Mission Not Impossible

All marketing wizards in the queendom of Authorland want me to spell out my mission. I suppose in common vernacular it means something like this: “Hey Bubbette! Why are you writing?”

According to the wise atop authorship mountain high, such a mission somehow plays into my platform. Huh?

I suppose that translates also. Maybe to: “Hey gal! What’s your deal?”

(Let me pause here to find out what the googlee-eyed genius’ mean for sure. Beg your pardon while I search ‘author platform.’)

Author platform research

(Oooh, I see.) One google wizard suggests:

Most importantly, platform grows from a body of work—or by producing great work. Remember that.

(Will do.) And now I’m going to consult another goog-lee genie, and truly see what an author’s mission is, and how it connects to platform.

(Excuse me. This could take a bit longer. Please be patient. Might I suggest while waiting, you whistle a petty crime or two.)

author mission research

(Well, I’m back.) I discover my first guess was wrong. Actually, I was one-third right. Why I write is the last part of the mission. The first part spells out: What I write. And the middle: Who I write for. So here I go, flushing out a bit about my professional calling.

  1.     What I write

Definitely, a potpourri of published stuff—articles, essays, novels (for young and old), cartoons, and now, poetry. Just hand me a scrap of paper and I take it as an invite to scribble out words and/or pictures, locking in wild ideas and/or sensations. And in my mind, the wilder, the better.

  1.     Who I write for

In a nut shell, I hope to reach people that self-identify as lifelong learners. They are open to new ideas; like to explore the worlds of mind, nature and humanity; and don’t fear rubbing up against the grain of cultural normalcy. Simply put, they are what I consider grounded in reality.

  1.     Why I write

While I know my life is ordinary in many ways, it is quite unique in others. After graduate school, as a young adult, I moved to a ‘closed’ Dakota reservation. Closed meant non-tribal members had to be invited onto the reservation for a specific purpose, or they were not welcome and could not stay. My purpose was to work for the Bureau of Indian Affairs-Crow Creek Agency in order to help the tribe implement the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1972.

My job? Bring home to the tribe children stolen from their families by mission school officials, state social workers and off-reservation police over decades. Less than a dozen non-tribally affiliated people were involved, and good fortune placed me in leadership.

Later on, in my mid-thirties, I headed for Austin, Texas, where I became an activist-initiator in alternative movements that included non-western healthcare; wholistic wellbeing, and earth-based/eco-feminism. From the start those of us involved chased our own off beat passions while heading ‘onward through the fog.’ Out of that fog rose among other greats, the very first Whole Foods store. And for decades, ‘keep Austin weird’ served as our creed.

Finally, while Austin remained my headquarters, I lectured in Europe for twenty years, three to six months at a time. There, I played a significant role in the alternative movements sweeping through one country after another. Through my work, people gained perspectives far distant from those touted by a society steeped in (and defensive of) patriarchy.

So, the reason I write is this: To make my unique experiences real and accessible to others, as much as that is possible, through written and oral stories—and through works of visual art.

  1.     All together now

Those in the marketing-know say the final step in banging out an author mission demands I sling # 1-3 above into a brief coherent statement.

Ok. Great. I’ll give it a try. (Long pause here while brain gears whirr round and round in circles.)

Then another attempt at mission stating. (And here, another bunch of whirring goes on.)

And yet again. (Trust me. Lots of word-slinging happens behind the page you’re looking at. But you don’t have to suffer—I can go it alone.)

mission accomplished

Ok. Finally. I’ve hammered out a marketing platform, and can reveal my author’s mission:

Based on life experiences to date, my mission is to share truth, beauty and humor through stories and other creative activities.

And as the googlee-eyed wizard commanded at the start:

I must remember that.