This week, the internet really delivered! There we so many things I read and watched and heard that inspired me. Here are some of them:

*Emma Carmichael interviewed rapper Angel Haze for The Hairpin. Some topics covered: ego, writing practice, being a female rapper and not asking for help from men, Kanye, Missy, Nicki Minaj, pickle juice, religious fanaticism, why your favorite rapper probably sucks, and dreams of living in Montana with Chipotle, Starbucks and a girl crew. Plus, there is good music linked.

*Yesterday was my birthday, and as part of my gift to me (treat yo self!) I watched Noah Baumbach and Greta Gerwig’s Frances Ha (which you can buy on iTunes right now, do it!). And loved it. So then of course I had to go onto the internet and read all about it. I found this great profile on Baumbach and Gerwig (who are a couple, which makes it even cooler in my book–I have this fascination with creative couples, don’t you?) in The New Yorker, by Ian Parker. It’s quite a read. Here’s my favorite Gerwig quote from the piece (but it’s really worth reading the whole thing!):

“She went on, ‘This is lofty’—a lot of emphasis—’but in one of Hamlet’s soliloquies he says, ‘This brave o’erhanging firmament,’ and he’s talking about the air and the stars and how everything is so alive and so beautiful, and at the end of it he says, ‘It means nothing, it means nothing, and I don’t want to live.’ And I’m, like, ‘How can you see everything and then feel that way?’ I always want to find the reverse of that—to see all the darkness and find the light, as opposed to see all the light and resonate with the nothingness.’

*Speaking of people I love, The Rumpus has a piece on Aimee Bender, who writes short stories and books that are both fantastical and true. “The Color Master” is one of my favorite stories (alongside Lucy Corin’s “Eyes of Dogs”) from the fantastic collection of fairy tales, My Mother She Killed Me, My Father He Ate Me, so I am thrilled to see that her newest collection of short stories is titled The Color Master. Here’s a taste:

“I don’t actually believe in intention with writing at all. I think in some ways we have to skip over that kind of conscious thinking. I believe in a sort of trying to be intentional in many other ways, but I think there’s intention and there’s the unconscious, and they’re sometimes at odds with each other. Intention is just one layer of communication. What I rely on with writing is not intention. It’s the unconscious material. My job is to get out of the way and let that stuff come forward.

*Eliot is one of my favorites to quote–“I will show you fear in a handful of dust” is one of the greatest rap boasts of all time, let’s be real –so I was really into what Julian Peters, a visual artist who does illustrations, comics, and poetry, did with Eliot’s The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock. I had fun translating the Italian and then got the part with “streets that follow like a tedious argument of insidious intent”–with the lines zig-zagging through actual streets, and realized how it really adds something to experience to have a visual component.

*Finally, this inspiring story of a french resistance fighter, Nancy Wake. Nancy was on the of the Gestapo’s most wanted list, and in addition to being bad-ass, she is also responsible for maybe the best war-time one-liner ever:

Nancy recalled later in life that her parachute had snagged in a tree. The French resistance fighter who freed her said he wished all trees bore “such beautiful fruit”. Nancy retorted: “Don’t give me that French shit.”

Have a great weekend!