Literary Crushes: My not-so-secret addiction

Am I the only one who develops writer crushes? Because I seem to have an awful lot of them. Sometimes the crush forms when I am reading a new story or blog post, like “Where the Streets Have a Name” by Nicki Gilbert (@nixgilbertca), a luxuriously detailed writing on home that was so vivid I could taste the chlorine-and-smoke infused barbecue. Take a moment and read it. Please. Go ahead, I will wait for you.




[Yes, this is me humming some sophisticated elevator music that reminds me of women shopping at Saks, wearing white gloves and carry purses hooked around their forearms]







So what did you think, fabulous, right? I read Gilbert’s piece about 24 hours ago and I still can’t stop thinking of summer swimming parties from my youth and how everything about my hometown has changed so much I almost don’t recognize it and yet it still feels so…familiar. Gilbert also writes for The Huffington Post, Kveller and Mamalode (I found her post on Halloween particularly engaging and even giggle worthy).

Another way that I develop writer crushes is when I encounter the authors on social media or read an interview with them that so resonates with me that I rush out to find anything they have written, as if I am consumed with a desire to read all their glorious words. Now! Truth be told, many times I am disappointed by the author’s actual writing, which is a serious letdown.

But not this time!

At some point in my meanderings about social media, I clicked on a link to an interview with Carmen Maria Machado (@carmenmmachado) and I felt like I had struck the mother lode. Machado often writes about sexuality and women’s experiences while blurring the lines between realism and fantasy as well as experimenting with form. Excuse me as prostrate myself before my little altar of idol worship…


…okay, I’m back. Now, like I said, often when I read interviews and whatnot, I get excited about what the interviewee is saying, but then the actual writing doesn’t deliver. Obviously, if I am sharing info on Machado, this was not the case. I read her story “Inventory” and was flat out mesmerized, so now I am working my way through her body of work (and note that she’s been nominated for the Shirley Jackson Award and the Nebula Award, among others) and can’t believe I have to wait until 2017 for her collection of short stories to be published.

So yes, I am geeking out about my new “discoveries” and have added both of these women to my list of literary crushes (don’t worry, no stalking involved). I am excited about what new writing candy they will share with the world. Yes, candy, because I really am an addict…aren’t you?

Now it’s your turn to sound off and let me know about your writer crushes. Who makes you absolutely giddy to read/connect with? Who makes you feel like there *is* somebody else out there who “gets it”? Who who who?

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