Hey Amanda (Hoping that's not too forward) - You've posted before about your love of yoga. I also know you're familiar with Boston area. I live in Somerville and am looking to pick up yoga to help my mental health. Can you recommend any good studios for a total beginner? Especially places where people won't ask about scars or physical marks. Thanks a bunch!
heya. i’m happy you asked.
NO yoga studio will ask about your scars or physical marks, unless they’re…i don’t know, terrible fucking yoga studios. yoga-land is incredibly accepting: yoga is about coming as you are and being accepted as you are. it’s not about beauty, competition, or even health - though some people package it that way. real yoga is about learning how to be at peace with what is. you will hopefully love it, it does wonders for mental health. be patient with yourself, you may not really get it until you’ve done a handful of classes. if you really don’t like the teacher or the studio…leave and find one you do. if you don’t like any of the teachers anywhere, then it’s you. one of my favorite things about traveling around trying different studios around the world is my very judgment of yoga teachers is part of the yoga: i pay really close attention to myself when i judge, why i judge, where it’s coming from.
in the end, you sort of start to see the patterns, and everything is yoga
there’s a TON of great studios in boston area, they’ve been springing up left and right for the last 5-10 years.
i’d avoid bikram - i often go but i don’t think it’s great for beginners in general.
both baptiste studios (cambridge and brookline) are really wonderful - that’s where i tend to head. the best teachers there: clare, gregor, jane, emily.
sadhana in the south end is WONDERFUL, it’s more of a little local joint as opposed to the hugeness of baptiste, and glen is one of the best teachers i’ve ever had. he teaches a long sunday morning class that is absolutely wonderful. that might be a good place to start. he goes very slowly and speaks a lot to the real yoga.
Don’t ever use the word ‘soul,’ if possible. Never quote dialogue you can summarize. Avoid describing crowd scenes but especially party scenes.
If you’re doing your job, the reader feels what you felt. You don’t have to tell the reader how to feel. No one likes to be told how to feel about something. And if you doubt that, just go ahead. Try and tell someone how to feel.
You want vivid writing. How do we get vivid writing? Verbs, first. Precise verbs. All of the action on the page, everything that happens, happens in the verbs. The passive voice needs gerunds to make anything happen. But too many gerunds together on the page makes for tinnitus: Running, sitting, speaking, laughing, inginginginging. No. Don’t do it. The verbs tell a reader whether something happened once or continually, what is in motion, what is at rest. Gerunds are lazy, you don’t have to make a decision and soon, everything is happening at the same time, pell-mell, chaos. Don’t do that. Also, bad verb choices mean adverbs. More often than not, you don’t need them. Did he run quickly or did he sprint? Did he walk slowly or did he stroll or saunter?
i haven’t been shy about saying that my college years were dark. one of my biggest retrospective regrets is that I didn’t get to take a class with the famous Annie Dillard. she was there teaching writing - people whispered in reverent tones about her class.
huh who ?
I knew nothing back then
now, 17 years later, i sit down in a melbourne cafe to get back to writing my first book after a weekend of beautiful debauchery. I feel like a total fucking fraud. I can’t write and I don’t know what business I have pretending I can. so, like a good, disciplined writer, begin the days work by checking my tumblr.
i started following maria’s blog just a year (or so) ago - but sometimes her uncanny timing just rips my heart in two: is she stalking me and posting in-jokes?
alexander’s description of annie’s class is like a little salve on my seemingly un-healable college-regret wound. a stitch or two. I didn’t get a chair at the royal table, but he brought me some dessert in a doggie bag. delivered by maria.
the world today is therefore, as neil would say, a good place.
click on the link and read Alexander’s whole piece. it’s fucking brilliant.
thank you maria thank you Alexander chee thank you annie Dillard
Guys commit suicide Guys self harm Guys throw up Guys starve themselves Guys cry Guys get bullied Guys get hurt Guys get abused
Girls aren’t the only ones. So when your seeing a depressed girl and say thats sad then do the same to guys. Cause no matter how strong a guy could be, he can still break just like girls. So to everyone with a disorder, regardless of gender, stay strong
Hi :) How's the book going? Anything cool happen today?
Hi :) thanks for asking. i’m writing up a fucking storm. something cool did happen today.
i was walking down napier street in fitzroy, on my way back from a long day containing a yoga class, a really perfect cup of coffee and a real nice bowl of vegetarian soup at the vegie bar, where i wrote about 5,000 words, then stopping by the bookstore and buying a copy of one of neil’s books for a friend and a copy of walden by henry david thoreau for another friend and a spontaneous art-book gift for some people in a share house i recently met who did something nice for me last week. they asked me if i wanted a bag and i thought about it and finally said yes and was really happy that my wet yoga clothes fit into the bag perfectly with all the books.
i passed the beautiful fitzroy town hall and the sun was setting and coming through the trees and buildings in blazing patches on the sidewalk in front of me, but the wind was cold, and i was warm every time i walked into the sun, then cold again every time i was back in the shadow of the buildings.
and i thought to myself
"i am absolutely, perfectly happy right now. nothing’s missing. amanda, remember this feeling."
and right at that moment i passed by a dog behind a fence in someone’s yard, and he said hello and so i went over and patted his head and looked in his happy dog eyes. and i thought: maybe this is a sign from Dog that i need a God.
hi amanda! so, i was thinking of covering "oasis" (if that's cool, of course), but as someone who has never been raped or had an abortion, would that be disrespectful or insensitive of me, even though the point of the song itself is (at least kind of) irreverence in the face of those ultra-horrifying experiences? just wondering. and regardless, you are amazing and thank you for all that you do.
the world’s gotten sad when I start getting all sorts of tumblr questions like this.
tumblr has been depressing me lately.
everyone is so goddamned afraid of each other.
GO BE FREE OF ALL THIS!
GO MAKE SOME FUCKING ART!
ANYTHING YOU WANT!
COVER A SONG!
ALL SONGS ARE YOURS!!
THAT’S WHAT MUSIC *IS*
THAT’S HOW WE SHARE!!
GO WRITE A SONG!!!
“Creators of things are people like anybody else. They have flaws, often major flaws, like anybody else. They are nevertheless often able to create art that is moving, meaningful, emotionally involving, satisfying, and beloved. This is a very strange alchemy that doesn’t really make much coherent sense. Humans create art that is better than they, the humans themselves, are. No one actually knows how this is possible or how we do it or where it comes from or why our brains are built to allow for it. It is just one of those things. It looks like magic, and it can be upsetting to fans. The idea that behind the thing that they love, that affects them deeply and truly and that brings meaning and beauty to their lives, is an actual person who you might or might not actually like as a person, is disconcerting and can be troubling.”—(via larien-vardamir-arcamonel)
How do you manage to be so on the edge of thing, so sensitive, so aware of other people and not be drown by their misery? It might sounds selfish but it seems like you never step out, for ourself, from time to time. And you are an artist who needs also this time to write and create. So you just don't sleep?
who says i don’t drown in other peoples miseries? it’s one of my favorite past-times.
and as for the sleep: it’s an illusion, I have tricked you. i sleep eight hours a night or get a cold. nine hours when i’m on tour doing long shows and signings every single night.
My girlfriend got me "The ocean at the end of the lane" in its spanish translation for my birthday, and in Neil's bio says you are a writer (instead of a singer or an artist). I thought it was funny and cute and thought of sharing it with you. Anyways, the best of lucks with your new book, lovely human being.
improve your piece of media by adding non-sexualized lesbians. lesbian heros. lesbian villains. lesbian minor characters. old lesbians. young lesbians. chubby lesbians. poc lesbians. non-binary lesbians. firefighter lesbians. astronaut lesbians. queen lesbians. everyday…