I've been a big fan of Angela's work for roughly three years now, ever since I had the privilege of working with her in multiple workshops during graduate school. At its best, her writing is simultaneously gut-bustingly hilarious and so fiercely introspective it's about to make you cry.

Which makes me that much happier to share her work that was recently published in Connotation Press. The first essay, "I Am Good at Eating," is perhaps my favorite piece of hers I've yet read, simply because it is so Angela Sparandera. It reads like both a confession and a manifesto, balancing passages like this:

I keep telling myself that I can eat like everyone else. I begin the lie every morning, making an inner pact in my mind to not eat sugar and white flour today, or to only eat salad, or meal supplement bars, or to eat nothing. Maybe I can just work so hard I'll forget to eat lunch: "I only ate one very small breakfast, so I can definitely have this fourth dinner."

...with lines as killing as this:

When I was younger I used to fantasize about cutting off all my fat. Just grabbing the knife that Mom uses to cut cantaloupe with from downstairs, and in the secrecy of my room, slowly slice each bump clear off...There was no blood in my fantasy. It was as though I were a plastic surgeon who defied all laws of nature...When I was done slicing off all the fat from my thighs to my neck, I would imagine my new body. Not all sliced up, but smooth and airbrushed. No recovery time at all.

To read Angela is to get to know her. She lets the reader into her fears, doubts, and (not least importantly) her Sedarisian sense of humor, leaving the reader better for having known her. And if you want to get to know her better, you can always visit her blog.

AuthorJohn Proctor