Discover more from Cruel Summer Book Club
Cruel compendium #21 🧚♀️
Pandemic pets, holiday bops, and the power of fairies
If you’re still looking for Good Gifts™, check out the CSBC gift guide. And go ahead and wrap up anything you bought for yourself recently, as a treat. ✨
Also, I’m looking to gift myself with a writing workshop in the new year. Please send me your suggestions!
Writer and editor Sari Botton is about to take a few months off to pen her first book. She writes honestly about what it really takes to build a writing career and become “successful” in her newsletter, Adventures in “Journalism”
Someone recently referred to me as “established” and “influential,” and I don’t think they have any idea what a struggle it’s been for me to arrive at anything vaguely resembling those adjectives in my mid-50s. The truth is that it’s been two-and-a-half decades of exhaustedly vying for gigs. At the beginning I was too young and too much of an outsider to be taken seriously. Now I worry those who might hire me think I’m too old—that I’ve had my chance, and it’s time to put me out to pasture. It feels as if there hasn’t been much of a middle to this story.
My pandemic cat had a secret by Carla Bruce-Eddings
Is it okay to let my dog sleep in my bed? by Kelly Conaboy
She stalked her daughter’s killers across Mexico, one by one. By Azam Ahmed. The incredible story of Miriam Rodríguez, a mother who took on the cartel, and inspired her country.
I’m listening to
Questionable self-care advice
Support I got that you might need to hear
You should know about
Dialup, a voice-chat app to talk to strangers. I feel like this could be a powerful tool to build social self-confidence, especially during a pandemic. I heard about it through this Modern Love column.
The Peloton app. No, I do not have The Bike, but I did get the Peloton app a couple of weeks ago and really enjoy it. There’s hundreds of classes for yoga, strength training, running, cycling and more. I’ve been getting back into running using the outdoor audio exercises. It’s only $12/month, and your first 30 days are free.
I’ve been using aluminum-free deodorant for a few years, and they are truly not all created equal. Here are two I really like. (Disclaimer: I’m generally not a very sweaty or smelly person, so these may not work for someone who is.) Fat and the Moon has an earthy, sage-y smell and goes on smooth and easy. I like it for the consistency and scent, but it’s not as great at repelling sweat. And Funk Butter has a more powdery scent (baking soda) and does a great job covering smell and sweat. But it’s harder to put on with your fingers and can leave a chalky residue all up in your pits.
The economics of Christmas trees. Fascinating!
Writer Ann Friedman is looking for two emerging writers for a fellowship through her very successful newsletter. What a dream. Deadline to apply January 10.
This thread about believing in the power of fairies:I think everyone could use a lighthearted/happy story right now so here goes: At the beginning of the pandemic I went through some painful personal stuff and would often go out at night for long walks because no one was around and I couldn’t sleep anyway. One night I was walking
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