READ: Before the internet. | “You are getting yourself a bad reputation as a lonely woman. Stop it at once.” | Seven rules for being alone. | “Why I hate my best short story.” | “Some wine I drank in England.” | “My control over words felt like a monkey of barrels.” | Bohemia was never a safe country for women. | “In today’s world, a secondhand woman is like a secondhand car,” he said. “Once it’s been driven, it’s not worth a fraction of its original selling price.” A secondhand man, on the other hand, Yu explained, is like renovated property in China’s real-estate market: “The value only appreciates.” | …whether the recipe was for a typewriter with candy keys or a rubber duck with potato chip lips, it began, like a prayer, in the exact same way: “Make cake according to directions on packet.” | “There is no diagnosis.” | In praise of Daphne du Maurier. | “Because my home life was stable, I had the luxury of dreaming up very bad situations and strategizing how to survive them.” | Listening to Elif Batuman narrating The Idiot on audiobook.

LOOK: Bolt hole. | Vita’s cigarette case. | Everyday oil.

THINK: How to better talk to children about their art. | How to raise a reader. | Ask Polly: I’m terrified of having kids! | “Self-esteem decreased during pregnancy, increased [after birth] until the child was six months old and then gradually decreased over following years.” Mothers with three-year-olds hit a low point in their self-esteem. | Sexting in the present tense.  | Actually, how Donald Trump eats his steak matters. | “[W]e know that protest is not the answer but it creates space for the answer.” | A reminder that this boring-looking politics podcast is excellent.