By Leslie Lindsay
A curated newsletter on the literary life, featuring ‘4 questions,’ reading & listening recommendations, where to submit, more
Leslie Lindsay|Always with a Book
~MUSINGS & MEANDERINGS~
I bought a desk. Another one. Because what writer needs two desks? Apparently, this one.
For months I avoided my messy office in lieu of working at the kitchen table (chaos, distraction), or maybe going to the coffee shop (not a bad alternative if I had the time), but then fall hit and it was like–bam!–I gotta do something about this junky office.
In all reality, it wasn’t that bad. But it was cluttered and there might have been a cobweb or two in the corners–eek! Scraps of paper with scrawled notes and ‘good lines,’ were everywhere. Notecards with scenes were taped to the wall. Cords were strung everywhere to illuminate spaces and power the heater. I know: it’s not winter. That’s how long it’s been.
There was a real, psychological reason I wasn’t in my creating space. I was burned out. It was a fallow season. The ideas were percolating and my mind was conjuring ideas for next steps.
I was out and about at one of my favorite home decor stores and there she was: my new desk. I snapped her up, along with three antique glass window/shutters. I hung those babies up on my wall, cleaned, polished, purged, and it really looks good now.
One desk is decidedly for laptop work: writing on the computer, responding to emails, creating graphics, formatting interviews, editing…all of that stuff.
The other desk is my creative space. No computer. No phone. Just a space. For doodling, journaling, brainstorming, drawing, collaging, reading, and taking notes by hand.
My goal is to toggle between both desks at different times of the day for different tasks. I might start with my creative/blank slate desk and then mosey over to my laptop after I have satisfied my own creativity.
What do you think about this two-desk concept?
~Leslie : )
There’s more to this newsletter…keep scrolling!
Ask the Booknerd:
“I’ve always been curious: what do you do with all the books you review?”
–Curious about your books
(a) I have a booming business on the black market.
(b) I re-gift them.
(c) I turn them into art/crafts
(d) They become kitty litter
(e) I give away/donate/pass on
(f) All of the above
(g) Some of the above
(h) None of the above
Many of the books I keep. They are lovely and inspiring and I am surrounded by books all the time. On occasion, I will pass one along to a friend. Some virtually brand-new (gently read) copies, I may become a gift to a friend, along with a gift card to a coffee shop. Some books end up in Little Free Libraries. And more than a few are displayed cover-out at home because they are so beautiful and go with my decor. I’ve turned a few into art by folding the pages and doing something fun with them. I don’t have a cat, so no kitty litter. And yeah…no one is getting rich from black market books.
Are you following me on IG? That’s where you’ll catch #bookreels of these ‘Book Bundles’
I highlight current, forthcoming, and backlist books. Maybe you’ll (re-) discover a new favorite?
Some Writing Opportunities:
- Nimrod International is interested in reading your fiction, poetry, and CNF for their themed issue, “Body Language,” which really encompasses a lot…open till October 1 for the spring 2023 issue.
- Literary Mama is open year-round for work by both established and emerging writers about the complexities of motherhood. “We believe in a wide-ranging understanding of motherhood as experienced through multiple lenses and bodies.”
- Cobalt Review would like your poetry, CNF, Fiction, and more.
- Tahoma Review is reading for their Spring 2023 edition. There’s a fee to submit, but they are seeking flash, CNF, poetry, critique, more, through October 16.
Be sure to check out all featured author Further Reading Recommendations|Always with a Book for more inspired selections.
Recently-published Stuff You Might Have Missed:
- An essay about an experience at a workshop/retreat, featuring design/architecture, and how we are all works-in-progress, in The Smart Set.
- A piece in the nostalgia dossier of Levitate Magazine, about my childhood interest in a (vintage) kid’s rooms and spaces book.
- A conversation with Carla Zaccagnini about her book, Cuentos de Cuentas (Amant/Verlag, spring 2000) in The Millions.
- A Conversation with Marie Myung-Ok Lee in The Millions, about her new novel, The Evening Hero, featuring aspects of immigration, Minnesota, color, and medicine.
- “Breaking Ground,” by Leslie Lindsay, flash fiction in The Tiny Journal
- “Making Space: Cicadas & My Mother,” by Leslie Lindsay, CNF in ANMLY
- Speaking of Apraxia: A Parents’ Guide to Childhood Apraxia of Speech, 2nd edition (Woodbine House, 2021) through some online retailers, your local library, used bookstores (it’s now officially out-of-print), and the audio edition is downloadable (with additional PDFs, resources) through Penguin Random House.
- A conversation with Dr. Sabine Hossenfelder about her book, Existential Physics (Viking, August 9, 2022) in Hippocampus Magazine.
- A book review of YOUR HEARTS, YOUR SCARS (Bellevue Literary Press, January 2023) by Adina Talve-Goodman in DIAGRAM.
- A photo essay in On the Seawall featuring miniatures, houses, and a family besieged by mental illness.
- A piece about being a book ambassador, reading about family, inheritance, post-memory, and landscape in Moms Don’t Have Time to Write.
- An interview with Lauren Acampora about the pursuit of art, the suburbs, growth and stagnation, more as related to her highly anticipated novel, THE HUNDRED WATERS, in The Millions
- A a hybrid flash non-fiction piece about the mysteries of ancestry in ELJ Editions Scissors & Spackle.
- A conversation with Kristina Langley Mahler about her new hybrid memoir, CURING SEASON: Artifacts (WVP, October 1) in Brevity.
- Other interviews forthcoming in HippocampusMagazine…Juliet Patterson’s SINKHOLE: A Natural History of a Suicide (Milkweed, September 2022) to appear in October. Sarah Fawn Montgomery’s HALFWAY FROM HOME (Split/Lip Press, Nov 1) to appear in November.
I’ll be sharing my published interviews here, after they’ve ‘gone live’ with their various publications.
There’s more to this newsletter. Keep scrolling.
What I’m reading:
I am between books. Don’t worry; it won’t last long. I’m going to take my own advice and read a ‘book bundle.’ This one will get me prepared for an October Writing Retreat in Oregon.
What I’m listening to:
White noise. It’s been a long week or two. Life is noisy. Maybe not in volume (but that’s true, too), but in ‘stuff,’ ‘bombarding’ us at all times–pings and dog barks, car horns, and traffic. White noise is soothing.
You are reading Musings & Meanderings, a consistently inconsistent weekly newsletter about the literary life from Leslie Lindsay, and home of an archive of bestselling and debut author interviews. I’m also on twitter and instagram. I try to answer comments as best I can. Feel free to find my book suggestions on bookshop.org, and also check out the authors I’ve hosted in in-depth interviews HERE.
In the meantime, catch me on:
Reviewing books and talking about them with others on-line and in-person is one small way to engage with & support the literary community.
Thank you for letting me guide you on your bookish journey.
Let’s walk this bookish path together.
Some of you have been reading my reviews, interviews, and meanderings for more than a decade now. That’s huge and I am so humbled. Thanks for being here.
More than 2,800 folks read Musings & Meanderings.
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That’s where you’ll catch bookreels, cover reveals, & book mail : )
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