hello, i'm samantha chaffin.
sam, if you like.
I'm a writer and Los Angeles-based digital content consultant.
I think you have a universe of stories in you.
On my blog, you'll find posts about books, feminism, faith, and my current projects. If you're interested in learning more about my consulting work, head here.
Other things: I have a thing for Young Adult literature. I also have a B.A. in Theatre and Creative Writing from the University of Southern California. I’ve been a contributing blogger for The Yellow Conference and a few other places, and can usually be counted on to work Batman, The Princess Bride, and/or Alan Rickman into conversations.
Right now, I'm probably hugging a bookshelf somewhere.
also, some faqs
+ why young adult novels?
I think YA literature is changing the landscape of fiction. It's home to some of the most brilliant, thoughtful, funny, courageous, and compassionate people I've known - readers and writers alike. I write YA because books told me I wasn't alone when I was growing up, and I read YA because it's home to me. Also, things like YALLWEST prove to me that there's probably nothing better than this community.
+ you mentioned working at a nonprofit in your last post...
I spent nearly three years working at the Downtown Women's Center, the only organization in Los Angeles' Skid Row exclusively dedicated to housing and advocating for homeless women. I tend to talk about those years sometimes in my blog posts, because they were some of the most beautiful and heartbreaking of my life. The women I worked with are the strongest people I know.
+ so where do you work now?
I started working at a 4-12 girls' school in April 2017, doing website/online content management. Now I spend my days with tiny children and not-so-tiny almost-adults everywhere, all the time. They're the coolest. I still work as a freelance digital content consultant (more about that here).
+ are you a christian?
+ are you a feminist?
+ how can you be a feminist and a christian?
Short version: Jesus Christ is actually responsible for making me a feminist.
Longer version: I was raised in an extremely conservative denomination of Protestant Christianity, where I was taught that women were second to men because "the Bible said so." I didn't realize until I was older (and studied literature) that reading the Bible requires an understanding of cultural and historical context. And when you add context, the Bible becomes a love song and an anthem for those whom society oppressed and/or persecuted (namely: women, poor/young/old people, people discriminated against because of race or sexuality, etc.). The actions and words of Jesus become a poem about the deep love that makes all of us valued and equal.
It was only once I started to see my own misconceptions about who God truly is that I encountered Christ the Original Feminist, who casually broke all the rules society had/has put in place, challenging patriarchy and empowering the marginalized.
That said, I understand that there's a lot of baggage connected to the word "feminist" and the word "Christian." I struggle with both of them myself, namely because there are some very real problems with both labels and the camps with which they are associated, because we are a lot of broken humans trying to figure out how to do justice and love mercy. I think Sarah Bessey breaks down this tension really well (I recommend her book Jesus Feminist). The Junia Project is a great place to start learning more about egalitarian theology, if you're interested.