tabula rasa (ˈtæbjʊlə ˈrɑːsə)
1. Latin: a scraped tablet (one from which the writing has been erased)
2. an opportunity for a fresh start; clean slate
Hi everyone, Josh Richards here and firstly welcome! I thought I’d kick things off here with a bit of an introduction to both Patreon and my new website at joshrichards.space – enjoy!
For those of you not sure what this is all about, a bit of background. In early 2008 I started writing comedy, initially on a mediocre-looking blogspot site with a mixture of poorly thought-out rants with an excess of memes and general weirdness. But it was a springboard for me into the world of comedy and first performing standup later that year.
As I gained more confidence writing and performing comedy, the blogspot site evolved into a hosted domain of my own: themightyginge.com*. The Mighty Ginge ran for over 7 years, and while it fell into disrepair during different chaotic periods of my life, it was always something I could always return, to even when things got really weird…
Between exorcising demons with Keith The Anger Management Koala and discovering the Mars One project, something shifted in 2012 for me though. Over the next few years whatever was fueling the angry and frustrated kid that performed comedy mostly as a safety vent started to give way to something far more driven and focused: an overwhelming determination to help humanity become a dual-planet species.
As I’ve progressed through Mars One’s selection process the last 4 years – filtered through over 200,000 expressions of interest to now being one of the 100 candidates shortlisted worldwide – I’ve had to ask harder and harder questions about why this is important and how I’ll represent myself and the mission. My comedy shows quickly evolved into a combination of comedy storytelling with a space science communication core. Meanwhile much of my writing started to focus more on my travels around the world working in the space industry, as well as speaking to kids and adults about being a candidate for a one-way mission to Mars.
With my hosting renewal due in June, I decided it was time to move on to a new domain name and let themightyginge.com die. I’d backed-up the site in case I wanted to repost some of my old content on this site, but I wondered whether I wanted the old posts anyway: they were from another time in my life, and I genuinely cringed at a lot of what I’d written pre-2012. A glitch in the backup’s configuration file jumbling the old posts forced my hand, and I decided joshrichards.space would be tabula rasa – a fresh start with a clean slate.
Ofcourse it’s not a completely fresh start though, because you’ll still get the smartass cheek I’ve always written with. But this new site gives me the emotional freedom to write from a broader perspective: a better blend of the serious and the irreverent, like in-depth ethical discussions coupled with ridiculous pug memes.
You’ll also get the exact same claims of this site being “regularly updated” like I made on the Mighty Ginge too -the difference now is I’ll actually do it because if I don’t I’ll be hearing about it from the people paying me to write! I’ve often asked how people can support what I’m doing and if I’ve written a book, so I’ve started a Patreon page where folks can support both me and my writing.
Ultimately I want to be writing & talking about what life is like living on the surface of Mars, and the best way I can make that happen is to not only apply to go, but to also write and speak to kids about why it’s important for our whole species to explore space. And the best way people can support that is by becoming a patron. For anything between $1 to $100 a month supporters get early and exclusive access to my articles about space science, engineering, psychology; insights into my personal journey towards living the rest of my life on Mars; early access to book drafts and signed copies when they’re published; entries from the hand-written journals I’ve maintained since applying to Mars One; and even a monthly skype call for a chat with you, your business or your students!
I’m really excited about the prospect of writing about both space and my personal experience trying to get to it, so while things ramp up here have a look around both my Patreon page and this new and shiny website too. You can see all the media I’ve done as a Mars One candidate on the Media page, as well as my on-going challenge to complete Richard Horne’s “101 Things To Do Before You Die”. There’s a full run-down on my science communication work, school and corporate speaking, as well as links to watch my standup comedy shows. Finally, you can find all the ways to support what I’m doing on the support page, or get in touch through the contact form.
All my social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram is staying the same, but there’s a whole new raft of adventures just around the corner. So thanks for sticking with me – it only gets better from here!
* Please don’t look up themightyginge.com – part of me died when I saw it’s now bizarrely been turned into an installment loan site for people who can’t get credit in Florida.