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BA of the Week: Writer Dana Sitar

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Every week we feature a different person from the community shedding a little light on their life of brokeitude. Who knows, maybe you’ll learn something about the human spirit — probably not.

Wanna be a Broke-Ass of the Week? Holler at us here and we’ll send you the questionnaire.

Dana has been writing professionally since 2010, blogging unabashedly since 2011, and traveling perpetually since she discovered that one feature article could purchase enough gas for a cross-country road trip. She covers stand-up comedy for SF Weekly, and she shares resources, tips, and tools for writers at DIY Writing. To help other broke-ass writers with big dreams, Dana created these free tools. Check them out. They’re free.

Name: Dana Sitar

Age: 26 (but that’s subject to change)

Occupation: Freelance journalist & indie author

What neighborhood do you live in?: Currently couch-surfing around the Bay. My favorite is the Mission, so if anyone has a free couch there… call me.

Best money saving tip: Couch-surf instead of paying rent 🙂

Actually, my best tip is learn how to pay some other way. Know what value you can offer someone – can you cook, clean, offer a ride, edit their novel, film their wedding, or introduce them to someone important? Accept handouts like food and a place to sleep from wealthier friends, and use these things to pay them back so you don’t wear out your welcome.

What do you refuse to spend money on?: I won’t buy fancy name-brand stuff, like Sam’s Choice and Faded Glory. I buy thrift and store brand only.

Most expensive thing you’ve ever bought: I have an iPhone 4, so that was a big purchase, and the bill every month is pricey.

How’d that feel?: Awesome. I feel like the 1% every time I tweet.

Favorite cheap eatTaqueria Cancun on Mission Street.

Favorite dive bar: Dirty Trix Saloon. See comedy there on Wednesday nights and the 3rd Saturdays for free,  and drink $3 PBR and $3.50 rail drinks. Plus they have Chicago Bears stuff all over, which makes me feel at home – I’m from Wisconsin, and it reminds me to hate Illinois for a few hours.

Best deal you’ve ever gotten: I just stayed in a hotel in Vegas for $22 a night. A decent one, with a pool and clean sheets.

Favorite free thing to do: Hike. That’s so stereotypically California, isn’t it? But I get exercise, a tan, and an afternoon of entertainment from it, plus a few days of feeling better than everyone else.

If you woke up a millionaire, what’s the first thing you’d buy?: Plane tickets. To everywhere. (Simultaneously, a passport.)

Despite not having money, do you still love your life?: Yeah. Sometimes I love it more because I don’t have money. I have a romantic fascination with these old writers like Charles Bukowski and Henry Miller and how poor they were, so I celebrate being a “starving artist”. I just read Quiet Days in Clichy whenever I start to worry about money.

Do you own my book?: Does that cost money?

Best hangover cure: Grow up. Know how to handle your alcohol.

Are you a hipster?: No. I’m just a poor person with good style.

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Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Stuart Schuffman, aka Broke-Ass Stuart, is a travel writer, poet, TV host, activist, and general shit-stirrer. His website is one of the most influential arts & culture sites in the San Francisco Bay Area and his freelance writing has been featured in Lonely Planet, Conde Nast Traveler, The Bold Italic, and too many other outlets to remember. His weekly column, Broke-Ass City, appears every other Thursday in the San Francisco Examiner. Stuart’s writing has been translated into four languages. In 2011 Stuart created and hosted the travel show Young, Broke, and Beautiful on IFC and in 2015 he ran for Mayor of San Francisco and got nearly 20k votes.

He's been called "an Underground legend": SF Chronicle, "an SF cult hero":SF Bay Guardian, and "the chief of cheap": Time Out New York.