Late last fall I wrote about my newly discovered love of walking for The Guardian. The piece received an incredible reaction, with folks reaching out to me from all over the world to share their love of putting one foot in front of the other. It is with that hope for connection that I'm starting this new project, Walk It Off.
If you have no idea who I am, here’s my official bio:
Isaac Fitzgerald has been a firefighter, worked on a boat, and was once given a sword by a king, thereby accomplishing three out of five of his childhood goals. Formerly of The Rumpus, McSweeney’s, BuzzFeed Books, and BuzzFeed News’ Twitter morning show #AMtoDM, Isaac appears frequently on The Today Show and is the author of the national bestselling children’s book How to Be a Pirate as well as the co-author of Pen & Ink: Tattoos and the Stories Behind Them and Knives & Ink: Chefs and the Stories Behind Their Tattoos (with Recipes). Isaac’s writing has also appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, The Best American Nonrequired Reading, The Boston Globe, and numerous other publications. These days he lives in Brooklyn where he is working on two books forthcoming from Bloomsbury: a YA novel, and an essay collection titled Dirtbag, Massachusetts.
Unofficially, I'm somebody who certainly doesn't have it all (if anything) figured out, and is a little rough around the edges while at the same time being wildly optimistic. But don't worry, I'm going to therapy for all that. Walk It Off is going to be focused on three things: walking, human connection, and New York City.
The peace of mind walking gives me is something I look for in everything I do now. I'm trying to lead a simpler life. I have resided in New York City since the fall of 2013, but spent far too much of that time working instead of appreciating the incredible place that I am lucky enough to call home.
Every walk I go on is an adventure, and I want to share that adventure and exploration with you. It’s as simple as that. I’ve been covering miles and miles all over these islands, taking photos and writing down my thoughts. This project is about my personal discovery of New York City. Finding places that bring me joy, or wonder, or calm, or introspection. And you better believe that I’ll be looking for suggestions for places to walk to from friends and readers.
Walk It Off will come out once a week, every Friday, and will be focused on my walk to a specific place within New York City that has a unique history or story behind it, that I’ll share with you. For example, this bear/Beard gravestone in Greenwood Cemetery in Brooklyn:
Look for that story tomorrow. And yes, there will be photographs. On some walks I will ask a friend or person of interest to take me to a spot that means a lot to them. A longtime resident of New York City, or a writer, or artist, or musician. We’ll walk together, and I will publish our conversation as well as our journey. Eventually I hope to travel, walking with friends in places all over the country. While New York City is at the heart of this project, please know that it can be enjoyed by anyone anywhere.
Every week I will also post a member thread discussion, because I want to hear from all of you. Where are you walking? What are you listening to? Thinking about? What new place did you discover while rambling around outdoors? This past year was difficult for all of us in so many similar and wildly different ways. And I, for one, could use a walk.
Walk It Off will always be free. But I am not above putting my cup out. Here are the rates, if you want to buy me socks, beer, or a sandwich while I’m out exploring:
$7 for 1 month (socks) 🧦
$80 for 1 year (beer) 🍺
$200 for 1 year (sandwiches) 🥪
Or, you can gift a subscription to the walker in your life:
Ok, that’s enough talk for now. If any of this sounds of interest to you, I hope you sign up. I’m going to go Walk It Off.