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In the mood for a great read? Get a short note with a book recommendation (plus a few other fun links) every week. Sign up here and you’ll also get a FREE downloadable guide to the best books of 2017 and 2018 (so far).


Breaking book news! I Miss You When I Blink, a collection of essays, is forthcoming from Simon & Schuster’s Touchstone Books in April 2019.


Screen Shot 2018-06-09 at 4.08.05 PMThe New York Times: Shopping for a Car — And a Teenager’s Future — “As fear so often does, it refused to look itself in the eyes, instead drawing my attention to problems I could solve with things I could afford to buy.”

 


Screen Shot 2018-04-11 at 9.48.57 PMLit Hub: Surviving the Ordinary: Why We Need Memoirs of Regular Lives — “Imagine we all kept a shelf stocked with sharply written, illuminating first-person accounts of these stages of life—not just the eventful beginnings and endings, but the middles, too. We’d have what amounts to an instruction guide for living. We’d know better how to survive the ordinary things that happen to all of us but which are no less daunting for their ordinariness.”


Screen Shot 2018-03-06 at 10.54.06 AMMcSweeney’s: Literary Pet Names Using Puns Unworthy of Their Namesakes — Mark Twain said, “No circumstance, however dismal, will ever be considered a sufficient excuse for the admission of that last and saddest evidence of intellectual poverty, the pun.” Challenge accepted.

Sequel: MORE Literary Pet Names Using Puns Unworthy of Their Namesakes

And now: @WeNamePets on Instagram, for your twice-weekly punny pets fix.


Screen Shot 2018-02-26 at 1.08.09 PMThe Washington Post: Look to the Lessons of Theater Kids — “Perhaps more adults might embrace the lessons of theater kids in our approach to solving the gun violence epidemic. Don’t give up when it’s hard. Know that it has gotten worse, but it can get better. Work together, no matter how small each of our parts. If we do, we’ll have something to be proud of. We’ll have our children’s lives.”


Screen Shot 2018-03-02 at 4.43.41 PMGarden & Gun: Expand Your Southern Canon — If you could pick just six books from the past couple of decades to promote to the great Southern literature hall of fame, what would they be?


Screen Shot 2017-11-09 at 1.00.18 PMThe Paris Review: The Case for Seasonal Sentimentality — “It’s soothing to think of wildcats, bugs, even trees loving their parents, caring for their neighbors, and raising their babies. We all want the same things: to survive, to grow, not to be left behind.”


Screen Shot 2017-08-25 at 9.20.11 AMCatch new episodes of A Word on Words, the Emmy-winning literary interview mini-show, on Nashville Public Television or online. Meet guests including Jesmyn WardElizabeth StroutAdam HaslettCeleste NgWeike WangLisa KoYaa GyasiJohn HartEd TarkingtonCynthia D’Aprix SweeneyAdam Silvera, David ArnoldEmma StraubAnn PatchettLouise ErdrichJane SmileyMaile MeloyWilliam FinneganLauren Groff, and more!


Screen Shot 2017-07-16 at 9.56.47 PMThe New York Times Sunday Review: My Adventures in Accountability — “As an approval-seeking person, I always want a gold star. But to achieve one thing generally means letting go of another.” A humorous look at what happens when a busy person tries to be accountable to too many goals at once.


Screen Shot 2017-10-22 at 3.02.23 PMPublishers Weekly: Think Before You Link — “Outlets and individuals who publish compelling content exert some control over the cultural conversation. With their choice of links, they drive consumer behavior as well.”


egg-806081_960_720Brevity: An Egg-Poaching Pep Talk That Is Definitely Not a Metaphor for a Writer’s Career — For anyone who has ever experienced creative anxiety.


screen-shot-2017-03-05-at-9-53-17-pmThe New York Times Sunday Review: Sing, O Muse, of the Mall of America — Observe people in the act of searching — whether they get what they search for or not — and you will understand something about them.


photo-credit-heidi-ross-4“It’s sort of like having David Sedaris run your online literary magazine on the side.” (<– Greatest compliment ever received.) Interviewed by Ann Patchett about reading, writing, winning an Emmy, and multi-tasking.


screen-shot-2016-10-24-at-8-40-06-pmMore interviews: George SaundersColson Whitehead, Elizabeth GilbertGlennon Doyle MeltonLee Boudreaux, Chuck KlostermanMegan Abbott, Brad WatsonAyobami Adebayo, Kimberly Williams-PaisleyDavid Sedaris and more.


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The Washington Post: This Shop’s Walls Can Talk (In 140 Characters) There’s enough opportunity for mistaken identity on Twitter to populate a Shakespearean comedy, but it’s still fun. Here’s an essay about creating a bookstore’s voice, from the front page of the Book World section.


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Get your copy anywhere you buy books! (For autographed copies, order from indie bookstore Parnassus Books.) And check out the penguins on Buzzfeed, The New York Times, Travel + Leisure, BookPage, The Millions, and more


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Festival season keeps rolling! Coming up: the Southern Festival of Books!