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Carmen Maria Machado. Photography: Miranda Barnes

The National Book Award finalist’s upcoming memoir—about emotional and psychological abuse in a lesbian relationship—goes beyond the universal

Carmen Maria Machado told me she writes for herself. Still, within any self, there are many others. Her second book, In the Dream House, coming out on November 5, is a memoir written in fragments. A fair comparison in form would be Claudia Rankine’s Don’t Let Me Be Lonely, though written by a young master of prose, In the Dream House is poetic, associative, and elliptical. An epigraph by artist Louise Bourgeois reads, “You pile up associations the way you pile up bricks. Memory itself is a form of architecture.” The other epigraph by writer Zora Neale Hurston (the namesake of this publication) goes, “If you are silent about your pain, they’ll kill you and say you enjoyed it.” …

And yes, even slow, boring, inefficient workouts are good for you

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Credit: Elizabeth Fernandez/Getty Images

As a millennial with much-higher-than-the-national-average student debt, I spent years managing feelings of disappointment, fear, stress, and even stretches of depression by engaging in intense exercise. I would run six quick miles at least three days a week, rapidly lift weights in as many boot camp classes as I could fit in, and zoom through vinyasas in hot yoga. Moving fast was a form of avoidance that still made me feel accomplished.

Eventually, I was forced to slow down when my knee, shoulder, and back muscles started flaring up. …

Cassie da Costa

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