch horror movies on Shudder together twice a week, and occasionally we take a detour and watch something non-horror (or at least, horror-adjacent) on Netflix. This time it was I’m Thinking of Ending Things, which I’m sure all of you have seen by now so we’re in no way original in our viewing choices, but it felt very much to me like being inside the strange inner fantasy world of an incel with a pretend girlfriend constructed out of things from his childhood bedroom. Make of that interpretation what you will.

On a completely different note, I’ve been enjoying the launch of my friend Lucé Tomlin-Brenner’s new podcast, It’s Always Halloween, which begins with a brief history of the holiday before catapulting you straight into a bucket of goopy eyeballs! Like me, Lucé believes that Halloween is not one day out of a year, but an entire season, an entire lifetime even, a lifestyle all its own that deserves year-round celebratory immersion. If you feel the same way, I think you’ll like it.

I have been reading slowly these days while I work through various projects, but I am almost done with Joy Harjo’s memoir Crazy Brave (the perfect blend of lyric and narrative) and have recently acquired copies of the following four books from Erase the Patriarchy contributors:

The particular genius of Binary Star is that out of such grim material in constructs beauty. It's like a novel-shaped poem about addiction, codependence and the relentlessness of the everyday, a kind of elegy of emptiness."
-New York Times Book Review

Dear Twin is the most terrifying book I’ve read in years.

Addie Tsai has rendered a world blisteringly similar to the one we live in where acceptance of one’s biography and queerness does not come easy. Dear Twin is the story of twins, the story of desire, the story of writing, and most importantly the story of eyes and bodies. It is rare that a book is as equally horrifying as it is beautiful, rigorous as it is readable, quiet as it is spectacular, but that is just what Tsai has created in Dear Twin. I have never read anything quite like it.

-Kiese Laymon, author of How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America

I won’t say that Campbell’s is the book you didn’t know you needed, because you do know it. You do need it. It’s the rage, the elastic, ecstatic poetry, the sheer humor and horror of this country wrapped up in a gorgeous and furious collection, and it’s truly the thing you need to read now.

-Amber Sparks, author of And I Do Not Forgive You and The Unfinished World

Reading Katie Manning’s 28,065 Nights, I felt as if I were examining grief through the ever-changing lens of a telescope. The poems dilate and constrict, homing in on a dab of vanilla in “the small space behind each ear,” then expanding to focus on the soaring vastness of death, “…the great egret at the swamp…the stillness after everyone is gone.” These prose poems are letters to a grandmother whose “body of work is other people’s bodies: children who made children who are still making more children.” Manning reaches to the very core of wonder, awe, loss, and motherhood and transforms enormities—guilt, miscarriage, missed opportunity—into precise sharp moments: a kiss on the forehead, a bite of a fried bologna sandwich, a grandchild’s small nose. I found myself stopping after each poem, breathing deeply at Katie Manning’s mastery, at her love, and how she tells these stories “to keep myself alive.”

-Jennifer Martelli, author of My Tarantella and After Bird


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Erase the Patriarchy Zoom Launch Today

Noon PT

Happy Sunday, friends. I wanted to send a quick extra update this week to let you know that the second and final Zoom launch for Erase the Patriarchy takes place today at Noon PT. We have 11 contributors sharing and discussing their work, and you will find their names below. We hope you can join us!

Sunday, September 20 @ Noon PT
Marcella Prokop, Tara Campbell, Sarah Lyn Rogers, Rachel Neff, Krista Cox, Andrea Avery, Maggie Rosenau, Laura Desiano, Addie Tsai, Raye Hendrix, and Kegan Gaspar

Keep this link handy to join the event when it goes livehttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/84106328517


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Erase the Patriarchy launches tonight!

Zoom Link & More Info Below

Erase the Patriarchy officially launches tonight with the first of two readings:

Tuesday, September 15 @ 5PM PT
Katie Manning, Joanna Valente, Abigail Zimmer, Caitlin Cowan, Tracy Gold, Tara Burke, Tyler Vile, Adra Raine, Ki Russell, Zann Carter, Kitty Stryker, Melinda Smith, and Caren Florance

Sunday, September 20 @ Noon PT
Marcella Prokop, Tara Campbell, Sarah Lyn Rogers, Rachel Neff, Krista Cox, Andrea Avery, Maggie Rosenau, Laura Desiano, Addie Tsai, and Kegan Gaspar

Readers will show their erasures via Screen Share and talk about their process/inspiration for the work. We hope you can join us!

Keep this link handy to join the events when they go livehttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/84106328517


Buy my books on Bookshop.org!

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