The folks at Glitchy Pancakes invited me and Sheree Renée Thomas on to talk about #OwnVoices fiction. Not just what it is, but also some of the complexity behind how people wield that label in writing and reading discourse online. It was a great conversation and I always love talking to Sheree cuz she’s amazing.
Last week I had the great pleasure of being on WNYC’s Science Friday as part of the #SciFriBookClub. All this month they’re reading and talking about stories from New Suns: Original Speculative Fiction By Writers of Color edited by Nisi Shawl. I got to talk to editor Aisha Matthews and producer Christie Taylor about the story “Dumb House” written by Andrea Hairston.
Any time I get to discuss Andrea’s work with people I’m happy, so I knew going in that this would be fantastic. We ended up having a truly wonderful conversation that went a little over time, so some had to be cut. Still, what’s there captures the essence of what we talked about. You should buy the book, read the story, and listen in.
If you want to listen to the first segment where they talked to Darcie Little Badger about their story, or find the upcoming segments, head to the Science Friday book club website.
In this episode Aleen talks to Rosemary Orchard and we discuss getting over barriers to creativity, not holding yourself to impossible standards, and establishing a writing ritual that works for you. Also: do you trust strangers to watch your stuff in coffee shops? (I totally do…)
In my recent post about communities I talked about the importance of Finding Your Tribe. In this episode we discuss this in the context of the XOXO Festival and why creating intentional community spaces at conferences like this one matters. Also ways to get to conferences even if you don’t have the funds to do so.
Let me know what you think of this one in the comments!
In this episode we talk about the F word: failure. Bob Ross didn’t want you to be afraid to fail, and neither do we. So we discuss mistakes and how to frame those experiences to be productive instead of destructive. It’s not as woo-woo as it sounds, I promise.
In the past year I’ve had many occasions to think about the value of community and having a close-knit cadre of friends you can count on. It’s key to my mental health, my creativity, and everything that’s important to me. And that’s what this episode is about.
For about a year and a half I’ve been part of an artist’s collective with five other amazing woman who inspire me with their creativity and their compassion: Alethea Kontis, Monica Valentinelli, Stina Leicht, Shveta Thakrar, and Leanna Renee Hieber. I wanted them on the podcast to discuss the wonderful microcommunity we’d built and so I could talk with Aleen about how to take what we’ve done and apply it across time and space. Leanna, unfortunately, could not join us, but I got the other four together for a conversation and the whole thing turned out far better than I’d hoped.
This is one of the episodes of ORIGINALity I’m proudest of and I hope you’ll give it a listen.
It’s also a nice intro into a post going up later this week in which I expand on many of the ideas discussed here about community and trust. That one’s been brewing a while…
In this episode Aleen and I talk about the line between inspiration and appropriation. We get into the value of learning by copying and also what questions to ask yourself to ensure that your final product isn’t still a copy. We also dip into the nuances of drawing from different cultures, how to interrogate what really interests you about that culture, and what to do when you mess up.
In this episode we talk about habits and how and why they don’t work for everyone. We start with routines and how they often help prepare your brain can help you reach a more creative place (though not for everyone). Then we discuss how we use bite-sized goals and rewards to keep working, why “grit” is super annoying, and the importance of taking time to step back, look at the big picture, and be kind to yourself.
In this episode Aleen and I discuss bring creative while under the mental toll of life in America in 2019. There are many potential ways to deal with this, including gathering up friends, family, and community who sustain your creativity, using data to figure out what works for you, when you should or shouldn’t listen to “experts” about how to create better, and why it’s good to ask for help when you need it.
Get your shovels, because in this episode Aleen and I discuss the dreaded “shoulds” and how to bury them so you can focus instead on what you want to be doing. We also talk about the importance of saying “no” to things, the powerful motivation of avoiding a 9-to-5 job, and how to find a word count goal that works for you.