Genre: Memoir | Themes: Adventure, Skiing, World Records, Travel
Why do we have to wait for life to break us before we reinvent ourselves? What if we’re the ones holding the hammer, and all we have to do is take a swing?
These are the questions that Steph Jagger asked herself when she set out to accomplish something extraordinary—something absurd. Steph was doing quite well at the time: she had a loving family, a successful career, and an apartment that she’d purchased with her own money. She wasn’t going through a terrible break-up, or grieving for a lost loved one, or trying to pick up the pieces of her life. Life had not forced change on her; nevertheless, she wanted a change. She wanted more. She wanted gusto.
Hot, so hot. The sun was like a member of the family, unyielding and exacting. We planned our days by its moods.
Whether or not the temperature was below 100 degrees determined if we left the house or not. The heat was a presence, a heavy blanket that sat upon our skin, sucking the moisture out. The taste of it seared my lungs as I breathed it in, boiling my insides.
Three strands: Me, my mother, and sleepwalking
A beginning: white, translucent skin kissed by the sunlight in a thousand scattered freckles, so similar in body, her skin, my skin, her compassion, now mine. She is the owner of the love in me, my first draft, me her masterpiece.
Growing up wild in the desert, her mini me, infusing her into me, her music, her burning incense, her fingertips covered in slick aloe vera, sending the sharp, healing scent into my pores.
Genre: Fiction | Themes: Paris, Bookshops, Love, Loss, Friendship
What Chocolat did for chocolate, The Little Paris Bookshop does for books—infusing them with love, magic, and mystery, not to mention the capacity to heal.
On board the Literary Apothecary, books are medicine, and Monsieur Jean Perdu is the “capitano” who prescribes them carefully and lovingly to each individual person.
Think about it. Where do our obsessions come from? Mine: reading, words, the earth, the stars, the universe, melancholy music, edgy images, fairy tales. These are the product of my childhood.
I was born in the desert, a steampunk wonderland of oases and sand dunes, raised on dusty books that smelled like age, fairy tales that took me away from the screaming in the living room (for I must have heard it, though I don’t remember it), the drawn out and vibrating melodies from the record player on the bureau, lulled to sleep by songs about pain and love and heartbreak and searching, songs about life.
I write to feel the scratch of pen against paper. I write to see my words, scrawled in spidery black, pink, purple, and blue cursive across the paper, marching in a line from some beginning to some unknown end.
I write because it brings me closer to that feeling I have no name for, that place I can’t identify, that memory I can’t quite put my finger on. I write because it sends blood to my heart and sets it aflutter.
There was a time Branson could move 50 dreams in a single night. After 10 years dealing dreams, he’d become the top ace. It was a hungry world out there, and he was damn good at feeding it.
He took a hard-right turn, leaving the poorly-lit sidewalk and entering an alleyway littered with spilled garbage cans and indistinguishable shapes wrapped in shadow. His steps echoed off the cement buildings to either side, announcing his presence to the scurrying rats and the vagrants who battled them for real estate.
Science Fiction | Theoretical Physics | Alien Civilizations
We’re all so busy looking down at our feet (perhaps at our glowing screens), we forget to look up…and wonder what might be looking back. Is there other intelligent life in the universe? What would happen if they contacted Earth? How would human civilization respond to such a communication? Would we band together and welcome our visitors, or would we separate into factions, divided by our feelings about the merits of saving the human race?
For the past several months—quite a few months before I left my job—I’ve been carrying around an article I read about quitting your job and traveling, written by Jessica Yurasek. I keep it in my purse, my computer bag, even as a book marker. The reason I keep it is to remind myself of what really matters. It’s not just the message of the article that struck home with me, although that is powerful and attractive enough; it’s the way the author chose to convey the message. It’s the words she used that caught my attention and have continued to hold it.
“You should do this because travel will make you feel more alive. It will inspire you again, kindling that lost flicker of creativity until new ideas start to boil and bubble from deep within. It will allow you to create more, to feel freedom again, and to start your life anew.”
I came across an article last week that got me thinking about reading. The article was featured in an online publication called the DorsetECHO, named after the county in South West England. The headline read “BBC journalist Kate [Adie] pays tribute to the bravery of adults learning to read”. It’s really no surprise that this article caught my attention; for those of you who know me, you’ll be familiar with my motto that reading is my one addiction (besides Mexican food). I love reading, always have, and it’s hard for me to imagine what it would be like not to be able to do it.