If you are a regular journal writer, you will find that some topics or themes recur consistently for you. Our mind snags on certain things and we have to keep teasing them apart till we are satisfied with how we have understood or resolved them. Books have always been the dominant topic in my journals. That said, whenever some other major obsession or worry (work, relationships, etc.) crops up, book-related thoughts are the first to get pushed aside. This year, though I have been writing a lot of book reviews, I have been far too occupied to write as deeply about books in my journals as I would like. So, for April, let's focus our journal prompts around books, shall we?
Harriet Lerner is a clinical psychologist and has a good set of practical advice books I dip into often. I'm not ashamed or embarrassed by them being "self-help". Goodness knows we all need a lot of self-help throughout our lives. If there's one thing growing older has taught me, it is that we have to continue raising our individual selves throughout our lives. And that cannot happen if we do not reach out to expert resources, whether they are people or books.
I had reviewed Anjali Sachdeva's debut short story collection, All the Names They Used for God, earlier this year. Then, I got the chance to do an interview with her. We discussed how she approached the themes of the stories in this collection and the choices she makes regarding style and structure. We also talked, particularly, about her love for the short story form and what she is working on next.