Category Archives: Mary Karr

Something Good

oldtownalleySo great to be partnering with Wanderlust to share this list with a larger audience.

1. This American Was Shocked When His Facebook Post About England Went Viral. “A few weeks ago he visited England, and he decided to share his observations on Facebook.” This list is both interesting and funny.

2. Wildlife is absolutely thriving at Chernobyl disaster site.

3. Living a Full Life, a dharma teaching from Natalie Goldberg. “A writer, for better or for worse, gets to live life twice.”

4. This offensive photo sparked a whole lot of love for the boy who deserved better.

5. It’s here and it’s being claimed “The first zero-waste grocery store in the world.”

6. Nutritower is a vertical farm for your tiny condo.

7. The Just F*cking Journal Class: October 12th-16th. “5 days. 5 fresh prompts. 5 ways to get present with YOU.” This is a great opportunity, a great practice — FREE.

8. Wisdom from Mara Glatzel, on the page for her The Deep Exhale offering, something I needed to hear so badly I signed up for it,

When we are well-rested, well-nourished, and well-loved we are able to show up in the world to do the work that we were put on the planet to do with ease and grace. It really is that simple and yet, so many of us tie ourselves up in knots believing that working hard(er) is the only way forward.

9. Begin Again: How Yoga Unlocks the Writer Within from Dani Shapiro, in which she says,

The writing life is painstakingly slow. We toil invisibly, tearing our hair out, steam escaping from our ears, our hearts frozen in fear, our poor small selves so full of the tension of what we hope to express and the impossibility of ever getting it exactly right. It’s just about unbearable, which is why we look to our totems to help us along the way. But perhaps the wisdom we crave isn’t to be found inside those objects we imbue with magic and meaning. Perhaps—just perhaps—to quote Woolf once more, “We are the words; we are the music; we are the thing itself.”

10. Squirrel Rescued After Hurricane Becomes Family’s Cutest Member. A squirrel named Jill.

11. The True Secret of Writing: A Talk With Natalie Goldberg, wisdom from one of my favorite teachers.

12. #3bravethings : Have You Done 3 Brave Things in 2015 Yet? from Diana Dellos.

13. Money Talks with Jill Salahub I love the Money Talks series on Mabel Magazine with the lovely Sherry Richert Belul, and was so happy when she asked me to take part. It’s so timely, because I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how I make my living.

14. The Simple Technique that Changed My Life on Elephant Journal. This article explains why I meditate better than almost anything I’ve ever read.

Our tendency at grasping for the next thing to fill a hole that we perceive in our being is demonstrated in our thoughts during meditation practice. By cutting the pattern of discursive thought we learn to relax and just be. We can actually sit and be content. But, we’re not doing all of this to just be good little meditators, or to have short reprieves during our day from our constant state of anxiety and dissatisfaction. We’re doing this during our sitting time so that it begins to affect our entire life.

15. The corporatization of higher education: With a system that caters to the 1 percent, students and faculty get screwed. I could only read this in short doses. It’s so true, so disappointing, that it makes me feel sick.

This exploitation of low-wage faculty is part of what’s known as the corporatization of higher education. Increasingly, both public and private colleges are being run on the cost-cutting model of American business. Which presents a burning question: If faculty are being paid less, class sizes are growing and tuition is higher than ever, where is the money going?

16. Dog Refuses To Leave The Side Of Man Who Saved Him From Flood. This story had me in tears.

17. This Is What You Should Eat. Any Questions? This is so great, highlights how hard it can be to know what to eat when we listen to something other than our own body, our own inherent wisdom. And, it’s funny at the same time.

18. Instead of a ‘dislike’ button, Facebook tests new set of reaction emojis.

19. Mom’s Viral Facebook Post Offers Powerful Message After Miscarriage, “Scars tell stories. Scars mean survival. Scars mean you showed up for the fight instead of running from it.”

20. Awake in the World, 2nd Annual Online Free Event, November 4th – 8th. Last year this was great, and this year promises to be the same. So many great teachers.

21. Raise Your Hand Say Yes with Austin Kleon. A great podcast, a great guest.

22. The Brutal Economics of Being a Yoga Teacher.

23. Good stuff from this week’s Positively Present Picks list: 25 Hilarious Tweets That Perfectly Capture Your Feelings About Animals, and 5 Positive Reasons for Saying No, and The Two Best Ways to Uncover Your Truth.

24. Austin Kleon on Mary Karr’s new book, The Art of Memoir.

25. the shutterbugs: kate holstein on SF Girl by Bay. Such dreamy pictures. I clicked through to her full website and got lost in it.

26. 5 Ways to Manage Stress at Work, some great tips from Laura Simms, who is also offering Your Career Homecoming Training Series videos for FREE on her new website.

27. The Crossroads of Should and Must. “This is a story about two roads — Should and Must. It’s a pep talk for anyone who’s chosen Should for far too long — months, years, maybe a lifetime — and feels like it’s about time they gave Must a shot.” This post ended up inspiring a book that I really want to read.

28. Why you should stop saying should on Positively Present. Stop shoulding all over yourself.

29. Wisdom from Anam Thubten,

If we were asked to be free right now, to jump into the sea of love in this very moment, we might turn our attention inward and try it, and it may not work. Why? Because of a hindrance, a block. That block is the very sense of “I am” that is the false image of who we are. It is the shell that is veiling, covering our true nature. So the goal of all spiritual endeavors is to actually realize the enlightened part of who we are, not sometime in the future, but right now.

30. Wisdom from Kiki Smith,

Just do your work. And if the world needs your work it will come and get you. And if it doesn’t, do your work anyway. You can have fantasies about having control over the world, but I know I can barely control my kitchen sink. That is the grace I’m given. Because when one can control things, one is limited to one’s own vision.

31. The Geography Of Sorrow: Francis Weller On Navigating Our Losses.

32. Claritude from Jena Schwartz.

33. Breathe, an eleven week, (self-directed), deep breathing, creative recovery retreat for your spirit with the lovely Julia Fehrenbacher.

34. A dirty secret called grief. “After her mother’s death, Kiran Sidhu found she was expected to ‘move on’ with such bewildering haste that her only option was to conceal her sorrow.”

Something Good


1. From Justine Musk, The Question You Need to Ask Yourself.

2. This quote from Geneen Roth:

Sometimes we use food and our weight as a way to be left alone. Since many of us believe that, regardless of what we get paid to do, our real job is to on call for people who need us, we leave ourselves with a way to get what we need and want: food. But when you say yes when you mean no, you abandon yourself. And when you say no when you mean no, you signal to yourself that it is safe here, inside your body. Safe here, where you live and are and breathe. You don’t have to run away. You don’t have to lie.

Saying no is a way of being tender with yourself and honest with the people around you. And when you say no with your voice, you will no longer need to say it with your body weight. And when you say no to what you don’t want, you have space to say yes to what you do.

And this one:

Right now, in this very second, ask yourself if what you are doing, what you are thinking and how you are acting brings you closer to yourself or farther away. Does it open your heart or does it close your heart? You have a choice. Break the trance. Come back to kindness.

And this one too:

Sometimes happiness is as difficult to accept as sadness or loneliness. Sometimes, we eat because we don’t know what to do with happiness or joy. We think we’re not allowed. We think we will get “too big for our britches.” We become superstitious. If we talk about it, people won’t like it. If we tell someone, they might be threatened and go away. We hold onto our sadness because we think that that is what connects us with other people–that if we feel terrible about ourselves, we will get help, but if we feel as if we are occupying our own lives, if we feel powerful, we will lose. In this way, we keep ourselves psychologically small. We keep ourselves wounded and afraid of our own magnificence. But it’s when you are aware of, and own, the hugeness of your heart, your being, your love that you are most connected to other people–which then allows them to connect to their own power, their own love. It begins with you.

3. A tiny riverside house in JapanOn the inside, it looks so much bigger, more spacious than you’d expect.

4. Understanding How to Frame Your Creative ExpertiseAnd P.S. I’m a survivor.

5. How to Write Like a Mother#^@%*& by Elissa Bassist & Cheryl Strayed.

6. Not Today a beautiful poem by the beautiful poet Julia Fehrenbacher at Painted Path.

7. The Power of Showing Up from Clare Herbert.

8. “Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this too, was a gift.” ~Mary Oliver

9. 5 Lessons I Learned While Running from Marianne Elliott. The final line of this isn’t about running at all, but it’s my favorite. Marianne also has a really great Resources for Writers page on her site.

10. Ben’s Friday Dance Party. I love this guy. He makes me smile. But I also watch this video and wonder if you were around him all the time, would it get annoying? Or would your face and stomach hurt from smiling so much and laughing so hard?

11. 30 Best Jokes from 30 Rock. I watched the final episode this weekend, am so sad that it’s over.

12. I commit to 28 days of meditation practice. May my practice benefit all beings.

13. 14 Days of Self Love hosted by Vivienne McMaster.

14. My Creative Life: Rachel W Cole on Susannah Conway’s blog. Two of my favorite women together.

15. 8 Ways Happy People are Different from Everyone Else by Shelley Prevost.

16. Why We Write: Mary Karr on the Magnetism and Madness of the Written Word on Brain Pickings. Equally depressing, refreshingly honest, and oddly comforting is this, “I still don’t support myself as a writer. I support myself as a college professor. I couldn’t pay my mortgage on the revenue from my books. The myth is that you make a lot of money when you publish a book. Unless you write a blockbuster, that’s pretty much untrue. Starting when I was five, I always identified as a writer. It had nothing to do with income.” I wish it weren’t true, and yet if it is, wouldn’t it just be better to surrender?

17. Brene’ Brown: The Courage to Be Vulnerable, Sounds True Podcast. Listen or download for free.

18. 13 New Year’s Resolutions for Writers from Jeff Goins, shared by Susannah on her Something for the Weekend list.

19. Glazed Beet and Carrot SaladI want to eat this, (also from Susannah’s list).

20. My Gift to You from Erica Herbert, in which Erica reads the sweetest book, (also from Susannah’s list).

21. Seth Godin on The Art of Noticing, and Then Creating, an On Being podcast, (from Happy Links on Rowdy Kittens). Also about Seth Godin, Here’s How Seth Godin Writes on Copy Blogger. My favorite part is when he is asked: “Do you write every day?” and his answer is “Do you talk every day?”

22. Yo La Tengo – “I’ll Be Around” video, a simple but magically complex video.

23. Danny and Annie, a sweet, sad love story, with an ending like so many others.

24. 10 Things Parents Should Never, Ever Do on BlogHer. I’m never sure if these are funny to me because I don’t have kids, or if they’d be that much funnier if I did.

25. Get Out of Your Head and Into the Moment on Scoutie Girl.

26. How to Say No to Everything Ever by Alexandra Franzen.

27. Oh What To Do About Sugar? by Jennifer Louden. Oh what to do indeed.