Well, I’m sorry to say that IndieGoGo rejected JB’s campaign for Hellbreaker, and worse, they just completely deleted all his information rather than allow him to provide an explanation on the page.

Thanks to those who shared the campaign or donated (every dollar has been refunded).
The link is dead, but the dream lives on.

How my job — the entertainment writing side of it, anyway — works at The Stir is this: I comb through trending news items for topics that are getting a lot of attention, I pick something that I can try and cover in at least a semi-unique way, and I pitch my story angles to my editor. What they’re looking for are opinions, ideally, not just a basic rehash of existing reports. Pitching is far more difficult than the actual writing, because it’s not always easy to find a topic out of the relatively small pool of What’s Trending Right This Minute that I give half a damn about one way or the other.

Sometimes I write about things that don’t interest me at all. Sometimes (well, a LOT of times) I use a headline I normally wouldn’t touch with a fifty-foot pole. Sometimes I feel like a bottom-feeding hack.

I’ve been mentally churning on this lately, partly because of that ridiculously sanctimonious show that can’t figure out if it’s a zany comedy or a serious political drama or a microwaved version of the endlessly annoying Jim/Pam romance-that-wasn’t, Newsroom. If you’ve watched it, you probably have a pretty good idea what Aaron Sorkin thinks about gossip writers. I guess I fall into that category, at least part of the time, and I’m not sure why I’ve been watching an entire season of a show that annoys the crap out of me AND sort of makes me feel bad about myself, but there you go.

When I start questioning myself, though, I think back on every job I’ve ever had. Did I thoroughly enjoy every single one of my responsibilities? Of course not. Did I sometimes write things that I wasn’t terribly interested in, that weren’t presented in my preferred style, because that was what I was required to do? Of course I did.

I’d say for every Kristen Stewart/Robert Pattinson article that makes me feel like I should probably take a shower afterwards, I get the chance to write several stories about movies that look awesome, shows I enjoy, actors I admire, or things that just make me laugh. I get to work from the comfort of my home while my kids play nearby. I get to work with smart, friendly people who give me useful feedback.

It’s a good job. It’s a great job, actually.

Here’s something I wrote in 2008:

I believe in my abilities and I believe I am marketable. I believe that given the right set of circumstances I could take the big terrifying step into freelancing full time — and for once, fully owning my professional success. My career aspirations boil down to this: I want to get out of it what I put into it. I believe the path for me to achieve that goal is working for myself.

I could tell myself that I’ll pursue my dreams at some later date, maybe when the kids are older, but why? There is no better time for me. I am strong and capable and I can do it all — I can be a great mom and I can make a happy life for my family and I can delight employers and I can run my own business. I know this.

It took me a few years to turn that dream into a reality, but here I am. Maybe the picture isn’t always exactly how I imagined it, but what ever is? When I think about it — really think about it — I don’t feel like a hack or a bad person. I feel really, really lucky.

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