Hi! Welcome to Little Things, and thank you so much for being here.
Who are you?
“Ali is the rare kind of person who can acutely observe human behavior and mine it for storytelling that balances sharp insight with much-needed levity” - NYLON Magazine
Hi! I’m Ali, a TV writer (The Morning Show), producer (Comedy Central), and actor (The End of Us, SXSW). Maybe you know me from the dozens of short films & videos I’ve written and directed, which have nearly 1 billion views online and have gone viral in virtually every space, from the front page of Reddit to playing on The TODAY Show. Maybe you’ve followed me on Instagram or Twitter since my BuzzFeed days, taken one of my writing classes, or are here after finding my worldwide writing & Yoga retreats. Or, most likely of all, you’re discovering my existence right now as you read this from the magical community that is Substack.
“Little Things is a remix of the literary salon. An antidote to creative loneliness. A therapy session. Cocktails with a friend. Ali shares tips and insights with optimism and humor. If you're a writer looking for community, this is a great place to start.” — Pablo Andreu
What Do You Write About?
This is a newsletter and community space dedicated to the spiritually challenging parts of creating. We’re here to rediscover our love for the process, and attempt to let go of our attachment to the result. It’s REALLY HARD to take care of yourself spiritually and creatively when you make a living (or strive to) from your art. Little Things offers you support and community while we navigate the wild life we’ve chosen for ourselves as creators.
The subject is deeply personal to me, a recovering anxious workaholic, who now integrates spiritual practices into my everyday life out of pure necessity. I’m a triple fire sign. I’d explode otherwise.
This is a space for us to PRACTICE WHAT WE PREACH! Community experiences are an ongoing and unique element of this newsletter — this Spring, dozens of us did The Artist’s Way together in the subscriber chat. There will be lots more to come!
Beyond community experiences, expect curated recommendations, journaling prompts, advice, essays, and interviews with inspiring creatives.
I’ve written about getting negative feedback, waiting for other people’s approval, and the inevitable down cycles in a creative life. I share what’s inspiring me, what books, films, and TV I’m consuming, and I give you discounts on my retreats.
For paying subscribers, I also offer concrete advice for those seeking resources for a career in TV & film: I’ve asked execs what they want from TV pitches, I’ve explained how to teach yourself TV & film structure, how I got my agent and managers, and a lot more.
Little Things always approaches self-care with humor, optimism, and accessibility. Spirituality is not a commodity and that truth is crucial to everything I write and explore.
In a nutshell, I approach self-care like this:
You’ll get the most from this newsletter if you pay. It’s only .96 cents a week!
Paying means you’re supporting an artist working hard to write stories that matter in a brutal industry with zero stability. But beyond that, I work very hard to make each edition of Little Things truly helpful, and, well, great. Hopefully, you’ll notice that and want to pay so that this newsletter can continue to exist. Without paying subscribers, I can’t keep writing this. A girl’s gotta eat.
Paying subscribers generously contribute $5/month or $50/year for this newsletter, and in exchange, they receive:
Paid-only posts offering thorough, tangible writing & career advice.
Full access to my roundups — including recommended links and journaling prompts — and the ability to comment on them.
Full access to my archive (all posts are eventually paywalled)
$100 off in-person writing and Yoga retreats, and $50 off all digital events.
The knowledge that you are supporting my labor
My eternal gratitude for being the entire reason that this can continue to exist.
NOTE: Founding members get 10% off in-person retreats (usually $250-320!), and $100 off digital events.
All that is for the equivalent of buying me a cup of coffee a month!
Here’s what paying subscribers say:
“I get *so much* out of your newsletter! I’m constantly talking about it to my writer friends and it has such a good community vibe!” — Carina
“I find your newsletters so beautifully done. Really inspiring and insightful and so well-written! It feels just so high-quality in terms of the whole way it’s executed.” — Joyce
“Little Things' is about the *big* things in a working writer's life, like regaining faith in your own work, & negotiating the knocks of a whirlwind industry - all hard-won, reliable advice from someone in the trenches doing that work every day, delivered with kindness and wit.” — Mike Sowden of Everything Is Amazing
Little Things subscribers range from showrunners to aspiring writers to teachers to engineers — you can learn more about the readers in this post.
Join these brilliant, and quite frankly, gorgeous readers by subscribing below!
This is a space for you — it’s not just for me to shout into the void. So reach out. Ask questions. Send me requests. Let’s support each other as we collectively invest in our work and our well-being.
Thank you for being here! We’re gonna have fun.
PS — Typos are always intentional, of course.