All I cared about was the parking space. It was a night during the middle of my week and all I wanted to do was park my car, bring my pizza, or the “Fried Seafood Combination” from Potomac Fish House (I can’t remember which) into the house so that I could have my dinner and watch Army of the Dead with DC-native Dave Bautista. This was pre-pandemic. This was before I came to understand the business of relationships.

Parking in this neighborhood is first come, first serve. If you’re not on the block by 5:30 then you’re guaranteed that extra…


From The Neon: A Vaccine for The Writer’s Great Depression

by Kenji Jasper

I was a writer who hadn’t been writing. I hadn’t published a post or article in months. I had a great time teaching my weekly memoir writing course. There is nothing more enriching than to be introduced to new voices in the war of words. But I still wasn't writing. And I knew why.

Writers need fuel: experience, research, trauma, pleasure, reason to tell the story. And there had been no new beginnings in the restrained shuffles for groceries and curbside takeout that safety during a pandemic…


by Kenji Jasper

It was almost 15 years ago when I walked into my apartment and found the empty spaces she’d left behind. Her rolling bag that usually sat next to the living room hearth was no longer there. The bottom drawer where she kept her things for overnights had been pulled out and emptied.

This was no surprise, as I’d done the same thing at her place a day or two before. …


by Kenji Jasper

This writing begins 17 years ago in the half-bedroom in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn that I once called my office. A white cylindrical candle was lit. I spoke an incantation that shouted out God and Jesus, maternal and paternal ancestors, and the names of thinkers I admired who had passed on.

I asked for elevation. I asked for clarity. But what I got instead was Ego.

I had been writing as a pro for 15 years, never seeking anything other than the best work I could do at the time. In past incarnations I had only prayed for the…

Kenji Jasper (He/Him/His)

A veteran of entertainment media, I’m the author of the acclaimed books Dark and The House on Childress Street. I don’t write to live but I live to write.

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