Seananis creating words, pictures, bridges, and brave spaces
Short of cash but eager to help? Thank you -- honestly. We've all walked the short-shrift path. In appreciation, I'll hook you up with one digital haiga -- multimedia art combining a photograph or drawing with a haiku (nature) or senryu (humanity) a season.
Everything in the earlier tiers, plus private access to posts about teaching artistry (from crafts to warmups to interviews with exceptional teachers); mindfulness and creativity; and my artistic process as a writer, photographer, storyteller, and teacher.
You'll also get a calligraphed poem or signed photo, and a hand-written thank you note.
I have four novels in various stages of revision. I love and believe in them all -- and I have agents interested in seeing my work. What I don't have is space or time.
Two of my young adult novels are fantasy. One takes a girl from danger in her home village to her full power as the first female shaman in her land. Another follows a pair of twins as they escape their heritage and training; they're meant to become extraordinary assassins, but neither has a taste for death. Risking their lives and their lineage, they carve separate paths, and reunite to defy destiny and change a kingdom.
The third, a contemporary novel, explores the relationship between two sisters. One of them is on the autism spectrum. Behind a mask of perfection, the other is something far more dangerous.
My middle grade novel stars a shy boy and an ancient dragon he accidentally brings into the world. Every time the boy tries to make things better, they get exponentially worse. In the end, the only way to make things right is to forfeit what he has finally come to love.
If you're wondering how I can have four books and say I need clear hours and room to work, here's the answer. I'm a fast writer. When it comes to revision, however, I'm slower than a sea slug.
All that's standing between these drafts and polished manuscripts is a lack of focus, space, and time.
Remember those interested agents? It'd be good to get back to them before they forget me. And rewriting a novel requires being able to walk through the world and then to shut it out entirely: room to reflect, quiet for focus, and energy for creation and revision.
My income comes from freelance writing and photography -- mostly food and travel, but sometimes other things -- and the gig economy. As a teaching artist, I lead courses writing, playwriting, acting, theatre arts, puppetry, geekery, and social justice, largely in areas that are underserved: poor, often communities of recent immigrants or people of color, schools with disabled students, and classrooms with a student/teacher ratio so high it's amazing that the teachers know their students' names.
I'm glad to have carved out a way to make a living -- albeit a tenuous one -- that both contributes to the world and accommodates my autism, dyslexia, and dyspraxia. I work in spaces where my gender-fluidity is not an obstacle. In many ways, I am fortunate. With both freelancing and teaching artistry, though, the hours are long and the cash flow is consistently uneven.
A steady income of $500 a month would free me of enough hours that I could focus on revising and writing. Then I could get my words into the hands of people who could put them in the world. Depending on your level, there might be a signed copy for you on the far side of that goal -- or maybe a mention in the acknowledgements page.
Imminent returns on your investment, depending on levels, which are under construction:
- Drafts of chapters and stories (By the time you see them, the rough bits will have been filed off.)
- Haiga (a combination of poems and visual arts; most of mine use photos)
- Q&As with artists, writers, and creative, crafty folk
- Wallet-sized cards with words and pictures
There will be more if this takes off.
To tell a deep truth, I'm scared by that "if". It's a big little word -- and this page calls for more gall than is currently in my possession, which puts me in gumption overdraft.
All of that said, I'm not alone in wanting to see my novels out in the world. There's a route from the tsunami to the shore. I'm choosing to believe in community and art.