16-16 project

A Bushel of News

(Is "bushel of news" a Legitimate Thing? No matter. It is now.)

I have been published in the breathtaking journal Wildness, by the lovelies behind Platypus Press. It is a very new journal—only on its second issue—and you know how much I adore supporting these small, beautiful ventures. Especially when they are filled with so many gorgeous pieces, ones that I am truly honoured to reside with. I think most worth noting is Christina Im's “Cycles”Christina is one of the most talented writers I know, and I am lucky enough to call myself her friend; it is wonderful to see her work in Wildness, along with my own piece, “Cherry Blossoms”Here it is for your reading pleasure. Enjoy, darlings.

One of my dearest friends, Chiara Sullivan from Books for a Delicate Eternity, interviewed me on poetry and my writing process. I had such a beautiful time speaking with this kind soul—her questions were thoughtful and lovely, and I hope you too find light in them.

This Friday, I am participating in a lyric writing workshop in collaboration with the National Book Council of Singapore and the All In Young Writers' Festival. I'm immensely excited for it—I will be working with the kids all day to write lyrics and then hone their songs, and in a few months I will be performing their music along with other local bands. It is going to be a wonderful, cosy workshop, and I simply can't wait to get to know the kids - I have been wanting to get more involved with the Singaporean music scene, and I think this will be the perfect opportunity.

Next Friday, March 4th (or the Thursday before that, for those located in the United States), I am joining Marc Christmas on his lovely radio show, AllVerse Thursdays! Marc reached out to me a few days ago and was kind enough to invite me to co-host next Thursday's show, and I am so looking forward to chatting with him and getting to know the AllVerse community through the show. I had such a beautiful time listening to the recording of the last show that Marc sent me - it is a dynamic and fascinating conversation, and you lovelies are in for a treat. (Also, Marc has a beautiful accent, so you should listen in just for that, I think. ;)) More information on how to tune in coming next week.

And finally, perhaps the most exciting news of all:

The book is out!!

Yes indeed: after 16 days of frantic writing and then a month of delays, the 16-16 project by tNY Press—and my very first collaborative, full-length novel (!!!!!!!!)—is published at last. It has been a wild and incredible ride, and I can hardly believe it is over already. I have made friendships that will last for a very long time, and collaborated with 13 writers whose work I admire like no other. A Cathedral in a Mason Jar is perhaps the oddest thing I have ever had the pleasure of working on, and I am so, so excited to see it published. The process of putting it together was one so full of laughter and light—and I hope you enjoy it as well. Here you are.

There has been a gorgeous whirlwind of incredible things happening lately, and I feel so privileged that I can take you all along for the ride. All of your endless support truly overwhelms me, in the best way possible. Thank you so much. And I cannot wait to see where we go next.

16-16: The End

It has been a wild, beautiful ride.

I'm finding it hard to believe that our 16-16 project has come to an end at last. Who would have thought that I could become such close friends with 15 strangers in the space of two weeks? And who would have thought that we would create something so magical?

Our book contains sad Elvis impersonators and a copious amount of pickles, detectives and radio shows, out-of-work actors and overbearing mothers. It is insane, and random, and cobbled together with 16 different writing styles. And it is perhaps one of the loveliest things I have ever had the pleasure of calling my own.

The editing was frantic and fast-paced, filled with everything from major structural rearrangements to minor line edits. I must admit that I did not get much sleep over the three days—and if I hear the words "pickle" and "Elvis" in the same sentence one more time, I may go insane—but now that it's all over, I'm finding myself almost mourning the loss of this book.

Not that I've lost it completely, of course. After all, now it is time for the Tny Press team to take over, to work their magic as a publishing house will do, and then in January I will hold it in my hands once more and so will all of you, for the first time. It is not perfect—far from it, in fact—but its imperfections give it character, I think. It is the product of 16 days of laughter, of frustration, of arguments, of delight, of newfound friendship. I wouldn't dream of changing it.

So now that these 16 beautiful days are over, I will be turning my attention to other writerly endeavours. There is more work to be done elsewhere, as always—but this project is one that has profoundly changed my writing, and I am so very grateful to have taken part. And more excited than ever for you to read it.

I will be sending out a letter to my email lovelies in the next couple of days with a more in-depth exploration of how it went—and all of the victories and pitfalls, and what I learned—but for now, the next you will hear from me about this project is in January.

I'm sorry to leave it behind. But also: excited for what the future holds. After NaNoWriMo in November and now this taking up the first half of December, I feel as if all of the prose has been squeezed out of me. We still have three more weeks of winter break, and I am planning on immersing myself in poetry. And sharing it with all of you. Of course.

There is more to come in the days ahead, but for now, I will leave you with this: don't forget about the 16-16 project. You won't want to miss it in January.

All my love. xx