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Joan Kobayashi

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Barry
Barry SAYS:
This one, my dear, will be r…
This one, my dear, will be relatively short on words (at least for me), but long on gratitude.

I think I'm earmarking your donation for non-profit app fees. It's time, if only so donors can at least write this stuff off, right? I've been chewing on the idea for so long, and now that a year has gone by doing the workshops, it's finally obvious to me that the project isn't going to fall apart or anything. People keep coming. In the last two weeks I've had a growth spurt--a full room, meaning a dozen or more attendees. Many of them are eager to see me get a little lit journal rolling, and I'm also talking to a fellow at the O. Henry house/museum about alternating weeks between the ARCH and there. That's going to draw in a whole new crowd of folks who (not surprisingly) don't want to go near the shelter. In other words, the roots have taken, and it's time to get a bigger pot. :-)

Did you see the Statesman piece? I'm super-jazzed that Roberto the Reporter put so much more focus on the writers than on me--being the poster child is fine, but it's not about me, after all. And hell, I'm not that big a deal! He did a great job of diverting the attention to where it belongs.

So, let me buy you a beverage sometime before school starts, okay? Kick Butt Coffee has become my de facto office and conference room. I'll hook you up with a fancy latte or something.

Love and hugs, dear. Tons of 'em.
Barry

But wait! There's more! I posted on the St Lit blog at author Jenny's insistence. Her letter there is embarrassing in its praise, but this is where I get my warm and fuzzies these days:
http://streetlitorg.weebly.com/street-lit-blog/awww-shucks

That's all!
9 months ago
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Barry
Barry SAYS:
Joanie, sweetheart, sugar do…
Joanie, sweetheart, sugar doll, honey pie...

I'm in the middle of wrapping up pre-break homework, figuring out what's going to be nailing me when the break's over (Archaeology midterm, a short story due, an essay to draft, but not a bad workload), and I've been wondering lately what I need to do to give Street Lit a shot in the arm. And me, too--I've been walking around kind of feeling like I'm getting a tad burnt.

Anyway--Boom! Here you are with a morale booster in the nick of time. Thank you!

I've been seeing a lot of Street Lit writers come and go. Most in a great way: they've got a place now, or in one case, have popped themselves into rehab. I'm adjusting to "new" regulars and I'm at a weird spot where I need to hustle up some more homeless people! Or not necessarily homeless, but unable to access writing help through normal channels. I don't mean to say I'd shift away from homelessness, but to widen the scope. I'm not sure yet. I need to bounce ideas around with the pros, you know?

Also in the brain stew these days is to start a full-on nonprofit to underwrite a real online and print journal for this realm of writing and art. Again, it's still in the brainstorming-by-myself stage, and I don't even know quite what I have in mind. I do know it'd be like any lit journal: inclusion by submission, acceptance based on quality, with fully edited and polished work in the final product (unlike, say, the Challenger street paper, which prints anything, and prints it as is), and hopefully revealing a level of sophistication the world at large would not expect, while still accommodating the less-skilled contributor. To pull this off, I need to conjure a way to reach out beyond downtown Austin, and get the word out elsewhere. Think about it: there's not exactly a mailing list out there of homeless writers to contact! :-)

When it happens, I think I may name it the Invisible Ink Press. Maybe.

Until then, Saturdays keep on coming, and people keep showing up; I keep bringing munchies and books and me, oh my. And even when I'm grumpy, I still leave at the end of the day feeling pretty awesome. I think the Street Lit folks do, too. So it's all good!

Hugs, love, and great big thanks. I'll have to dedicate the first journal issue to Joan of Austin. :-)
B
1 year ago
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Barry
Barry SAYS:
Wow! I’m looking at the Cro…
Wow!

I’m looking at the Crowdrise stats as I write this, and I am flat out stunned. In one day, 99% of the Street Lit goal. You all have been incredible in your kindness and generosity. Thank you. Over and over!

The $1,388 that you’ve contributed will go towards immediate purchases of supplies, dictionaries, and writing instruction books I will make available for those who are into this for deeper work. And a radical upgrade to the munchie table. (I’m not above bribing attendees with food. Not at all.)

This initial funding round will create a standing account to keep the ball rolling. Supplies will be used up, food and drink each week will be bought, and incidentals such as printing or transportation can be approached without so much concern over breaking the budget. You’ve made it so that I can meet with my peeps as a stronger facilitator, one who knows that costs are covered for the time being, and for some time into the future.

I’m experiencing the same emotions I’ve gone through when gifted with scholarships, or an unexpected kindness from professors, friends, or even support flowing in from the world at large. (It’s also a bit like an acceptance note from a publication!) The feeling is gratitude, yes, of course, but it’s also a sense of responsibility. I’ve been entrusted with a task, and now one of my drives to make it a success is that I refuse to let you all down.

Thank you all. You rock!
Barry (and the Street Lit Authors Club!)

PS: As I closed this note, notification just came through that we’ve hit our goal!

The last $12 rolled in from one of my original Street Lit madmen, Ian, an all-round crazy good guy. He wrote with his donation: "For the finish line. This is an endeavor worth doing." Thanks, buddy.

PPS: I’m going to keep the fundraiser open indefinitely, since expenses will be ongoing, so there’s no need to stop sharing, is there? :-)

https://www.crowdrise.com/streetlitauthorsclub/fundraiser/barrymaxwell
2 years ago
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Barry
Barry SAYS:
PS: There's a "Thank Ag…
PS: There's a "Thank Again" button on the Crowdrise fundraiser management page. I'm using it on you now. Thanks--again. :-)
2 years ago
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Barry
Barry SAYS:
Uh, Joan? Um...uh. Gosh. Y…
Uh, Joan? Um...uh. Gosh.

You've just made it so that I can stop at the store on the way downtown, and NOT buy the 1/2 off, too-old-to-look-at-while-you-eat-'em veggie bags. And some good dip. (For some reason, dip, like French onion or ranch, is amazingly popular. These folks pile it up like ice cream!) And I can do it without wondering how I'm going to eat later, myself, with the hole in my pocket I've been working with on this thing. And I can sit down at Amazon, and click "Add to Cart" for a ton of decent writing pads--the good ones that don't fold up in your lap--and touch the little indicator for the number of items to pull the trigger on say, 20 copies of a writing text, or a baddass book that my people just must read, or or or and and and...

I am, to quote Caroll Baker in "Baby Doll": all fuzzy and buzzy inside.

You break my heart in the sweetest way. Thanks, hon, for such a show of faith in both the project and in my ability to pull it off. I won't let you down.

Barry

2 years ago
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Joan Kobayashi
Austin, TX United States
CROWDRISING SINCE: Jul 22, 2015
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Joan
Kobayashi

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