Is TinyLetter the new Tumblr? Here are a few of our favorite direct-to-inbox reads.
i have to tell you about this by Aisha Muharrar
Aisha Muharrar is a TV comedy writer and bookworm who has a keen eye for humor and good storytelling. In each edition of her Tiny Letter “i have to tell you about this,” Aisha recommends one cool thing you should be imbibing.—JL
What I love most about Chewing Gum is that pretty much every character is someone I’ve never seen on TV. I’ve watched so much television and written it that I can usually see any plot twist coming. The one thing that throws me off is original characters. Seeing how new types of people respond to same-old situations makes it new again! That’s also a writing tip for any aspiring TV writers reading this.
mmmm, vol 1. by Cassie Marketos
Whenever I hear from our friend Cassie, this sentence that Oliver Sacks once wrote for the New York Times comes to mind: “I have had an intercourse with the world.” Cassie is having an intercourse with the world right now and when we are lucky, she lets us in via her TinyLetter “mmmm, vol 1.” She’s traveled the world, worked for former POTUS Obama, experienced more life than anyone I know. And what an amazing writer she is! Someone give her a book deal.—JL
“Really, you must lean into it,” I remember instructing a heartbroken acquaintance, scribbling her a postcard from the aquatically hot jungles of Borneo. “These are the things that make us better.”
Ah, god. Idiot pain.
fermentation & formation by Jenna Wortham
New York Times writer (and co-host of the excellent Still Processing podcast) Jenna Wortham explores different forms of self-care in her TinyLetter “fermentation & formation.” Ayurveda, teas, music, and other rituals that you too can experiment with at home—simple joys with otherworldly vibes.—JL
The tonic will light a flame inside you that will ground and perhaps even guide you through the next few days. This month’s full moon is in Cancer, a tender water sign, brimming with volatile emotions. Feeling all the feelings is unavoidable, so prepare thy heart and body accordingly.
Well Read Black Girl by Glory Edim
As the newsletter supplement to the IRL Brooklyn-based book club of the same name, WRBG offers anyone outside of NYC the chance to connect with its founder, Glory Edim, and her mission to “celebrate and promote the phenomenal Black women on our bookshelves.” Every month or so Glory delivers handpicked book recs and a selection of poems and quotes that seem to say the exact things you need to hear. As Glory wrote in a recent edition, “More books. Deeper connections. Limitless love.” (Full disclosure, I work with Glory and think she’s wonderful.)—MML
Brit [Bennett] writes about the complexities of love, family, and friendship. [In The Mothers], she has created beautifully nuanced characters who experience heartbreak and make decisions that at times leave the reader puzzled. But isn’t that real life? Everyone simply trying to do their best. I fell in love with the sharpness of Nadia Turner and the mystery that surrounded her upbringing. Also, I cried every other page. In conclusion, you must read this BOOK.
The Dry Down by Rachel Syme and Helena Fitzgerald
I’ve been following Rachel Syme’s writing around the internet ever since I read her Broad City piece in Grantland a couple of years ago. When she announced on Twitter that she and her writer friend Helena Fitzgerald were creating a newsletter dedicated to “perfume as a shared language,” I immediately signed up. The Dry Down is an elegantly written celebration of all things fragrance, with each installment delivering stories inspired by powerful scent memories. According to Syme’s website, the newsletter will soon become a podcast. Until then, subscribe for the A+ scent recommendations, and reread for the thoughtful, intimate words. —MML
Perfume’s particular connection to memory is one of its most well-known powers, and perhaps for this reason it easily takes on the things we want to share with the people we love, but cannot heave into words. I can’t really tell you why this one particular week when I was twelve mattered, but here, smell this, it’s like the powdered violets in Apres L’Ondee.
(Not Actually a TinyLetter But) The Ann Friedman Weekly by Ann Friedman
It’d be hard to list all of the life lessons and vocab words I’ve picked up from reading and listening to journalist Ann Friedman over years. Like Call Your Girlfriend, the podcast she co-hosts with her long-distance BFF Aminatou Sow, The Ann Friedman Weekly offers a buffet of thought-provoking articles, life advice, GIFs, pie charts, calls to action, and more valuable brain pickings each Friday. She’s like the smarter, cooler, taller sister I never had. —MML
Like Trump. I argue we should create a registry of the people who pose a threat to America. Only I’d like to enroll entitled white men.
What newsletters are you reading? Do men have TinyLetters? Let us know.