When Lina Abascal got her heart broken back in 2016 she turned it into a work of art. In the same ways that artists like Lady Gaga have managed to turn the sordid status of their personal lives into their greatest works, Abascal has done so with her writing.
2017’s A Headache From Crying started out as a viral essay on Medium before expanding into a collection of short essays that helped create closure on a relationship that never really ended with every loose end tied up. The essays, which resonated deeply with anyone that has ever felt a longing for answers they would never get, launched Abasacal’s career as a creative writer.
Next came These Are Not About You, the follow-up collection of essays, poems, and stories that revisited all of the relationships that made Abascal who she is today. Never about a single person aside from Abascal herself, the collection details the pivotal decade of a woman’s life throughout her late teens and early twenties in a way that further canonizes Abascal as a voice of her generation, where women are constantly caught between an outward drive for personal success and the all-too-human need to feel loved and deeply connected to a relationship—even if that relationship is with one’s self.
But it would be a couple of years before Abascal would self-publish another zine. “In the latter end of last year, I was ruined,” writes Abascal on Instagram in the announcement for her new collection of satire, essays, and other stories titled Shucked. “I was lied to, abandoned, betrayed by a person and then by my own body. I felt removed from my self and my home and my life plans. Shucked if you will. So upon reviewing what to do: A. kill yourself B. write about it. I just barely went for option B. You’re welcome,” she continues.
Just like in her other works, Abascal will take her personal tragedies, chew them up, and spit them back out in the form of a thoughtful, heartfelt collection of work from an artist that found her voice and her place where so many of us have in the digital age—online. But where Shucked will differentiate itself from its predecessors is not in its content, but its presentation.
“I think the biggest difference between this zine and the previous ones is the format,” says Abascal. “In the most literal sense this one has a lot more art. The art was directed by me instead of giving free reign to the artist which is what I did last time,” she says.
Both A Headache From Crying and These Are Not About You served as cathartic retellings of love stories and heartbreak that had their readers reliving their own relationships in a new way. Shucked, much like Abascal’s real-life personality, will have a much more sarcastic take on the same types of stories that often have anyone feeling as if they’re in a low point in their lives.
“It also is satirical and comedic and then it has one short story fiction at the end … emotionally I think the biggest difference is that I feel like this is coming from less of a spiteful place and more of a healing and positive place,” she says, admitting that her own growth has contributed to a tonal change in her writing. “It’s more reflective of my current approach to [healing] as well as my current writing style, which is fiction and satire,” she says.
Abascal’s Shucked is out now, and you can grab a copy for yourself on her website here. You can also follow her on Twitter, where her online personality as @linalovesit became URL canon in the 2010’s, portraying the ups and downs of becoming an adult on the internet. Oh, and she also wrote a book.