Family Bonds and Habits:  In Conversation with Fanny Singer, Author of Always Home | Ordinary Habit

Family Bonds and Habits: In Conversation with Fanny Singer, Author of Always Home

Fanny Singer's Always Home: A Daughter's Recipes & Stories is a delight for the senses. In this memoir-meets-cookbook, Singer provides a captivating portrait of life with her mother, Alice Waters—the esteemed chef, author, and activist known for Chez Panisse, the Edible Schoolyard Project, and more.

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Haunts and Habits: Reflections on I Came All This Way To Meet You by Jami Attenberg | Ordinary Habit

Haunts and Habits: Reflections on I Came All This Way To Meet You by Jami Attenberg

Lately, I’ve been thinking about the space between fear and courage, especially in a period of continuous global tumult. These themes were especially prescient as I read Jami Attenberg’s memoir, I Came All This Way to Meet You: Writing Myself Home.

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In(habit)ing the World: In Conversation with Cara Blue Adams | Ordinary Habit

In(habit)ing the World: In Conversation with Cara Blue Adams

In You Never Get It Back, Cara Blue Adams crafts a captivating portrait of life in motion. Across thirteen linked stories, readers get to know Kate Bishop while she grapples with early adulthood. From earthen landscapes to seaside towns, Adams renders vivid backdrops as Kate navigates more complicated, emotional terrains: family tumult, career changes, relationships with partners, friends—herself.

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Rest, Remembrance, and Rereading: Reflections on Wintering by Katherine May | Ordinary Habit

Rest, Remembrance, and Rereading: Reflections on Wintering by Katherine May

The last time I reread a book was the winter of 2019 (The Girls by Emma Cline for curious minds). It was a time when I felt every aspect of life shifting—my reading life included. Stories became urgent, and I yearned to feel familiar pages between my fingers.

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Human Habits and Possibilities: Reflections on Five Tuesdays in Winter by Lily King | Ordinary Habit

Human Habits and Possibilities: Reflections on Five Tuesdays in Winter by Lily King

As the end of the year approaches, I find myself grasping at beginnings. I want books that open me up to possibility (even if those possibilities are dashed within the first few pages). Books rich in dialogue and plot—stories about love, but not exactly love stories. Of course, there are the stories we tell ourselves about love, and then there are the ones that Lily King writes.

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(Life)Style Habits: Reflections on Happy Hour by Marlowe Granados | Ordinary Habit

(Life)Style Habits: Reflections on Happy Hour by Marlowe Granados

When I was younger, my sartorial inclinations weren't motivated by much else other than the desire to check a box. It seemed to me that style was less of a habit and more of an expectation. Clothing was a way to tell a story I felt too shy to say out loud. These days, my reading habit has shifted how I understand aesthetics (both on and off the page). Recently, I picked up Marlowe Granados' debut novel Happy Hour, and I was reaffirmed of the nuanced role style can play in someone's life—and how it can quietly transform their story.

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A Quiet Habit of Connection: Reflections on Seek You by Kristen Radtke | Ordinary Habit

A Quiet Habit of Connection: Reflections on Seek You by Kristen Radtke

From observing the details of a book’s cover design to breathing in the inviting scent of its pages, these small acts make me feel a little less lonely in my body, even when I’m alone with my mind. This duality was at play while reading Seek You: A Journey Through American Loneliness by Kristen Radtke.

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Ordinary Habits, Fanatical Language: In Conversation with Amanda Montell, Author of Cultish | Ordinary Habit

Ordinary Habits, Fanatical Language: In Conversation with Amanda Montell, Author of Cultish

In the sixth installment of this series, Rachel Schwartzmann speaks with Amanda Montell about her new book, Cultish: The Language of Fanaticism, and the habits she hopes to cultivate in reading, writing, and beyond.

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Nourishing a Habit of Love: Reflections on The Book of Difficult Fruit by Kate Lebo | Ordinary Habit

Nourishing a Habit of Love: Reflections on The Book of Difficult Fruit by Kate Lebo

Food writing is transportive and—especially during a period of isolation—a gift to the senses. Reading The Book of Difficult Fruit: Arguments for the Tart, Tender, and Unruly (with Recipes) by Kate Lebo was certainly no exception. Lebo's storytelling is enough to satiate the most well-versed foodie. And while I initially thought the book would nourish my reading practice, it ended up feeding something much deeper.

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Life’s Ordinary Habits: In Conversation with Rainesford Stauffer, Author of An Ordinary Age | Ordinary Habit

Life’s Ordinary Habits: In Conversation with Rainesford Stauffer, Author of An Ordinary Age

“Ordinary” may take on different meanings depending on who you ask, but one thing is certain: An Ordinary Age will endure as a guidebook for the ages. Rachel Schwartzmann spoke with Stauffer about the book’s development and the ordinary habits that are important to her in reading, writing, and life. 

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The Art and Habit of Listening: Reflections on Earth’s Wild Music by Kathleen Dean Moore | Ordinary Habit

The Art and Habit of Listening: Reflections on Earth’s Wild Music by Kathleen Dean Moore

Earth’s Wild Music features new and selected essays from Moore, which are divided into four sections—aptly titled “Tremble,” “Weep,” “Awaken,” and “Sing Out”—and her poetic blend of reportage and personal reflection stays with you. Moore writes with an attentiveness that moves between empathy and accountability. 

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Habits with Heart: Reflections on Between Two Kingdoms by Suleika Jaouad | Ordinary Habit

Habits with Heart: Reflections on Between Two Kingdoms by Suleika Jaouad

Ordinary Story is a monthly series by Rachel Schwartzmann that features musings and conversations on one of our favorite ordinary habits: reading. In the first installment, Rachel reflects on Between Two Kingdoms: A Memoir of Life Interrupted by Suleika Jaouad.

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