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Posts Tagged ‘good causes’

Help found the Dream Foundry!

Some of you may have heard about the Dream Foundry, an organization that aims to provide support and encouragement for new professionals in science fiction and fantasy writing and art. I’m a part of the group, and our project just got rolling in the last year or so (you may have heard some of us talking about it at Worldcon in San Jose); now it’s running its very first Kickstarter! There’s a five-year-plan for getting the entire enterprise up and running, and the purpose of the Kickstarter is to fund the first year of weekly articles and a discussion series. If it meets that goal — which is only $2000, and since we’ve already got $1766, the odds look good — then further funds will be used to extend that funding, recoup startup costs, expand our web presence, pay staff (all of whom are currently unpaid volunteers), and even provide the money to start up a contest for new writers and artists, with a substantial cash award and free workshop for finalists.

There’s an added twist here, which is that the Dream Foundry’s financial people have plans to apply for various grants and such — but in the perverse way of such things, it’s easier to get a grant if you can show a track record of other funding and results. So the more the Kickstarter can raise to get the Dream Foundry going, the better our odds become of keeping it going in the long run.

I got involved because my own career got started with an award and the monetary prize from that, and I’d love to see another such project aimed at people who are new to the field. The people behind the Dream Foundry are astonishingly well-organized, so I have every faith that with support, this can become not just a real thing but an amazing one. Back the Kickstarter now to help make that happen!

The Pixel Project to End Violence Against Women

promotional image for The Pixel Project to End Violence Against Women

This Friday at 9 p.m. Pacific Time (9 p.m. Eastern), I’ll be doing a Google Hangout reading and Q&A session in support of The Pixel Project to End Violence Against Women. Here’s the link for the YouTube Live stream; obviously there’s nothing happening there yet, but you can bookmark that and come back to it in a few days.

While you wait for that to roll around, though, there’s a fundraiser as well, which has already made it more than a third of the way to its $5000 goal. This will be ongoing for the next month and change — it ends October 15th — and they’ll be rolling out additional perks throughout; my own donations are currently scheduled to go up for grabs later this week. But there are already several awesome things available, and I’d love to see the project blow through its initial goal well before the fundraiser ends.

Update on the book sale fundraiser

The fundraiser I launched last week has raised over six hundred dollars for the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services — $621 to date. Thank you so much to everyone who has participated, whether you bought one book or eight (!). I’m in the process of shipping everything out, which is taking longer than expected due to sheer volume . . . which is excellent news. 🙂

The fundraiser is still ongoing, in the sense that I see no reason to call a halt to it. You can find the list of stock here, and I’ll update the page to note that I’ll go on taking orders and donations.

Fundraiser for immigrants and refugees

Update, 7/16/18: I will be leaving this fundraiser open for anyone who wishes to pick up a book and donate to RAICES, since there’s no particular reason to call a halt to it. The stock list may get outdated, though, so please do email me to make sure what you want is still available.

I’ve already donated to one of the organizations working to oppose the Trump administration’s cruel imprisonment of refugees and immigrants and to reunite the separated families, but I want to do more. Since I’ve also been thinking that I should cut down on my stock of author copies, that provides me with a way to raise some more money for the cause.

The plan is simple. I’ve listed the available books below; all of them will be signed unless you specify otherwise. If you want to buy one or more, drop me a line at marie{dot}brennan{at}gmail{dot}com telling me which ones you want, who if anyone you’d like them inscribed to, and where I should send them. After I’ve confirmed that the books you want are still in stock, donate the price of the books to RAICES, Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services, an organization in Texas, and send me a copy of your receipt (after deleting or blacking out any personal information you’d prefer me not to see).

Shipping is covered anywhere in the U.S. For shipping internationally, I may ask you to PayPal me a few bucks to help mitigate the cost, because that can add up incredibly fast.

So here’s the list of books. Note that I have numerous foreign-language copies of the first two Memoirs, in a variety of translations; if you would like something to keep your hand in, or know someone who reads that language and might like the book, please do consider picking one up! It’s hard for me to find good homes for them in the normal way of things.

Current fundraiser total: $790

(That last one requires a bit of explanation. I recently bought out my publisher’s remaining stock of the book in order to get the rights to revert so I can republish the series; as a consequence, I have a lot of copies on hand. I’m not even sure how many, but suffice it to say that I have more than I’m going to move via this fundraiser. Though hey, prove me wrong!)

If you have any questions, drop them in the comments or send an email. Let’s raise some funds!

Kaiju, Tuckerization, and tornadoes

Strange Horizons is running a prize drawing as a fundraiser for the magazine. Enter for a chance to be Tuckerized in the book I’m writing right now, the sequel to the Memoirs of Lady Trent! Given the nature of this book, the most likely prospect is that you’ll wind up being some kind of expert on the Draconean language or other such nerdy topic, but there are a few other possibilities as well.

The Kaiju Rising: Age of Monsters II anthology is nearly halfway to goal. If you missed it before, this anthology will feature a short story from me based on the micro-setting I wrote for the Mecha vs. Monsters expansion for the Tiny Frontiers RPG, which took that concept and smashed it full-speed into the idea of high school science competitions. The story is one of the most gonzo things I’ve ever written, and you can help it become a published reality!

This is a very long article, but very worth reading if you want to get a sense of how terrifying tornadoes can be. I’m lucky that I never experienced one, despite living in Dallas for eighteen years; I did experience huddling in the back hall of our house, waiting to find out if we’d lose that particular game of meteorological Russian roulette.

(Juxtaposing that with the previous item: gonzo as my story is, it doesn’t come close to approximating the sheer destructive force of a tornado. But it’s also meant to be a moderately funny story, and there’s nothing funny about annihilation on that scale.)

Finally, not so much an item as a teaser for something upcoming: stay tuned to this space for some exciting news on February 6th!

that whole “tikkun olam” thing

I’ve been making these tikkun olam posts for about half a year now, and responses to them have been slowing down, which I suspect is in part a sign of fatigue. It’s hard to keep on working to repair the world when so many people seem determined to break it, and when it’s hard to see any result for your effort.

But sometimes you can make a very real difference to a very specific person. Chaz Brenchley has put out a call raising funds to treat his wife’s multiple sclerosis. If we lived in a country where this was covered by insurance, they wouldn’t have to worry; instead we live in a country where Republicans are trying to take away even the insurance we already have. Karen is the primary earner in their family, and she doesn’t know how soon she’ll be able to return to work. Helping out, either by donating directly, or by subscribing to Chaz’s Patreon, can make all the difference in the world to these two people, and to their friends and family.

And while you’re at it, call your senators and beg them to oppose Trumpcare. Because I’d like to live in a world where things ranging from anxiety to surviving sexual assault don’t count as “pre-existing conditions,” and where health insurance companies are required to cover things like doctor’s visits.

One day left! (For two things!)

Tomorrow, y’all. Tomorrow, Within the Sanctuary of Wings will be available from all reputable vendors of books! If you’ve been waiting for the series to be complete before you pick it up, now is your chance to start! If you know someone who has been waiting for the series to be complete before they pick it up, now is your chance to tell them to start!

My upcoming tour schedule is here, with a new item added: a May 11th signing at University Bookstore in Seattle, where I will be joined by the inestimable Todd Lockwood.

Also, don’t forget that the illustrated edition of Lies and Prophecy is currently 30% off at Kobo. Just enter “APR30” as a coupon code at checkout to get the discount. The sale ends today!

Finally, I’ve contributed a number of items to this year’s Con or Bust auction. There are three lots:

Bidding is open now, and will continue until May 7th. It’s a great organization and a great cause, so go forth and bid!

. . . see you all tomorrow!

Making the words count

In the course of all the protesting and petitioning and calling my representatives and so forth, I remind myself that my normal activities can also be used to make a difference in the world.

The VeriCon Charity Auction is live right now, with proceeds going to benefit Cittadini del Mondo, which is working to help refugees. My own contribution there is a signed copy of Cold-Forged Flame, but there are many, many other items on offer, and the cause is a very good one.

I’m also involved with Children of a Different Sky, an anthology of stories about refugees, whose profits will be used to benefit same. My intent is to write a new Driftwood story for it: that whole setting is about the survivors of calamity carrying on in a new place, which makes it very fitting for this kind of project.

The last thing is a bit more indirect, but still important. I’m one of the judges for Fantastical Times, a writing contest for Tampa Bay-area high school students. I know the likelihood that anyone reading this post being eligible to enter is small, but I want to mention it anyway. Because right now I feel especially bad for our younger generation, the people looking ahead to the future, wondering what they’re going to inherit from us — and wondering if they can do anything about it. Their voices matter. They’re the ones who are going to have to deal with the mess we leave behind. If you know of a similar opportunity for kids in your area, promote it. We need their vision, and we need them to know we’re listening.