5 email newsletters that will improve your inbox and maybe your life, too

Illustration by Twylamae
Words by Hannah Cole

Find the light in an overflowing inbox.

I am always down for a life hack, whether it’ll save me time, money, or stress. Email management hacks happen to be one of my favourite sub-genres. 

Never in my five-plus years of full-time work have I gotten the hang of email management (although, truthfully, has anyone?). My inbox is an overwhelming, ever-increasing set of red flags – both literal and metaphorical – and the source of much anxiety. Still, I’m drawn to the idea that maybe one day I will be in control; I’ll finally be on top of everything. 

One such hack that has benefited my inbox, albeit in a small way, came to me via Man Repeller. And now I pass this nugget of wisdom on to you: the “Leisure Reading” folder. It’s the home for articles to read later, newsletters to ponder and things to review. You’ll never have to make a mental “read later” note again. Simply file that email away for the next moment that calls for a little enlightenment. 

While my “Leisure Reading” folder is already bursting at the seams, maybe yours is looking a little lacklustre. If you could do with some inspiration or entertainment to while away commuting time, see below my newsletter reading delights.  

The Ann Friedman Weekly

This is the newsletter that trumps all others; it’s worth its weight in gold. Every week (Saturday morning for us in Australia) writer and podcaster Ann Friedman delivers a thoughtfully curated reading-fest into subscriber’s inboxes. Insightful life tidbits accompany links reaching the outer edges of the web. Expect a deluge of fascinating recommendations covering American politics, social justice, humour, literacy and other treasured pieces you would never have found alone. Sign up to become a member ($5 USD a year) for bonus pie charts, or stick to the free option and start bragging about what an intelligent and well-rounded individual you are.

In Her Words

In Her Words is The New York Times’ twice-weekly dispatch of news covering women in a delightfully easy-to-read way (and it’s free!). Each newsletter offers a fresh perspective from women in society, with recent topics including the Oscars, the inequality of household chores, and the impact of Brexit on women. It’s an empowering and often aggravating read, but forges a sense of community amongst women the world over. Read about the female experience in Syria, Japan and Nepal, alongside US and UK counterparts. Knowledge is power, and this newsletter is one easy way to stay informed. 

Ask Molly

I implore any fans of The Cut’s Ask Polly column to drop everything and sign up to Ask Molly. Both are written by Heather Havrilesky but vary greatly in their tune. Ask Polly is the sometimes-harsh, mostly-encouraging advice column we all need. Ask Molly is “just like Ask Polly, except evil.” For any word fans and lovers of descriptive (bordering on bizarre) rants, this is a must. Expect a touch of humour, mixed in with equal parts sorrow, anger and questioning. Essentially, Ask Molly jots down every thought I’ve ever had in a much more engaging and well-written way. Heather is my hero. 

Read Like The Wind

Once a solo endeavour by Molly Young, Read Like The Wind has now joined the club at Vulture. If you love books and yearn for quality recommendations, this is for you. Importantly, Molly doesn’t limit inclusions to the most recent releases. Instead, prepare to delve into dusty library shelves and uncover forgotten novels worthy of the spotlight. Register for a Goodreads account and keep this open every time Molly’s monthly dispatch arrives, ready to add more recommendations than you could ever possibly read. But a girl can dream, right?

Wardrobe Crisis News

Last but not least, I bring you the local offering that is more than worthy of your precious time. Clare Press’ Wardrobe Crisis book and podcast have re-manifested by way of a weekly newsletter. Stay up to date with the latest news stemming from the sustainable fashion and living spheres. Clare offers bite-sized, easily-digestible news for those intrigued by these spaces (which should be all of us, really). Prepare to get inspired, make change, and use less plastic. 

Ta-da! A meaningless commute remedied. 

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