For three years now I have been maintaining this blog solo. This doesn’t always have to be so. A single individual with truncated resources cannot possibly do it all. I can and will continue to write posts on a regular basis for the foreseeable future, but – at least in my mind – Awkward Botany can and should be so much more.
Consider Awkward Botany’s mission statement (the beta version):
Creating a space where novices, amateurs, and experts alike can share in the discovery, exploration, and celebration of plants and plant ecology.
The way I see it, Awkward Botany has the potential to be more than just a blog. It could be a beacon – sounding out the love for plants and plant ecology across myriad platforms and in myriad ways. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Here is what I envision for the short term:
- More and better writing by writers other than just myself
- More photographs and illustrations of plants, especially those of professional quality
- Audio and video components (to be determined)
- Improvements to the website (to be determined)
- Products (to be determined)
I say “to be determined” because these are ideas in embryo. They will mature in time; however, without outside help, they are doomed to proceed at a snail’s pace.
Perhaps this is where you come in? If you like what you see here, and the idea of Awkward Botany growing into something greater interests you in any way, then there are various ways in which you can help make this happen.
Become a guest writer.
I have a put a few feelers out there for guest writers, but I haven’t had anyone bite yet. If you love plants and want to write about them, let me know. True, I am going to be a little picky about what I publish here, but I’m sure we can work something out.
Design a logo.
Are you a professional or amateur graphic designer? Would you like more exposure or experience? Awkward Botany needs a logo. Obviously – at this point – I don’t have the money to pay anyone for their design work. But I will happily shout from the rooftops the name of the person/company that designs a logo for me. If this sounds like a job for you, let me know.
Photographs, Illustrations, Infographics…
I have found that one of the most time consuming things about composing a blog post is searching for just the right images to accompany the writing. Sure, good writing stands alone, but images help break up the text and add context to what the writing is all about. Not only am I a bumbling, untrained photographer, but I also have limited access to many of the plants and other things that I write about. There are open source images available online, but they are also quite limited, and sifting through them for just the right image often ends unfruitful or in settling for a less than ideal photo. If you enjoy photographing or drawing plants, please get in touch. Again, I have no money to offer, but I will always give credit where credit is due, and I am more than happy to sing praises to your name in all outlets available.
I am especially looking for illustrators/illustrations for Awkward Botany and Awkward Botany related projects. Infographics would be great as well. Any graphic designers out there who would like to work with me on designing such things for Awkaward Botany and beyond, please get in touch.
Audio and Visual Help.
I have dreams of taking Awkward Botany beyond the written word. I don’t want to start a podcast, but it would be great to do some interviews and have the audio clips available for people to listen to. Video would also be fun. If you have experience creating audio and/or video and would like to offer advice or assistance, please let me know.
Donate Old Textbooks, Field Guides, Floras, and Scientific Journals.
Did you take a course in botany? Do you still have your textbook? If you’d like to get rid of it, consider sending it my way. Same goes for any entomology or ecology related courses. I’d be happy to take textbooks off your hands, as well as field guides, floras, and old copies of scientific journals relating to plants, entomology, pollination, ecology, invasion biology, etc. You can mail them cheaply by requesting the USPS media rate. Send such things to:
Daniel Murphy, PO Box 9862, Boise Idaho 83707, USA
Donate Your Hard Earned Money.
I certainly don’t expect anyone to send money without receiving anything in return. BUT, if you do happen to have a few dollars burning a hole in your pocket and you need someplace for them to go, I would be happy to have them. Rest assured your dollars and cents will be put to a good cause. Lack of funds really limits the progress of this blog, so any additional funding is greatly appreciated. As I am able, I hope to reward those who donate. I also plan to pay forward a percentage of the donated money I receive to Planting Science – an organization that connects scientists with students in order to advance scientific training and literacy among the younger generation. I also intend to be transparent concerning any and all donations I receive. If such a thing interests you, please consider sending a few bucks via the following links or the mailing address above.
Buy Me a Gift.
If a cash money donation doesn’t suit you, consider sending Awkward Botany something from it’s Amazon Wish List. The items on this list include resources that will help advance the mission of Awkward Botany.
Follow and Share.
Probably the simplest thing you can do to support Awkward Botany (and one of the most effective) is read, follow, and share. Awkward Botany is on Twitter and Tumblr. Follow me at either or both of those locations if you feel so inclined. If you like what you see here, share it with your friends via whatever social media outlet you prefer and/or word of mouth. Five gold stars if you do.
If you are interested in assisting Awkward Botany in any of the above ways – or if you have some ideas of your own – please contact me via the Contact page or via snail mail (!) at the address above. There are likely many other ways that you can help, so this post will be updated frequently as such needs are articulated. It will find a permanent home in the “About” tab at the top of the page.