Jaya Saxena on Giving Ourselves Permission
“If you pick up a crystal and suddenly your writer’s block is gone, it’s not the crystal—it’s you using an object to allow yourself to think differently.”
Dad MagazineThe Book Of Lost Recipes ()Basic WitchesCrystal Clear: Extraordinary Talismans for Everyday Life
MS: “We tell these stories with crystals and incense and chants because we want to create ourselves. To make other people see us and treat us the way we want them to, we have to see ourselves that way first.” Your book has such amazing depth. You’re never just giving readers rock facts. You explore human nature and the ways we cope with existing, while examining your own relationship to each stone. Was that energizing or exhausting, exploring so much within and without? Do you feel like you’ve created yourself here?
Crystal Clear Which
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A Roundtable With the PEN America Best Debut Short Stories Judges: Tracy O’Neill, Nafissa Thompson-Spires, and Deb Olin Unferth
So many of the stories I liked best played with understatement and a sort of quiet, confident pacing.
“In illustration, we have to understand the writer's mind as much as we can to make the work.”
I feel like it has made the illustrators' community more connected than I realized before.
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“There were awkward motel and Airbnb moments involving my dog and other people’s pets. But I’m glad I have a record of those, even if I wasn't able to elevate them into art.”
“I was grateful for the beauty and for the reminders that there are seasons; that things change gradually and also suddenly.”
“Linking climate action and environmental protection to social justice action is essential. It is still possible to hope.”