I've been wanting to talk with you since I stopped. The last time I wrote was December 2022, and I said I would write more, but I didn't. For the longest time, I just felt bad about that: lazy, guilty, flaky. But then late last summer, when my brain switched on and I was thinking about creating again, I went back to my last YouTube video and looked at the date. It was from September, just days before I got Covid after taking my mask off in a stuffy, crowded theatre.

That was the first time I got Covid (rather, the first—and still only—time I've tested positive, I should say), and it took me out. No wonder I didn't write again. I was exhausted for months. I was terrified for months that it would never go away. Luckily, my Covid didn't turn into something more (yet), but it forced me to take that yearlong break I kept thinking about.

Even though I thought about restarting my YouTube channel all summer, even though I impulsively applied for (and got!) a holiday job at the Apple store, even though I kept writing my Morning Pages and washing my dishes while the morning kettle boiled, I didn't make anything on the internet. I really took a break, and wow, did I need it.

But I missed this. More than the newsletter and the videos and the zines, I missed blogging. When I come back, I told myself, I wanna blog again.

Maybe you've been on my mailing list since 2018—through Tiny Letter, then Mail Chimp, to Substack, back to Tiny Letter, then Convert Kit. I wanted to try Ghost before that last move, but self-hosting was just beyond the reach of my tech skills. So in January, I tried again—I opened the terminal, folks—and then I found Pika Pods, which is where we are now. (I am writing a post about how I did it; don't worry.)

Still finding my blogging feet again, but here's a post about how Canadians can demand a ceasefire in Gaza and here are a few game recs for you. I wanna make games again. I wanna film vlogs. I wanna stream zines. I wanna finish writing this book proposal and send it to my publisher. (Next week, Elly, I promise.)

Here's hoping this letter, this tiny drop of hope sent out into the world, helps to push me forward. I really need it. Maybe you do, too.

💚 Jess

PS. please don't feel bad about unsubscribing. I know I'm a little newsletter'd out, too. Here's an RSS feed for you.

1994 was my year. I was 12—almost a teenager—and so much good stuff came out. It was the year I started watching The X-Files (Darkness Falls was my first—maybe the most Vancouver of eps). It was the year I discovered grunge, but it was also the year of Dookie.

Then that summer: Speed. I don't remember seeing it in theatres. I'm sure my first time was on VHS later, a bootleg from my grandpa. I think he gave it to us simply because it was a popular action movie (he also gave us a copy of Pulp Fiction, and I don't remember asking specifically for either). But I fell in love.

Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves hug and smile for the camera in their Speed costumes, standing beside a black film camera
"Whatever you say, ma'am."

Now I'm making a zine for Speed's 30th anniversary, and I want your stories. The anniversary is in June; the deadline is the end of May. Can't wait to see what you create.


I wrote a book! I know, it still amazes me, too. The Magic of Pockets is a guide for sewing pockets into your favourite clothes, and you can buy it now. One of my first YouTube videos this year is gonna be the unboxing of the second box of books that's been sitting, sealed, waiting, since December 2022.

PPS. a bonus tip for writing in the Ghost editor I discovered while writing this letter: a correctly-formatted em dash requires 3 - not 2.

I've come to talk with you again