If you’re like me, you like to hold a book and read, not stare at a screen. So I’ve compiled the bulk of my essays into paperbacks for exactly that reason. Available on Amazon and on Kindle today.
My Place In It
So much of this past year has felt as if the bows and strings of who I am have been pulled taut and into new chords. Same string, new ways of playing it. “My Place In It” reflects that almost gibbous feeling I haven’t been able to evade, the feeling of shifting, of trying to find where I’m meant to land. Almost in the same way plate tectonics causes the earth to slide around like dominoes shuffled on a tabletop, I’ve felt the pieces of me shifting and realigning as well. On some level, I knew this would be a season of rediscovery. Rediscovering myself apart from the online magazine I created and ran for eight years, rediscovering my body after years of neglecting it, and rediscovering who I am as a friend, partner, coworker, brother, son, cousin, nephew, and human person navigating the world. This year, it wasn’t just the streets of Manhattan I was navigating, it was actually the world. I traveled more than I ever have in my life and it’s been fulfilling and challenging and testing and mesmerizing in ways I couldn’t have known. From the bays in Singapore to the deserts of Israel, from sunny days in Los Angeles to thunderstorm alley in Texas, I’ve been many places. “My Place In It” seemed an all the more appropriate metaphor for a man who’s mid-30s and mid-pivot. It’s a misconception that big changes are relegated to those emerging from college or turning 30 or having a baby or retiring. Big changes are always happening in us but there’s an adventure in finding our way and our place in it. Get your copy HERE.
I Feel God in This Cab
Over the course of a year, Ryan Brinson discovered a common through-line in many of the essays he was writing: God in the expanse of the everyday. As Celine sang, “Near, far, wherever you are,” there’s something to learn about God, our shared human experience, and how the two are tangled together in a really interesting, messy, challenging, wonderful way. From his upbringing in the Bible Belt to his life today in New York City, Brinson explores how God has been the centrifugal force within the adventure. Some may search for God in confessionals, support groups, on mountaintops, or at an altar, but if this year has taught him anything, it’s that you can find God just about anywhere, even in the backseat of a cab on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. You may not call God what I call God—you may call God ‘love,’ or ‘spirit’ or any number of monikers—but we all know what it feels like when there’s a stirring in our soul. We know what it feels like when our hearts become full and we’re moved in a way that’s personal and precious. In that filling, in that stirring, there’s God. In the big moments and the small, the moments both intentional and perfunctory, God’s everywhere, every day.” Get your copy HERE.
I Really Like My Hands Today
In November of 2016, Ryan Brinson was so frustrated with the state of the world, the country he loves and the outward-facing representation of “people of faith” that he was on the verge of a Chernobyl-caliber meltdown. Every headline made him feel increasingly more twitchy and he reached the point where he struggled to hear the sounds of life over the sirens ringing in his head. On election night, he turned off the coverage and fell asleep, exhausted by his own frustration, and by the time he sat down at his desk the following morning, he’d mentally outlined his plan of escape: He would write. That release of thoughts and questions and memories and stories became his ticket to freedom and over the past year, he’s discovered new aspects about his faith, his upbringing, and his self. Card games and subway rides, pool parties and spilled coffee. It’s about faith and questioning, love and equality, writing and learning. Part time capsule and part looking-glass into the future, they may run the gamut of topics and themes, but they all come back to a man’s quest for fullness. Get your copy HERE.