Letter[s] to my [ex] Lover[s]
February 16, 2019
In 2009, I switched from keeping a journal as a solo pursuit to writing letters as a collaborative exercise. I thought that, if someone in my future did want to know me, it would be easier, or at least more encompassing, if they could read the dialogues I had with others instead of the monologues I had with myself. It would be better for readers to know me in my plurality—through the infinite number of selves I unveiled as I communicated them to different people in my life, for different purposes.
Later, it came to be that I had amassed both a number of lovers and a number of letters across a decade of my life. Spending time with that thematic collection of letters, a hope arose that, when viewed as a series, I could offer both myself—and anyone interested in my humanness—a deeply personal view into my being, for better and for worse and all the greyness in between.
I share these letters, lush in their melodrama and too in their truth, as an offering that speaks to the evolution and stuckness of myself, and maybe of you, too. I wrote the first letter when I was nineteen—many of those that follow reflect a person I’m embarrassed of or disappointed with. I invite you to feel the same way about me.
Beyond, or perhaps within, the joy and loss of the lover[s] in this book, lives something else entirely—a grand beauty that was, and is, bigger than us.
About the Artist
Rebecca Marshburn is an author and artist who has shown interactive and language-based public pieces in New Orleans, San Francisco, Detroit, and Lisbon, Portugal. She currently lives in Seattle, Washington. After production costs, all proceeds from sales of Letter[s] to my [ex] Lover[s] will go to one of three nonprofit organizations of the purchaser’s choice. 826 Valencia, a creative writing nonprofit based in San Francisco’s Mission District, is one of the organizations purchasers can choose to support. The additional two organizations, Ruth Ellis Center and Literacy Source, support at-risk LGBTQ youth in Detroit, Michigan, and adult literacy in Seattle, Washington, respectively.
Interview: With author Rebecca Marshburn
Website: Letters to My Ex-Lovers