Plus the Links of the Week: Taylor Swift tickets, the fallacy of fresh starts, and the last night of a dive bar
I’m going to give you my regular weekly links in a bit, in case you need something to read between helpings of turkey over the next few days … but first I wanted to thank all of you who read this little newsletter.
It’s a joy for me to dive in here and share all the great work I run across from week to week. And it’s a pleasure to have a place to jot down some thoughts about everything from politics to sports to music to … whatever pops up in my strange brain.
Special thanks to those of you who have become paid subscribers—you keep this boat afloat, and I’ll always be honored that you choose to send some of your hard-earned money my way.
But all of you have invested in this little venture in one way or another—if not with your money, then with your time and attention. I’m deeply thankful for all of it.
A preview of the months ahead: In December, I’ll post a few year-end lists of my favorite books, movies, music, etc., of 2022. Be thinking about some of your favorites, too—I’ll be asking you to post your picks in the comments. (One of the great perks of doing this newsletter is that I learn so much from y’all.)
After the holidays, I’m going to post a lot more on the process of doing my dog book … I’ll walk you through all the stages and will show you some behind-the-scenes stuff as we go from one step to another. When it comes time to reveal the title and cover and all those things, I’ll be doing that here.
Plus I’ll still be doing my weekly links and writing about other things as they come up.
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I’ve got a lot to be thankful for. This little space is one of the big ones. Happy Thanksgiving, y’all.
10 things I wanted to share this week:
My weekly for WFAE was about memories of past Thanksgivings.
Also, the newsroom employees of WFAE (including me) are forming a union. I love working at the station and I’m proud we’re taking this step forward.
My friend Joe Posnanski on the ordeal of getting Taylor Swift tickets … and why it was worth it.
The brilliant Oliver Burkeman on fresh starts, and embracing the idea that you have already failed.
DOG NEWS: While I work on my book, I’m devoting this slot to dog stories. This week: Chowder is better at skateboarding than I ever was.
This Longform podcast with Taffy Brodesser-Akner, about her book (and now TV series) FLEISHMAN IS IN TROUBLE, is about as deep a look into a writer’s hope and fear and ego and insecurity as you’ll ever hear. And as a writer, the part where she talks about what she learned from Jimmy Buffett—try to make work that will support you in your old age—has really hit home.
There’s something missing from Bob Dylan’s new book, and Amanda Petrusich fills in the blanks in a simple and powerful way.
Just finished Kevin Wilson’s great new book, NOW IS NOT THE TIME TO PANIC. Kevin is my favorite novelist writing right now—there’s no one else remotely like him. This book is about two lonely teenagers who come together to make something that grows beyond their wildest dreams. (For more on Kevin, here’s my SouthBound interview with him from 2019.)
Track of the week: Bonnie Raitt singing Richard Thompson’s “Dimming of the Day,” backed by … Richard Thompson. Speaking of things to be thankful for.
See y’all next week, everybody.
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