All the Single Ladies writer shares stories, gives advice
Published: Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 15:02
Kate Bolick, a contributing editor to The Atlantic and freelance journalist, lit up MUB Theater I yesterday, Oct. 1, speaking about literary journalism, writing and her famous article, “All the Single Ladies” to an audience of faculty, graduate and undergraduate students.
Her hit article, published in The Atlantic in 2011, took a stand for single women everywhere, declaring that the eligible male bachelor pool is shrinking quite considerably. This claim was evidenced from both personal experience and hefty research.
Her infamous quote from the article explains it best.
“We’ve arrived at the top of the staircase, finally ready to start our lives, only to discover a cavernous room at the tail end of a party, most of the men gone already, some having never shown up — and those who remain are leering by the cheese table, or are, you know, the ones you don’t want to go out with,” she wrote.
“I feel like that quote haunts me,” she said. She’d been on a roll, writing on a deadline and had simply gotten carried away.
But the lecture, about journalism and writing, was meant for that sort of truth and regret. The audience was silent in attention. When she paused to unscrew her water bottle and take a sip, the crowd seemed frozen in awe, waiting to pick up her next piece of advice.
Bolick’s talk opened on a piece about theatrical expression — and furniture. Thanks to a certain interior designer, she said she now has a 19-inch coffee table next to her reading chairs. It’s the little details, she said, details always matter. Her attention to detail shows, as her breakthrough article was 21 pages long.
Bolick spoke for an hour, touching on writing freelance articles, protecting identities and “breathing life” into the dry facts that accompany the world of news journalism.
“(The) best personal writing happens when we figure out how to intersect with the world,” she said.
Bolick has not only graced The Atlantic with a new face, but the country with a new image of independent womanhood, a feat that has earned her a fan base.
“How I’m taking it (is that), now I have legions of little sisters,” she said. Bolick said she loves to hear from her fans, and tries to write tidbits of advice when she has time.
According to Bolick, for the up-and-coming generation, the media field is changing indefinitely. Her advice is simple: “Write as much as you can, because practice really does make you better.”
When writer’s block hits, Bolick suggests writers turn to reading.
“Getting out of your own head (helps),” she said. “Usually when I’m having some sort of block it’s because I’m just too stuck.”
Based as an extension of her article, she has now begun working on a book, “Among the Suitors: Single Women I Have Loved.” A script was bought by CBS for a television series based on her article and is currently being optioned in Hollywood, as well.