I racked up 80+ litmag rejections in 2019. But something funny happened in 2020, and I just received three essay publication acceptances in one week. Here’s the first one. They say never write about dead parents or dead pets. But my first writing class (thank god) was with Lidia Yuknavitch, and she taught me to write whatever the fuck I want. She also taught me how to braid. So here’s a braided dead dad and dead cat piece! 😂 It was something I had to write to get to the rest. I workshopped this essay at Lighthouse Writers Workshop with Leslie Jamison. I put it in a drawer. BK Loren helped me pull it out. She handheld me through some radical revisioning. And the essay—finally—felt quiet. Thank you Melissa Febos for honoring it as the winner of the Pacifica Literary Review CNF contest. Gratitude to all my best reader-friends, each of whom left her thumbprint on the pages.
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