nylah burton Profile picture
Writer | race, climate, mental health, love | words @NYMag @Essence @VOGUEIndia @BritishVogue @zoramag @byshondaland @TheNation | literary agent @jessregel
14 Sep
🧵A lot of people are surprised that you can do hit 10k as a freelancer but you really can. I’ve done it several times so I’ll give some tips in this thread.
1) print pieces

This is easier said than done but try to get a story in print! A lot of magazines will pay $1/word for print and it’s better for you career-wise. The best way to get in print is to ask an editor you’re already working with about their pitching process
2) subscribe to @studyhallxyz, they post snacking opportunities and checking them everyday will help you find new opportunities and well-paying pubs
Read 19 tweets
23 Aug
You are allowed to do almost anything in this life, you have the right.

Whether you should do it... that’s a totally different question. I feel like people get the two mixed up so often, especially in this extremely cursed individualistic society.
People do not like to hear this, but prioritizing yourself at all cost comes at a price, and you may wake up one day and be deeply unhappy with the price you paid.
Forgetting that you’re a human being who is reliant upon other human beings... forgetting that other human beings are reliant upon you, can be a disaster
Read 6 tweets
8 Aug
I actually like I May Destroy You specifically because of how messy and personal it is. Arabella is an anti-hero and that’s how she’s supposed to be
I actually don’t see a whole lot of myself as a survivor in this show and that’s what intrigues me about it. It’s deeply personal.

And Arabella does shitty things and has shitty ideas and that’s realistic
People don’t get assaulted and become experts on the issue overnight. They may remain entrenched in r*pe culture for the rest of their lives, does it make their story any less compelling? I don’t think so
Read 8 tweets
21 Jul
This is actually every single thing that is wrong with the “destigmatize mental illness” shit. Y’all only want to destigmatize fairly mild anxiety and depression and burnout. You actually have no interest in destigmatizing delusions, hallucinations, mania and suicidal ideation
You have NO interest in destigmatizing mental illness for those of us who have literally been PUT IN CHAINS and locked into some of the most horrific “hospitals.” You have no interest in destigmatizing people mental illness for people like me
You want us to be perfect and easily defined and likable and morally superior and aritistic geniuses and inspiring and yoga experts who drink lots of fucking water lol
Read 5 tweets
21 Jul
The problem with how y’all talk about Kanye is that other mentally ill people can FUCKING HEAR YOU.
It’s so easy to ignore him! It’s so fucking easy but y’all act as though he is singlehandedly destroying Black America and it’s up to you and your brigade to stop him.
I don’t talk about ableism and Kanye West because I love Kanye West, I actually dislike him very much. But he is UNWELL. He has admitted that he does not take medication. You are not a fucking doctor. You don’t know how mental illness impacts the way he thinks
Read 5 tweets
1 May
In 2020, every man is an ally. Every man is innocent. Every man practices consent perfectly. They “hear” us, they “see” us... but they have nothing to apologize for.

They acknowledge that sexual violence happens all the time, but no one they know is a perpetrator.
They want to change the culture, but the culture hasn’t influenced them at all. They are perfect.
They believe women, but the ten women who say they were victimized by them are lying.

We shouldn’t blame victims, but every accusation should be viewed with scrutiny.
Read 11 tweets
19 Apr
I’m going to be ranikg state flags from worst to best.

1) Mississippi

I.. don’t need to explain why.
2) Alabama

If you’re gonna have a Confederate flag, do it with your chest.
3) Rhode Island

This is not even good enough for a toddler’s t-shirt.
“Hope”? Losers. An anchor? Wanna-be sailors? A missing border? Don’t even know how to use Word 97

Read 57 tweets
12 Apr
I’m really confused that y’all think we’re just gonna... go back... to... normal???

How are we gonna spend the summer in the Caribbean? How you gonna have boozy brunch when all the brunch places you love are closed?
How you gonna go back to work when a lot of our industries will be dead/insanely competitive for a long time?

Does it make sense to spend money on an MFA program now?
How are you gonna move the same knowing all these people are dead?
Read 15 tweets
1 Apr
I’m starting to notice people resisting the stay at home orders by hiding behind the most vulnerable people, when really their issue is that there are social sacrifices they don’t want to make
Like... it does not help incarcerated people or houseless people for you to be able to visit your friend or go sit down at a restaurant.
It’s actually pretty gross to conflate the two, imo.

But yeah I’m super wary of people who say stay at home orders shouldn’t happen until we’ve fixed every societal ill. That’s just gonna kill people?
Read 12 tweets
6 Mar
Warren supporters have exhausted me. I say this as a person who was until very recently, going to vote for Warren.

I feel extremely gaslighted and disgusted by a lot of the discourse. And yeah, I’m gonna fucking talk about it. Y’all made us talk about snake emojis for 2 months
The kicker is that Warren doesn’t even have that many supporters. We saw that very clearly. Warren’s base is a smaller group of educated people with steady incomes. Mostly white, but a lot of this applies to her POC supporters as well.
So, many of her supporters have HUGE platforms that they are using to spread ideas that are counterproductive to a progressive agenda. I find that unacceptable.
Read 16 tweets
13 Feb
y’all really have no idea what abuse is.
the extent to which ghosting is abusive, harmful, or even mean is highly dependent on context: when, where, what, and with whom

ghosting is rarely abusive by these standards
Read 10 tweets
23 Nov 19
White people: destroys world for spices

Also white people: uwu tumeric is too spicy and gross color oh nooooooo get it away from me
White people: ethnic food is *gross* 😤

Also white people: OMG can we do Ethiopian tonight! I need to take an insta of myself with the injera and the DOROO WHAT
Read 8 tweets
13 Oct 19
Writers: which pubs pay quickly (2 weeks or earlier)? I know that’s something that would be SUPER helpful for me to know this month and for a few other writers I know.
I’ll start with ones I know:
@WearYourVoice pays day of publication
@BitchMedia pays average three days after publication
@Independent pays within a week after publication
@JewishCurrents pays every Friday
@thenation pays within two weeks, if I remember correctly
Read 14 tweets
21 Aug 19
Hey y'all. If you know me, you know I very rarely insist on personal action re: climate crisis. But if you want to do something about the #AmazonRainforest and the killing of Indigenous people, the easiest and most impactful thing you can do is stop eating beef. Let me explain.
Deforestation in the #AmazonRainforest is happening because of corporations that are tearing down the forest to make way for more production. Some of these companies are timber and rubber and medicine, but a lot of them are cattle.
Boycotts can be hard and confusing, but "No beef," is a pretty easy thing to do — even if you medically need to eat meat, there are other meats. And even if you still eat cheese or milk, the loss of those profits from the meat would be impactful if we all did it.
Read 28 tweets
13 Aug 19
TW: mental health, SA, suicide

When I heard Trump say he wanted to increase involuntary commitments, my heart stopped, because I personally know how involuntary commitment can be a traumatic, criminalizing experience — especially for women of color. bustle.com/p/involuntary-…
It can save lives, but the system can also cause harm to patients.
When I was involuntarily committed the first time, it saved my life. The second time however, was horrifying. I was handcuffed, put into police wagon, and transported to a poorly-run, dangerous government hospital. It was terrifying, and it left me with traumatic memories.
Read 7 tweets
8 Jun 19
The vast majority of white people don’t like being called white. Some will end friendships over it. You’re not special because you feel incongruent with whiteness.
It amazes me that people think “I am not really WHITE-white bc that’s not how I FEEL” or “the white kids bullied me bc [insert marginalization here] how can you call me white?”
You’re not SUPPOSED to be comfortable with whiteness, you absolute loons. It’s not SUPPOSED to make you feel warm and fuzzy inside. It’s not SUPPOSED to give you a positive sense of identity... there is no such thing as white culture! It’s a descriptor & system of societal power
Read 7 tweets
17 May 19
I don’t mind fighting these threats with white women. What I do mind is white women who just discovered these issues in 2016 and now think they can speak over the women who’ve been doing the work, the women whose entire lives have been shaped by the violence of this country
Y’all always show up when you wake up and realize that you’re in danger too. Some of y’all only realized that our lives were in danger in 2016. That doesn’t give you the right to dictate everything, especially when there are women who know so much more than you
These issues are about more than just what you interpret them as, and your refusal to analyze systems of power and oppression makes you do unintelligent things like sex/ Southern boycotts. y’all need to grow up
Read 8 tweets
16 May 19
I’m taking fifty steps back from writing in Jewish publications so she won’t have to worry about this for long. But it always baffles me that people think I have some grand conspiracy planned. First of all that’s ridiculous. Secondly, over half of the stories I’ve written come..
from direct requests from Black Jews, to explore certain topics that they don’t feel comfortable enough writing about themselves because they know they’ll be harassed. I am not making this shit up? I’m actually listening to the community y’all love to ignore.
It was the privilege of MY LIFE to tell these stories but I can’t do it anymore. This is why writers of color crash and burn in these publications. The harassment is too intense and the support networks aren’t there. And the emotional labor required to do this is enormous.
Read 5 tweets
13 May 19
All of y’all saying Dany couldn’t have become what she became bc she did nice things for people... y’all weren’t raised by narcissists and it shows
Y’all keep citing the fact that she saved women from rape... but the reason they were being raped is because she pressured her husband to sail to Westeros and capture the throne for her. The Dothraki raided villages to get the resources to do so, she knew what they were about.
But her need to be the center of everything was really what made her “save” these women and the witch who killed khal drogo pointed it out, that Dany did this for herself, not for those women, and that she didn’t really save anyone
Read 24 tweets
28 Apr 19
Weirdly been thinking about the function of rich white families making the suburbs, not the cities where the fathers worked, the family home. Think Betty and Mad Men. On the surface one could say it’s about safety, better schools, area for the kids to play, etc but it’s
More about controlling women. Keeping them from academic centers where they could learn about feminist theory, keeping them from socializing with radical women, keeping them from meeting men and participating in life, etc.
Anyway remembering this just reinforces to me how important cities are as sites of resistance for all marginalized groups. It’s why gentrification pisses me off. Literally cleansing brown people from cultural hubs
Read 7 tweets