The Art of Blowing Things Off

Because the best holidays are the ones we make for ourselves.

Grant Faulkner
3 min readDec 18, 2022


I wasn’t going to write this newsletter.

Because I had a low-level migraine for the better part of this week.

Because that migraine is the result of a too-much, too-busy, too-everything year.

Because I’m fried. (People tell me I have a problem with saying yes to too many things, and, yes, they’re right: I’m uncomfortable if I’m not doing something).

But then I read an essayette, “Blowing it off,” in Ross Gay’s Book of Delights, and I thought about what a delight it is to blow things off. I thought about how some of the most joyous times of my life occurred when I skipped school or skipped work or just decided to pretend that something didn’t matter (“decided to pretend” is the key cognitive moment here).

We know the dangers of blowing things off, but I think we tend to forget the joys. The harumphing march of our lives possesses such a bossy vigor and insistence that it can smother our need to drift, meander, disappear.

Blowing things off can be interpreted as a way to listen to yourself.

Blowing things off is a way to listen to the world.

We are incarcerated in our shoulds…



Grant Faulkner

Executive Director of National Novel Writing Month, co-founder of 100 Word Story, writer, tap dancer, alchemist, contortionist, numbskull, preacher.