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The Sun Magazine

Why does my mind go blank every time I try to write on a topic of someone else's choosing? I've been reading The Sun Magazine for years. If you've never heard of this magazine I urge you to check it out, especially if you're a melancholy literary/writer type. You can sign up for a free sample issue on their website. DO IT! You'll thank me. Every issue has an interview with a compelling thinker, author, activist or artist, etc., followed by essays, memoirs, true stories, fiction and poetry --- all peppered with amazing black and white photos that seem to transcend time. People who love this magazine, tend to really love it and consider it a form of spiritual or communal sustenance. I'm one of these people.

A couple in a tiny town right outside of Chico recently started a Sun Magazine group that meets in their home once a month. There are only a handful of us, but I am truly loving the amazing people in this group! All of us are writers of sorts and we often bring some of our own writing to share. The Sun has a section called, "Readers Write." This section is my favorite. At our meetings we try bring in something we have written on the "Readers Write" topic. Usually, when I sit down and try to write on one of these topics, I freeze up.

December's topic is "Fights." Lord knows I've had plenty of those. When I was 13 I chased my 11 year old sister around the neighborhood with a butcher knife until someone threatened to call the police. I can't even remember why we were fighting. The tv, maybe? My dad and I had nightly power-struggles at the dinner table, a few of which ended with me dramatically declaring that I was running away from home to live on the streets where I would be forced to launch my career as a prostitute--- all because I objected to my mother's meatloaf or something equally ridiculous. In college I fought "the state," "the status quo," "patriarchy," and "the man." Later I fought God -- tooth and nail -- my most fierce battle to date.

These days I fight myself: my propensity for anger and self-doubt, my negative thoughts toward bunnies and babies (read, "over-population"). I especially fight these negative thoughts when I'm driving on icy roads. If I don't, God will surely smash me into a mountain in an attempt to teach me for the millionth time not to hate.

Till then, I freakin' love my Sun magazine groups where we talk uninterrupted for hours about boring adult stuff like poetry, psychology, spirituality and politics.


( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 15th, 2010 04:48 am (UTC)
Ack! I am in the midst of developing an essay that I will soon send to The Sun! Not kidding! So I am glad, glad, glad to find that someone wonderful such as yourself reads it, and that you are thinking about ways to write with them (and their readers) in mind!

Nov. 15th, 2010 05:02 am (UTC)
I have heard that they need submissions in the essay category. Good to know you love The Sun, too. Good luck with your piece!
Nov. 15th, 2010 01:23 pm (UTC)
Regarding your piece on "Fights"... didn't you just practically write it? ↑
Nov. 15th, 2010 02:36 pm (UTC)
Maybe........maybe I just needed to write about something else first.

Edited at 2010-11-15 02:36 pm (UTC)
Nov. 15th, 2010 02:09 pm (UTC)
I think that is why I am having so much trouble with that Lj idol thing. I mean, I CAN write, but like Henry says, "I write from a point of view, mine" or something like that.

It's so hard to be given a topic and to work with it, ya know?

It looks like a cool place. I'll have to check that site out!
Nov. 15th, 2010 02:39 pm (UTC)
I almost did the lj idol thing this round....if nothing else it's a disciplined writer's exercise and it forces people out of their writing comfort zones.
Nov. 17th, 2010 07:29 am (UTC)
The Sun
Thanks to you and your amazing parents, I am now in a "The Sun" group too. I might actually have to think on my own for a change!
Nov. 17th, 2010 08:30 am (UTC)
ah! when i lived in new orleans, i desperately wanted to join the local sun magazine reading group. sadly, it disbanded right before my move. perhaps i'll seek one out in boston or start my own....
Nov. 22nd, 2010 03:05 am (UTC)
to write or no to write
I also am involved in a Sun group here in Fort Wayne and look forward to our monthly gatherings. In the most current issue there are two subjects posted in Readers Write that got my attention and to which I intend to respond. Hopefully in better prose than that which just proceeded.
Watch this site!
Dec. 28th, 2010 01:26 am (UTC)
I &hearts the Sun! I have no idea how I became subscribed, maybe I signed up for that trial issue, but I've been reading it for two years now.
Apr. 11th, 2011 01:20 am (UTC)
I just wanted to let you know that I just signed up for Sun Magazine. I went backwards through your posts because I remembered that you made it sound so awesome but I couldn't remember the name. So yay!

AND, for the first time ever in the history of my life, I think I'm going to sign up for a one-day writing workshop on Creative non-fiction. It feels like a really brave thing to do, and I thought you could relate/appreciate that.
Apr. 11th, 2011 02:43 am (UTC)
Outstanding! I can't wait to hear what you think of The Sun, and to hear about the writing workshop, too. :)
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )