In an intro letter, Smith said she hoped to use the newsletter to “form an inter-connective body of work for a responsive community.” She plans to post “weekly ruminations, shards of poetry, music, and musings on whatever subject finds its way from thought to pen, news of the mind, pieces of this world, free to all.”
There will also be a subscriber tier, through which Smith will release a new serial, The Melting, every Tuesday (the first few installments will be free before it goes behind the paywall). She described The Melting as “a journal of my private pandemic,” noting the first entry was recorded just under a year ago, on April 7th, 2020. Along with the weekly installment, subscribers will also receive additional posts “relating to [The Melting’s] expanding world, finally fulfilling my Jo March fantasy as she serialized her Gothic tales for the newspaper.”
Smith also discussed her Substack in an Instagram video, which — most importantly — features a cameo from her cat. “This is going to let me expand, so if I want to write a meditation on Sylvia Plath or about, well, who knows, the healing properties of turmeric, I can do that and send it to you,” Smith says in the clip.
Smith recently performed with Tony Shanahan at the Brooklyn Museum as part of New York’s statewide PopsUp festival, to help reintroduce live entertainment. She’s also set to perform at a special set of Bob Dylan covers at Kaatsbaan Cutural Park’s outdoor Spring Festival in Tivoli, New York, on May 22nd, two days before Dylan’s 80th birthday.