Who are you?
My name is Julia Hass. I’m twenty-[number I’m not going to remember to change]. I live in Boston with my parents and two gerbils.
What do you do?
Currently, I’m a student finishing my degree and a freelance writer/editor/columnist/social media person on the side. I’m interested in illustration, but I only have so many hours in the day to do things, since, despite my best efforts, I’m still not Beyonce.
Why are you only going to college now?
Because I had a very difficult stretch in terms of mental health after graduating high school. It’s something I’ve discussed before, but it’s not that compelling a story. I basically have a chronic illness that for a while was really bad, and now it’s not as bad.
Also, at eighteen I wasn’t ready for or interested in college. I tried and explored a lot of things first, got my mental health in order, and took time to decide what I really wanted to get out of my education, and also what I wanted to do once I got it. Just think of me as having gone through my twenties out of order.
What do you write about and why do you rarely update this blog?
I write primarily non-fiction in the form of essays or columns, and I can do most types of copy so long as it’s not super specialized or technical. When I do copywriting or editing, I can’t add that to the blog – it’s for a company and their property.
Also, since I’m in school and sometimes also working, I don’t have time or energy to write as much as I’d like. When I do write something, I often try to shop it around before I publish it here, where I have a limited audience and will make zero dollars. I am always “writing” on my Twitter, but longer stuff takes time to put together and find a publisher for. It’s just how it goes.
You talk about hockey a lot.
And you say you live and grew up in Boston, but you’re a Penguins fan? What? Why? How?
I was a late in life convert to hockey. I started watching during the 2011-2012 season because a friend was a Blackhawks fan and I was unexpectedly stuck in my brother’s apartment for a week helping him recover from an appendectomy with nothing else to do. Growing up in Boston, I was only exposed to the Bruins and thus thought hockey was just punching people while skating. Once I watched the game, I found it actually involved a lot of skill and was pretty dang cool. And I got hooked.
Unfortunately for the Blackhawks, I have a deep aversion both to their mascot and the color red in large quantities. The same friend suggested I watch HBO’s 24/7 special on the Winter Classic in the hopes I would wind up liking Alex Ovechkin, but her plan backfired spectacularly as I fell headlong in love with the Penguins. From there, I fell in love with the women’s game as well (also a high skill, fast, no-punching style), and now, well, here I am.
Also, the Penguins have the best mascot. So there’s that.
You talk a lot about animals, too, and I can never figure out how many you have.
At any given time, I own two gerbils. (They have short lifespans, so which two changes regularly.) I also have a dog, but we share her with another family, so sometimes she is at their house and sometimes she is at my house. And I babysit people’s pets or just go over their house to visit their pets and ignore the actual people.
What other stuff do you talk/write/tweet about?
Cute animals, pop culture, politics, feminism, any intersection of the last three things, food (especially dessert), history, art, how great Boston is and all the stuff you should do there (mostly involving dessert, history, and art), anything I think I can make a joke about, making a lot of terrible jokes.
How terrible are we talking?
Pretty dang terrible.
Can I use [drawing/piece of writing/thing you made] for [a logo/a zine/anything]?
Not without my permission! And unless there’s a really good reason (like, say, charity), not without paying me. Mama’s got gerbils to feed and tuition bills to pay. But you can hire me, and we can discuss rates. I’ll end up making you something that’ll be EVEN BETTER, I promise.
(And then shoot me an e-mail.)