Rachel Schwartzmann
is a writer and creator based in New York City.

Rachel Schwartzmann

is a writer and creator based in New York City.





“In her debut memoir, YOU COULD MAKE THIS PLACE BEAUTIFUL, Maggie Smith renders a profound portrait of divorce, motherhood, friendship, and loss. She discovers and confronts her pain in the ordinary: a pinecone, a postcard, a photograph, a playlist, a vision board, a wedding dress, a house. She takes readers into rooms where hard things have happened. She stays in a place that feels like—and still is—home. And throughout these elegant snapshots, Smith ultimately constructs a home for us in her words.”

“With richly-drawn characters and searing honesty, OLD FLAME is an ode to life. It's about embarking on new chapters and closing others. It's about people—those who raise us, change us, love us, leave us, and ignite a flame so that we may keep turning the pages.”

“Because, over the years, I’ve shared so much of myself online: my apartment, my clothes, and in the somewhat near future, my book. While not a diary by definition, it’s a vessel that contains stories I never thought would see the light of day. It’s hard work, and as someone who’s still getting used to the idea of having readers, ‘sharing’ is now a nuanced practice. But by putting pen to paper, I’ve noticed I’d rather share in the direction of genuine connection than pure aesthetic consumption.” 

“The demands of modern life can make it hard to weigh what’s worth our attention. But as we collectively navigate a changing world, perhaps we should take a moment to recalibrate our perspective. After all, snippet culture puts the onus to go deeper on us. It’s a reminder of our agency; an invitation to slow down and ask questions. Maybe in this way, less can be so much more.”

︎ Interview: Katie Kitamura︎︎︎
The Sewanee Review | 2022

“When I interviewed Katie Kitamura for Slow Stories in 2021, she said this about fiction: ‘I think one of the things that fiction is very good at is looking at the relationship between the individual and the institution or the larger social structure. And I think it’s not only good at narrativizing what it’s like to be an individual caught within a larger structure . . . but also kind of minding the gap between individual experience and collective experience in a productive way.’ In many ways, this tension is explored in her craft essay ‘Sprawl,’ which is featured in the Sewanee Review’s Summer 2022 issue.”

︎ Slow Seasons: Summer Is︎︎︎
Slow Stories | 2022

“Summer is a growing pain. Explosions of green foliage blanket the streets. Leaves become entangled, and gardens are overgrown. Ripples of light and heat pour in from all directions. For so long, there is nothing, and then suddenly, here is everything.”

︎ Interview: Sara Freeman︎︎︎
The Sewanee Review | 2022

“Following the publication of her debut novel, TIDES, Sara Freeman has slowly been working her way back to the page. ‘Having a book published is quite an external, nearly social process: editors, reviewers, readers,’ she says. ‘It’s a new experience for me, thrilling, and yet it can be momentarily disorienting, this thing you created in total privacy suddenly becoming an object outside of you, open to interpretation and critique. And so it’s been taking me a moment to re-enter the private, vulnerable space of permission and release required for writing.’”

“Flip through THE RED ZONE, and you'll find many things: Reddit threads and diaristic lists; romantic excursions and heated text messages; questions and (sometimes) answers. But whatever shape its content takes, one thing is clear: THE RED ZONE is an homage to love—for our bodies, partners, families, and ourselves.”

“Though a singular obsession drives Naomi, she ultimately writes towards her humanity while simultaneously grieving it, honoring it, and learning to recognize her life beyond the page. In this way, A NOVEL OBSESSION is a story about people—at their best and worst. Plot aside, Barasch reminds us of a simple truth: everybody has a story.”

︎ Love Letter(s): A Study in Objects from A-Z ︎︎︎
Natural Habitat (by Vitruvi) | 2022

“As our lives became smaller, I began to see these trinkets as relics from a time before everything changed; what were they if not a curated collection of distractions? But, gradually, these items have revealed themselves as necessities beyond function or aesthetics. I’ve realized they protect something precious.”

“I've learned if I choose to observe my body as I would brush strokes on a canvas or feet pointed midair, then I will learn to value my body in the same way I regard the arts. As something worth paying attention to, a work in progress, beautiful.”

︎ Slow Seasons: Branch by Branch︎︎︎
Slow Stories | 2022

“Winter is a season when things are laid bare. For many, it's become a time that's synonymous with uncertainty just as much as respite. For me, it's a period where words don't always flow as freely—where the stripped branches catch them mid-sentence, hardening their edges. Where they sit like buds, waiting to blossom into something worth saying aloud.”

“As someone who works online, I've been looking at the digital boxes that contain remnants of my days—curated moments primed for presentation. But what could be left unsaid? What do I let heal on its own? The changing landscape of a body also changes how you look at and use it. There's a bravery in Worley's honest examination of owning the dirty, messy truths that make a person—a life.”

“I mostly read ANIMAL at night, in the dark, when every being in my household slept soundly. But no matter where you are in the world, Taddeo's writing brings you back to your body. And if, like me, you found yourself breathless while reading THREE WOMEN, then just wait: Pulsing with life, ANIMAL creates space for a long-awaited exhale—growl—that allows you to feel it all. To tell your story out loud, and then again, louder.”

︎ In Style: Lauren Chan︎︎︎
Domino Magazine | 2021
“In her fast-paced, pre-quarantine life, ‘home was not a place I spent a lot of time,’ she adds. Now Chan, who describes her wardrobe as ‘practical, minimalist, and a touch quirky,’ is translating these elements to her Brooklyn apartment.”

︎ Be Slow︎︎︎
The Isolation Journals | 2020

“Unlike the click of a button, these objects don’t provide immediate answers, but they refocus the blurred lines between physical and digital, real and obscured. They create opportunities to look more closely, to listen more carefully, to consider more honestly: What do I want to make? Where do I want to go? Who do I want to be?”

“Traveling back to each of these women's homes over eight years became integral to reporting, but Taddeo's time on the road also reinforced a deeper understanding of travel's potential to shape our lives in ways we never expected.”