My Notorious Life: a Q & A with Kate Manning

Kate Manning’s My Notorious Life, is a “big, fat, fierce” historical novel loosely based on the trials and triumphs of a midwife and abortionist in 19th century New York. Amazon chose the book as a September “Editors’ Pick,” calling it “compelling, assured and irresistible.” Kate Manning spoke to the Narrator about her process of creation. […]

Separate but (un)Equal

Back to School!  That sweet September sight of brand new backpacks, fresh haircuts, and packed yellow buses.  Breathe it in – it’s an exciting time!  Full of possibilities, ambitions, and unbridled potential. For whites. While acknowledging that racial equality has made substantial progress in the 50 years since MLK made his ‘I Have a Dream’ […]

Celebrate Your Own Holiday

I’m sure you’re in the midst of preparations, but just in case it slipped your mind, September is the “Great American Low-Cholesterol, Low-fat Pizza Bake Month.” As a holiday, it’s right up there with Christmas and Thanksgiving in terms of the importance of eating. Unlike Christmas and Thanksgiving, which emphasize sharing large amounts of delicious […]

Run 26.2 Miles

With the Write-A-Thon right around the corner, I’ve been thinking a lot about marathons. I could probably never run one–I have trouble making it up the stairs to miss the train–but there are people in this world who CHOOSE to run 26 miles and 385 yards without stopping for bathroom, food, or naps. That blows my […]

Put Your Writing In Hyperdrive

Be focused. Do your work. Don’t be fidgety. Probably since Socrates taught Plato in ancient Athens, students of all ages have learned these mantras as the keys to success in the classroom. In recent years, though, it seems a new saying has joined the time-honored group: get treatment for ADHD. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder can […]

Exercise Your Anticipation

Count your pencils and pack your lunches, because school, alas, is starting again. This time of year is always bittersweet: it spells the end of the long and languid days of summer, but it also means seeing old friends and brings the promise of new experiences and knowledge. No matter how much I prepare, the […]

Dangers of Traveling While Female

Today’s post comes from Tara Isabella Burton. Her essays, reviews, and travel writing can be found at the Los Angeles Review of Books, The New Statesman, Salon, Guernica, The Rumpus, Conde Nast Traveller, and many other places. Her fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in Arc, Shimmer, The Dr TJ Eckleburg Review, and more. She is the winner of The Spectator‘s 2012 Shiva Naipaul Memorial Prize for travel writing and the author of the novel A […]

Carnival Time in Brooklyn

Every Labor Day, the annual West Indian Carnival parade draws millions of spectators and revelers to Eastern Parkway in Brooklyn to watch Caribbean-New Yorkers celebrate their vibrant culture with floats, brilliantly costumed masqueraders, stilt dancers, and bands. Although the parade is hardly an under-the-radar event, plenty of pre-Carnival festivities are equally interesting and much less […]

Ride the Freytag-Coaster

In sixth grade, I was given a handout of a stick figure on a roller coaster (Oh, English Teachers.) The bell curve of the roller coaster was labeled with five stages: the start of the ride was the “exposition,” the inclined slope was the “rising action,” the peak of the bell curve was the “climax,” […]

Open with Track One

I grew up listening to CDs, mostly carrying only one of them on me at a time, so the importance of an album telling a story was not lost. You listened to one CD, and you listened to it in order. All the music in the world in the palm of my hand? Please. Long […]