THIS IS NOT AN EMAIL: Letters in the Mail from The Rumpus Part 2

I’m the kind of person who checks my physical mail box every day, OCD-style, sorting through ad flyers and bills for my monthly letters from The Rumpus.  Begun in January 2012, The Rumpus’ Letters In The Mail program offers subscribers a letter or two each month from a variety of writers including, Margaret Cho, Aimee Bender, and Matthew Zapuder among many others. The communiques are often very personal, and authors provide their address so you can write back, although I still haven’t done that yet.  Rumpus founder Stephen Elliott explained to me that, “We didn’t know it would be so popular when we started, but now we have 2,000 subscribers. People really enjoy getting actual letters and authors tell me that lots of people write them back.” The Rumpus also just started Letters For Kids, featuring letters written by children’s authors for subscribers six years and up.  I get those, as well, and pass them on to my goddaughter Emmy, a sharp critic, who lets me know which ones she liked, and which ones were just “eh.”

In honor of Letter Writing Month, we’re partnering with The Rumpus and featuring 2 of the letters. Last week we shared Deb Olin Unferth’s letter and this week, we’ve got one from Gabrielle Calvocoressi. You might even consider printing these up to read later on when you’re far far away from your computer.  Enjoy! —Stacey Lewis, City Lights Staff


GabrielleGabrielle Calbocoressi’s letter below is a letter in two parts, one letter written just at the beginning of Rosh Hashanah, and a revised letter written weeks later.  Her letter was written in the middle of a writing fellowship in Marfa, Texas, and in it, she explores the process of revision, of how, when starting out on a project, it can turn into something completely different than what you’d originally expected…
Expand to read the letter in full…

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