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Here we have a tiny dining room with lime green walls. Three steaming bowls of spaghetti, and seated with them are the heroes of the evening:

Arya Ramzun, a curvy, ethnically ambiguous woman writing tales of her past life as a sex slave. Rowan No-Name, a fictional man suffering from amnesia, and last but not least, Nambia Spark, their gender-neutral AirBnB host.

Arya is writing now, at the dinner table, which makes it especially hard for Rowan to eat. He knows he’s fictional — just think of the sensations her story spilling pen must induce!

Arya looks up at their…


Dear Gen Z,

The years is 2018. I’m 25 years old.

I’m on salary; I work a lot but have no definitive way to describe what I’m paid to do. I realize this is the condition of the luckiest citizens — the ones who make enough to live on.

On my wall is the list of scripts and books I want to publish before my death. Two of them are checked off. The rest, in my current life, have no future. I’m grateful that I don’t want children, because I’m not rich enough to afford them and may never be…


The media’s latest accusation of my ilk is that we are unwittingly changing the death industry with our acceptance of mortality.

Millennials just can’t do anything right, it seems.

Photo by Abigail Keenan on Unsplash

But rather than focus on what divides us, it occurred to me that across the Boomers, Gen X, and Zillennial crowd, we actually have something central in common: we are easily offended.

While not comprehensive, I have compiled a short list of things that tick us off.

Things that offend Zillennials:

  • Slurs
  • Gratuitous violence in media
  • Climate change denial/minimization
  • Excessive touching in the workplace
  • The cost of insulin
  • Telling introverted children to be more extraverted

Our most relevant and misunderstood skill

I’ve spent the better part of a year traveling on a budget, with an uncertain future and peculiar income sources. I’m happy to say that this is something I chose, so no time was wasted. While I kept writing, I wasn’t able to curate my projects into intentional challenges that brought my writing ability to where it is today. But what I didn’t learn about my craft I learned about Adaptation.

Know your limits, and stop before you meet them.

You can’t do what you want until you know how much you can do. Everyone has a mental and physical limit. My mental limits are higher than my physical…


Dear Irony,

I’m not sure how to start this letter. Please read the whole thing. I wanted to tell you in person, but I just think it’s going to be easier this way.

I think we should just be friends. Don’t get me wrong, you have so many awesome, amazing qualities; firstly, the way you sound: Irony, it’s slick as hell. Sounds like the name of a yoga boutique that also sells men’s jewelry.

But as a writer, I just don’t think I can make this work. No offense, but post-modernism is so passé.

I’m a millennial. I don’t have…


Photo by Nathan Hulsey on Unsplash

Imagine planting a single apple tree and getting three trees in its place. That’s baraka: a natural amplification of good intentions. During Ramadan, the very air is rife with baraka. Most practicing Muslims will fast if they can, but here are five other ways that anyone can make the most of this precious time.

1) Learn something new

Focus increases during Ramadan, especially for those doing any kind of fasting, so this is a great time to reacquaint yourself with your religious history or investigate a realm of spiritual knowledge that you’ve been curious about. …


The problem might be that you’ve been taught all the wrong things about theme.

Firstly, your theme is not a concept.

Love, Death, Addiction, Loss: these are not themes.

I know you’ve been taught to believe that they are themes. I know that trained professionals and academics still, at times, talk about these concepts in a shorthand that would suggest that they are themes. But a theme is not an idea. A theme is a central question.

Photo by Artem Maltsev on Unsplash

I repeat: a theme is a central question.

If your theme is a statement, you’re not writing a story. You’re writing propaganda. Now…

Ayah

Author of “Paint.” Writer, YouTuber, novice comedian. USC SCA. Student of metafiction. Links at shethewriter.com

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