The Crynicles of Sierra June

My life’s a joke, might as well tell it.
— Sierra Mckie

What would your love life look like on paper?

What if you created a poster board depicting all of your dating experiences (good and bad), dramatic events, face palm moments, crying sessions and times when you felt played to the point where seeking revenge was the only logical option? Would you use any glitter glue to jazz things up? LOL all jokes aside, what would that look like for you? Sierra decided to ditch the construction paper and take the digital route. She documents her love life (or lack thereof as she would say) in a web series on YouTube called “My Crynicles”. I stumbled upon her channel after seeing the first episode links retweeted on my Twitter timeline some time ago. It looked pretty cool and I was in need of some new entertainment—I found myself binging on all the available episodes. When I tell y’all I was weak as hell minutes into the first episode…WEAK.

Sierra is a 24-year old Marietta, Georgia native who currently resides in Los Angeles. She completed her bachelor’s degree at the University of Missouri- Colombia where she studied Communications Mass Media. Determined to make her dreams of working in TV a reality, she’s giving herself more leverage in the game by creating her own series and honing in on her talents. We talked a bit about her interests, what inspired The Crynicles and how she goes about making each episode. If you know me, you know I STAN women who are out here doing dope shit and being creative…Sierra most definitely falls in that category.

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Lyndsey A: When did you get into digital design/graphic design? Has it always been a passion and skill you possessed?

Sierra M: Only recently, maybe a year. And I originally wanted to be an actor but I needed something more secure so taught myself different trades in the industry. 

LA: What is your absolute favorite part about running a web series?

SJ: I can tell my truth, the way I want.

LA: A lot of the issues you faced in your Crynicles are relatable to a lot of young women. Was being able to resonate with women a main focus of yours in releasing this web series? Or were you mainly focused on just speaking your truth?

SJ: I was mainly just focused on speaking my truth. It was actually surprising to me that so many people could relate so heavily. 

LA: What inspired you to bare your romantic soul and release this series? Were you at all afraid about how it would be received by the public?

SJ: I’ve always wanted my own show and i just got sick of waiting lol. And yeah, I was a little afraid, just little bit, but i needed it on my portfolio more than I needed anything else.

LA: Who are three people who inspire you the most and why?

SJ: Issa Rae, because she started on YouTube and has become a super star. Donald Glover because he never limited himself on what he could do to make an impact. And Mara Brock Akil because she created a show (Love Is_) from her own love life. 

LA: It looks like a lot of time and effort go into each episode of the Crynicles. Can you give me a run through of how you organize and structure everything to make it possible?

SJ: First I write the episode, then i send out the lines, then I create each set I need and design the characters. I record my lines in response to everyone else's lines and then I just throw everything together. Writing is honestly the hardest part; trying to figure out which things are important to the story and which are just fluff honestly.

LA: How would you describe your creative process?

SJ: It's a lot of figuring out how to get what I see in my head on the screen lol. It’s a lot of googling and looking up tutorials on YouTube because this is all new to me so I'm pretty much learning as I go. 

LA: What do you think makes for a great web series?

SJ: Something people can relate to so they keep coming back.

LA: What advice would you give to any creatives who are afraid to take a leap of faith and bring a certain project to life?

SJ: You really just have to decide how important it is to you. That's really what it comes down to. 

The Crynicles cover Sierra’s love life dating back to her high school years. There are currently five chapters up, and it’s definitely binge-worthy material. You might as well kick back, grab some snacks and check it out to see if you can relate to any of her unfortunate events! Make sure you leave love and check her out on Instagram!

peace and blessings,

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Three Reasons to Declutter + Release.

I’ve been in the abrupt mood to get rid of all the things. No discussions or second thoughts, just garbage bags.

I have no idea where this urge came from but I refuse to fight it. I typically have no issue holding on to certain things; they could be the most meaningless items but I’ll make sure they have a spot to…hold up space. WHY? This has become somewhat of an issue for me because I really am curious to know what the cause is. Do I have some form of separation anxiety or something?

I remember at the beginning of last year, I went through a good bit of my stuff and ended up feeling so light and free after I had a mini “decluttering” session. I donated a bunch of clothes, boxed up and discarded others. I must be itching to have that same feeling again because when I tell y’all a lot of this shit can go…I mean it. And really, it’s not even because I want to make room for anything new. I just want some form of a fresh start.

I’m always looking for ways to better myself and I know a nice clean sweep will contribute to that notion. While this need to have next to nothing in my space came completely out of the blue, I feel like the universe tries to get me to pay attention to my wellbeing in subtle ways. I was feeling overwhelmed and stressed and I know a clearer space is needed. That urgency to release is how I can take a step in the right direction.

Looking back at this year so far, I’ve done a lot of letting go. I let go of some people. I let go of fear and apprehension that held me back from pursuing my dreams. I let go of stressing myself out about the future and I stopped thinking so much about what may or may not happen. Since I let go of all that over these few months, why not take it a step further and really do away with physical things?

Why is decluttering necessary? What’s so liberating about releasing?

Think about it… you’re literally freeing up space. You have more room and less to look at, so you’re not as bogged down. Every decluttering session I’ve had over the years has left me feeling fresh, new and in a much clearer headspace.

-MORE MINDFULNESS. Getting rid of anything you possess shows intent. You’re aware that you have a bunch of shit and you’re deciding to let it go. Be it you want to change your daily views, or maybe you want to actually create more space, you’re being mindful about how you go about it.

-CLUTTER IS UNHEALTHY. It just is. Your mind is forever in a whirlwind, you feel unsettled, and the excess things can collect more dirt, dust, etc. Keeping it minimal is good idea overall.

-WE LOVE A STRESS FREE DOMAIN. You know that relaxed feeling you get when you’re in an area that lacks all the extra? The essentials are mainly what’s present and the vibe is just different because of it. You can easily move around and there isn’t a bunch of shit piled up everywhere. My goal is to make sure all the places i spend the most time mimic a minimalism-type of guideline.

peace and blessings,

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What I'm Reading: March/April Reads + Favorite Local Bookshops in New Orleans

My last book post hasn’t been since December which isn’t surprising to me at all. I say that because when I first had the idea to document any reads on here, I knew it would be a somewhat sporadic thing. I’m an all over the place type of reader and sometimes I forget to follow up once I’m done because my main focus is just starting the next one. I promise I’m working on this though. For the sake of all the book lovers interested in what I read and what I think, I’m working on circling back to do FULL reviews. A few people have sent me DMs on Instagram asking for my thoughts on certain books, but of all the times its been requested, I only did so once. And it was brief as hell. However, you’re in luck if you follow my book Instagram page because I for sure post all of my reads on there AND I leave little tidbits about what I thought. They don’t tend to be too detailed and verbose for the sake of me not giving away any spoilers, but I’ll definitely let you know whether or not it’s worth spending your had earned coins.

March has been a slow reading month for me. There were books I started but couldn’t finish. There were books that stopped being interesting to me about 50 pages in. There was a bunch of other real life things happening that pulled me away from actually being able to stay focused long enough to make any headway. CC: my dog dying, life being in shambles, etc. But alas, these few made it through! I read two books this month. Two. That’s slow for me but provided the circumstances, I’m glad I was able to do that much. Plus, there’s no race when it comes to reading for me. This is a fun hobby of mine so no stress, no pressure…ever. I do set goals for each month though. Doing so helps keep me on track actually look forward to reading because I won’t be stumped about choosing the next book. I set a goal to read at least three books in April. If I show up and show out and/or actually feel like it, I’ll go for four. It is what it is. We shall see!

What i read in march:

My sister the serial killer by oyinkan braithwaite

Of course, the title grabbed me. I heard a lot about this book via the #bookstagram community, so I felt like it was an obligatory purchase. Though the hype was exciting because I had been in a reading rut, I would give this book a 3/5. It had an interesting storyline and plot, but I was left a bit underwhelmed. Maybe I just had super high expectations since I heard so many great things. Here’s a little bookish pro tip: when it comes to books, it’s okay to ask folks what they think, but always do your own research and review searching too! We all have different perceptions about what’s good to us.

lets explore diabetes with owls by david sedaris

You guessed it. Yep, I’m reading yet another work by David Sedaris. He was featured on my previous what I’m reading update, and that book was hilarious. I know I sound like a broken record when it comes to discussing how funny and witty his writing is but it’s facts! If you need some light-hearted texts that’ll make you laugh, please check him out!

What i plan to read in april:

Black is the body: stories from my grandmother’s time, my mother’s time and mine by emily bernard

While perusing the many mounds and aisles of books at the Garden District Book Shop, I came across this title. The cover looked a little familiar, but I soon realized it wasn’t anything I’d seen before. Emily was stabbed at random in a coffee shop in an old New England town (what the fuck, right?!) She said how that crazy act of pure violence set something ablaze within her and it pulled out the storyteller that is she. The backstory that encouraged her to write was so out of the norm, so I had to pick this one up.

the care and feeding of ravenously hungry girls by anissa gray

I need some good fiction in my life again so I turned to this one. I read a couple good reviews that said if you enjoyed An American Marriage by Tayari Jones, this one would be a good choice. I did in fact enjoy that book, so yep. We’re doing it.

the source of self-regard: selected essays, speeches and meditations by toni morrison

I mean, Toni Morrison. I don’t need to say much else. She’s such a dynamic writer whose stories have been in my life for as long as I could remember. I’m genuinely excited about this one.

That’s what my literary month is looking like and I’m pretty excited about it. My reading has been a bit slow lately because I haven’t come across a lot of stories that wowed me, but I have faith in April. I really do. The weather is nicer, Mercury is finally out of retrograde or whatever the hell it was in and things are slowly getting better for me on my end. #GRATEFUL

Never trust anyone who has not brought a book with them.
— Lemony Snicket

Allow me to switch gears for a second and mention a few bookshops in New Orleans that are simply amazing to me. While I love a good trip to Barnes and Noble just as much as the next person, I would much rather buy local when possible.

If you ever find yourself out this way, definitely check these places out:

Blue cypress books

Nestled on cozy Oak Street, this is my favorite bookstore right now. Please visit, the staff is so friendly and the store is so cute.

garden district book shop

This shop is located in a historic space called The Rink which is at the corner of Prytania Street and Washington Avenue in the Garden District. For some reason, I can never just browse when i visit this one— I buy something EVERY SINGLE TIME.

Garden District Book Shop. I took this a few months ago but if you follow my book IG, you’ve def seen it there too.  hint hint wink wink  follow my book page lol

Garden District Book Shop. I took this a few months ago but if you follow my book IG, you’ve def seen it there too. hint hint wink wink follow my book page lol

octavia books

This such a jazzy bookstore located Uptown on Octavia Street. Though I don’t visit this one as often as I’d like, I love the ambiance, the book selection and the fact that they have sooo many book signings so often. Note to all my book lovers: visit this place. You’ll love it.

peace and blessings,

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