Now Kickstarting: From Dream to Reality

Happy February! I’ve been enjoying the bright (yet cold) sunshine here in Portland, and am very excited about the sun not setting at 4:30pm anymore.

I’m also excited because my latest nonfiction book from Microcosm Publishing is currently in the Kickstarter phase!

We’re about halfway through the Kickstarter, and halfway through the goal — and my editor just emailed to say the book just went off to the printer. 🙂 Can’t wait to see it!

So. What’s this new book, you ask?

From Dream to Reality is basically a very detailed, expanded version of the spiel I’d give you if you asked if you could take me out for a beer and pick my brain about becoming a freelance writer. I’m super proud of it, and can’t wait to see it out in the world helping people make a living with their writing.

I love talking about this stuff. The marketing, the business stuff, the money — all that business nitty-gritty is super fun to me!

This book full of juicy how-to-make-money-writing tips, written in a conversational style that’s meant to be casual and approachable, while giving you the confidence to hang up your freelancer’s shingle and start finding those first clients. (Though I don’t shy away from how hard it can be, either.)

If that sounds like something you (or someone you know) would love, go check out the Kickstarter.

And thank you very very much!

From Chaos to Creativity Kickstarter is a Go!

I look around, and I’m surrounded by creative people.

My mom makes these amazingly artistic quilts. My dad welds incredible works of art and invents ingenious farm contraptions. My sister does intricate cross-stitch hangings. My husband takes stunning photographs. My friends write and paint and dance and sing.

My neighbor’s 8-year-old kid asked for bricks and wood and cement this Christmas so he could build things in the backyard.

They’re all creating art.

I’m assuming you’re also creative, because I have yet to meet someone who doesn’t have some sort of creative passion.

And I’ve never heard anyone say they have enough time to do their art.

I mean, I certainly don’t.

I’ve been struggling for years to find the perfect productivity system or tool that would help me Do All The Things.

Get my oil changed. Read all the books. Meet my client deadlines. Text my friend happy birthday.

Oh — and write a novel.

I eventually cobbled together a system that worked for me, drawing from David Allen’s Getting Things Done, James Clear, Laura Vanderkam, Mark McGuinness, Gretchen Rubin and dozens of other productivity experts and researchers to make something that just clicked.

I wrote about my system a while ago, but I wanted to do more than just tell people what I personally did.

I wanted to help people come up with a creative productivity system that worked specifically for them.

So I wrote a whole book.

From Chaos to Creativity

c2c cover

From Microcosm Press — coming fall 2019

Art and writing can be the most fulfilling part of our lives. But it’s often difficult to make space for it in our day-to-day existence. Sometimes we have so many ideas it’s difficult to keep them all organized, much less maintaining a creative schedule or dedicated workspace.

With all the clutter overwhelming your scattered brain (not to mention your desk), it’s all too easy to fall into procrastination and disarray. 

From Chaos to Creativity is a series of glowing beacons. Jessie L. Kwak has written a Getting Things Done for artists and writers, drawing on her experience as a professional copywriter with a novel-writing habit, and from interviews with other authors, artists, musicians, and designers, to teach you how to focus on the good ideas, manage your project, make time in your life, and execute your passions to completion.

Make great art by channeling your chaotic creative force into productive power and let the world see what you’re capable of!

I’m incredibly excited to share this project with you!

If this sounds at all useful, head to the Kickstarter page to learn more and preorder your copy.

As one of the rewards, you can get the Jessie Kwak Superpack, which includes copies of my three Durga System novellas, as well as most of the Bikes in Space anthologies that have my short stories in them.

Check it out!

Screenshot 2019-01-17 16.49.31

PS — What’s your art?

Let me know in the comments. 🙂

Pedal Zombies Kickstarter – get your copy now!

I was on a road trip with my husband last summer when I checked email on my phone, and saw Elly Blue’s latest call for submissions. It was for her third volume of feminist bicycle science fiction, Bikes in Space, and the theme was zombies.

I groaned. Zombies? I hate zombies. I had stories in both Bikes in Space Volume 1 and Volume 2 (you can read my stories for free on my free stories page), but . . . Zombies?

“Just imagine all the cool zombie-fighting bike gear you could have,” said my husband, a bike company rep. “You could have bikes with flame throwers, and pedals with spikes on them, and. . . .”

By the time we got to our destination, I’d sketched out a rough draft of my story, cracking myself up the entire time. I turned it in to Elly a few days later.

You see, as a former catalog copywriter, I couldn’t help but ask myself,

How would the Creative Department of a catalog company weather the Zombie Apocalypse?

My story is titled: “Notes to Creative on the Fall 1 Catalog: Zombie Apocalypse Special Edition,” and it’s dedicated to the entire creative department of Chasing Fireflies – Cathy, Jeff, Mechas, Amy, and all the rest.

It’s told in the form of a series of emails from the head of Creative to her team, who are diligently working their asses off to put out the best Fall 1 Special Edition catalog they can as things slowly go to hell around them.

I had a ridiculous amount of fun coming up with new products, such as the XLC LazerBlade® Mini U-Lock, Burley BearCub Armored Baby Trailer, and Showers Pass Zombies Pass FlakJacket.

If the zombie apocalypse ever does come to pass, let it be known that I expect a cut of profits made from the ZAP-13 UltraVolt, a gravel grinder bike where endurance race geometry combines with the latest in long range electroshock weaponry for a high-voltage, high-adrenaline off-road bike. (Colors: Citrus, Aqua.)

Are you prepared to read about the zombie apocalypse?

Check out the for Pedal Zombies Kickstarter here, and hear an important message from the Zombie-Living Alliance (ZLA)

The official description of the book:

In the not-so-distant future, when gasoline is no longer available, humans turn to two-wheeled vehicles to transport goods, seek glory, and defend their remaining communities. In another version of the future, those with the zombie virus are able to escape persecution and feel almost alive again on two wheels. In yet another scenario, bicycles themselves are reanimated and roam the earth. A talented array of writers bring their diverse visions to this volume: sometimes scary, sometimes spooky, sometimes hilarious, always on two wheels.

The zombie apocalypse will be pedal-powered! And feminist! Watch out!

Edited by Elly Blue and featuring an exciting and talented collection of new and returning authors. Scary zombie cover by Amelia Greenhall.