Hello ya’ll! Hope everyone is doing well.
I was recently a guest on the Catholic Feminist Podcast which you can listen to at this link. I am really proud of this interview because I was able to be myself and that made me feel at home. Also, with my husband gone, I rarely get a chance to talk to another adult in real life and I love love love talking.
One of the things that I talked about was the need for more diverse stories in the Catholic world. I also do not think this is a problem with just the Catholic world either. As a pro-life (when it comes to the border and abortion equally), Hispanic, Catholic woman who grew up in poverty and with a past of sleeping around that I talk about openly and do not blame the devil for because I understand how the trauma of sexual abuse as a child works now, it is rare that I find myself in a group of people who I can be totally myself with. The secular world wants stories from women of color UNLESS you are devoutly Catholic and pro-life, the Catholic world wants Hispanic voices who are pro-life but only if you do so walking the Republican definition of what being pro-life. In all situations you are out if you do not fit a narrative being pushed by whoever it is that is “looking for voices”. It is usually with the stipulation that you say the “right things” according to whoever is pushing whatever narrative.
I do not think that I am a victim though because God will always find a way and as I said to Claire on her podcast, people are thirsting for authentic stories and with the internet, I can get my voice out there for people to hear.
But there are things that people can do to help support the writing and speaking of people who have different stories. I say this because of how many messages and comments I have gotten from people after listening to the podcast.
First of all, share the writing of people you like. Share their social media content because honestly, writers nowadays are expected to have a platform in place to be published. Social media content takes time and energy to create and that takes time and energy away from writing so please share it.
Send cash. I do not know a writer who would not benefit from donations. Even those who are making steady money writing and speaking. There is always something that needs to be paid for that would help the writer focus on writing. Even if it a gift certificate for housecleaning, pizza delivery or an Amazon gift card. Or PayPal for the light bill. Every single thing helps because if you are not worrying about how to pay for groceries, you can write.
Patreon. If you know of someone whose writing you love and you have the means to support them through Patreon, do so. That goes with the above suggestion but steady money is always a blessing in this business when steady money is so iffy. I really suck at Patreon but my Patrons inspire me to keep writing on the days when I want to throw in the towel and go back to waiting tables.
Hire them for speaking engagements. If you are not sure how this works, just suggest people who you like to your pastor and see what happens. If you find this does not work then contact that speaker and see if they are willing to speak in your living room. Just FYI, I am. I feel so strongly about people hearing my story both of my conversion and Anthony’s suicide that I will anywhere to tell it. I will work with anyone’s budget.
Send encouraging emails and messages. There is no end to the negative emails, messages and DMs. There is no end to the frustration of being in Catholic media for a number of different reasons. But the struggle is so real. The self doubt is real. The feeling that you are not important is real. It is also spiritual warfare and that ish is SO REAL. Every single encouraging email, message and DM helps fight against those things. I am thankful for every single encouraging message that I get.
Send coffee, coffee giftcards or liquor. I have had someone send me a box of wine and that got me through 2017 to be honest. Always ask the writer you are supporting if alcohol is ok but almost every single writer I know will be so happy with a Starbucks giftcard.
The most important thing you can do for writers and speakers you want to support is to pray for them. Light candles for me, have masses said for Anthony and anything else you can do. I will take all of the prayer anyone is willing to offer up for me.
Thank you all for always having my back. I would have stopped writing a long time ago if it were not for you guys. Especially those of you who have been following my blog since Ramblings of a Crazy Face.