Retreat! — Early Musings From My Willapa Bay Arist Residency

The daydream had a pronounced hold on me for many years: disappear into a cabin in the woods for a couple of weeks to write my next album. I took it for granted that I’d emerge with brilliant, pathbreaking material—more importantly, however, I’d get to bury some cryptic, legacy-building disclosure in the liner notes (remember those?) once I’d recorded everything, something like “Conceived over ten days and two quarts of huckleberries in the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest.”  Who could resist buying that?

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Bushwick and the Red Badge Project

A few years ago I was the featured speaker at a local high school’s Veterans Day assembly. This was, of course, an egregious error. I was there to accompany the school choir, directed by bandmate Brian Hoskins, in a performance of “Carry On,” a piece I wrote inspired by the stories of a B-17 pilot in World War II. The student-group in charge of scheduling a speaker had failed to do so and, without my knowledge, slotted me in. Gulp.

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The Hardest Books You’ve Never Read

The other day on Buzzfeed, Louis Peitzman put together a list of the 25 Most Challenging Books You Will Ever Read. I was disappointed to see that I had read ZERO of the books on the list. As someone who prides herself on (attempting to be) well read this was a punch in the gut. It got me thinking about difficult books. Hard books. Challenging books. What’s the deal with those guys? Read more

Bushwick Picks: SIFF Edition

The Seattle International Film Festival is currently ripping through theaters all over the city and continues for one more week with a bevy of intelligent, provocative films. Below you’ll find a list of our upcoming picks, full of films that show love for books and music.

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5 Reasons to Give BIG to Bushwick Seattle

Listen up, Bushwick, because Tuesday is a big day. A BIG day, as in the Seattle Foundation’s Give BIG 2014, a one-day online giving frenzy where donations received by participating organizations qualify towards a pro-rated matching fund. If you’ve been looking for ways to help out your favorite nonprofit, now is the time.

To donate to Bushwick during the GiveBig on Tuesday May 6th – click here.

We came up with five reasons to consider the Bushwick Book Club Seattle on Tuesday May 6th.

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Ten Inspirational Norton Juster quotes from The Phantom Tollbooth

In honor of our upcoming May 3rd show inspired by Norton Juster’s The Phantom Tollbooth, here are ten of our favorite inspirational quotes from the book.



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Bushwick Picks: Molly Wizenberg Edition

Tonight is the night! The Bushwick Book Club Seattle Presents:A Homemade Life is only moments away, but before the show begins we thought we would check in with the author, Molly Wizenberg. (We’re so excited to have her at the show tonight!) She shared with us the books and music she currently has on her list.

“I am the world’s slowest reader, and I only make it through a handful of full-length books a year. But a few months ago, some of us ladies at Delancey started a book club, and it’s been a great way to force myself to speed up a bit. (I can get really bogged down in details, analyzing a writer’s language and style. No fun for anybody.) A couple of months ago, we decided to tackle Madame BovaryI was glad to finally check it off my list, though it made me feel like throwing myself out of a window. But this past month, man oh man, we read a great one: The Fault in Our Stars, by YA author John Green.  It was so good that I haven’t been able to start another book since I finished it. I’m not ready to move on.  I had read Green’s earlier novel Looking for Alaska a number of years ago, and I liked it, but TFIOS really knocked me out.  The characters felt so true, so fully realized, so clever and smart and lovable. They felt like characters in one of those ’80s high school movies starring Molly Ringwald. I had been warned that TFIOS would make me cry, but I doubted that it really would (up until this point, only one book had ever made me cry: Plays Well With Others, by Allan Gurganus), but I wound up crying semi-hysterically for a good half hour or so at the end.  My daughter’s babysitter arrived while I was still mopping up my face, and I scared the crap out of her as I clutched the book and weepily tried to explain myself.  Anyway, all of this to say that I am now a giant John Green fan.  Me, and about a million teenage girls.

I should add that I also read the New Yorker. In general, I tend to gravitate more toward nonfiction than fiction, and The New Yorker is my favorite place to read nonfiction.

And as for listening, well, to be perfectly honest, lately I’ve been revisiting stuff from the early- to mid-90s, like Hole’s Live Through This and all the Fugazi albums I used to listen to in high school. I remember being at a Fugazi show when I was 21 and thinking, I hope I’m never too old to like this, and it makes me very happy to see that I still do, 14 years later. I also dug out Sleater-Kinney’s One Beat the other day – I can’t believe it’s already 12 years old – and Ted Leo’s Shake The Sheets. Ted Leo’s songs are so catchy, and he seems to just keep churning them out.  Very inspiring.”

– Molly Wizenberg

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5 Fantastic Cookbooks You Should Know About

a-homemade-life-bushwick-eventSo you devoured A Homemade Life and loved the prose-filled stylings of Molly Wizenberg’s cookbook/memoir. Here are five other text-heavy cookbooks that you might enjoy.

The Best New Recipe by Cooks Illustrated Magazine

This text-heavy giant is a workhorse in the kitchen. If it was a player on your favorite NFL team, it would be the veteran center. A quiet and stable leader on the field, it knows its job and works hard to protect you, the kitchen quarterback. This book doesn’t include stories for each recipe and is instead laden with the steps the masters in the Cooks Illustrated test kitchen took to insure that these recipes really are the best. I’ve had people tell me that my chocolate chip cookies are “effing delicious.” Here is my secret: follow the recipe in this book exactly as printed.

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Make Delicious Banana Bread Tonight

a-homemade-life-bushwick-eventAre you in need of an easy homemade dish to bring to a party or potluck? Do you want to try a uniquely delicious take on a classic quick bread? If so, then Molly Wizenberg has a perfect recipe for you. Her take on banana bread in A Homemade Life is well-written and easy to follow and, as I found as I tested it, very delicious.

A Homemade Life is not your typical cookbook. You won’t find recipes with numbered steps or tons of full color photographs. Instead you’ll find short stories from Wizenberg’s life followed by a recipe relating to that story. These recipes are the heart of the book and are used to connect the readers to the stories. Prose-filled cookbooks are my jam so I’ve been enjoying it immensely. To get the full book experience, I felt I had to try out at least one recipe for myself.

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Sue’s Little Free Library Update

I asked my awesome Mom, Sue Garvin, to write a little update on how things are going with her Little Free Library since she last wrote. You can read the initial post about it here.

During the crisp fall weather, the park was busy with kids.  For Halloween this year, I made 80 tootsie roll pop ghosts with a little free library ad attached.  It was a good way to get the word around in the neighborhood.  Then, I loaded the library with lots of kids books.  One day, after the Girl Scouts delivered their fundraiser candy, they stopped at the library and picked out some selections.

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