Lisa Marchiano, Jungian psychoanalyst and author of ‘Motherhood: Facing and Finding Yourself,’ on fairy tales, maternal rage, and more

I was never alone during the pandemic. There was an infant always attached somewhere to my body. On long walks, we enjoyed the company of Lisa, Deb, and Joseph, hosts of the podcast This Jungian Life.

I found my new companions in a fit of new mom googling—not about the…

Have we made so much room for the struggles that there’s less space for our contentment?

At my first prenatal appointment for my first child, my doctor asked how I was feeling.

“Good, I said, “but tired.” I wasn’t throwing up, just sleeping.

“Don’t tell any other mothers that,” she said. “Tired and not puking is better than tired and puking,” she said.

Fast forward through…

Whatever it takes, you know?

In graduate school, a professor asked me if I had a “writing practice.” We were sitting in an attic office with acute angles and a low ceiling. I had no idea what he was talking about.

“Do you have a routine?” he asked. “A daily time allotment or word count…

In praise of narrative optimism, a term I just made up.

I wrote a book that is often described in shorthand as being “about grief.” That was only part of it, the moon in shadow.

“It’s really about pleasure, and about joy, and that is so hard to write,” a writer told me recently. She gets it, I thought.

Lately I…

Perfectionists, this one’s for you.

One of my most pleasurable reading experiences of the year so far has been Melissa Broder’s second novel, Milk Fed, a book I had to read after hearing Broder interviewed by author Lisa Locasio on the podcast LitCit.

It’s a wonderful interview start to finish about sex, death, desire, disordered…

On writing with children when you’re not a morning person by nature

When I first began to ask women about their writing lives once they had children, five o’clock in the morning came up a lot.

My internal response was anguish. Is rising at an ungodly hour what a creative life would require? Take my body, my independence, and sleeping in on…

The bittersweet redemption of Vashti Bunyan

May 1965, British singer-songwriter Vashti Bunyan released her first single, “Some Things Just Stick In Your Mind.” Written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, the song was not a hit.

Bunyan wasn’t into the swinging London scene so she and her art school boyfriend, having no car and no money…

Intrusions, collaboration, and a writing prompt-permission slip to help move from frustration to iteration.

Toward the end of a conversation with Sarah Manguso and Sheila Heti on poet Rachel Zucker’s podcast Commonplace in 2017, Zucker asks her guests about the possibility of a “poetics of motherhood.”

It’s a complex question and one she frames carefully, and at length, about kinds of writing that, “complicate…

Sarah McColl

author of JOY ENOUGH, writer of a newsletter LOST ART https://www.sarahmccoll.com

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