Curses and Blessings for Creatives by Richaundra Thursday

May your graphite snap and your erasers vanish

May your pencils survive all grips of frustration

May spell check mock every name, including yours

May your autosaves be faithful

May strangers press you to critique their work

May friends listen to you untangle plot points over shared beverages

May your pantry be bereft of ingredients quickly transmuted to meals

May loved ones bake you casseroles with gentle reminders to eat

May your coffee be an infectious bitter

May you stay hydrated with sweet tasting water

May your critics open secret eyes on your insecurities and gnash them with unsecret mouths

May your editors and commissioners be kind and full of grace

May your pens scratch through your sheets

May your laptop batteries never die

May demons prey upon your doubts

May you be ever warded from Impostor Syndrome

May you be adored by middle aged straight white men who utilize your work to perpetuate systemic inequality, condemning you to a life of ignominy and Sad Puppy Forums

May you light a fire to unfreeze voices previously silenced and fill the world with new songs

Author’s Note:
The Sad Puppies are a group of (mostly White, conservative men) writers and readers within the speculative community who believe the genre and attached awards, such as the Hugos, are being ‘ruined’ by women, people of color, queer folx, or, Lovecraft forbid, PEOPLE WHO ARE ALL THREE.
Richaundra is a nonbinary (cassgender, so they/she pronouns are fine) aromantic asexual living in South King County, Washington. They teach 8th grade Social Studies and English/Language Arts during the day and spend their free time reading everything they can, cooking, playing video games and spending arguably too much time on Twitter. They have been published in Blossomry, Silverblade, Eye to the Telescope, Star*Line, The First Line, The Poet’s Haven, Vulture Bones, and Luna Station Quarterly. While they have most often published speculative poetry, they also write short stories, flash fiction and found poetry. They find themselves returning again and again to topics of queerness, the perception and treatment of women in society, struggling to recognize privilege and use it for good, dealing with mental illness (specifically Depression/Anxiety and Manic-Depressive Disorder) and popular culture.

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