Can Awl pal Jess Grose stop swearing before the birth of her child? Sure, why the fuck not.
Congratulations to Awl pal Jessica Grose, who has sold her debut novel to William Morrow. (That link is subscription-only, so know this: Sad Desk Salad is "told from the voice of a popular blogger who chronicles the rise and fall of her big scoop, where she must reconcile her values with the growing (ruthless) demands of a gossip- and reality-obsessed culture," but Jess assures us it is not a Devil Wears Prada kind of thing.)
Jessica Grose: We're here to talk about hate-blogs. In my novel, Sad Desk Salad (shameless self promotion alert), the heroine and her coworkers at a women's website called Chick Habit are plagued by a hate-blogger who reblogs their posts and puts up incriminating, embarrassing personal information about them.
For those who aren't familiar with the phenomenon, hate-blogs are an actual thing. I based the hate-blog in my book (Breaking the Chick Habit, or BTCH) on the hate-blogs I had read up till then: The ones about Jezebel, the Pioneer Woman, and Julia Allison.
I asked you to join me in this chat because you’ve covered [...]
"Dear Parents, I disown you. I've tried for ten years, but you've Wrecked it. I'll never Speak to you again. Your x child, Jessica." Awl pal Jess Grose, forced to examine her personal archives before her parents move house, discovers this gem of 10-year-old indignation. God, remember when everything seemed that important?
Today Slate publishes "A Death in Yellowstone: On the trail of a killer grizzly bear," an 8000-word investigation by Awl pal Jessica Grose about the search for “the Wapiti sow," a 250-pound grizzly bear implicated in the killing of two separate visitors to Yellowstone National Park in 2011. The story is both about the hunt for the bear and the larger implications of man's sometimes fatal interactions with nature. It's a remarkably compelling report that you absolutely need to read. Here's a brief conversation about the piece.
Jess Grose, I loved this report. But I am a confirmed bear aficionado. What drew you to the story?
I am in the middle of a flight to St. Louis to give a reading. I was reading a New Yorker story that made me think of my mother all alone in the seat I whispered to her "I know, Mother, I know." (Found a pen!) And I thought of you – someday flying somewhere all alone and me dead perhaps and you wishing to speak to me.
And I want to speak back. (Linda, maybe it won't be flying, maybe it will be at your own kitchen table drinking tea some afternoon when you are 40. Anytime.) – I want to say back.[...]