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The Haven Foundation for Artists

If you make a living full-time off of the arts and have been struck by a debilitating tragedy (or if you fear such an event) you might want to check out The Haven Foundation.

The Foundation was formed by Stephen King in order to help artists. In his words:

In the summer of 1999, I was struck by a careless driver and nearly killed while taking my daily walk. It was ten months before I was able to work productively again. Some years later, a good friend of mine, audio reader Frank Muller, suffered terrible head injuries as a result of a motorcycle accident. He never worked again. My luck was infinitely better than Muller’s, but the two events set me thinking about the uniquely perilous situation of many freelance artists. The majority of mid-list writers, audio readers, and freelancers in the book and publishing industry have little or no financial cushion in the event of a sudden catastrophic accident such as that suffered by Muller and myself. Many aren’t affiliated with any professional associations or guilds that can help them in the event of such reversals. Even those who are affiliated with organizations such as The Authors’ Guild cannot look for much beyond token help over a short period of time.

My response to this has been the creation of The Haven Foundation. Its goals will be fourfold:

First, to establish a compassionate and committed group of board members willing to sift through cases and identify those where the need seems to be the greatest. These “greatest need” cases would be freelance members of the fine arts community – who have found themselves unable to work due to disease or accident. We will also focus on freelancers who lost their homes and work spaces (with freelancers these are often the same) as a result of natural disasters or other catastrophic events.

Second, to help a number of these individuals each year, based on need.

Third, to establish cut-off points for such help. As I have discovered, the decision to cut off aid is an agonizing one, and best made by a group rather than by an individual. I have come to believe, however, that it must be made if help is to be rendered to the many rather than the few.

Fourth, to seek fundraising opportunities so that The Haven Foundation can continue to do this work.

Stephen King

Go check out their guidelines, bookmark their page, and consider donating.

 


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The “Make Good Art” Speech by Gaiman

I’d reserved this for an upcoming post called 50 Reads for Writers.

 

But I don’t want it to get lost in the noise.

So even though I’ll share the video once more in a future post, I’m posting it here separately. If you haven’t seen Gaiman’s speech, you should probably take a twenty-minute break and watch it now:

 

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New Stories, Poems, and Menu (Downloads to Follow)

Hey gang,

Added a few stories and poems. I also nested the fantasy stories from my Gergia world under the stories tab.

Soon to come : downloadable versions (.pdf; .mobi; .epub) of stories and poems. But first I have to transfer everything to WordPress.org – that’ll take awhile, but hopefully by winter you can download singles for free.

More to come…

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For the Fear of Christian Art

:: long story short ::

I have yet to meet somebody who, deep down, wanted to become something other than a good person. Or at least a good citizen. Though I’m directing this post at the Christians in the room, I think anyone will find it valuable if they swap out “Christian” for “good citizen” or “good human being,” because that’s a huge part of what I mean when I say “Christian.”

For some time Christian artists in America have been strung up between two poles: fraud and infidelity. We must cut out both the con-man and the wanderer to create true, lasting art… as Christians. And for the person who fears Christian art as an atheist or Sikh – it’s time to recognize the neoplatonic base of Christianity, those forms like truth and beauty and integrity that undergird Christian thought. At very least, we can all agree on some basic truths such as what makes a good citizen.

These two thoughts – that good citizens make the best artists and that Christians struggle with fraud and infidelity – work like counterpoints, like discord and resolve, like a guide for Christians who want to make art and a haven for anyone terrified of this alleged “genre.”

Now, if you want to skip to the comments and start mulling this over, go ahead.

But I believe in long form blogging as well, so  here’s the…

:: short story long ::

Two poles: fraud and infidelity. As I started out saying, all of us artists struggle with fraud – what some call “selling out.” And all of us struggle with periods infidelity or dishonesty – what writers call “block.”

Continue reading

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Comics that Nourish

People keep tucking away all kinds of imagination-based encouragement into the nooks of the internet, you simply have to dig a bit to find it all. Thanks to Meghan for pointing this one out.

Stephen McCrane over at Doodle Alley started drawing “cartoons that nourish” for people like you and me. He took the principles that helped him develop his craft and put them online in little chapters.

I’ll share two and you know I love the first one:

Learning to Learn

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Diversify Your Study

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Go check out Stephen’s great work –  tell him Lancelot sent you.


 

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The Art of Fiction :: A Mega List ::

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Nothing in the last two years has taught me more about storytelling, fiction, and great reading habits than the Art of Fiction series by The Paris Review. I read around two dozen of them before I decided to work systematically from number one until the end.

Huzzah for lists.

Unfortunately, The Paris Review currently classifies their interviews only by name of interviewee and date of interview. They don’t do them by category with separate tags for “The Art of Fictionand “The Art of Poetry” and so on (or if they do, it’s pretty hard to find).

I love lists, so once I grew tired of Googling every single Art of Fiction interview in numerical order, I decided to knock out 223 Google searches in one sitting and make a list of links for myself.

Why not share the fruits of my labor with you fine folk?

 

Hit CTRL+F to find your favorite literary author, go through it systematically, or take my recommendation to read numbers 3, 8, 12, 13, 21, 39, 64, 69, 84, 169, 189, 203, & 207 – whatever you do, read at least one of these.

If you’ve stumbled upon this post and happen to be on staff at The Paris Review, I want to say “thanks” for the new mobile functionality of your articles – it makes reading much more enjoyable than the old pinch-to-zoom stuff.

:: The List ::

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a brooklyn, new york author

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