Why I Started This Newsletter
I dreamed up Second Breakfast in an attempt to reclaim my own writing voice. The irony about that statement is that I’m a writer for a living, but mostly for other people and organizations. I wanted to write under ~Elizabeth Black~ because sometimes it’s nice to write for fun, without needing to monetize it.
Why the name Second Breakfast?
This name is a love letter to my favorite meal of the day. I wake early and I’m hungry often, so 10:00am usually finds me rummaging in the kitchen for something to sustain me until lunch.
But Second Breakfast is more than about food; it’s a mid-morning ritual that always recenters me, and usually recalibrates me if I need a fresh start. In addition to chowing, it involves taking a mid-morning break from whatever I’m working on, making a fresh cup of coffee, and usually stealing 15 minutes to read an article that’s been open on my browser for too long or stepping outside for some fresh air.
It’s a peaceful moment in which I can step away from the noise of the world, reflect on something or other, and feel better when I come back.
This is a privilege for sure (and one that disproportionately favors those with desk jobs/access to a computer/the ability to take 15 peaceful minutes to themselves without having to answer to someone—someone being a boss, child, parent, patient, etc.)—and it’s one I don’t take for granted.
But regardless of who or what dictates your time, reclaiming your time and stepping away for a moment—even if just for 5 minutes—is deeply important.
I hope this newsletter offers you a moment of calm or creative introspection, and I hope it’s a space where we can observe and learn together, while finding ways to become more engaged in the spaces that interest us.
What I’ll write about
A little bit of everything! I’m interested in how we can become more curious, compassionate, contemplative, and creative humans—all qualities that I believe can make the world infinitely kinder and just…better. So, I’m going to write about topics that pique those traits in me, in hopes they pique yours, too.
I won’t pretend to have all the answers or to be an expert on every topic I write about, but I’ll always try to create a cute little learning journey for us to walk together.
What this newsletter is:
Thought-provoking, mindful, and fun long-form commentary, with a side of whatever else I feel like including (read: favorite weekly reads, tweets, interviews with people who are interesting, etc.)
What this newsletter is not:
A public diary
A series of hasty hot takes
Long-winded policy analysis
Apolitical (We don’t do the “I sTaY oUt oF poLiTiCs” bullshit here). Many people much smarter than me have written about why that’s problematic.
Relatedly: An opinionless LinkedIn-esque newsletter that doesn’t say anything of substance for fear of being seen as “unprofessional” or—gasp!—challenging the status quo.
Materialistic promotion for stuff we don’t need (capitalism doesn’t need another hype woman).
While I’m a Midwestern gal at heart (ask me about Chicago hot dogs and my overzealous use of “ope!”), I now call the amazing city of Seattle home. Professionally, I’m a writer and editor working to advance social impact at the intersection of gender, public health, food security, climate change, and more. Personally, I’m an old soul with a love of books, bread, the outdoors, and scintillating conversations with cool people.