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Writing

From the Podcast

A Little Happier: Mindy Kaling’s “Rules for Writing” Show That We Can Be Funny Without Being Mean
A Little Happier

A Little Happier: Mindy Kaling’s “Rules for Writing” Show That We Can Be Funny Without Being Mean

Mindy Kaling is a successful and productive writer, actor, and director. She’s hilarious and brilliant. In her “Rules for Writing,” she explains how to be funny—without being mean.
A Little Happier: For Writer Isabel Allende, January 8 Is the Right Day to Begin.
A Little Happier

A Little Happier: For Writer Isabel Allende, January 8 Is the Right Day to Begin.

In remembrance of her grandfather’s death, writer Isabel Allende starts all her new books on January 8, which for her is the right day to begin.
Podcast 340: Very Special Episode! Ask Us Anything
Podcast 340

Podcast 340: Very Special Episode! Ask Us Anything

Every tenth episode is a Very Special Episode, and this episode is an “Ask Us Anything.” We answer listener questions about our parents, career insights, our favorite hacks, why Gretchen calls Elizabeth “my sister the sage,” and more.
Podcast 333: We Review Our One-Word Theme for the Year, Suggest a Hot-Weather Hack, and Discuss the Power of Plants with Michael Pollan
Podcast 333

Podcast 333: We Review Our One-Word Theme for the Year, Suggest a Hot-Weather Hack, and Discuss the Power of Plants with Michael Pollan

The year 2021 has hit the midway point, so we review our one-word themes to evaluate how we’re doing. We also suggest a hack for dealing with hot summer nights, and talk about Michael Pollan about his fascinating new book, “This Is Your Mind on Plants.”
A Little Happier: Novelist Amy Tan Didn’t Ask Her Unnamed Goddess for Glowing Reviews.
A Little Happier

A Little Happier: Novelist Amy Tan Didn’t Ask Her Unnamed Goddess for Glowing Reviews.

Novelist Amy Tan recounts that as she was writing her second book, she prayed to unnamed goddess that she “be able to write the best book I could, and that no matter what happened to it, I would have no regrets.” Wisely, she didn’t pray for a particular outcome or some metric of success; she prayed that she would feel no regrets.
A Little Happier: The Memory of a Delicious Night of Sleep, Four Hundred Years Later.
A Little Happier

A Little Happier: The Memory of a Delicious Night of Sleep, Four Hundred Years Later.

In the 1600s, Samuel Pepys kept a diary, and of everything he wrote about, including the Great Plague of London and the Great Fire of London fair, one thing that is remembered, so many hundreds of years later, is a delicious night of sleep he had in 1661.
A Little Happier: How a Loose Piece of Popcorn in a Museum Inspired a Masterpiece
A Little Happier

A Little Happier: How a Loose Piece of Popcorn in a Museum Inspired a Masterpiece

The brilliant children’s book "From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler" was inspired when writer E. L. Konigsburg spotted a piece of popcorn on a chair in a period room at the Metropolitan Museum. You never know what moment can lead to a masterpiece.
A Little Happier: A Question That Seemed to Make No Sense Was in Fact a Declaration of Love
A Little Happier

A Little Happier: A Question That Seemed to Make No Sense Was in Fact a Declaration of Love

In her memoir The Bread and the Knife, Dawn Drzal explains that her grandmother’s habit of asking her grandfather, “Is the pasta done?” made no sense to her, until years later, when she realized she’d been seeing a declaration of love.
Podcast 300: To Celebrate Our 300th Episode, Ask Us Anything!
Podcast 300

Podcast 300: To Celebrate Our 300th Episode, Ask Us Anything!

With every 100th episode, we have a very special episode where listeners can ask us anything. We discuss how we were raised, how we prepare to record the podcast, tips for Obligers, why Elizabeth has such a deep love of reality TV, and more.
Podcast 297: Happier Podcast Book Club: Author Yaa Gyasi Talks about Family, Faith, Science, and Belonging in “Transcendent Kingdom.”
Podcast 297

Podcast 297: Happier Podcast Book Club: Author Yaa Gyasi Talks about Family, Faith, Science, and Belonging in “Transcendent Kingdom.”

We talk to writer Yaa Gyasi about her compelling bestselling novel “Transcendent Kingdom.”
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