My first adventure in publishing was a little less than a year ago and happened kind of despite myself. What I mean is that I was approached really out of the blue to help with an article on art journaling and all of a sudden they wanted pictures of my work and then it turned out they even printed these pictures! It was like a little miracle that just kind of happened to me, although of course I was absolutely thrilled to be a part of it.
This time however I initiated the adventure and that made it extra thrilling and exciting. Here's what happened:
When you keep a blog for a while and there's a nice group of people (that's you!) who follows you and likes what you do they get this crazy idea in their head that you actually know what you're doing. (hahahahaha) Then the questions come. Questions about materials, about process, about techniques, about artsy living. They come either through the blog, through groups you're a part of or through the e-mail. I try to answer the questions best I can and am always amazed I actually usually do have an answer to give.
This was especially true when Lynn wrote to me. (I'm allowed to use her first name, but other than that she wants to remain anonymous.). She had just taken up art journaling a few months before and was now struggling with it and didn't like what she was doing and asked for advice on how to get her mojo back. That brought on a very extensive response from me, because I thought it was so sad that someone who only has been going at it for a few months feels they have to produce amazing work and love it all the time. That's just not how it works.
So I decided to give my opinion about how it does work. And how it works is quite simple: you'll struggle, you'll suck, you'll have to practice, you'll have good days and bad days and in the end all that matters is that you keep going and have fun at it and learn your skills. I came up with a total of nine truths of art making, but they might as well have been four or four hundred. The point came across and Lynn soon mailed me a wonderful spread from her journal. I was all flattered and honored I had actually helped her.
Because I liked the mail I wrote to her so much I thought I might turn it into a blog post for you all to read, maybe edit it a bit, take out the personal Lynn stuff to protect her privacy and see how you all felt about this subject. And then my eye fell on this new magazine that I had just finished and that was actually published by a blogsy pal of mine named Marit. The magazine is called Featuring and you can read all about it here.
It's a wonderful actual tangible magazine (so not digital) that can only be ordered online and some of the great names in mixed media art that we all know and love from the blogosphere can be found in it. What I was looking at was only the first issue and I thought: why not? Why not turn this mail turn post into an actual magazine article? I mean, this is the stuff we so rarely read about, the hard stuff. If only life were as pretty as the pretty blogs, but it's just difficult sometimes and why not say that out loud? So I started editing and submitted my article. I wasn't even nervous about it. I figured if they didn't want to publish it I could still turn it into a blog post and I wouldn't mind. In less than an hour Marit wrote back and said they would love to publish it! I was ever so thrilled of course.
Then came the tedious months of waiting (this happened somewhere in the early spring). I think waiting must be the hardest part of being published, not the writing, not the submitting and resubmitting of photo's or watching editors tweak your text, although that last part is hard too being the control freak that I am. The thing is, you know it's going to happen, but you have nothing to show for it yet and that's frustrating as hell. It's out of your hands and did I mention the control freak thing already?
But now it's official: I'm a published author. The magazine is about to be available and it looks like this:
And yes, that's my journal on the bottom front of the cover (the spread that says 'lush life')! So I'm a cover girl now too! I was quite stunned at this. The article is called "There will be days like this" and it is fully dedicated to Lynn because she deserves total credit for inspiring me to write it in the first place. I'm desperately waiting for my copy of the magazine to arrive which should be very soon. If you're interested you can pre-order it from their site. Don't do it for me, do it for a wonderful new mixed media magazine that does not only showcase pretty work but talks about the behind the scene stuff too.
In any case I am very proud to be published in it and this may just inspire me to write more. I have ideas in the back of my head that need to come to the front! If you have any suggestions as to subjects that should be written about more, please let me know. I'm not above dedicating another article to someone else. ;-)
And of course now I'm really nervous about what people will think of it. All the nerves I never had in submitting it in the first place now are showing their ugly heads after all. So if you do read it I'd love to get some feedback on it, both positive and negative. I just might learn something. Of course I totally prefer the positive feedback, haha.
And that's all I have to say on my second publishing adventure. Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy Wednesday!