My name is Sean Miller. I’m American. 53 years old. He/him.
The “Dr.” above is from a PhD I earned a decade ago at the University of London. My research explored the role imagination plays in the production and dissemination of scientific knowledge.
After graduating in 2010, I did a postdoc in literature at Nanyang Technological University in amazing Singapore.
That gig was effectively my last hurrah in academia.
After the postdoc ended in 2012, I moved to Portland with my wife and first daughter, who was two at the time.
Since then, I’ve careened from one job to the next.
I worked in healthcare IT for a spell. I tried my hand at writing and selling mobile apps. I taught driver ed. I co-founded a startup that offered a system for driver ed schools to track their students’ coursework performance. I worked as a Google G-Suite administrator for the local community college. I tutored. I made artisanal organic soap and sold it on Amazon and Etsy.
Through all this meandering, I’ve never really found a vocation that felt like, as the Buddhists put it, right livelihood. Except for writing.
Most recently, I’ve been taking care of my second daughter, who just turned two.
When I’m not hanging out with her, I’ve been learning how to write middle-grade novels.
Understandably, it’s flawed. At the outset of the story, the protagonist’s desire line isn’t clear. I take way too long getting her to the fun part — the fantastical world ruled by a sorceress and a crew of cunning fairies. Its themes are muddled. The genre, confused.