Photo credit: Erika Astrid
Describe your latest project.
The Wild Unknown Animal Spirit Deck and Guidebook
is a creature lovers dream. It includes 63 illustrated cards of animals from the real and imaginative realms, along with an accompanying guidebook. The cards can be used for divination, inspiration, clarity, fun, or to get in touch with the wilderness within you. The guidebook helps bring focus into the meaning of each card, and encourages the user to look deep into the essence of each creature to glean wisdom and insight.
The Wild Unknown Animal Spirit Deck
is a great accompaniment to The Wild Unknown Tarot Deck
and The Wild Unknown Spirit Cloth
. Mix and match the two decks for deeper wisdom and clarity.
What was your favorite book as a child?
by Gary Paulsen.
When did you know you were a writer?
I think of myself as a visual artist first and foremost and as a writer second. The writing supports the images. But when I read snippets from The Wild Unknown
guidebooks, I’m surprised by my own voice… somewhere along the way the writer in me blossomed in tandem with the drawings.
What does your writing workspace look like?
It is mobile. It has moved with me across the country, into what seems like a million different studios. I would love to say I have a studio that grounds me, but it’s the acts of writing and drawing that ground me. I don’t care where I am — the work carries me home. This said, I’ve include a photo of one of my favorite studios, where I drew The Wild Unknown Animal Spirit Deck
What do you care about more than most people around you?
I have a thing for daily practice — whether it be creative, physical, or spiritual practice. I experiment with how long-term practices (a year of daily drawing or a year of daily meditation) affect my life and my creativity. I am a constant investigator in this way, testing out the wisdom of the sages, teachers, and artists that have come before me.
Share an interesting experience you've had with one of your readers.
Across the board, it’s been amazing (aka shocking, complicated, flattering) to see all of The Wild Unknown Tarot
-inspired tattoos pour forth onto social media. At some point our social team lost track of the count, but there must be thousands now!
Introduce one other author you think people should read, and suggest a good book with which to start.
James Hillman. He carries the torch of Carl Jung
yet questions mainstream psychology at every turn. A true firecracker and sage of the deepest dimensions. Start with A Blue Fire
or The Soul’s Code
What's the most interesting job you've ever had?
Working at the Guggenheim Museum in NYC was a pretty interesting job. I was on the exhibition crew there and got to hang everything from Picassos to Rothkos to Matthew Barneys. I soon observed that some artists were jaded, some were open, some were magnetic to be around, others were like tired horses. Observing artists this closely made me aware of energy, gratitude, and the complexity of creative careers.
Have you ever made a literary pilgrimage?
Last year I became obsessed with the life of Anne Frank
, and I started a writing project inspired by her. I traveled to Amsterdam to visit the Anne Frank Haus, and to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp where she died just months before the war ended. I left her my necklace. I have a feeling there is more to this story than this one single trip… I may be going back again this summer.
What scares you the most as a writer?
To quote Willie Nelson: "Know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ’em, know when to walk away, and know when to run." This is scary stuff when it comes to creativity. Sometimes projects get better the more you work on them. Sometimes overworking is a death to its essence. Its tricky to know what is needed most when you are deep in the process.
If someone were to write your biography, what would be the title and subtitle?
It would probably be called The Wild Unknown
. That title is the mysterious gift that keeps on giving.
Offer a favorite passage from another writer.
Work. Keep digging your well.
Don’t think about getting off from work.
Water is there somewhere.
Name a guilty pleasure you partake in regularly.
Karaoke. I can slay Nirvana or Sia sober. Watch out.
What's the best advice you’ve ever received?
(See the Rumi poem above.)
Top Five Books About the Artist as Healer.
These are autobiographies, memoirs, and personal essays that reveal the natural inclination in writers and artists to move through difficulty while carrying the world forward toward change. Many of these books exist against all odds (a diary written while in hiding, a slave mastering the written word). They are miracles to behold.
The Diary of a Young Girl
by Anne Frank
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave
by Frederick Douglass
by Stephen King
by Mary Oliver
The Year of Magical Thinking
by Joan Didion
÷ ÷ ÷
is an artist, author, and the creator of The New York Times
bestseller, The Wild Unknown Tarot
. Her publications include ABC Dream
, 123 Dream
, Hello Sacred Life
, and the Animal Spirit Deck and Guidebook
. Along with husband and collaborator, Arjan Miranda, Kim curates The Wild Unknown, an arts collective offering publications, artwork, music, and events that activate the forces of creativity and radical transformation. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, New York Magazine, NYLON, Teen Vogue, Design*Sponge
, and Marie Claire.
She lives in Portland, Oregon.