“You are your home.”
Taken from “Flux,” the words of Orion Carloto, a Youtube creator of 7 years with a subscriber count surpassing 200 thousand, have reached a widespread audience. Having spent years as a columnist for the Local Wolves magazine, her writing about self-love, acceptance, and personal development reached people for years, but never in a format so condensed. Her brand has evolved into a distinct one; her videos and Instagram posts are littered with her writing and matched to a minimalist style that is eye-catching and tasteful. The long-awaited book spans a brief 181 pages and is primarily comprised of her own poetry, alongside brief pieces of prose and art provided by Katie Roberts.
The release of the book was preceded by the release of a short book trailer, the description of which reads, “Flux is a somber narrative, an ode to change, a nostalgic collection of poetry and prose written from the many states of grief...This is an ode to the lovers, the dreamers, and the ones who believed in someone else's ‘forever.’” I purchased the book after having seen numerous online content creators release books ghostwritten for them. Orion’s original work is refreshing in the sense that it is just that- original.
As with any book, liking Orion’s work is a matter of taste. It reads almost like a diary, every account of hers coming from a remarkably personal place, and being given to the reader without inhibition. She details her heartbreak, her coping, and her progress since the relationships that she’s had. She does this fully, not in an effort to merely share her experiences or to relay a story that is largely shared, but to demonstrate the self-love that her experiences have amounted to. In a note to the reader, she provides that “I wrote these words for me, but now I want these words for you.”
There is a maturity about her writing, and a simultaneous recognition of the room left for growth. I say this because there are passages of hers that read very simplistically, and this is a trait often critiqued by newer writers. It is this quality, however, that makes her writing so accessible, particularly to a younger audience. There are still pieces more layered and thought-provoking than the one-sentence pieces that more often than not hit home. I was met with the concern that her work would romanticize the pain she so vividly paints, but as if to answer those concerns she features a piece that reads, “Infatuated with my own desirable imagination, I turned myself into a victim of my own romanticization.”
The strength of the book is its honesty. She does not brand herself as all-knowing or as a guide to self-growth, but hopes that her readers will find themselves understood in her words. “Flux” is a quick, but affecting read, and speaks volumes of Carloto's experience.