Category: fanfiction

Interview: CHM

Today we’re joined by CHM. CHM is a wonderful versatile writer. She has written in a few genres and styles. She mostly writes fantasy and historical fiction. When she’s not writing original work, CHM also dabbles in fanfiction. It’s clear she’s a 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.

My art is mostly creative writing. I mostly write fantasy
and historical fiction, as well as fanfiction.

What inspires you?

A number of things, but mostly music, and my own personal
experiences.

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

I used to read a lot, and that slowly got me into writing my
own stories. I also tend to daydream, and story ideas seem to spawn from
daydreams.

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 really like ending books with the title when possible.

What advice would you
give young aspiring artists?

Don’t apologize for your work when presenting it. Stop
yourself from saying things like “Sorry in advance” or “This is terrible, but”
because it’s not. It’s the best you can do at that moment, and putting yourself
down doesn’t help you improve.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum
do you identify?

I’m an AroAce lesbian. Oriented AroAces feel other types of
attraction strong enough to warrant their own labels in their identities. The
ones I feel are sensual and alterous attraction.

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

Never in my field, but in my personal life, I have. I
usually deal with it using calm explanations.

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

That we all hate sex, or that we just need to wait a while
for sexual attraction to happen.

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

No matter what you hear, no matter who says it to you, your
identity is real, and you have a strong community backing you up. It doesn’t
matter what someone else says about your identity, all that matters is the way
the words you use to describe yourself make you feel.

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

I post all my fanfiction on my Quotev account! At LOZelfafan

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

Interview: Skyler

Today we’re joined by Skyler. Skyler is a wonderful fanartist who has written a massive amount of fics in the Doctor Who fandom. She writes fics about the 10th Doctor and Rose Tyler. Aside from fics, Skyler has also created moodboards and 8 tracks. She’s clearly a passionate artist who enjoys what she does, 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 have written about 145 fanfics for the Billie Piper and
David Tennant fandom. Most of those are Doctor
Who
, for the Tenth Doctor x Rose Tyler ship (sort of. It’s sci-fi complicated.).
I’ve also made some playlists on 8tracks with manips for cover art and
moodboards and such for this ship.

What inspires you?

I think since I’m aro ace, I find relationships fascinating,
and I love exploring the drama and what-ifs.

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

I started reading fanfic when I was a preteen on a message
board and by the time Harry Potter peaked in popularity around my high school
and college years, I was reading tons of fic. I deeply wished I could create a
Fanfic.net account and start posting. But I was too scared and never did it. I
came back to fic after college when I watched Doctor Who and needed to know
what happened after the happily-ever-after. I started reading fic and had all
these ideas about what I would do with that story. That’s another thing that
motivates me: wanting more than we were given about how a plot point or
relationship tied up.

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?

Having the voices of the characters in my head, thinking
about how the actors would say it, how the character would perceive each
other’s actions… if I don’t have that, I can’t write. It wouldn’t be any good.
But when I do, people say I have captured them well, so it’s worth the battle
to push through.

What advice would you
give young aspiring artists?

There are not as many rules as you think there are. We all
have insecurity. It is tempting to think of fandom as this cool kid table where
you have to get permission to join, but you don’t. Just write. Create what YOU
like. Read as much as you want, and yes there will be fanon that people
consider sacred or whatever, but some of the best fic is from writers who are
new to the scene because they don’t get trapped in the same tropes done the
same way. When you’re in a fandom a long time, it’s tempting to write the same
thing over and over 100 times that everyone else is writing. But new writers don’t
have that sense of conformity. If you can preserve that curiosity and wonder
while also gaining experience and growing as a writer, that’s when true art is
born.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum
do you identify?

Aegoromantic/aegosexual (aro ace for short)

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

There’s always aphobes on Tumblr, who aren’t worth my time,
but my actual community has been hugely supportive. I would say all the
prejudice and ignorance from people who matter has been internal. I limited
myself because I didn’t think I could be ace if I like writing and reading smut
(then I found the aegosexual label!). Then I made a post about it and it still
shows up in my notifications years later. I was so afraid to publish my fic for
Pride last year about Rose being bisexual and the Doctor being demisexual. It
was really personal for me. But people are still leaving comments a about how
much that story meant to them. So I think we limit ourselves a lot more than we
should.

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

There are so many out there, but one personally is that people
don’t understand the split attraction model. Usually it doesn’t both me because
I’m both aro and ace, but I do have aesthetic attraction, and people don’t
really get that. I like the visual of a “hot” person and can call people
“sexy,” but that doesn’t mean I personally want to have sex with them. lol It’s
just an expression to explain what type of aesthetic appeal they have. Which
probably doesn’t make sense to people who do experience sexual attraction, but
when you don’t, it is like a huge lightbulb.

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

First, it’s OK to change labels later if you decide you were
wrong. Second, it’s a spectrum so you probably weren’t wrong, just somewhere
else on the spectrum than you thought. And third, you can also be sure! Even if
you’re a teen, you don’t have to “wait until you get older” to identify as ace.
You can be ace at any age. It’s also not a Tumblr thing. People have been ace a
lot longer than Tumblr has been around.

Also, just ignore the discourse. It is minimally helpful
just to be familiar with the arguments people are using these days, but it’s
not worth getting upset about and definitely isn’t worth engaging. Just gather
real fellow aces and allies you can count on and support each other.

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

The best place to read my writing is AO3: Skyler10. My Tumblr
is Skyler10fic. And here is my edit tag and 8tracks.

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

Interview: Matthew Maione

Today we’re joined by Matthew Maione. Matthew is a phenomenal visual artist who also writes and creates fanart. He enjoys drawing faces and also does quite a lot of fanart. When he’s not creating visual art, Matthew enjoys writing and writes both fanfiction and original work. He’s particularly fond of historical fiction and crime suspense. It’s clear he’s an incredibly dedicated artist who loves to create as you’ll soon read. My thanks to him for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I am a
virtual artist and creative writer. I enjoy drawing faces and fanart.  I like playing with colour and texture a lot.
I write almost entirely fanfiction and fiction. Historical fiction and Crime
Suspense novels are some of my favourite to write.

What inspires you?

Music is a
huge inspiration in my life, it can get me in certain moods that are perfect
for writing. My fiancé often inspires me with the little things she does,
dances around the house that make me want to write romance. Nature gives me a
breath of life, revitalizes me and makes me want to draw.

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

It was
actually my older sister, she is a cosplay and traditional artist. She is 5
years older than me and I, being a younger sibling, was jealous and decided I
needed to be better than her. Now I do it because I love it, of course.

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 used to
but since I lost most of my sight I’ve just been trying to re-explore what my
art is. Playing with styles and shading to recreate it so I can still actually
create, I used to sign my older works.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Don’t give
up! Make your weaknesses your strengths! There is no reason why you can’t
pursue art if it’s what you love. Always do what makes you happiest, not what
others want you to do.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I identify
as Grey-ace. I don’t really experience sexual attraction, but if I have a
strong romantic connection with someone I am able to connect with them in that
way as well. But it’s more of a, I do it because I love them and want to make
them happy. Not to say that is the only way to do so, there are many ways to
connect with your partners and sex is never a mandatory part of a relationship,
but it can enhance your romantic connection. Simply put, while I don’t
experience sexual attraction, for me, being intimate occasionally makes me feel
emotionally closer.

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

I haven’t
really in my field. It’s not something that just casually comes up in
conversation but those I have told have all been very understanding. A few
people I told were even comfortable enough with me after the fact that they
were able to come out to me as well. In my daily life a few people have said
that it’s because I hadn’t met the right person, or claimed they could fix me,
very common things to run into. I mostly just ignore this and do my best to
stay safe.

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

That I’ll
never be able to have a permanent partner or that it’s a phase. I have a fiancé
who has no problems with it, we have been together for two years. She is always
very understanding if I’m having a repulsed day, because there are good and bad
days. Some days I’m totally okay with the idea of sex and others I can’t stand
to watch movies with implied scenes in them. But if you’re worried about
finding someone who will love you, of course you will. There’s somebody for
everyone.

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

Being
asexual, while it is a way to identify, does not define you. If the thought of
it is new or uncomfortable, it’s just another part of wat makes you, you. It’s
not something to be ashamed of or hide, there are so many people out there who
will accept you for exactly who you are.

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

My Tumblr
is Naoki-arts, I have AO3, Ammarettu. I’m currently working on getting my first novel published
so any news on that will be found there as well!

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

Interview: Maeve Forde

Today we’re joined by Maeve Forde. Maeve is a phenomenal actress and writer. Her main passion is acting and she acts in sketch comedy, plays, short films, and television. Recently she has written and acted in a webseries entitled, “Suddenly Super?” which is now available on YouTube. When she’s not acting, Maeve enjoys writing and currently has a novel in the works. It’s clear she’s a dedicated and passionate artist, 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’m an actor and a writer.
I list actor first, because that’s my primary job right now (even though
I’m still starting out and I have other jobs to pay the bills) but I’m also a
writer.  I’ll write just about anything –
I’ve got a novel in the works, I’ve written a web series that is out now on
YouTube, I’ve written fanfiction for years.
I’ll act in just about anything too – so far I’ve done sketch comedy,
plays, web series, short films, and television.

What inspires you?

A lot of times when I start to write, I have a specific
scene, line, or emotion in mind that I’ll come up with that I really want to
nail, so I’ll fill in everything else around that.  Ultimately, the scenes and lines come from an
emotional basis anyway for the characters, so I’m inspired by the idea that I
can make these characters feel something and make it honest and earned.  I know that art can have an impact so I use
my writing a lot to explore different emotions and different power dynamics,
but I always want to make sure that it all makes sense and doesn’t feel forced
or like I’m trying to force an audience to feel something that’s not there.

I have a similar approach to acting.  I’m inspired by what’s in the script
primarily, but while taking into account that emotional impact.  So, I guess I’m inspired by that impact; I’m
inspired by the idea that when someone is taking in the art I’ve made, I’m
trying to make sure they get something out of it, so my job is to ensure they
do.

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

I’ve been writing creatively for pretty much as long as I
could write at all.  I remember being in
grade school and having like special notebooks to write stories in when we had
downtime in class. I always dreamed of being a published author.  I wrote a lot of original stuff until high
school, when I wrote almost exclusively fanfiction.  I’m 22 now, and in the past three or four
years or so I’ve been getting back into writing original stories in various
forms.  

I acted in school plays growing up, but it wasn’t something
I wanted to do until high school.  High
school was when I started getting really into fandom and writing fanfiction and
I started getting connected to characters rather than to stories, because it
was individual characters that brought me into fandom rather than overarching
plots and mythologies.  And since I got
so into characters and how they interacted, it got into my head that I could
play characters one day, and that’s how I got serious about acting.  I didn’t really tell anyone for a while that
I was interested in acting seriously but I’d act out the stories I wrote, and
then once I got to college (to study History) I took acting more seriously and
auditioned for student projects there.

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 have a rule for myself now that I always include queer
characters and that none of them die.
It’s not really a signature and it’s not something I can really control
when I’m acting in someone else’s piece, but for my own writing, it’s a
definite rule.

What advice would you
give young aspiring artists?

It is okay to take time to figure out what you want!  And it is okay to want multiple things!  I studied history in college and right out of
school, I had a job in a history museum because that was a dream of mine, too.  There’s this myth that in order to be a ~real
artist~ you have to go for it entirely.
There’s this romanticized idea especially regarding actors but really in
probably every facet of artistry, that says you shouldn’t have a safety net and
that romanticizes the idea of being on your last few dollars but being so
committed to ~the art~.  There is nothing
wrong with doing it halfway until you can do it fully.  There’s nothing wrong with doing it halfway,
or 70% of the way, or 12% of the way, or whatever if that’s what you want.  Whether you act professionally or you act
once a year in your local community theater, you’re still an actor.

You can have a day job in an office or a restaurant or a
library or whatever and still be an artist.
Your level of commitment is up to you, and no part of it needs to be
performative.  If you’re comfortable
going all in, good for you!  Do it!  If you aren’t, you don’t have to!  You don’t have to be one thing, you don’t
have to struggle and suffer for your art if it can be avoided, and you can
change your mind about all of that at any time.
Commitment is good, but it’s also flexible.  Let it bend so it doesn’t break.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum
do you identify?

I identify as asexual panromantic.

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

To be honest, I’m pretty closeted professionally, especially
in acting circles.  I’ve yet to do
anything that required any sex scenes or anything like that, though I am
generally open to it.  Right now, I feel
like as an actor starting out, it’s in my best interest to keep it quiet.  Even in roles that don’t include sex scenes,
there is still a lot of expectation on female characters, and in turn their
actors, to be seen as sexual beings.  We
still see actors struggle to get work after coming out as gay, so there’s still
an atmosphere, especially among actors starting out, to keep it quiet, because
no matter how good our acting may be, there are still people who, when they
know we are out and see our work, will still refuse to see our character as
anything other than what we are out as.
I’ve had conversations along those lines with people in and out of the
industry, who just love to mention that when an actor is out, they “just can’t
see their character as straight.”  Bonus
points if the actor comes out while their tv show/movie series is still in
progress, and the person just outright adds an “anymore” to the end.  There’s a definite, accepted attitude that
queer actors don’t need to be believed when they play straight and that it’s
a-okay to just admit that.  There are
pretty famous actors who are out as ace like Janeane Garofalo and other famous
people who are out and it doesn’t seem to have affected their work, but many
came out after they were already solidly in their field.  So, I think I have a ways to go until I can
be more comfortably openly out, though I am out with one actor I worked with on
a play.

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

That something can ~turn~ us at some point.  I’m open about my asexuality with romantic
partners pretty much from the start, especially on dating apps.  I’ve had quite a few encounters on apps along
the lines of “well you haven’t found the right person.”

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

I would tell that it whatever they are feeling is okay.  It’s tough to find a label that fits, it’s
tough to accept that orientations are on a spectrum and they may move around on
that spectrum or they may not, it’s tough to know that there are people who
won’t understand and won’t bother to try.
But the most important thing is that you feel what you feel. You can’t
run from what you feel, and what you feel is okay.  It’s good.
I live in the US, so I know the culture around sex here can be really,
really tricky to navigate but it is easier when you know where you’re
going.  There are a lot of great
resources to make you feel more comfortable in the ace community; I know that
when I first figured out I was ace I panicked but then I looked around on the
internet and found a whole community of people like me.  It helped to see people of all ages, of all
backgrounds so comfortable with who they were.
So, if you’re struggling, reach out.
You don’t even need to talk to anyone; just seeing someone be
comfortable in their skin to can be enough to make everyone else a little more
comfortable.

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

My Instagram is at maeve.forde and my web series
“Suddenly Super?” is on YouTube now at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCL-prcEKVIVCY5Zoz3rXDCQ.

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

Interview: Schi-Lee A. Smith

Today we’re joined by Schi-Lee A. Smith. Schi-Lee is a phenomenal artist who is incredibly versatile. She does a lot of visual art and even teaches painting classes. When she’s not doing visual art, Schi-Lee enjoys writing and writes both original work and fanfiction. Schi-Lee also has a passion for singing and even has some karaoke fans. It’s clear she’s a dedicated artist with an impressive amount of passion, 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.

Well, I paint quite often, I actually teach painting classes
sometimes.  I sing, a lot; I have some
fans at karaoke.  I draw with pen or
pencil, too, and I write, both fanfiction and original works.  My writing is usually like what I read,
sci-fi ish, and I pride myself on making realistic dialogue.  I like to paint and draw realistically,
haven’t quite gotten abstract down.  My
singing can be just about anything, I can sing Creep by Postmodern Jukebox and
Highway to Hell just as easily.

What inspires you?

When I was a child, it was my Dad.  I still have his drawings and poems around my
house, and when I was very young, he would record us singing on a giant
cassette tape recorder thing and let me do skits in between songs.  He was very artistic, and just about all my
artistic tendencies stem from him.  Now,
it’s still that in a way, but also I just want to see the beauty in the world,
and add to it if I can.  Lots of people
love hearing me sing, and love my writing, and love my artwork.  If I can make someone else happy, then I’ve
succeeded.

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

Technically my field is Biology, that’s what I’m majoring in
in University, but I’ll always consider myself a musician, artist, and
writer.  My Dad never put me down for any
art I did, so I was never afraid to get into something I wanted to do, and it’s
always been with me since childhood so even if I never get any recognition for
any of it, I’ll always be an artist.
Therefore it’s not as much something I want to do, as something I’m
doing, even if I stay obscure.

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 do, actually.  My
Dad’s signature was a heart with ‘LAB’, his initials, in the center, all
interconnected, it’s really neat.  I made
one for myself when my initials were still SAB, but it looked really weird, so when I got married, I
changed it to a kind of horns, or something, to match SAS.  It’s hard to draw with a mouse, but it’s
basically this.

What advice would you
give young aspiring artists?

Don’t worry about what others say is art, art is what you
want it to be.  I have friend who play
metal that people say isn’t music, but it is to them, and it makes them
happy.  Draw/sing/write/do whatever to
make you happy, or to get it out of your head, don’t do it for others.  

And don’t be put down if it sucks at first, most everyone’s
first drawing of a person is a stick figure, just practice, and practice a lot.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum
do you identify?

I identify as a biromantic asexual.  I suppose if one goes for this part, I’m
sex-positive.

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

I have encountered some people that didn’t really know what
it was, but my friends were very supportive and defended me before I
could.  I have awesome friends.  Thankfully I have yet to encounter any
prejudice or ignorance that scared me like I know plenty have, so I thank God
every day for where I am in life.

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

That we hate sex, or we never have sex.

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

You aren’t alone, that feeling that you don’t understand
what all the fuss is about?  Other people
feel it.  It’s not weird to think that a
‘hot’ person isn’t hot, according to your body.
You don’t have to pretend.

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

Well, I have a YouTube channel, youtube.com/schihigh, where
I’m attempting to post my singing and music videos I make on.  I also have a Tumblr and a specific tag with
my art on it.  You can just search
‘schi’s art’ on schi-walker-locked.tumblr.com.  If someone were to want commissions, they
could message me on Tumblr, or email me at schihigh@yahoo.com.  Just put commission in the subject.

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

Interview: Linz Vandermeer

Today we’re joined by Linz Vandermeer. Linz is a phenomenal writer who has recently gotten into cosplay. They mostly write fanfiction, but they started out writing poetry and stories. For the cosplay, they’ve only recently started dabbling in it and enjoys it. It’s clear they’re a passionate artist, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please, tell us about
your art.

I have been writing for as long as I can remember, it’s
almost a compulsion with me. I started with poetry, some bad, some even worse,
and then branched out into stories. Eventually, through my love of comics and
movies, I ended up in the realm of fanfiction, and that’s where I’ve focused
most of my attention for the last 3 or 4 years. The other thing I have really
started to get into is cosplay, and though my sewing skills are not the
greatest, I have a great group of friends to turn to where my abilities are
lacking.

What inspires you?

I get a lot of my inspiration from daily life. I take a
situation that I’ve encountered, and wondered ‘what would such-and-such a
character do in my place’, and ‘how could this have gone worse’? It’s like a
little mental exercise, and then before I know it I have 1200 words on a page.
When I am cosplaying, I try to find a character that really calls out to me,
someone that I can see a bit of myself in.

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

Even from a very young age I wanted to be a writer. I used
to write stories with my friends about the adventures we would go on if we
didn’t have to be in school, or if our parents were actually super spies, and
things like that. As I got older I realized that I didn’t want writing to be my
job, it was my mental escape from life and to put pressure or deadlines killed
my creativity. Cosplay naturally evolved from my love of roleplaying games like
D&D. I took part in a LARP (live action role play) for almost a decade
before health issues made it too difficult, and that’s where I really started
to learn to build costumes.

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 like to use British cuss words, they’ve always entertained
me and I grew up watching shows like Monty
Python
and Red Dwarf, so that
coloured my view of humour. More than that I like to take one scene and add
more description than necessary, really make it the centerpiece of my work. I
also rarely have sexual content in my fanfiction, which makes it a bit of an
oddity.

What advice would you
give young aspiring artists?

When you are writing, write for you. That way any person who
likes what you have done, that’s just a bonus. Art should come from inside of
us, and serve us, the rest of the world is a distant second. Do it to make
yourself happy, that’s where the best art comes form.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum
do you identify?

I am a panromantic asexual and agender individual.

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

There’s a lot of pressure towards sexualization and
romanticism in writing, and fanfiction in particular. I occasionally get
pressure to add sex scenes, and I will the odd time concede and add them, but
it always feels wrong to me. I have no interest in sexual actions, so I’m not
certain that I can really build them appropriately or accurately.

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

I find that for the most part I encounter a lot of confusion
over the fact that my partner and I have been together for almost six years.
We’re both asexual, and though we live together we have separate bedrooms
because I am an extremely restless sleeper. When people hear that we have never
even kissed (I’m touch-averse), they assume we are more like friends that live
together, but it’s not that at all. I love and adore my partner, and being with
her is very different than being with even my best friend.

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

Struggle is natural. I grew up in a world where asexuality
didn’t exist, and where even more standard queer identities like gay and
lesbian were barely discussed. I tried on a lot of hats when I was trying to
figure out who I was, but it wasn’t until I found asexuality that I felt
comfortable and that it was ‘just right’. Don’t be afraid to change your
identifiers when they don’t suit you anymore. Sexuality is not only a spectrum,
but it flows and changes as your identity and personality develop.

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

I have some of my old poetry up on Deviantart at https://www.deviantart.com/cavannarose
and my fanfiction is up on AO3 at https://archiveofourown.org/users/CavannaRose

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

Interview: Adrienne

Today we’re joined by Adrienne. Adrienne is a phenomenal young up-and-coming writer who is currently studying creative writing at college in Canada. She has been writing fanfiction for years and has just started getting into original work. She’s a wonderfully enthusiastic writer with an incredibly bright future ahead of her, 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 creative writer. I currently specialize in
fan-fiction and original short stories. I must admit – however, that much of
the latter is still very new to me and is currently a work in progress. 😀

What inspires you?

There’s so much! I almost don’t know where to start! A lot
of my inspiration for writing comes from the fantasy/fiction genre. A lot of my
inspiration also comes from what I see in other people’s writing/art work, as
well as what I see in my day to day activities.

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

The Lord of the Rings.
I started writing self-insert fiction when I was 14, and it sort of spiraled
upwards form there.

I have always wanted to be an artist, yes. It’s 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?

I’m not sure that I’ve got any special sort of writing style
or anything. I guess it’s hard to figure out your own writing style when you’re
constantly editing and re-reading it. ;D

What advice would you
give young aspiring artists?

Keep writing! Keep drawing! Keep doing! It’s super hard, I
know. But you must try!

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum
do you identify?

I am pretty firm on the asexual part of the spectrum. There
are other unrelated attractions there as well, but all in all – pretty firm on
the asexual part.

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

I have been fortunate enough to not have experienced any
sort of ace prejudice or ignorance in my field yet.

There have been a couple encounters where I’ve had to
explain my sexuality with close friends, but otherwise no negative feedback
yet.

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

I have been most fortunate in having friends and family who
have accepted my sexuality and have made attempts to learn more about what it
is to be asexual.

That’s not to say that there are no misconceptions about
asexuality, only that I have been lucky in my personal experiences.

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

Your identity is real. What you experience is real. You are
valid. You are not alone.

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

My work can mainly be found at diariesofawaywardwriter.wordpress.com.

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

Interview: Sabrina

Today we’re joined by Sabrina, who also goes by
how-to-sit-gay. Sabrina is a phenomenal writer and dancer from Germany. She has recently picked up fanfiction again after a five year hiatus. She started writing fanfiction over ten years ago and wrote in a variety of fandoms. When she isn’t writing fic, Sabrina writes a lot of original work, mostly short fiction and poetry. Aside from writing, Sabrina also danced quite a lot. She danced in a
Gardetanzgruppe, which is part of carnival culture in Western and Southern Germany (for an example, here’s a video). My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please,
tell us about your art.

It feels like I’ve been writing stories since I
was able to spell my name, even though this might be far from true. I wrote my
first proper fanfiction back in 2005, but I started writing poems and original
stories before that, way back to when I was in elementary school. Since then I
have written more short stories and poems than I can count, apart from
fanfiction.

Gardetanz is a very special dancing style that is
deeply rooted in the carnival culture of Western and Southern Germany. I
started dancing when I was a wee little 7 year old and only stopped 17 years
later when I moved away to a federal state that has no carnival traditions
whatsoever and hence no dance group for me to join. I still miss it so much.
Luckily, any kind of dancing or working with my body still comes naturally to
me.

What
inspires you?

Usually it is my latest obsession, which I think
is not uncommon for fanfiction writers. I’m quite often inspired by songs –
some lyrics fragment that just makes me immediately develop a scene in my head.

When it comes to original stories or poems I draw
a lot from personal experience, especially when it’s about struggle or going
into the dark places of one’s mind. I’ve only ever written two “happy” poems in
my whole life, and that just to prove myself that I can.

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

Looking back, it seems like I was born with a
pencil in my hand. Always either drawing or writing. And when I was not holding
a pencil, I was running and dancing around. Little Me didn’t care for her 39.5
°C fever, she just needed to relentlessly jump and flail.

How and why I started dancing I is a simple story.
Our across the street neighbour told my mother about starting a children’s
dancing group in our local carnival club, and she thought this would be a nice
way to have me use my pent up energy. It was one of her best decisions.

I never wanted to be any kind of artist, or at least
I hadn’t planned to. In the end I just became Me with a raving passion to
create stories, and to move my body.

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, except you count the main characters
having a snarky and sarcastic kind of banter going on. This just happens
naturally. But I’m actually thinking about implementing something like this
now, like in Bones where there’s always a clock showing 4:47 in key scenes.

What advice
would you give young aspiring artists?

Go for it. And of course practice makes (almost)
perfect. It’s actually a good sign when you look at your old work and cringe a
little (or a lot in my case), because it shows that you’ve grown and improved
yourself. This counts for works both of the mind and the body.

ASEXUALITY

Where on
the spectrum do you identify?

It’s really hard to tell, the safest bet would be
grey-asexual, but there are times when I go “full ace” for different lengths of
time. As I have figured out thanks to my last relationship, if there is any
sexual attraction to happen it definitely isn’t towards male identifying
persons. Romantically I’m pan, though.

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

Not personally, so far. I think when it comes to
writing fanfiction where people try to live out their own fantasies (not
necessarily sex-wise), there are a lot of misconceptions about ace writers.
Yes, I am ace. Yes, I can enjoy reading smutty scenes. Yes, I am also capable
of writing them myself and have already done so. No, I’m not an innocent child
who squeals ‘ewwww’ as soon as the characters kiss.

I don’t know how it is with dancing. Luckily for
me, Gardetanz isn’t a dancing style loaded with sexual undertones, even though
the skirts are so short and your panties are visible most of the time. In my
group there was never any other sexuality discussed than heterosexuality, so I
don’t even know if my fellow dancers realised I was and still am utterly queer.
In the end, probably the same common misconceptions apply there as in most
other cases.

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

First and foremost of course, that it doesn’t
exist and I just haven’t had good sex yet. That it’s not natural. That I must
have lived through some trauma but maybe can be ‘repaired’.

When I was looking for a therapist for my
depression and anxiety, one said to me that I probably don’t want to have sex
because I’m such a closed off person. That woman never saw me again.

And being on Tumblr for quite some time now, I
noticed the astounding misconception that ace people don’t belong to the
LGBTQIA+ community, that we’re basically just prude/virgin hets-to-happen. The
first ones I can shrug off, the latter one really riles me up.

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

Don’t doubt yourself and your feelings (or lack
thereof), everything you experience and feel is valid. You don’t need to put a
tag on yourself if you can’t or don’t want to. There are times it feels like
the world just wants to spit in your face, but there will be a time all that
sh*t will go away to make room for all the good things.

I basically try to live by some wise words by
Charlie Chaplin: “Nothing is permanent in this wicked world – not even our
troubles.”

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

After a very long writing hiatus, I finally
published a fanfiction again. It can be found on AO3 under my username how_to_sit_gay. I’m
thinking about uploading my old (English) RP fanfiction after re-reading and
editing it as well, but this might take some time.

Said old tennis RPF can be found at poetry-of-dance.livejournal.com/tag/fic
but I probably really have to revise them as they are more than 8 years old.
Last but not least, a lot of my German short stories and (revised) fanfics
(2006-2009) are on fanfiktion.de/u/AngelOfFreedom

Unfortunately there are no videos from our Garde
performances online. You have to search YouTube for “Gardetanz” to get an
impression of it.

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

Interview: Holmesienne

Today we’re joined by Holmesienne. Holmesienne is a wonderful writer who is currently focused on writing a novel but also writes fanfiction and for Role Playing. She is incredibly passionate about writing and loves talking about the subject. Holmesienne is clearly a dedicated and talented artist, 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.

Well, I like to
do all sorts of art (even though I’m not so good at all of them) but the one I
feel very connected to is writing. I have always been interested in this art,
even though I didn’t considered it as such back then. It was just something I
enjoyed doing and nothing more. Since I was a kid I kind of wrote every time I
could, littles pieces of stories coming straight out of my mind. It was not
exactly the same topics, themes, characters or writing style I used at the
time, but this is how it works after all. It has helped me growing up, and
improving my writing abilities as well.

Now, I write
different kind of stuff. I’m focused on a novel for the time being, and I write
a fanfiction on the side too. Plus, I’m part of the Role Play community, so I’m
always torn between the three of them. Despite my inability to choose what I
want to write on most days, I’m always attached to the same thing: the style.
Well, I mean, I try to use the same style to write my RPs and fanfictions the
same way I do when I’m typing for the novel. Even though one seems less
“important” for some matter, I just can’t write something I haven’t put myself
into it with my bare soul. I guess I put a part of me in everything I write and
that’s why I’m so slow, cause I have some kind of self-sacrifice to make (I
mean, my energy, not some other thing super gore-like).

Anyway, to
describe my style it’s really difficult for me to explain cause I don’t think I
could find the right words which fit my writing abilities. It’s not pretentious
or some shit like that, I really can’t find THE word to summarize it all, but I
could try to give a shot at some kind of explanation. I guess the best words I
could use to describe the style is: detailed and kind of explicit descriptions
of landscapes/situations/feelings, so that an impression can emerge and readers
permeate themselves with the combination of the said impression and the
atmosphere depicted, to guess the implicit meaning of the sentences and the
story in general. Sorry if it doesn’t make sense in English, but it’s the best
I can do to grasp the very substance of it all.

I also try to
approach some difficult subjects to give some kind of depth to the story. What I
mean by that is that I’m not familiar with light subject and little connection.
I like it when I can find a deep bond between situations, a strong explanation
as to how it connects and how it will affect the future of the story, and so
on. The difficult subjects I talk about are somehow linked to the troubles we
all experience at some point in life. It’s not always the case, sometimes I
don’t address it at all. But I always try to show that nothing’s always black
or white, that everything’s kind of grey, no matter the nuances.

I think I can cut
it now. It will do.

What inspires you?

Honestly,
everything. The situations I see/read about everyday kind of inspire me at some
point, some structures too I guess, like buildings or shops and even
landscapes. Songs or videos I watch on TV or on the Internet. But the thing
that inspires me the most is the weather. The grey or night kind of weather.
The rainy and stormy kind too. Every time I go outside, I look at the grey sky,
the thick clouds, the bright stars, the pale moon, the ragging storm, the
sparkling lightning, the rain pouring down. That’s what inspires me. Because I
just stay there, inhale and permeate myself with the atmosphere emanating from
this kind of weather. I imagine my characters or some situations linked to this
aura, and it just strikes me. Every time I feel like I don’t know how to start
a sentence, I just get out and it’s there, hanging in the air. Just for my
imagination to reach out for.

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

I can’t remember,
really. I guess everything I had to do in my life had put me in this place
right now. Had made me fond of the art of the literature, even though I hated
these classes back then when I was still at school. I was not super interested
in this field at first, I was just happy to wrote things when I had an idea at
the time. With nothing to bother me and no strings attached.

Now, I still
don’t consider myself like an author or a writer, but I would find it amazing
if I could become a professional artist in my field. I’m just an amateur for
the time being, but I guess I’ll see what’s next to come for me. Whatever will
happen in the future, I would just be glad if I could still write on my spare
time. No matter what.

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 think I do
yeah. When I write, I like to include some words corresponding to a certain
domain. A unique category of words, linked to a specific setting. It’s a
cluster of themes I’m more aspiring to write about. The category is: the dark.
I always write words linked to the dark, to describe different things, like a
situation, a landscape, a feeling. I mostly use those words: obscure, shadow,
dusk, opaque, oblivion, naught, and so on. And I also use terms that are
contrasting to them, to impose some kind of duality (cluster words about light
for example).

It’s my signature
and certainly the strongest feature of the things I write.

Sometimes, I like
to add some symbols here and there, to cut the story at one point and show that
the following sentences belong to another section of work. This is how I write
the most, because I always write one situation at a time, and to just mix it up
or rush the story is really not my cup of tea.

(It’s probably
how you will recognize me if you ever read my stuff.)

What advice would you
give young aspiring artists?

The more
important thing you have to remember when you do your art is that it’s for you
FIRST. You do what you want for you. You make things you like for you. When you
get to become or consider yourself as an artist, please, remember this. Do
what’s best for you. Do what you enjoy. Do what you like.

If there’s
something you want so badly to see in art and no one has ever done it before,
just do it! Do not hold back for anything in your life, especially for art
because it’s directly linked to you. To your very being and your soul, to your
beautiful spirit.

And please,
another thing you absolutely have to remember and to know: do not wait for
others to criticize (or worst, evaluate) your stuff without them knowing what
you intend to do. Do not lay your work in other hands (unless it’s collective
art) because it will not feel like it’s your work anymore.

Last thing you
have to understand it that it’s okay when you have no motivation or don’t have
time at all. Don’t feel bad and don’t put yourself down over your work because
of this. You will get through it and you will get back to your stuff.

Little trick for
you all, if you don’t feel confident enough : I always tell everyone that, if
you do something you like, it’s because you know you’re good at it. Otherwise
you would have ended it sooner than later or stopped it a long time ago.

Believe in you ♥

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum
do you identify?

I identify as
demisexual. But mostly I tell people I’m just asexual so that I don’t have to
explain all the time the specificity of my real identity. It’s sometimes
exhausting to describe what it means to those who don’t know or understand what
it is. But, every chance I get and when I have time, I correct myself and tell
them who I am and how I identify. It’s important for everyone to grasp the
signification and for us to expand the representation.

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

Personally, I
haven’t met ace prejudice in my field, but I do have encountered some ignorance
in real life. Some people are not informed or show some misconceptions about
what it means to be asexual.

When it happens
IRL, I always stand my ground and explain to them the aspects of being ace,
what it means, what it really is. Because it’s my identity and I will not let
anyone disregard myself for it just because they know shit about this and won’t
take the effort to inform themselves over it.

On the other
hand, when I see some posts on the internet about our community, I reblog them,
I retweet them. I’m not fluent enough in English to explain out of the blue
everything about asexuality to people on the internet. However, when it’s in my
native language, I can tell almost everything there is to know about the
community and the spectrum.

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

I have two
misconceptions in mind but they are somehow linked.

The first is that
people that are ignorant on the matter think that asexuality means we don’t
like or practice sex at all. It’s infuriating because there are asexual that
love sex. It’s not about the act itself (in general I mean, but I understand if
the repulsion of the act is a part of why someone identify as ace) but more
about sexual desire and sexual attraction. They are “lacking” or “low” most of
the time for asexual but it doesn’t mean that it’s unnatural. How can someone
believe it’s unnatural? It’s just normal.

The second is the
fact that everyone always have to give the “It’s because you haven’t met the
right person, yet!” card. And for that, I’m kind of biased since I’m demi,
because I get why it’s the matter sometimes. Even though it’s more about the
connection between one ace person and their partner (romantic or not)  that is important for this aspect. You trust
some people with this, and there are people you just don’t. But it’s not the
matter altogether. The reason this pretense is also false is that you can met
whoever you like, it will not change anything about your asexuality. You are
and always will be a part of the community, no matter what.

There are so many
more misconceptions I could talk about but I never encountered anything else,
so I will stop here.

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

It’s probably not
what you would want to read but making your own researches help a lot at first.
That way you can focus on what’s important for you, and get to know how to
better identify yourself.  (However I
understand that if you are completely lost on the beginning it will not be the
better point to get across, especially if you don’t know the word asexuality).

You can also talk
with ace people on the internet after logging on some forums or read through
ace positivity blogs. Asks those who are willing to help you, they will be
happy to do it. Search for associations or clubs or documents or even
interviews, and so on. On the internet or in real life too.

The most
important thing is that once you get to identify yourself, everything else will
not be so hard anymore. You are scared to do your ace coming-out? Don’t. You
want to do it? Do it. Just remember to not push yourself to fit into society
while you’re here with something so special that it makes you unique. But, so
long as you are happy and in terms with yourself, it’s all that will matter.

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

You can find my
fanfic(s) on AO3: https://archiveofourown.org/users/Holmesienne/works

Also I have short
“poems” on Twitter: https://twitter.com/Kt_Chup

I would
absolutely adore to share the stories of the characters I write about (not for
the novel, but for the RP on forums) and I think I will post them soon on
Tumblr (in my native language): http://coloraldreamx.tumblr.com/

Hopefully I will
probably finish the novel one day too and post it on the internet, who knows.
There’s also a chance I will post facts about the story’s characters on Tumblr,
and maybe some one shots if I ever made other ones too.

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

Interview: Jacob

Today we’re joined by Jacob, who is known on social media as Jacob’s Jottings. Jacob is a phenomenal author who writes both original fiction, nonfiction, and fanfiction. For nonfiction, he writes about autism and mental health for the site “The Mighty.” For fiction, he has mostly written fanfiction and original short stories, but has recently taken on two large projects. One involves a detective in post-war Britain and the other is about an autistic wizard (which is something i would absolutely love to read because it sounds fantastic). It’s clear he’s a dedicated and passionate writer, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to him for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please, tell us about
your art.

I’m a writer, and I’ve really started to come out of my
shell in the last few years. I’ve always written short stories and never shown
them to anyone before, but that changed when my friends started writing
fan-fiction, and my English teacher at college told me to attend a creative
writing club.

Though I’m still very private about my larger projects, I
started publishing articles for mental health site The Mighty, one of those
articles received 32,000 hearts on the site, and got shared a lot on social media,
so I started to say to myself ‘what if people would like my creative work too?’
and here I am now, writing two large scale projects, one about an autistic
wizard, the other about a detective in post-war Britain. Not just that, but I
published some fan-fiction of my own, and I found once that was out there, I
found it a lot easier to write without much self-doubt.

I’ve recently finished college, and I’ve been accepted onto
the Creative Writing BA course at a university I’ve dreamed about going to for
years. I’m hoping this will really make my dream of being a full-time writer a
reality, even if it takes years to take off.

As well as writing, I also do a bit of photography, and some
digital design. I make all my own covers for my projects, as well as posters
for events, and I love going out and taking pictures. I often use the pictures
for reference for my writing, and it’s a great skill to have alongside.

What inspires you?

I find inspiration in many things, mainly everyday life. But
I often find myself looking into what I loved as a child, certainly what
comforted me. Sometimes this is in the form of stories by other authors, such
as J. K Rowling, or Terry Pratchett, but other times its films and music, or
most importantly to me: knowledge. Plants, animals, and space particularly
always have heavy presence in my stories, and that’s because I love to learn
new things.

I’ve always written to escape the real world, so I suppose
it is natural that my other methods of escape blend well with this, I often
find that going to a museum or exhibition particularly fuels my writing, it
often ends in me trying to fit a lot into one box- my wizarding story contains
as much knowledge of the natural world as it does fictional magic for example.  

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

I’ve always been creative, and I was sure I wanted to
utilise that in some way, but could never find an exact form that suited me. I
tried art, and drama, and found myself not ever truly comfortable. I mainly
thank books, films, and television, for getting me into writing. The idea of
making my own stories was irresistible! I cannot pinpoint when it exactly
started happening, probably about five years ago, but I finally found that
writing (alongside reading and watching) was the most enjoyable thing to do. Then
it all fell into place, and I find myself writing all the time, even if it
never gets added to again- it’s 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?

Oh definitely! The infinity symbol finds its way into most
of the stuff I write, not just because of its use by the autistic rights
movement, but because of my fascination with the concept behind the symbol. I
also always incorporate types of birds as symbolism- usually owls, or penguins,
as they’re my favourite, penguins especially.

Playing with colour is something I’ve recently moved into, I
don’t have a single character that does not heavily associate themselves with
colours and their meanings, even if it is just a subtle inclusion. Blue for my
protagonists usually, a colour I use not only to create a cold atmosphere, but
also to show the presence of intelligence, imagination, and peace. Reds and
oranges meanwhile shows up my more passionate and instinctual characters, with
purple showing a combination of the two.

I also love playing with imagery, with many of my characters
having ‘hair the colour of fertile soil’ or the ‘great spurts of an ancient
wine, hemorrhaging profusely’- it can feel a bit forced sometimes, but it often
pays off, and I find it a great way of illustrating the worlds I’ve made.

I’m also told I tell stories in a unique way, my friend
recently commented that when she reads my writing, I am clearly telling the
story, rather than just creating it. I’ve never quite understood this
evaluation, but I’ve heard it quite a few times in several forms.

What advice would you
give young aspiring artists?

It sounds cliché- but I would say just do whatever you love!
I spent far too long worrying about what others think, and though that matters
if you want to make a career out of it, the initial starting of a new art is a
solo-activity. If painting makes you happy- paint! Everyone I know who does
something creative for a living started off doing it to just kill time, or to
help them with another activity, and it grew from there.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum
do you identify?

I use the label asexual as standard, to me, this means not
feeling sexual attraction. I’m confident in identifying as a sex positive
asexual, but I’m yet to 100% settle on my romantic orientation.

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

I think one of the strangest encounters in my life was when
I first explained asexuality to someone, without attaching the label to myself.
I was told its ‘unnatural’- for this reason, in my private life, I don’t talk
about my sexuality until prompted.

I also find that some in my age group is often sex-obsessed,
I’ve often been labelled prudish just for not wanting to talk about sex, and I
find it very hard to try and express my frustration with that. I am not at all
prudish, I just think about it completely differently to they do!

I incorporate it into my work- I actually find it harder to
write allosexual characters, and therefore many of my characters are asexual by
accident! And I do worry that some people won’t understand the representation
if they haven’t experienced it first-hand, but I do my best to write characters
that educate as well as represent now.

Outside of my field, I see prejudice and ignorance
regularly, insults such as ‘frigid’ and so on, I also see the constant
discourse present on sites such as Tumblr, and though I do my best to keep out,
I sometimes worry for our community, I hate the idea that anyone who identifies
as asexual will feel like it isn’t valid or can’t talk about it in case they’re
verbally attacked.

As an autistic person, I also find that some people think my
asexuality is part of that. I don’t think it is- and it’s quite insulting to
assume that someone’s sexuality is part of their sensory issues for example.
The two often overlap for me, and I also know autistics that do feel sexual
attraction and have those sensory issues anyway. Some people in both
communities would even say their sensory difficulties enhance their sexual
experiences.

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

Personally, I find that the definition of asexual is often mis-identified.
It means lacking sexual attraction. But I know people who are completely
convinced it simply means ‘won’t have sex, or won’t masturbate’- it is often a
pain to try and debate it with them, and I find myself bringing up articles
from the community to back my side up.

I don’t like discussing the personal details of my own
asexuality in too much depth with people who might not understand, and therefore
I think the extra labels of ‘sex positive’ are really useful when discussing
asexuality, as well as the other identities within the spectrum.

At the end of the day though, the only person other than me
who has a right to that deeper information is a partner, and I don’t think
asexuals should ever feel pressured to dissect their identities for another
person’s curiosity or because of an ignorant person’s misconceptions.

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

Firstly, it is okay to struggle! I found it incredibly hard
to find the orientation that best described me. I still think sexual
orientation is a fluid concept, and I think people who are struggling should
remember that. If something doesn’t feel right, find the label that does feel
right, and don’t feel guilty if that changes. Some asexuals might not find that
identity for a long time.

I myself often find myself wondering if I might be aromantic
as well as asexual, or demisexual instead of asexual, this is a natural part of
development. Just as sexuality in all its forms is natural. A lot of people go
through that internal debate. And nobody should ever be afraid of using the
label that best suits them.

I would also repeat that the only person who needs to be
happy is you. Come out at your own pace. Experience your sexuality at your own
pace. Some people don’t find the identity they’re most comfortable with until
they’re halfway through life, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

There’s a thriving asexual and LGBT+ community waiting to
help you through it all, and the right people within it are not going to judge
you for struggling.

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

People can find my work in several places. For a more personal
touch, there’s my own Tumblr blog which is at jacobs-jottings, or my AO3 under the
same name (but without a hyphen).

As well as this there’s my new Facebook page, also called
Jacob’s Jottings, and my user page on The Mighty, under my full name-
Jacob Durn. If anyone is curious, my photography can be found easily on Instagram, where my
username is identical to my AO3 one.

My blog has a bit of everything (including personal posts,
and lots of reblogs), my AO3 some fanfiction, and soon some original works, whilst
the last two focus on my non-creative work.

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