Reporting from Porch Station Bravo

Forwarded from a friend?

Subscribe for the monthly update.

Emily P.G. Erickson siting on a porch in Saint Paul, MN. Her computer shows research titled "Protecting Youth Mental Health." She is writing a story about how parents can support their child's mental health treatment
Emily P.G. Erickson siting on a porch in Saint Paul, MN. Her computer shows research titled “Protecting Youth Mental Health.” She is writing a story about how parents can support their children’s mental health treatment

August has served up a delicious swirl of leisurely time lakeside and riveting writing work. I try to keep my laptop far away from water for both technology and mental health reasons, but I’ve still made a point to take advantage of the good weather when not in vacation mode. In particular, I’ve enjoyed reporting for duty from my three-season porch — a generous way to describe the screened-in situation on the front of my house, which is definitely comfortable less than three quarters of the time. These last days of summer have included a string of temperate days here in Minnesota, making Porch Station Bravo a productive and pleasant locale to dig in to my current projects covering parenting and psychology. I hope to have a new link or two to share with you next time.

New Writing From Me

Emily P.G. Erickson posing with other Macalester Alumni. They are part of MacReads, a book club for graduates of Macalester College in the Twin Cities, MN. She wrote a guide to help you start your own book club.

When I’m not writing or momming or cooking or walking, you’ll probably find me reading for book club. Ten years ago, I started one in the Twin Cities for Macalester College alumni. I still run it and people still come and it’s an absolute delight. I worked with Macalester College staff and MacReaders to put together a service piece about How To Host Your Own Bookclub for anyone who wants to start their own with a little leg up from our decade of experience.

Books I Think You’ll Like

Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill. Buy at Emily P.G. Erickson's Bookshop.

Jenny Offill is a master of atmospheric, character-driven novels, and Dept. of Speculation is no exception. I love these kinds of book when I’m winding down for sleep: Gorgeous prose and engaging writing, but not so engaging that I blow through bedtime. It was a yummy treat to dip into before bed this month.

Emily P.G. Erickson recommends Sea of Tranquility: A Novel by Emily St. John Mandel. Buy it in Emily P.G. Erickson's Bookshop.

Sea of Tranquility: A Novel by Emily St. John Mandel has the feel of a genre-defining work. It captures the spirit and wisdom earned from living during Covid-19 without being about Covid-19. This one is a pandemic novel you’ll want to read. Mandel follows compelling characters in a slow burn of a story, bringing them together in a beautiful, satisfying conclusion. This one lingered in my head long after I set the book down.

Body Work by Melissa Febos.  Buy it in Emily P.G. Erickson's Bookshop.

I loved Body Work: The Radical Power of Personal Narrative by Melissa Febos. This craft book, comprised of a series of essays about Febos’s approach to and ethos of creative non-fiction (specifically, personal essays), hit the sweet spot of validating what I’m already doing as a writer (community FTW!) and inviting me to do things differently (mentorship FTW!).

Emily P.G. Erickson's bookshop.
Check out my Bookshop for more excellent reads.

Let’s Connect!

If you’re reading this in your inbox, you can find a shareable version online. You can follow me on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. You’re welcome to comment below (or by pressing the blue button in your email) — and you can always reach me at

Sharing is Caring!

*I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post

Published by Emily P.G. Erickson

Emily P.G. Erickson is a freelance writer specializing in mental health and parenting. She has written for popular digital publications, including Everyday Health, Health, The New York Times, Parents, Romper, Verywell Mind, WIRED, and more. Emily is a professional member of the National Association of Science Writers (NASW), the American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA), and the Association of Health Care Journalists (AHCJ). Previously, Emily researched PTSD for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and earned a master's in psychology. You can find the latest from Emily at

Leave a Reply