Signal Boost: Kai Collart

Hello all!

A recent interviewee recently reached out and requested some help. Kai Collart is just a wonderfully talented fanartist (interview found here: Tumblr & WordPress). They need some help covering the cost of housing and medication. This is what’s written on their YouCaring page:

Hey guys, my name is Kai Collart. I need a little help. I need to move by August, and I need to save up first and last month’s rent. I’m currently between jobs, and struggling to pay my current rent. I also need to save up money so I can have time off after my top surgery. (I’m transgender, by the way, so this surgery is really important to me.) All of this is happening so fast, and I can’t afford to do this on my own. If I don’t have money to move by August, I’m not going to have a place to go, as my lease ends in August, and we can’t renew it, as the landlord is selling the house. I’m sorry to be asking for help, but I’m in a really tight spot. Thank you for your support!

IMPORTANT UPDATE!!!!

MY TESTOSTERONE ISN’T COVERED BY THE PHARMAHEALTHCARE PLAN, AND WILL ONLY BE COVERED IF I WAS A BIOLOGICAL MAN, AS STATED BY THE REQUIREMENTS. I NEED TO HAVE $80 BY FRIDAY, AND I DON’T HAVE ANY MONEY, I CAN’T EVEN BUY FOOD RIGHT NOW. PLEASE SHARE OR DONATE, THIS IS IMPORTANT FOR MY HEALTH.

He also requested I included this additional information in the signal boost: “ I am willing to write a short story of any kind for anyone who donates, as long as they let me know what they want written, as I have stated in my Tumblr post as well.”

Once again, here’s his YouCaring page:https://www.youcaring.com/kaicollart-1160920

So if you can help out an ace in need, I know that Kai would be just so incredibly grateful. And please share this as well. Let’s help an ace artist out 🙂

Thank you, everybody!

Interview: Kai Collart

Today we’re joined by Kai Collart. Kai is a phenomenal fanfiction writer who writes fics in the One Piece fandom. He particularly enjoys writing Zosan fics. While he mostly writes short stories, Kai also has a few multi-chapter fics too. It’s clear he loves to write, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to him for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I mostly write fanfics for the One Piece fandom, specifically Zosan. They’re mostly just short stories but I have a few multi-chapter fics in mind that I may create someday. I do also make my own short stories and what not but I keep those for myself and my close friends. I’m not as active as I used to be, as I’m spending more time editing other people’s work rather than making my own.

What inspires you?

The thing that inspires me most is music. I can’t write unless I have music in the background, usually set in the mood of what I’m writing. Going outside on walks also inspires me and helps me create new ideas, as well as brainstorming with my fiancée also helps.

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

I’ve always been interested in writing and storytelling since I can remember really. My grandpa used to make up these elaborate stories for us and get us to add onto it with him and since then I’ve been hooked. I can’t go a day without creating my own little world and making little stories along the way.

Reading fanfics is what got me into writing them as I wasn’t always satisfied with the content, or the lack thereof that I had access to. I wanted to provide my own ideas for others to enjoy in their own time without having to pay for it.

Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in your work that you’d be willing to reveal?

I don’t really have anything that I can think of that’s unique to my work.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

No matter what anyone says to you, good or bad, just keep creating. There will always be at least one person that will love and be inspired by your work and that in itself is worth it. But even then, create your art for you. Be your own inspiration when you can.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’m a sex repulsed asexual, panromantic. I also happen to be a transgender male and also polyamorous.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

I have indeed encountered plenty of ace prejudice in my time, mostly by my ex-boyfriend. At first I tried to educate him on it but when he seemed uninterested I just distanced myself from it. If a person isn’t willing to learn about or accept who I am, there is only so much I can do before I just have to walk away and take care of myself.

More often than not, people will accept it and move on for me.

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

Mostly I have encountered people saying that asexuality isn’t a thing and I just need to find the right person, that I’m picky, or even that I’m just afraid of sex because I’ve been hurt. Most people who have said these things tell me that it’s impossible not to be attracted to a gender and that I just need to choose something.

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

Just be yourself. Find people that will accept you, reach out to other aces if you can and talk to them. Share your story if you feel comfortable doing so. Don’t let people pressure you into doing something you don’t want to do, if you’re in a relationship with a person who is guilt tripping you over not having sex or not being sexually attracted to them, maybe it’s time to get out of that relationship if you can’t work it out. You’re not alone, we stand with you.

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

https://archiveofourown.org/users/Torchi_chan is where I post the work that I’m comfortable sharing. Some may be NSFW and most are pretty sad.

Thank you, Kai, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.

Interview: Hannah

Today we’re joined by Hannah. Hannah is a phenomenal fanartist who writes fanfiction. She has dabbled in a number of fandoms including Miraculous Ladybug and Voltron. When she’s not writing fanfiction, Hannah also has a few original novellas that she’s working on. She’s clearly a dedicated and passionate writer, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I’m a fanfiction writer, but I’ve kind of put that on hold for a while as I work on my university senior thesis, and my other original ideas. My earliest fandom was the anime One Piece, but I’ve written for Detective Conan, Miraculous Ladybug and Voltron: Legendary Defender, too. My original story is still in its early stages, only about five chapters in, but it’s coming along.

What inspires you?

Reading other people’s fanfictions, actually. Whenever I’m in a slump I go and reread my favorite OTP fics and tell myself that if they can publish a 50k fanfic, for free, then I can eek out a few more pages of a chapter. Also going back and reading comments on my older stories; I occasionally get a comment on my old stuff on fanfiction.net and every time I’m stunned that someone dug around and found this unfinished Detective Conan fic in the depths of an ancient website, but it still makes me happy whenever I look at those comments.

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

I guess read a lot when I was a kid, and wrote short (and honestly very bad) stories on notebook paper. I went abroad with this program called People to People, and I met a girl there with whom I would roleplay this kind of Avatar: Last Airbender-esque game. The story was so good I wrote it down. It never went anywhere, but the 15 or so chapters I still have it on a flash drive somewhere haha. Around that time I was really into cartoons and anime, and discovered fanfiction.net. I read other people’s stories and AUs, and started to create my own. I didn’t start writing original stuff until high school, and though I have a lot of dropped projects, I think the one I’m working on now will be a keeper.

I don’t really want to be a writer in the future though; I’m planning on going into linguistics and East Asia Studies, so anything I do publish will likely be academic. But just because I’m publishing non-fiction doesn’t mean I can’t write fiction for fun!

Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in your work that you’d be willing to reveal?

Hehe, none that I can think of!

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

READ. I don’t care if it’s novellas, classical literature, or more fanfiction, just read. It will constantly give you new ideas and ways of thinking and describing, and you might find yourself adopting and adapting ideas, which is totally okay (as long as it’s not blatant plagiarizing lol).

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’m a heteromantic asexual, though I’m kind of somewhere between demi and ace. I have little to no sex drive but might be willing to do some things with someone I’ve been with for a while without actually doing it, y’know?

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

Luckily my parents were accepting of my sexuality, though my Mom frets sometimes that she feels like I’m “missing out,” and I tell her in return that “I can’t miss what I never had.” My university is also very accepting, so no problems there.

It’s when I try to get into the dating world where I find a lot of trouble. Whenever I tell a guy I’m interested in that I’m ace, the most common question I get is “So are you a virgin,” which is honestly one of the worst things to ask a person. I actually have an Asexuality FAQ note on my phone that I send/show to people to avoid going through the same “What is asexuality?” conversation again, lol. I have yet to find an asexual guy in my area though (Ay, near Milwaukee, WI!)

Some of the guys think they can handle the whole “no sex” thing, but end up leaving after about two weeks. It’s routine, but also quite hard on me emotionally. Handling and re-convincing myself that I am valid is the hard part: Am I that unattractive that this person doesn’t want to even try? No, you’re beautiful. Do I wish that I wasn’t asexual? Sometimes. But I think that being asexual has its perks, like communities like this online.

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

Speaking of my Asexuality FAQ, one question on there is pretty common (besides the virginity one): does everything work? And it just makes me laugh at this point. I can have sex, I just don’t want to. (A funny question I got once was: “So do you reproduce by cloning like plants?” and I responded “That makes about as much sense as saying your nose is running when it has no feet.”)

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

It’s normal. Maybe no one label works for you. I’m almost 22 years old now, and only just last year understood that I was floating in between demisexual and plain ole asexual, so really there’s no shame in calling yourself one thing and deciding later that something else makes more sense, no matter how long it takes you. Take your time. It’s hard to be on the aspec in a world that is obsessed with sex, but you come out the other side stronger for it. Don’t feel pressured to have sex because it’s what society expects of you. I almost fell victim to that kind of mentality, and really screwed with my mental health the first few years of university. Raise your ace flag high!

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

My Archive of our Own name is 1004_Angel, and if you want to read my really old stuff from fanfiction.net, that’s 1004-Angel (with a dash instead of an underscore; fair warning, I don’t remember what is on there at all, so browse at your own risk!). I also have some one-shots on my Tumblr at the-noble-idiot (tag: Hannah Writes) and other ace positivity things (tag: acengers assemble). My original stuff isn’t online, but if you like I can send you the first chapter, just message me on Tumblr! ;D

Thank you, Hannah, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.