Interview: Margaret Rose

Today we’re joined by Margaret Rose. Margaret is a wonderful young writer who specializes in poetry. She already has a poetry collection entitled I Don’t Have One, which can be found on Amazon. Margaret’s poetry is very personal and she is incredibly passionate about writing, 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 love to write. I have been writing since a young age, I wrote a novel on a dare once (which now sits on my book shelf). But mostly I write poetry and keep track of anxious thoughts and questions in journals and on my phone. I usually don’t share anything out of fear. I submit to poetry contests under anonymous, and it’s nice when your work wins but then it’s a little sad when nothing comes of it because I don’t attach a name.

I also paint and love photography, but not nearly as much as writing, and writing is where I would hope to succeed.

What inspires you?

I find watching people over-come their personal obstacles really inspiring and people who really embrace their personality no matter how weird people may think they are. Sometimes liking yourself and accepting yourself can be a really powerful thing. Sometimes people really suffer trying to fit in, trying to please others and it really takes away from their own person. And it can really be a struggle, but hearing those stories about people getting to where they are happy or are on the way to discovering who they are, are really inspiring.

Tyler, the creator and Camila Cabello, if celebrity inspirations are of curiosity. I think they sort of had to make the decision to stay true to themselves and its paying off. Which I like to see. I like to know it’s possible to follow your own path and people will embrace it because they relate. Too many artists, I think, change to fit what is expected of them.

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

I used to journal a lot when I was younger and write stories and then later read them back and see how I reacted to certain things. As I got older I could see where I grew and where I was stuck. And I started to think about things that happened in books or songs see if they applied to me. Then I thought maybe my struggles and my triumphs could help other people, but it took me a long time to share any of my words. I haven’t always wanted to be an artist, but I always wanted to help people. Eventually I realized I loved writing even if no one saw it and maybe in time I could turn that into something.

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?

Not exactly. Sometimes I will place a very specific reference from a time with someone and work it in to a piece just as a little surprise for when they read it. So it’s not something broad that everyone would notice but I think it’s nice for people to read something and be like ‘hey, there’s a person in here, that really did happen, I remember this’. I think friends reading my stuff is terrifying because my writing voice is very different from my everyday voice. Sometimes people are like ‘is that really you writing that?’ So I think of the references as reminders like yes, it is me, hello.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Just go for it. there are so many ways to share your work today that you might as well give it a try. And if you’re stuck or trying to find your style don’t get discouraged. Keep making, keep creating. Create bad shit you want to throw away get it out of the way, that’s when you will come onto something you will be happy with. I write stuff all the time that I just trash, that sometimes leads me to a really nice place. Same with painting and photography.

Maker:0x4c,Date:2017-10-17,Ver:4,Lens:Kan03,Act:Lar01,E-ve

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

Asexual, aromantic would be the easiest way for me to put it. Although, I think a lot about demisexual but I think that’s a hope. In the past I have fallen in love with the idea of a relationship with a person, but then the real life aspect I’m just like.. nope. Which is hard sometimes.

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

In writing all the time. I’ve had a publisher ask “how can you be relatable if you do not relate to most of the population?” I have also been asked, or it was kindly suggested, that I do not mention how I identify because then people will not know how to interpret your work. Which is discouraging because I struggle myself with concepts of love and relationships. So to hear that no one else will get you or want to get you, is tough. It’s also frustrating that all my other writing gets over looked because publishers are concerned about who or what the love aspect applies to. I write a lot about depression, anxiety and other struggles/subjects that deserve attention.

I have always just taken these comments in stride, I am happy with myself and I expect eventually the people in charge will see that people want more representation and when that happens I will be here, willing to share. I’ve also always told people that I just write the words, and truthfully, you may do whatever you like with them.

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

That I just haven’t met the right person. Or that asexuality is a choice. I have had and still have moments where I think and wish for a regular relationship. Conversations with people would be easier, no one would make backhanded comments when your sexuality gets brought up, that sort of thing. But then I also know I would not be happy with that life.

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

I would say that it’s okay to struggle, I have days where I am at a loss when I think about the future. How easy would it be to fit into societal expectations for love? Easy. But you have to make a decision to be yourself. And that the people who love you will love you no matter what. You’re not a freak, a plant or have just never had good sex. You are a person who has valid experiences. Don’t rely too much on what society has to say about love and relationship expectations. And if you feel alone reach out, there are SO many people out there in groups and on the internet, where you can remain anonymous, who will just talk to you and not make you feel weird and strange.

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

My writing has been taken from my blog posts and journals and I have selected some of it for my poetry collection, “I don’t have one” which can be found here on Amazon: amazon/idonthaveonemargaretrose

Full link in case above is broken http://a.co/6TFGtjZ

I don’t sell paintings or really post them anywhere I just sort of give them away as people ask.

Instagram: mrg.rose

I have a Tumblr you can check out here: http://aparttimepoet.tumblr.com/.

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

Interview: Attina

Today we’re joined by Attina. Attina is a young up and coming writer. She specializes in poetry, but has dabbled in narratives too. Attina is an incredibly 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.

My writing is a mix of poetry and a narrative or one or the other.

What inspires you?

The hardships and happiness in my life.

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

I’ve always wanted to be a writer but I’ve never known how to get to that level of writing.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

To everyone, not just artists, is that we may be at rock bottom now with nothing left but now we can only go up.

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ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I am questioning.

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

I have but I always pick my head back up because my sister once told me when I was in the worst part of my life, “Pick up your head, baby, the crown slips and a crown is always placed on those who can handle the hardships.”

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

That asexuality doesn’t have a spectrum.

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

“Pick up your head, baby, the crown slips and a crown is always placed on those who can handle the hardships.”

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

Interview: Heather Kori

Today we’re joined by Heather Kori. Heather is a phenomenal poet who also occasionally writes short stories. According to the bio on her website, she’s a student at university in Canada and is a fierce intersectional feminist. Heather writes about a variety of things. They’re incredibly passionate and dedicated to writing, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I am a writer, specifically writing poetry and occasionally short story. My poems focus mostly on mental health, asexuality, and other things.

What inspires you?

People, my life, and my experiences. As someone who identifies as mad that greatly influences my writing. Lately I’ve been writing about being happy from a mad experience/perspective

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

I’ve been writing poetry since I was young, my parents got me into it because they both wrote as a hobby. I always wanted to be an author but I never thought it would be a possibility though recently I’ve decided to pursue it more intensely.

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?

Honestly, if it’s there I don’t know about it or do it purposefully. I think everyone has something in their work that makes it theirs whether conscious or not.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Do it. Do whatever it is that you love doing. Pursue it restlessly and you’ll get something back eventually.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I identify as demi-grey-asexual with a preference for women and non-binary folks, as well as demi-greyaromantic. Which is overly complicated so I just use “queer”

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

Not yet, but I’m not popular outside of queer circles (my friends, mostly).

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

That is not a real thing or it is related to my mental health.

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

You are valid in your feelings, you can make it through this, there are other people like you, and you will find them. (If you are in the Toronto area there’s multiple ace groups!)

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

Either my WordPress (heatherkori.wordpress.com or my Facebook: heather kori poetry and writing). Any likes or follows are appreciated but not necessary.

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

Interview: Rebecca

Today we’re joined by Rebecca. Rebecca is a wonderful writer who mostly writes as a hobby. She specializes in poetry and has plans to write a dark fantasy series. She’s a talented and dedicated writer, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I am a writer for fun that mainly focuses on poetry and dark fantasy. I am planning on writing a series called Luminosity sometime in the future, but I still have not gotten around to putting a lot of work into it.

What inspires you?

I am inspired by the world around me. I love looking at the world and thinking about what would have changed if X event happened. I am also inspired by other people’s stories, fictional or not.

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

When I was younger, I had really bad depression. I was at the point where I didn’t care about myself or anyone around me. I had no friends or anything that would tie me down enough that I wouldn’t want to commit suicide. But a few days after I started to contemplate ending my life, some sort of story popped into my head. That story, which will eventually become Luminosity when I get to writing it, saved my life by giving me happiness. But long story short, I wanted to write my story so everyone can experience the random thought that saved my life.

No, I haven’t always wanted to write and it still will not be my career.

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?

My work always resides in a gray area. Not literally, but in all of my books and the poems that have something significant in them, there is no one that is fully good or fully bad. I believe that everyone is good and bad, depending on who is looking at them and that reflects greatly into my writing. My work also almost always has some sort of magic or supernatural sense to them, but that may not be a feature at all.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Believe in yourself. No one is perfect when they first start. In fact, most people, unless they were born brimming with talent, suck at writing or drawing when they first start out. I know I did. That being said it is very important to edit, not when you are immersed in the work, but afterwards to look back on your work. Or at least for writing. For drawing, I have no clue what to say because I am about as good as an elementary schooler when it comes to drawing.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I am a demiromantic asexual.

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

I have been lucky enough to never experience any ace prejudice and I hope I never will. That being said, most people don’t realize what asexuality is so they are very ignorant about me. I handle it by not handling it. I just ignore any ignorant comments that I get because I am confident about who I am. I just think to myself that I know myself best and if I don’t want to have sex, or have kids I just won’t. Ignorant people are not the ones that are in charge of my sex life and the only person I would have to worry about is a potential lover.

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

That it doesn’t exist. I have been told by my parents that eventually I would want sex and to have kids, or that eventually I would find “the one” but I know that will most likely not happen. I mean, I do want a relationship, like really badly, but I am not looking hard for one and I won’t die if I never get into another relationship.

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

Only you know what you are. If you feel like you are asexual, then you are asexual. Don’t let other people parade on your feelings because they don’t understand. And if you need to stay in the closet, then just make sure the closet is nice and comfy until you are ready to come out. There is no perfect time to come out, and you never have to come out if you were not comfortable with it.

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

You can find me on Wattpad at https://www.wattpad.com/user/Destructive_Rain.

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

Interview: Li

Today we’re joined by Li. Li is a wonderful and talented aspiring author who has published a couple things in his school’s literary magazine. He writes mostly comedic poetry and short stories that fall under the horror genre. He’s a dedicated and passionate writer, as you’ll soon read, and undoubtedly has a bright future ahead of him. My thanks to him for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I’m an aspiring writer and enjoy writing comedic poems and short horror stories. My writing style can be very hyperbolic when writing poetry, while with my horror it can be very uncomfortable. My writing style as a whole still hasn’t fully developed, as I began writing only two years ago (Infrequently, though I’ve been trying to write more as of late), and my writing reflects that, though it’s slowly becoming its own thing.

What inspires you?

A mixture of pop-culture, music, my hometown, and my friendships/acquaintanceships. A lot of my comedy is inspired from my town specifically, where I’ve met a lot of interesting folk alongside a lot of strange ones. I wrote a poem recently about a PTA mother writing to another one named Barbra; Barbra was an actual mother I knew, but I did use a different name for her.

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

I’ve been interested in writing since I was very young, though I became more intensely interested in it about two years ago. I only recently decided I would like to write, as before this I wanted to be an astrophysicist (Admittedly, I’m not that much good at math) but decided that wasn’t quite the right career for me. What got me interested in horror was a mixture of things; artists like Junji Ito and movies like Perfect Blue are what got me interested in writing horror, as I wanted to provide the same intense feelings that they are able to produce. I only just became interested in writing comedy, and no one in particular has inspired me- I write to make myself laugh, not others, though I want to be able to write well enough to write things that others will enjoy besides myself.

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 actually don’t have any sort of thing like that, though as I develop my writing skills, I would like to make one.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

There’s always that cliché of working hard, but it’s a cliché for a reason- work on your craft, and try to really make it your own. For writers specifically, there’re a lot of skills you’ll need to learn to help you further your writing and help get yourself out there (A video titled Skills You Never Thought You’d Need as a Writer by Jenna Moreci is a very good in-depth video that I would recommend checking out, as she explains things far better than I could.). It’s important to remember that, in general, to try to not compare your work to others. Where you are with your skills are different from others, and though it’s good to strive to continually better yourself, it’s important that you don’t drag yourself down as “not as good” or “not good enough.” Keep your passion for your art burning, and make sure you have other things you’re interested in to go to when you need a break from your art.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I identify as aromantic and asexual. I’m sex-repulsed, and am open for a queer-platonic relationship, but will be perfectly happy if I never end up in one.

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

I haven’t experienced any sort of prejudice, but there’s definitely been a lot of ignorance my way. Most of it has been confusion as to what asexuality is, while some of it has been more vitriolic. Everyone who finds out I’m asexual asks what it is, and the more pleasant reactions included asking a lot of questions about it and what it means and so on, which I am always happy to oblige in. The more negative ones include being offered massages to see if that will “awaken” anything in me, getting sexual advances, butt/boob grabs to see if it will help me “get excited”, and being told I need to go see a psychiatrist to get medication to help “fix” me. For those who physically touch me, I cut off all contact with those people and warn others about them. For those who are just unaware of what asexuality is, I try to answer everything to the best of my ability.

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

One of the most common that I’ve personally received about being asexual is that I’m “a late bloomer” and that eventually I’ll begin to feel sexual feelings, and that I should try to get laid. For being aromantic, a lot of people think I’m just cynical about love and shouldn’t “give up on it” even if I express that I genuinely have no interest in it. In general, for both, people say that I’ll end up “alone and sad” because I don’t want a sexual/romantic relationship, alongside not wanting children. Just because I don’t want none of these, it doesn’t mean I’ll be alone and that I won’t have people who care about me- I’ll have friends and family (Plus my lovely pets), and that’s all I could ever ask for.

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

Remember that there isn’t anything wrong with you. Granted, there aren’t as many of us as there are gay, straight, or bi people, but that doesn’t mean your sexuality isn’t as real as anyone else’s and that you’re in any way dysfunctional because of it. Just because you don’t feel sexual/romantic attraction doesn’t mean you aren’t perfectly capable of being a whole human being, and as worthy being treated as well as everyone else.

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

I suppose the easiest place to find it would be my DeviantArt, Hid3AndS33k, as that’s the only place where a lot of my writing can be found.

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

Interview: Ella

Today we’re joined by Ella. Ella is a wonderful visual artist and a prolific writer. Xe do a number of forms of writing including short stories, poetry, and novels. When xe are not writing, Ella loves to do visual art. Xe are a versatile visual artist, doing everything from painting to graphic art to ink illustrations. It’s clear xe are an incredibly dedicated and passionate artist, as you’ll soon see. My thanks to xir for taking the time to participate in this interview.

cursedknight
Cursed Knight

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I write novels, short stories, freeform poetry and songs as well as ink illustrations, graphic art, paintings and concept art.

What inspires you?

Both the natural world and much of architecture. I draw from the westerns, horror, steampunk, fantasy and post-apocalyptic genres for concepts, palettes and settings.

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

As soon as I was able to hold a crayon I’ve been drawing, and when I was able to write I began writing. I’ve been doing this for almost my whole life, and I’ve always wanted to make it my career.

danteillustration
Dante illustration

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?

None that I can think of, which is a shame. I should come up with some.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Practice your craft. Get the basics down, know the bones of what you’re doing, and you have to know the rules before you break them. Once you know them? Go wild. Everything takes time to learn, and nothing is going to be completely how you want it at first.

hunter
Hunter

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

Asexual, though I’m probably closer to demisexual or grey-asexual.

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

I’m insulated enough that I haven’t dealt with it as a confrontation thing, but I do experience the vast misunderstanding and ignorance about asexuality a lot.

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

Either the celibacy misconception or just not knowing what it is.

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

It’s okay to be like this. You aren’t broken, or flawed, or sinful for being like this.

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

You can find me on Tumblr at blackcatwhitewolf.tumblr.com, my art blog, or on Deviantart, also blackcatwhitewolf. My AO3 is potato_being.

quothetheraven
Quothe the Raven

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

Interview: Sahar

Today we’re joined by Sahar, who also goes by sinamonroll draws. Sahar is a phenomenal visual artist and writer. They write a lot of poetry and have started dabbling in prose. For visual art, they specialize in character art with lots of color and dynamic lighting. Sahar hopes to one day combine their visual art and writing into a webcomic. It’s very clear they’re a dedicated and talented artist, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.

Architecture Study
Architecture Study

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I’m a writer and a visual artist, specializing in character art. I love using a lot of colors and dynamic lighting in my art, and drawing and creating stories about diverse people in fantasy settings. For writing, I mainly write poetry, but dabble in prose. Sometime in the future, I plan to combine my drawing and writing skills to create a webcomic or graphic novel, but that’s a long way away.

What inspires you?

Over the past year, I’ve been super into reading webomics, gobbling up new ones whenever I can. I used to read a lot of regular books, but I hardly have time anymore and webcomics are my way of satiating that need for reading and imagination, while also getting to check out really cool art in the process. I also tend to be really inspired by TV shows I enjoy, like Steven Universe and Avatar, or music I listen to (especially musicals). Oddly enough, science and the natural world are also incredibly inspirational to me. I’ve always been super into science and physics and astronomy and things like that, and the weird stuff that exists out there is a huge inspiration when it comes to worldbuilding, fantasy creatures, and even poetry that I make.

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

I don’t actually want to be an artist, at least not professionally, when I get older. I have been interested in writing and creating fictional worlds ever since I can remember, and towards the end of middle school, which was a pretty tough time in my life, I took up drawing as a means for me to escape the reality I was in. Today, it still serves that purpose, as well as just being something that’s incredibly fun for me to do. While like I said I do want to make a webcomic someday, I don’t necessarily plan on making writing or drawing a full time job, just because I’m more interested in studying physics and engineering.

Liya Character Design
Liya Character Design

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?

Not really that I know! I’ve been told that I have a unique use of lighting and color, but I wouldn’t really say I do. In my writing, I like taking existing clichés/metaphors/phrases and upending them, but I don’t know how successful I am at doing so.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

I think the most important thing for artists in any field is to know your limits, and then challenge them. Constantly. Practicing your craft is incredibly important, but what’s even more important in my opinion is practicing efficiently – learning where you need improvement and actively working in those areas to achieve that improvement.

Reo Character Art
Reo Character Art

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’m an aromantic asexual.

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

It’s not really been in my field, but I’ve encountered my share of ace-exclusionists or just general queerphobes on social media, as you do. I was forcibly outed to my mom and we’ve come a long way, but at first she was very confused and put off by it.

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

That it’s just, like, a “neutral” identity that goes away in the presence of another identity. Like homoromantic aces are “just gay” or heteroromantic aces are “just straight.” It’s really frustrating because it feels like asexuality is just being entirely ignored and shoved aside, like it’s not a valid identity in and of itself. Also the idea that it’s “just a phase” or something that can be easily fixed by “finding the right person” or taking medicine or whatever.

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

You’re not alone! It’s okay to want or not want sex and romance, it’s okay to identify as whatever you feel most comfortable with and it’s okay to change your identity if you feel like you need to. You’re not broken or wrong or weird.

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

I have a Tumblr (https://sinamonroll-draws.tumblr.com/) and an Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/sinamonroll.draws/), where you can follow me or message me for commissions. I also have a Redbubble (https://www.redbubble.com/people/sinamonroll) if you’re interested in purchasing my art.

SU Screencap Redraw
SU Screencap Redraw

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