Welcome to The Hyphen newsletter. An online space for thousands of curious readers.
Hi Emma, who are you?
Hello, I’m Emma Gannon. I live in London. I’m an old Millennial. I like wearing the colour yellow even though fashion magazines say you shouldn’t wear yellow if you’re blonde and pale. I like long walks, working for myself, reading in bed, buying new stationery, spiritual self-help, swimming, independent shops, organising my ridiculous bookshelves, city breaks with my husband, tweeting random shite, cooking easy things that look impressive, looking after other people’s dogs (I did it once) and inviting friends over. Truthfully, I really love my life. I’m a Gemini, but just try and look past that.
Sorry to ask but “what do you do”?
I write. I am a Sunday Times Bestselling author; I have written everything from waffling blog posts in the noughties, to writing tweets in the ‘voice’ of inanimate brands, to working at Condé Nast, to making writing my full-time job and writing bestselling books. In my twenties, I wrote a book called Ctrl Alt Delete all about growing up online from dial-up to dating to digital nativism. Hardly anyone read it when it first came out, which I now believe was actually The Universe being on my side (lol). Funnily enough, when I turned the book into a podcast (also called Ctrl Alt Delete) almost 12 million people have now listened to it.
Nowadays, as a slightly more wizened woman in my thirties, I write about creativity, books, wellbeing, Internet culture and the future of work. My second book The Multi-Hyphen Life (all about having multiple interests and breaking away from the 9-5) was endorsed by publications/people such as The Financial Times, The Guardian and Richard Branson. I am glad people did read that one. I have also written books on conquering self-sabotage and staying human online. I’m currently working on a new book about the myths of success. I am really passionate about helping others unlock their own version of success.
I also write novels. My debut OLIVE is about a child-free by choice character (Olive) who is figuring out her life which looks a bit different to her pals who are focusing on motherhood. It led me to meeting the most beautiful readers and confirmed my love of writing fiction.
Why did you start this newsletter?
Social media used to be an exciting, joyful online space. Unfortunately, it is no longer that (for me). Instagram hides my posts, Twitter gets very dramatic, and Linkedin seems to be a lot of men in suits wishing me a slightly sinister happy birthday. I missed writing on the Internet. I missed the comment section on blogs. I missed the connection that can come from your own little corner of the Internet. Along came Substack, and this newsletter is a joy to write. About the name: a “hyphen”, to me, symbolises that messy bit in the middle. The “in-between” bits of life, the hyphens that knit together all the different sides of ourselves. The bits between being a parent or being a worker or being [insert thing]. So, that’s why I called this newsletter The Hyphen. Anything goes here, but I will mainly be talking about books, wellbeing, creativity, joy, side-hustles and living life on your own terms.
How it works:
Every now and again, you’ll receive a Hyphen email for free.
And for paying members, you’ll gain access to all my new writing, the full archive, weekly Sunday round-ups of what I’m reading, Tuesday Threads, access to the Hyphen Book Clinic, the Sunday Scrolls, book giveaways and more. You’ll also be supporting all the work I do and give away for free. It’s a really wonderful community for less than the price of a cocktail. Here’s a 10% off code as a ‘congratulations’ for reading this far.
Can I pitch an article for The Hyphen?
Yes! A few times a month, I publish a 500 word guest post. Send in your idea, title and a short paragraph about the piece to hello[at]emmagannon.co.uk. We only accept pitches on the topics of wellbeing, work, digital culture and creativity as these are the main themes of The Hyphen. You do not need to have a social media platform (just mentioning that, as someone people ask). I’m really sorry but we cannot reply to everyone as the team is so small (it’s me, plus occasional help) so if you don’t hear back in a week then absolutely feel free to pitch it elsewhere! Thank you.
A bit more about me:
I also host a podcast Ctrl, Alt, Delete which is a non-traditional careers podcast founded in 2016 and has had over 11 million downloads to date, with guests including Elizabeth Gilbert, Ava DuVernay and Alain De Botton. We talk about life, work, wellbeing, creativity, success and everything in between. I LOVE making it. You can also find more audio of mine on Blinkist; I have made multiple video courses for Skillshare and I recently created my very own writing journal that I designed to help people overcome their writer’s block which you can check out here.