Work with Priscilla
“Fangs as long as your arm,” one of the men tells Bella, trailing his fingers from her elbow to her wrist. She shivers and steps into the half-moon of sailors. Her eyes are wide and round. Their gleaming teeth surround her; Ro’s breath thickens in her throat.
I thought that friendship required this, this knowing and keeping. From television and movies and interactions I observed from a distance – threaded fingers and bent-head whispers, the languid smiles and side-long eyes of a shared secret – I gathered that intimate details were the currency of friendships and that I would never be able to afford much.
For years, grief would overwhelm me in the midst of the ordinary: flipping channels on a hotel television, my mother’s perfume on a stranger. There is so much I know that I can never get back, but survival doesn’t come without loss.
The American customers only came for spices and trinkets, and the Indian customers buy ingredients to make their own. You convinced her, with stories of the spa treatments at the nail salon: mud and wax and aromatherapy. If they’ll pay for mud, you told her, they’ll pay for bitter melon.
“Your body is not broken. You are not broken.” I had tried to sit up. My head was locked in place, so he sat at my feet, laying these lamb-soft words across my lap. Sharp pinches and yanks rippled up and down my spine, each one determined to tell me otherwise.
But I am against diminishing accomplishments, refusing to acknowledge growth and achievement; I’m against confusing motivation with shame.
Authors Priscilla Thomas and Erin Brown discuss the idea of writer’s block and pressure to feel consistently “inspired,” as well as strategies for writing when feeling stuck. A 30 minute talk with accompanying worksheets with writing prompts and activities.
"This book is a gift. It is a complete celebration of life, with all its muck and intertwinings and joy. Thomas is one of those writers who makes you stop, sentence by sentence, and say, “Whoa. I wish I’d written that.” Beautiful." - Lindsey Stoddard, Just Like Jackie
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Work with Priscilla