Saturday, October 21, 2017

Sammie & Budgie by Scott Semegran

From Kindle bestselling writer and cartoonist Scott Semegran, Sammie & Budgie is a quirky, mystical tale of a self-doubting IT nerd and his young son, who possesses the gift of foresight. The boy's special ability propels his family on a road trip to visit his ailing grandfather, a prickly man who left an indelible stamp on the father and son. The three are connected through more than genetics, their lives intertwined through dreams, imagination, and longing.

Simon works as a network administrator for a state government agency, a consolation after a promising career as a novelist flounders. He finds himself a single parent of two small children following the mysterious death of his adulterous wife. From the ashes of his failed marriage emerges a tight-knit family of three: a creative, special needs son, a hyperactive, butt-kicking daughter, and the caring, sensitive father. But when his son's special ability reveals itself, Simon struggles to keep his little family together in the face of adversity and uncertainty.

Sammie is a creative third-grader that draws adventures in his sketchbook with his imaginary friend, Budgie, a parakeet that protects him from the monsters inhabiting his dreams. Sammie is also a special needs child but is special in more ways than one. He can see the future. Sammie seemingly can predict events both mundane and catastrophic in equal measure. But when he envisions the suffering of his grandfather, the family embarks on a road trip to San Antonio with the nanny to visit the ailing patriarch.

Sammie & Budgie is an illustrated novel brought to you from the quirky mind of writer and cartoonist Scott Semegran. The novel explores the bond between a caring father and his children, one affected by his own thorny relationship with his surly father, and the connection he has with his sweet son is thicker than blood, going to the place where dreams are conceived and realized.


"A quirky, mystical tale of a self-doubting IT nerd and his young son, who possesses the gift of foresight. Engaging and fun, with wonderfully crafted characters." --Derf Backderf, award-winning and bestselling creator of the graphic novel My Friend Dahmer

"Sammie & Budgie is instantly absorbing, its affable narrator hooking you with wit and whimsy, then reeling you into the boat, where larger revelations await. Scott Semegran is a lively, vivid storyteller, and this book will delight readers of all ages, while leaving them with plenty to ponder about their own lives. I loved this book!" -Davy Rothbart, author of My Heart is an Idiot, creator of Found Magazine, and contributor to public radio's This American Life

"Scott Semegran’s loose charm and conversational style brings his shaggy narrator to vivid life in this story of a loving, if imperfect father and his maybe-psychic son. A sweet story about an extraordinary everyday family, Sammie & Budgie will find its way into your heart, and stay there." --Emily Flake, New Yorker cartoonist, author of Mama Tried: Dispatches from the Seamy Underbelly of Modern Parenting, and creator of Lulu Eightball

"Though Simon's love for his children shines through as one of the novel's biggest strengths, its illustrations are perhaps the the best part. Expressive, adorable, and adding a fun surprise, they are a welcome addition to the reading experience." — Indie Reader

"Illustrated throughout by Semegran, this book is the author's best. In these pages, his steadfastly idiosyncratic style really begins to click. An unconventional, beguiling, and endearing family tale." — Kirkus Reviews

Friday, July 7, 2017

Designed To Go The Distance

It’s Not About The Creativity. It’s About The Career.

Designed to Go The Distance touches upon many career and lifestyle issues specific to those in creative career fields – cultural topics that are not often talked about or adequately prepared for.

Think of this book more as a late-night barstool or coffeehouse conversation between two creatives. A creative “pep talk” so-to-speak. And just like any pep talk in life, these pages provide a healthy serving of food-for-thought, as well as a few tips along the way, too.

Whether you are a graphic designer, artist, fashion designer, songwriter or a solo entrepreneur - or even a non-creative who needs to understand the mentality and culture more in-depth, Designed to Go The Distance is sure to be an engaging and informative read. 

Chapter 1: Square Pegs in a World of Round Holes
Chapter 2: Introverts, Extroverts, and Creativity
Chapter 3: Getting Comfortable With Risk
Chapter 4: The Inconvenient Nature of Creativity
Chapter 5: Establishing a Philosophy
Chapter 6: Bridging The Creative Divide
Chapter 7: Your Obligation to Non-Conformity
Chapter 8: The Emotional Intelligence Advantage
Chapter 9: The Benefits of Boundaries
Chapter 10: Understanding Comfort Zones
Chapter 11: Understanding Burnout
Chapter 12: Balancing Career and Life
Chapter 13: Handling Criticism Like a Pro
Chapter 14: When Side Projects Just Make Sense
Chapter 15: Depression and The Creative Pro
Chapter 16: The Final Word: Paying it Forward

What Readers Are Saying About The Book:

“Solid advice without any fluff”
“Great coping tips for creative types”
“A must-read for all creative professionals”
“Very interesting information for a non-creative”
“Give to spouses/partners of creatives!”
“Highly recommended”



Mitch Dowell is the author of “Designed to Go The Distance: A Survival Guide for the Creative Professional,” and has been involved in visual branding, design and creative marketing for over 20 years.

After having worked for a variety of tech startups during the dot-com and post-dot-com boom, in 2008, Mitch founded Branding Experiences –  a consumer-facing marketing, branding and design company in the Baltimore/DC metro area – spending nearly a decade helping U.S. and Canadian small businesses in a wide range of business sectors leverage a mindset to better make a connection with their target audiences.

Among many marketing disciplines, his primary focus is on the initial, visual branding experience and leads organizations to adopt a more consumer-friendly, outside-looking-in marketing approach.

Mitch is often sought out by mainstream and business media for his expertise on the topics of marketing, branding and design, and is frequently booked for speaking engagements on similar topics.