Megan Fernandes Recommends...

“I write in bursts, but when the epiphanic mechanism doesn’t trigger, I write letters. Writing and receiving letters puts me into a holy space. It feels like stepping into that small patch of cathedral light when that beam of light is maybe the only thing you believe in. The reverence I associate with letter writing is also about slow time. I write letters in moments of emotional or linguistic paralysis, or when I’m bored with myself and hate the formula of my insight. I reread past letters from friends when feeling overwhelmed by everyday routines and it is a kind of inter-dimensional travel, compressing time and space. I get a letter from Mexico City from Matthew as he contemplates a breakup. Another letter from my friend in Europe, who just gave birth to her second baby, divulges her hallucinatory postpartum realm. A postcard arrives from snowy Chicago and its author is trying to theorize his own sleepiness. When we finally see each other in person, the intimacy of those letters accumulates around us. This genre of writing teaches me about interiority and what often goes unsaid. At the end of the day, writer’s block is about the frustration of what we cannot access. Letter writing transforms my thoughts about what access I feel entitled to and what I cannot know. It thwarts the isolation of ‘stuckness’ by reminding me of the lives running parallel to my own.”
—Megan Fernandes, author of Good Boys (Tin House Books, 2020)