I’m Ellena Savage. In 2017, I started writing Little Throbs as a way of writing directly to a small number of readers.
At the time, I was supposed to be writing a thesis and I was supposed to be writing a book, but every time I sat down to work, I found myself distracted by the family of wood pigeons out my window. And then, when I moved apartments, I found myself distracted by dramas of the three-generation-strong family of cats in the empty lot next door, which were both more and less dramatic than the melodrama of human history.
I send out a new Little Throbs letter every week or so. Sometimes the letters gesture towards important, serious things like politics and class and gender and history and architecture and books sometimes too. Other times they speak to anger and nostalgia and regret. A lot of the time they say rude and inappropriate things about bodies and sex the tragedy and ecstasy of being made of meat. Mainly, these letters are about dailiness, the daily island life stuff. Things that happen out the window when you’re supposed to be working.
Sometimes my readers respond to tell me I have made them cry (in a good way, I hope) and other times they write me stories from their own lives. Maybe you want to cry or tell me stories from your life too. Or maybe you just want to in some way support the creation of little throbs of life that don’t belong anywhere in particular.
How much does it cost?
$5 a month, or $50/year.
I realise this is unmanageable for a lot of people (including me, a lot of the time). If you are unwaged or precariously waged, please let me know and I will gift you a subscription without question.
Over the past decade, I’ve helped a lot of things come into existence—I’ve edited journals, hosted readings, started writing prizes, taught writing, and published a bunch of my work around the world, mainly essays and essay-adjacent experiments, mainly in small literary journals. As you might expect, a great deal of the work I do is unpaid.
It’s difficult (for everyone, I know) to get the balance right with paid and unpaid work. Any income I can earn from my periodical writings here will help me keep my electricity bill paid.
What do I get when I subscribe?
The full archives of letters, plus one new letter a week. I will add some extra free posts from time to time.
Can I forward the emails?
Forwarding the free posts is totally fine. Sometimes forwarding subscribers-only content is ok too.