Has a stunning surprise or lucky encounter ever propelled you in an unanticipated direction? Are you doing what you always thought you would be doing with your life or has some unseen magnetism changed your course? And has that redirection come to seem inevitable? Edie Meidav and Emmalie Dropkin asked leading contemporary writers to consider these questions, which they characterize through the metaphor of "the strange attractor," a scientific theory describing an inevitable occurrence that arises out of chaos. Meidav's introduction and the thirty-five pieces collected here offer imaginative, arresting, and memorable replies to this query, including guidance from a yellow fish, a typewriter repairman, a cat, a moose, a bicycle, and a stranger on a train. Absorbing and provocative, this is nonfiction to be read in batches and bursts and returned to again and again.
About the Author
EDIE MEIDAV is the author of Lola, California, Kingdom of the Young, Crawl Space, and other work, and believes in the luck that brought this book to your attention. She teaches in the MFA program for poets and writers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. For more information, visit www.ediemeidav.com. EMMALIE DROPKIN's short story, "A Lamentation of Swans," was nominated for the PEN/Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize for Emerging Writers.
"Each essay reckons with contradictions, consequences, and risks. The moving, muscular collection holds an unexpected sort of magic, a sparkling nudge to stay open to change."—Boston Globe
"Strange Attractors reminds us that even chaos has a pattern, and now more than ever, we are grateful for it. Attraction is evidence of the sublime. The very idea sparks revelation."—Annie Liontas, author of Let Me Explain You
"A wonderful book, unique in all ways, truly and deeply full of wonder. What a stunning constellation of seekers, believers, wanderers, questioners. A collective spiritual autobiography like nothing I've read before."—Elisa Albert, author of After Birth
"Chance—the charm of chance—that permeates these stories is startling, often dazzling, and always life-affirming. You'll wish most of these talented women writers were your friends."—Susan Fox Rogers, author of My Reach: A Hudson River Memoir
"Urgent and reflective, infused with a revelatory grace, Strange Attractors is a wondering wander of a book, a curiosity shop of stories filled with surprise and clarity, longing and transformation. Lyrical, experimental, or conversational, this collection's voices explore encounters that change the course of our lives."—Cathy Chung, author of Forgotten Country