Updates of the Quick and Fun Variety!

Every time I log in to my blog these days it kind of feels like coming up for air. Between writing, commission work, and a few other projects I’m also preparing to get married in a week and a half! So, to say things have been chaotic would be a bit of an understatement.

Still, before said chaos pulls me back under, I wanted to share a few quick updates!

#1: The WIP Podcast interviewed author Zoraida Cordova!

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Zoraida Cordova – author of Labyrinth Lost and the upcoming sequel, Bruja Born – recently joined us on The Work in Progress Podcast as our first ever guest! Not only was it hella exciting to talk to an author whose work I deeply admire, she also had a wealth of information about playing the long game in publishing. Oh, and she’s also super cool. You can listen to the episode on Anchor or subscribe on some of your favourite podcast apps!

#2: I did my first public reading!

A little while ago I was asked if I would like to participate in Vancover’s Dominion Reading Series, hosted by the International Centre of Arts and Technology. The event on May 25th focused on works of YA fantasy, and while The Star and the Ocean isn’t quite young adult, it was still a thrill to get to read a couple excerpts for an audience!

#3: We hit an exciting milestone on Patreon!

Last week we hit the minimum amount of patrons at the “Floofers”, “Boofers”, and “Snoot Boopers” reward levels on my Patreon to unlock monthly commission contests!

Here’s how it will work: every month, subscribers at the above mentioned levels will be entered into a draw for a free commission (note: patrons at the Snoot Booper level get two monthly entries). Winners will get a full body, cell shaded art commission of a character of their choice (or even a portrait of themselves! I don’t care!)

ALSO, we’re only $9 in monthly pledges away from my first goal! Once I hit $50/month I will begin releasing two new early access chapters of The Wind and the Horizon per week until the book is finished. Subscribed patrons are already a full month ahead as it is, so this is a major bonus for TWATH fans!

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Chances are this will be my last post aside from chapter updates until after the wedding, so I’ll see you on the other side!

The Artist Life For Me: My Support and Work-With-Me Master Post!

As some of you already know, I lost my job at the end of February.

While the news was completely unexpected, I decided to treat this major upheaval as a blessing in disguise.

Anyone who writes and creates while working full-time can tell you how challenging it is. Finding the time to dedicate to your craft while also spending most of the day working is hard enough; Couple that with trying to spend time with loved ones and maybe even take care of yourself, and you understand what it means to say “there aren’t enough hours in the day”.

All I’ve ever wanted is for my creative projects to be how I make my living.

So, rather than rushing back into the job market, I’ve decided to the artist life an honest shot. Over the past month I’ve spent hours a day writing; Treating it like the priority I want to be in my life. I’ve also been hustling on several side projects – you know, the ones that pay the bills, ha ha!

I’m really, really excited to be giving writing and art a real chance to be my new full-time job.

But to make this work, I need those side hustles! So, if you’re looking forward to all the extra content I now I have time to pump out and/or you just want to help make the dream happen, here’s how you can support my work!

Subscribe on Patreon

If you’re trying to decide on how best to support my work, Patreon gives you the best bang for your buck! For as little as $1 a month (yes, seriously!) you get new early access content every single week. You’ll also get lots of exclusive content like stories and artwork, plus steep commission discounts and entry to monthly contests!

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Donate on Ko-Fi

Not everyone can make regular financial commitments to their favourite creators, and I get that. Whether you’d like to tip me for the content I share, or you just want to make a single donation to help me along, the Ko-Fi platform is the easiest way to do it!

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Commission me

My art commissions are now open, with no slot caps! I’m open for character and cover illustrations, social media avatars, and even merch designs!

Shop the Starborn Store

I’ve recently added a bunch of new designs to the Starborn Store, with more on the way! If you’re a fan of the Starborn universe (The Star and the Ocean, The Wind and the Horizon), this is the only place to get your hands on official merch! Have requests of a design you’d like to see? Hit me up and I’ll do my best to make it happen!

Hire me

In my previous life, I was a communications professional. I’m university educated (University of Toronto 0T8) and have completed post-graduate studies in public relations, with a decade’s worth of experience under my belt. I even taught college-level social media courses for four and a half years!

Add this to my experience in the world of books and fiction, and I your one-stop shop for all kinds of projects and initiatives, including:

  • Beta reading
  • Sensitivity reading (bisexuality, chronic depression, generalized anxiety disorder, anorexia)
  • Copywriting (blog posts, articles, newsletters, advertising copy, etc.)
  • Press release writing
  • Social media consultation

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And finally:

TELL YOUR FRIENDS!

Can’t support me yourself? That’s okay! There might be people in your network who could benefit from my services and/or who might like to read the things I write!

2018 Housekeeping

Now that we’ve launched into a fresh new year, I figured now might be a good time to do a bit of housekeeping! I’ll make it quick:

The Wind and the Horizon returns publicly on Friday, January 26th and will shift to updating every other week.

Not fast enough for you? Want new chapters now? Well, if you’ve pledged on my Patreon, you already have early access to the latest two chapters! You’ll also get weekly updates until the book is finished for as little as $1 per month.

Patrons also get access to all kinds of other early and exclusive perks, including artwork, colouring sheets, and steep commission discounts.

Can’t commit to a monthly pledge but still want to help support my work? Ko-Fi is always there for single donations!

The Work in Progress Podcast just posted Episode #8! It’s a little wild to think this podcast we started on a whim has already been going for eight weeks. Do you have any topics you’d like the four of us to discuss? Leave a comment and let us know!

As of right now you can listen to us on iTunes, Google Play, Overcast, and Pocket Casts. Don’t forget to rate, review, and subscribe!

Okay! I promise I’ve got some fresh posts and useful content coming up soon. In the mean time, thanks for letting me get this bit of business out of the way ❤️

Hello 2018!

I wasn’t going to do a New Years resolution post, but when I decided I wanted to post something today it felt weird to write about anything else.

2017 was one hell of a year: it started with my world falling apart which was quickly followed by a big move. It took months before my life really started to feel normal again but, when it did, good things happened.

Last year I finished the beta draft of The Star and the Ocean, a passion project more than 20 years in the making. The beta draft of that web novel went on to win a Watty Award, which really made me feel like a have a chance with this whole writing gig.

In 2017 I finally felt comfortable with calling myself a writer. I started work on the sequel, The Wind and the Horizon, dove back into art, started a podcast with my friends, and even launched a Patreon.

Oh, and I finally took up guitar, although I hesitate to say I “learned to play” because, well, I haven’t. Yet.

In next weekend’s episode of The WIP Podcast we talk about our different creative resolutions. Compared to Athena, Bri, and Rey’s goals for this year, my plan felt less grand and structured. Still, after all this time (not to mention the state of mind I ended the year in) I know what’s going to work for me with regards to where I am right now.

My creative resolutions aaaaare:

  • Finish the beta draft of TWATH (it’s half done already!)
  • Get The Witch’s Patron ready to query (and then do exactly that!)
  • Plot out my idea for NaNoWriMo (it’s never too early, dammit)
  • Create more art (and get better at it as I go!)
  • Get back to practicing guitar (I’ll actually learn to play properly!)
  • And that’s it! No deadlines or word counts.

What about you? Tell me all about it!

 

TWATH Update News and a New Way to Support my Work

Happy December, everyone! To kick off a new month (and the last one of 2017, whaaaaaaat??) I’ve got two pieces of news to share:

The Wind and the Horizon is taking the month off

I’m want to refrain from using the dreaded h-word here, so I’ll use the happier h-word instead: I’m going to take a holiday from updating TWATH in December.

This month is going to be a shit show for me. My day job is about to get ridiculously busy, my brother is visiting for the holidays, and I have a few projects I still need to wrap up (two outstanding commissions and editing an anthology submission, if you’re curious). Plus my lovely editor is going to be travelling for half the month anyway.

On top of finishing my outstanding projects, I want to use what little free time I’m going to have this month to keep padding the buffer of TWATH chapters I’ve already written. Not only do I want to start 2018 strong, there’s another reason I’m going to need that healthy buffer…

Segue to piece of news #2:

I’ve officially launched a Patreon

For the past two years I’ve been producing a metric buttload of content and giving it away for free on the internet. As an author and artist of queer work, I’ve been ridiculously lucky to connect with friends and fans all over the world. Up until now I’ve relied on donations, merchandise profits, and commissions to support my creative projects. Unfortunately, I’m no longer in a place where I can maintain my aggressive production schedule completely free of charge.

Enter, Patreon.

My patrons will get early access to all future chapters of The Wind and the Horizon as well as the final yet-to-be-named instalment of The Starborn Series. How early, you ask? Patrons will get to read new weekly chapters a full month before they go public, beginning in 2018.

I will also offer exclusive art and short stories, as well as discounted commission rates to Patrons (all perks that were previously only offered to members of my mailing list. Yes, that means mailing list perks will be changing). Once I figure out how the goal/reward system works, I’ll begin offering free art and other exciting stuff for higher tiers.

Your support makes everything I do possible.

I work full-time, I help my parents financially, and I have a beautiful old dog who needs expensive meds on the regular. Patron support will provide the financial incentive I need to justify continuing to create and share content.

To everyone who chooses to support my work: THANK YOU! I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!

To support me on Patreon, click here

To make a one-time donation via Ko-Fi, click here

 

TSATO Won a Watty! (Plus a Giveaway!)

Last Friday wound up being a truly awesome day.

Unfortunately for me, I also wound up coming down with a nasty bug on Friday and spent my entire weekend feeling like garbage, which is why I’m just getting around to writing this post now. But better late than never, right?

Here are three awesome things from last Friday:

Awesome thing #1: The Star and the Ocean won a Watty Award!

It’s already been a few days and I still haven’t found an eloquent way to express how unbelievably excited I am that The Star and the Ocean was chosen as a winning title in the 2017 Wattys in The Breakthroughs category! Over 250,000 titles were entered into this year’s contest and only 50 were named winners, so to say I’m flattered to have been selected is a huge understatement. Since the day I joined Wattpad I’ve hoped TSATO would one day win a Watty Award – the website’s version of the Oscars – and even though I know I shouldn’t let any award system speak to the value of my book but this one still means a lot to me.

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The Breakthroughs: On the rise talent deserves to be discovered, and this award is for the up-and-comers in storytelling who delighted readers and caused a stir on Wattpad.

Awesome thing #2: Friday was May’s birthday!

That’s right! September 29th is canonically May’s birthday and, even though I was sick I insisted on celebrating in style.

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May’s 2017 birthday art ❤

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A pink cupcake and champagne – the perfect way to celebrate May!

Awesome thing #3: You could win May’s birthday print!

To celebrate May’s birthday – as well as TSATO’s Watty win – I’m giving away one signed print of May’s 2017 birthday artwork over on Twitter!

How to enter: Follow me @MaggieDerrick and re-tweet this tweet by Friday, October 6th.

The contest is open internationally!

Thanks for the love and support, everyone! I always hesitate to admit just how much this story means to me because it makes me feel vulnerable, but it’s true: TSATO is incredibly close to my heart. To see it so well received by everyone is one of the greatest things I could have hoped for!


Ko-Fi May

Starborn Series Merch Now Available!

Ever wanted to get your hands on some merch from the Starborn Series?

After toying with the idea for a while I finally caved and made a Redbubble store!

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Most of the products available right now are stickers (up until now I haven’t been creating art with print quality in mind so options are a bit limited) but I do have some other products and will be adding more in the coming weeks.

Aside from getting yourself some cute swag, every purchase you make goes toward supporting my work so I can continue to make content for you!

If you make a purchase, please tweet pics to me @star_powered and I’ll share them!

How Embracing My Sexuality Helped Me Get My Creative Groove Back || by Maggie Derrick — BiblioSapphic

I was lucky enough to contribute a guest post on BiblioSapphic about how coming out as bisexual helped me reconnect with my creative side. Enjoy! ❤

From the time I was a child until I went off to university, I knew exactly who I was: an artist. Art was my everything; other interests came and went but drawing and painting were always there. Having a creative outlet helped me get through my parents’ divorce and, later, my tumultuous teen years. In […]

via How Embracing My Sexuality Helped Me Get My Creative Groove Back || by Maggie Derrick — BiblioSapphic

New Short Story PLUS an Art Giveaway Coming Next Week!

A super quick update for you, my friends!

My next Maggie Mail newsletter will be going out on Monday, May 15th.

This month’s installment will include two and half fun things you might be interested in:

  1. The password for a new May & Em one-shot story called Can’t Stop the Waves! (I’ll also be re-sharing the password for last month’s story for my new subscribers!)
  2. A contest link for a pre-birthday art giveaway! Subscribers can enter to win a full-body colour character commission (public value: $50 USD!)

Both of these goodies are exclusively available to people on the mailing list. If you want to get in on the good time make sure you sign up before Monday the 15th!


Ko-Fi May