“Stories of human nature are linked with pathologies of places.”
—Suzanne Joinson

“You bring to the act of photography all the pictures you have seen, the books you have read, the music you have heard, the people you have loved.”
Ansel Adams

(I’d say the same about writing.)

Hi! I’m Emily, a freelance writer, journalist, and photographer—usually based in Kuala Lumpur; other times, elsewhere.

This is a personal email newsletter about making sense of the world through stories. It’s part diary, part reporting notebook, part road journal, and part culture list, dispatched from wherever I am or ever have been, sprinkled with a little bit of humour and—dare I say it?—sincerity.

Want to know what you’re signing up for? Read my past letters. Then subscribe with your email and you’ll soon receive new ones in your inbox.

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P.S. As Joan Didion sort of said, I write to find out what I’m thinking. So I should say, though I shouldn’t need to, but because of the way the internet’s going: I reserve the right to change my mind.

How you can engage with this newsletter

Write me at emydeewrites@gmail.com if

  • you’ve got any comments, corrections, recommendations (on anything at all), travel ideas, or story tips.

  • you’re working on something cool you’d like to share.

  • you’d like to send a “postcard”—in text/audio/pictures, the more creative the better!—from wherever you are. It could be something as simple as the scene outside your office, or what’s playing out at your bus stop, or, yes, that desert mountain you’ve just hiked to the top of.

And if you’ll let me (you can also choose to remain anonymous), I’ll share your memos in my upcoming letters.

Free vs. paid subscriptions

You can stay on a free subscription and still read my letters, but I thought I’d at least give you the option of making a paid subscription, should you want to.

As a paying subscriber, you’d be directly supporting this newsletter’s growth, and helping me cultivate a readership of my own. Certain stories are more fitting for autonomous, personal outlets like this.

You can become a paying subscriber for USD$5 monthly (the minimum set by Substack; you can cancel at any time), or a discounted USD$50 annually:

Subscribe now

Alternatively, you can also just make a one-off contribution at paypal.me/emydeewrites—however much you’d like, in whatever currency you choose.

Even if you don’t do either, please know that I’m very, very thankful you’re reading.

Other ways you can support this newsletter

+ A personal thumbs-up from you would really make my day. Feel free to forward my letters on to your friends and family, or share snippets on social media. Don’t forget to tell people to subscribe at emydeewrites.substack.com

+ Write this newsletter a personal recommendation, which I’ll share in my next dispatch. Just email/DM/text it to me, thanks!

+ I’m always looking for opportunities to do more of what I love to do. Tell an editor you know that I write news, culture, and travel features/longform—from Kuala Lumpur, and elsewhere. I’m also open to collaborations.

If you got this far, I’m guessing you’re going to sign up… Many thanks in advance for granting me friendly passage through your inbox!

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All words and multimedia published on emydeewrites.substack.com © 2019 Emily Ding, unless otherwise noted or as common sense dictates. All rights reserved.