My name is D.A. Simants, writer and poet extraordinaire. After everything I've gone through at such a young age, I've made it my life's goal to always write about the truly important things. The purpose of this site is to collect everything I'm working on in one place, so everyone can stay up to date.
Through my battle with schizophrenia, the death of my stepdad, and an abusive relationship, one thought kept me together: seeing my name on a book. And my debut novel is finally here! Here's the description:
"How do you live with tragedy? How do you return to your day-to-day life? Is there a way to forgive yourself after everything that’s happened to you? To solve these and other mysteries, The Editor submerges himself in the letters of two mental patients from 19th century Russia. Through Estelle, a survivor of sexual assualt with a Machiavellian view of others, and Sonia, a young and neglected lesbian overrun with anxiety and sensitivity, he gains a new perspective on life. New questions begin to emerge. Who is Mr. Moloch? What caused the tragedy in Saint Francis Women’s Asylum? And why is everyone so desperate to ignore what happened to Imperial Russia? The answers might be enough to overwhelm him.
"Introspective and deeply psychological, D.A. Simants’s debut novel pays homage to resilience in moments of great mental torment. Inspired by the author’s own experiences with schizophrenia and abuse, Mostly Melancholy is an ambitious tribute to reflection and forgiveness.
"Praise for Mostly Melancholy:
"'Beautifully written, introspective, and captivating.' - Anonymous Beta Reader
"'I absolutely loved the premise of this.' - Anonymous Literary Agent, on reading a sample
“'[Y]ou have an intriguing concept and your writing shows promise…' - Anonymous Literary Agent, on reading a sample"
You can get it here:
Power of the Storm, Beauty
A couple of my poems were published in Awakened Voices, a literary magazine dedicated to helping survivors of sexual assault. The theme for Issue 9 was Erasure, so I took poems I had written my abuser while we were still together and blacked out any justifications for sickness, which permeated my writing at the time, leaving behind a clearer picture. My poems are on pages 104-109, but I encourage you to read the whole thing.
P.S. Along the way, my name was typo-ed as D.A. Simantis, which is hilarious to me. Just imagine a praying mantis wrote them.
A flash fiction of mine was featured on Awakenings: A Nightingale, the blog of a literary magazine dedicated to helping survivors of sexual assault. It contains a lesson I've organically learned due to a past abusive relationship and the feelings of guilt and blame surrounding my psychosis. They had very nice things to say about it:
"In this response to our July prompt, D.A. Simants creates a new word to describe a perpetrator’s act of weakening and causing harm. Although the word shares a root with 'vulnerable,' Simants skillfully adjusts the perspective of this meaning of weakness and pain to encourage our readers to view it not as an inherent trait or experience of the person experiencing violence, but instead an active harm pushed on the survivor. Simants is able to address the experience of blame that survivors encounter, and remind readers that trauma isn’t their fault — and freedom from blame is part of what leads to healing."
You can read it here:
God is Trans
During pride month 2019, I self published a short story in honor of the LGBTQ+ community, of which I am a member (genderfluidity & bisexuality represent), with Kindle Direct Publishing. In the story, God begins her life on this planet as a male but eventually reconciles with her identity as a women before the New Testament. You can find it (for the lowlow price of 99 cents) here:
Three Little Words
Author and booktuber Tim Hickson, also known as Hello Future Me, accepted community submissions to get featured on his website and I was one of the lucky writers chosen. My poem Three Little Words is available (for free!) here: