5 min read

Letter of News: Star Wars, New Column, Many Links

Cherry plum branches, their new green leaves glowing with light against a blue sky and fluffy white clouds.

Dear Friends,

I've found it so difficult to write a newsletter lately. So much has happened since last I wrote – big life-changing things, small quiet things, changes of scene and season. I've felt suspended, often, between the desire to write a heartfelt outpouring about the river and the forest and the meadow and the sky with which I kept close company all April, and the equal and opposite desire to write a sensible, robust accounting of how I spent my time last month and the first week of this, to offer updates on work and general circumstances.

In the past I've made vague, hand-wavy attempts at bifurcating these postings between Letters of News and a more haphazard wilderness of writing whatever I'm feeling, usually but not always on a Friday, sometimes an actual essay, sometimes slipping back into the musing, earnest, letter-to-the-world wonder that was blogging in its early days. I don't want to write less than once a month; I don't want to write more than once a week; I still crave an elusive schedule that I will find generative rather than restrictive, more like a sonnet than a sestina.

While I figure that out – some news!

First: I'm thrilled to share that I've contributed to Star Wars canon!

Anthology cover. An ewok is centred on the cover, back to the viewer, surrounded by ferns while gazing out over conifers silhouetted against a sunset-gradient sky in which fireworks appear to be going off. The names of the contributors are laid out in the left and right hand margins of the cover in alphabetical order, beginning with Saladin Ahmed at top left and ending with Alyssa Wong at bottom right. A full list of the contributors is at the link.
“What I have told you was true…from a certain point of view.”

Since 2017, Obi-Wan Kenobi’s quotable line from Star Wars: Return of the Jedi — a defense of his own retelling of Anakin Skywalker’s death at the hands of Darth Vader — has heralded an anthology series celebrating each 40th anniversary of the original trilogy films.

Today, StarWars.com and This Week! In Star Wars are excited to reveal the third installment in the collection, From a Certain Point of View: Return of the Jedi, including the cover art by artist Will Staehle.

In honor of the 40th anniversary of the film’s debut on May 25, 1983, 40 storytellers explore the story of Return of the Jedi through the eyes of supporting characters, including heroes, villains, droids, aliens, and creatures.

I'm in tremendous company, and very proud of what I wrote, which was a departure for me on several levels – but I hope to share more about that soon. The anthology comes out September 5; in the meantime, you can pre-order it here, or from your favourite indie.

Next: a new Otherworldly column went up last month, covering Emily Wilde's Encyclopaedia of Fairies by Heather Fawcett, The Lies of the Ajungo by Moses Ose Utomi, and Infinity Gate by M. R. Carey. (It's a gift link, so feel free to share it with anyone stymied by paywalls!). It's another one of those delicious columns where I fully adored everything I covered, and I'm always so grateful when that happens.

Finally, the biggest news: we've moved house.

A healthy spider plant sits in a terracotta pot on the dashboard of a car. Behind it the windshield is slick with rain, distorting buildings and electricity pole behind it; to the left of the pot is a partial glimpse of eyeglasses and a short mason jar in which a tiny bit of aloe vera grows.
Moving is a whole mood and so is this photo.

The last time we did this was the autumn of 2020, moving from a 2 bedroom apartment in a walk-up to a 3 bedroom apartment in a high-rise. It was a vast improvement on our previous circumstance; Stu and I had separate offices, we had balconies on which I could grow things in pots, the kitchen had a stove I could open all the way. There were things to adjust to, living in a condo, but overall I found it to be a haven for us, one in which we endured pandemic immurement and I figured out remote teaching and the cats murder-chirped at pigeons to their hearts' (dis)content.

This time we've moved into a house, and we (and the cats) hardly know what to do with ourselves.

A black and white cat sits near the top of a staircase with his mouth WIDE open, looking as if he's sounding a barbaric yawp from the rooftop of his world.
(Journalistic integrity requires me to say that Devon was actually yawning here, but the VIBE!)

There's a yard! There's a kitchen so good that one of our movers nodded "dope kitchen" while walking through it. We've doubled our daily step counts merely by existing in a place with stairs.

There've been challenges too: the house is old and venerable, which means subsidence, which means I'm engaging my core as I write this to keep my office chair from rolling away towards the door. There are lots of little ramshackle problems to solve; we've been here two days and are already wrestling ants in the kitchen. And as ever with renting, we don't know how long we'll be here, but we're going to do our best to make the most of it. Like Millie's doing:

A black and white cat (Millie) is draped over the shoulder of a ginger-bearded man in a hoodie (Stu).

Wishing you all a sweet, gentle easing into whatever you have coming next,


Outdoor selfie of me looking super delighted with my hair in very defined loose, bouncy ringlets, a couple of inches below shoulder length.
Oh also I got a new haircut! All praise to Amy Wade's curly cuts at BossArts!


Also, welcome to new subscribers! For reading this far, you deserve a photo of Devon as he helped me write this letter.

A black and white cat with a pink nose and green eyes is flopped on his side between the camera and the keyboard. In the background is a small sad aloe plant and the bottom left corner of a mac computer.