Personal Essay Filter
  1. Extremely Abbreviated Description of One Female’s Pain

    “I was excited by the idea that something really was wrong with me.” Alex Press writes about her health, female pain, and the writing of Leslie Jamison.

    Essay
  2. On Writing a Novel: “Should I Be Writing Bigger?”

    Michelle, writer at The Green Study, muses on novel writing and committing to the process.

    Books
  3. “I had grown weirdly protective of my Franken-scar. I wanted it to remain messy and strange and a little puzzling. That felt right to me.”

    Personal Essay
  4. Erin J. Bernard, Essayist

    From reflections on pop culture to thoughtful takes on politics in Portland and beyond, Erin J. Bernard’s site offers her perspective on a wide range of topics.

    Commentary
  5. Motherless

    “I walk around like I have a lightning rod through me. I can’t sit because I feel like I should be doing something. I pace, and I’m short with the kids, and I picture my life without them all and I feel like my lungs will explode.” A fraught, bittersweet journey from foster to adoptive parent.

    Death
  6. It’s Not What You Think

    “It’s possible that, along with grunge, Generation X’s other great gift to society is depression.” In his tribute to Chris Cornell, Rich Larsen reflects on despair, aging, and his generation’s struggles with mental health.

    Commentary
    Image by Andreas Eldh (CC BY 2.0)
  7. Family Genes

    All the males in Neil Kramer’s family had an inherited muscular disorder — but none of them ever talked about it, or sought help. Neil breaks that pattern.

    Family
  8. “What If People Could Tell Their Own Stories?”

    “Stories,” writes Lisa Katayama, “help us make sense of our world.”

    Diversity
    What's your story? How are you telling it on your blog, website, or portfolio?
  9. The Art of Jumping

    Joseph Lyttleton describes New York City: “It’s impatient and unkind, expensive and exclusive, unimpressed by anything you’ve ever done. The city doesn’t need you or want you, thank you very much; although, it’ll gladly have another meal.”

    Commentary
  10. The Comfort of Familiar Things

    Jennifer Balink has been thinking about getting a tattoo — and the idea leads her to reflect about family, permanence, and a Mother’s Day gift from years ago.

    Essay
  11. The Book And The Baby

    Sarah Menkedick on publishing her first book: “By the time it comes out the intensive period that held and fostered its creation has passed. . . And so to hold this book in my hands also felt like holding my child’s babyhood, and my nascent motherhood, realizing that I have come through it.”

    Essay
    Photo by Jorge Santiago
  12. Cuba Counterpoints

    At Cuba Counterpoints, writers and scholars look at the culture and politics of a rapidly changing, increasingly open Cuba.

    Commentary
  13. Motherhood and Waiting: An Essay Series at Motherwell

    Dive into “Motherhood and Waiting,” a series of essays from Motherwell.

    Essay
  14. My mum, the pilot

    Hey Loons’ mother became the first lady pilot in Assam, British India, in 1961: “. . . without radios gaining permission to land was simply a case of circling the airstrip until the light at the control tower turned green.”

    Family
  15. I Did My Hair in Case Matt Damon Showed Up to My Lumpectomy

    “I looked pretty, I thought, pretty enough for surgery and possibly Matt Damon.” Sara Dorner, a mother of two, was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. Here, she reflects on her diagnosis with a bit of humor.

    Death