Welcome everyone, I’m The Li-Bury-An, and today we have a spotlight on Barrington Smith-Seetachitt
Barrington Smith-Seetachitt is a woman who has done it all. She’s been a professional gift-wrapper, piano accompanist, a stage manager at Universal Studios Hollywood and a college teacher. She’s studied massage at a temple in Thailand, worked with a dancing cow mascot in Costa Rica, written a food guide for Western Australia and survived cancer… twice. She has spent lots of hours on sound stages, and sets. She;s also directed some short plays in Los Angeles and Australia. One of them went to the Darwin Fringe Festival and won the People’s Choice Award at the Short and Sweet Play Festival in Sydney, Australia. Most recently, she co-wrote an episode of Creepshow for its third season. Barrington’s story in our latest anthology, “Shell,” reflects an aspect of feminine life that we all experience. The fear of aging. Of being cast aside for a younger, newer woman. In Los Angeles, this fear is merely multiplied by the pressure of a beauty-fixated industry, and Barrington describes both the fear and the despair of a woman in crisis, and one who is at a crossroads in her life. When a woman goes to have a little nip-tuck procedure, she ignores the fine print of the agreement, realizing the consequences all too late. We are very proud to have such an amazing woman join our anthology, and we hope you will love her incredible story, “Shell.”
“Grace is jarred from her analysis by a change in Nurse Bethany’s cadence. The litany of risks and disclaimers has ended and Nurse Bethany is speaking with more intensity now, ‘You know, of course, that it is no small matter to discard a living being.'”From “Shell” by Barrington Smith-Seetachitt
Today, Barrington talks about how she came up with her story “Shell” for THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY : Women of Horror Anthology Volume 3. Out now from Kandisha Press!
“I began working on what would eventually become “Shell,” a couple years ago, shortly after a fellow screenwriter told me about a conversation she had with an agent.
The topic was women writers trying to break into television. “If she doesn’t have her career started by the time she’s 27,” the agent said, “we don’t want to touch her.”
This was not about the agent’s personal feelings—it never is—but was a commentary on the market. If head writers don’t want to hire older inexperienced writers, then it’s financially unsound for agents to represent them.
Ageism has been called “the last acceptable prejudice” Maybe because, unlike race, gender and sexual orientation, we all begin with the advantages of youth. As with other kinds of privilege, it’s easy to be unaware of the benefits we’re reaping until we begin to lose them. When we do begin to lose them, at least in my industry, we’re scared to talk about it, because doing so can draw people’s attention to the fact that we’re getting older, and we risk losing things even faster.
It’s obvious at this point, right, that when I say “we” are scared to talk about it, I mean “me?”
And when there’s a topic I’m too cowardly to talk about aloud, sometimes it ends up written on a page…”
BARRINGTON SMITH-SEETACHITT is a former Midwesterner who city-hopped around the globe before landing in Los Angeles, where she writes for page and screen while doing typical Los Angeles things like working day jobs and trying to eat less carbs. Her work – which is often but not always speculative fiction – has been published in journals that include Colorado Review, Sycamore Review, Chariton Review, and The Drum. She recently co-wrote a segment for Season 3 of AMC Shudder’santhology series CREEPSHOW. You can sample her short fiction on her podcast, Words to Drive By, or read random thoughts about her life and projects on her blog at BarringtonSmith.net.