Damsel In Defense

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Damsel In Defense

I just recently found out about a company that takes self-defense seriously. Er, or rather, they take it with a grain of humor. They offer many gadgets, kits, and devices for people (more specifically women) to defend themselves with. They offer everything from car kits to emergency kits to stun guns. While I’m turned off by the bright pink and purple and the the cringe-inducing term “hermergency” I am actually impressed by their selection and might even try some of these tools out. I’m also wondering if they plan on expanding their products to the larger population in general or even just women who aren’t “typically girly”. Anyway, their representatives throw protection parties and actually teach folks how to use their products, which is very important. I’m sure there are other places that offer these devices but nothing beats a demonstration. I definitely want to look more into this company. I think it’s a great thing that they’re doing and I wanted to spread the word. What do you think? What kinds of things would you like to see them add? What designs would you put on the products so that they’re more accessible? Do you think it’s a great idea or should people take a different approach when it comes to personal safety?

Character and Song #29: Mark James Blue

Ah, here he is, finally. The darkest creature in all existence. Not literally, although there is a bit where he does indeed become probably the darkest thing in the universe. Spoilers. Mark Blue has two sides: the fun-loving, ever-pranking, constantly aroused, rough and tumble boy and the perpetually depressed, angry, and impossibly understanding soul. His childhood is actually more messed up than mine. Don’t believe me? Wait until the Mark’s Childhood series comes out and then you’ll see for yourself. He starts out with insanely rough edges, turning to drugs and empty sex  because he never learned anything better until he met Stuart. He has a disorder where he’s left constantly aroused (which leads to its own set of problems), he sleepwalks from time to time, he dreams his future, and he also travels through time. There’s also that little prophecy about him gaining control over all of time one day but he chooses to ignore it. Instead he plays pranks, cheers people up, and fights off his daily struggle with depression. Like the rest of his family his hands glow in the dark, he eats energy, and he loves to wrestle. He’s also strangely unashamed, simply unabashedly himself. He exists on the edge, able to see more about events and people than anyone else would suspect. He doesn’t really like his previous incarnation, perhaps because he won’t reveal anything about how he died. And because he’s so special and dear to my heart, he gets two songs. One for his depression and one for his brighter side. First we have Adam Lambert’s “For Your Entertainment.” Did I mention that Adam Lambert looks exactly like how I pictured Mark to be except that Mark has those creepy black-beyond-all-reason eyes? Yeah, it would be my dream for Adam Lambert to play Mark. Ah, dreams, right?

 

 

The second song is more about his childhood and his depression. It is Staind’s “It’s Been Awhile.”

 

 

Mark appears pretty much all over the cuilverse in various and devious ways. He first appears in The Black Tree series and can be seen getting into mischief in many other series.

Character and Song #28: Micala Mishi Jackie Blue

Micala is the sister of Mark Blue and Mitchell Blue. Just like her brothers, she plays pretty rough. Partially due to the abuse she suffered at her father’s hands and partially because she’s simply insane, she carries acid in her mouth. Good luck kissing her! In fact, one of her favorite games to play is Tongue War, in which she burns the other person until they give up. If you actually manage to last longer than a few minutes or manage to defeat her then you gain her respect. She also has a tendency to assault men’s genitals. Don’t ask me what’s up with that. You can ask her about that yourself and I’ll be watching from a safe distance, eating popcorn. Micala knows what she wants and gets what she wants, one way or another. She first appears in the Black Tree series and has green hair and a kickass outfit. She loves her brothers dearly and wants to help Mark find out what he originally was. So just your average, sweet, acid-spitting, ball-busting gal. Right… So, anyway, her song is Black Widow by Iggy Azalea and Rita Ora. Yes, I know Iggy is freaking crazy. Shut up and listen. And imagine Micala hunting you down…

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Ghosts of Lovers Past

I know I usually write light-hearted or darkly humorous posts but this one is more about letting some emotions go.

 

Perhaps part of my even more frenetic pacing for writing and typing up my stories recently is the fact that so many people I loved have died in the past few years. This year alone I lost not one but two lovers, one I’d let go and one I was still with. I can’t really describe the sense of loss, the strangeness, the sheer unfairness, and the unlikelihood of such a thing. I had barely begun mourning one when the other passed on, and both so young. Even with that, I forged ahead. I kept working, kept loving, kept enjoying the precious moments I did have. But what I never expected to experience were triggers. I’ve already worked through most of the possible triggers for the traumatic events occurring in my childhood but now I must start anew. Not once, but twice this last month I’ve seen doppelgangers of the people I’d lost. Both times, it took my breath away. Both times, I’d been having fun when the sight hit me like a blow from a hammer. And then I wondered: will these triggering situations mean there will be some people I could never interact with because they reminded me too much of those who’d died? How many moments will I burst randomly into tears, just like I had over equally painful but far darker memories? Will people grow sick of hanging out with me because I have been so sensitized, been through so much, that I spend much of my time in deep reflection and contemplation? What I feel now is so entirely bittersweet. What happened wasn’t fair. It was no one’s fault. It also left a gaping hole that will never go away, even as I learn to live with it. I miss them. Every single day. I’m more open in last few months than I’ve ever been, and I love that. Each day I realize again and again how precious time is, how truly beautiful each moment is, and how I never want to waste a second. So the next time I see someone who looks like someone I’ve lost I’ll take a deep breath, remind myself they’re beautiful individuals, remember my loves, probably smile and cry at the same time. It’s weird, for sure, to experience this but my life has always been weird. It comes with the territory. One moment at a time. Deep breath.

Freaking Out

Okay, the new covers are all finished and ready to go. Did I update every site? I have like a million. Maybe I should hire an assistant to make sure. Haha, just kidding, I’m too broke for that. Are all the letters aligned perfectly? Do the covers make sense? How soon will they update across all the sites? A few weeks. Okay. I want to bite my nails but that’s disgusting. My guest posts are up on Postmodern Woman and Multiple Match. Will people like them? They’ll probably hate me. That book review for The Changing of Allison Dutch is up as well. Will people get it? Ah, exposure. I’m not used to people noticing me. What happens when more people read my books? Will they hate it? Will they get the sarcasm and barbs about traditional writing? Did I forget something? What the hell is Twitter for? I don’t get it. Did I eat today? Yeah, I ate. How many more books to go? Books Thirteen and Fourteen of The Black Tree series are so messed up. Will people read that far? What about all the stuff in it about me? Will I come off as narcissistic? Or will they think I need therapy? Totally had therapy. All that pain. But it’s funny, right? It’s dark and twisted but so full of inside jokes that it’s bleeding as badly as the universes in it. Do I have enough photos for the other million books I wrote and have yet to write? How many hints can I safely give away? What about the more personal books? Gah, do I really want them to know that? Honesty is the best policy, right? What about all the incest? God, my characters are gross. Damn scaroths. They’re like the Mayfair family Anne Rice wrote about. Too much sex? Too much gay sex? I’m not a prude and it has a purpose. There’s so much misinformation about it out there. Why is violence more acceptable than sex? Didn’t I joke about that in one of my books? Ugh, I wish I were as brave as Queen Aeryn and Lilith. But wow, look how far I’ve come! Reading back over all of those captured moments, that pain, frustration, and helplessness. Nine books. Nine books now! I didn’t think I’d make it this far. But when will the vitriol come? Someone out there will hate it, right? That’s how the math plays out. I’m thinking about it too much. Jean’s telling me to calm down. Hell, even Mitchell is telling me to rest my mind. New friends, new sources of understanding. These women are amazing and so strong. Why do I still feel so weak? Should I even post this? Gah! I’ve lived through so much. I’m still here. I’m even happy. Man, anxiety sucks. Thankfully it doesn’t come often. Yes, it’s getting better every day. I don’t freeze up like I used to. I can actually step outside without having panic attacks. And each time I keep going despite the anxiety I feel I prove to myself that I can keep going, that I’ve survived and will survive. Hell, I even have conversations now! Nine books. So many more to go. It has to see its finish no matter how deep and ugly. It’s my story. It’s how I survived. I’m still here. And the ending…the end of that journey…

 

Yeah, I’ll be okay. I’m here and this is my story. Fuck anxiety.

 

*Here’s the cover for my newly published book, The Black Tree Series Volume Six Book Twelve: Come Collecting. In the next few weeks you’ll also see updated covers for all my works. There will also be a sale on Kobo for each work starting August 6th.

 

The Black Tree Book Twelve: Come Collecting

The Black Tree Book Twelve: Come Collecting

Character and Song #27: Johnathan Reighlight

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Yeah, it’s a picture of a suit. Quite a dashing one, if I do say so myself. Imagine how delicious Johnathan Reightlight-the brown-haired, green-eyed British-accented ambassador of Saturn-would look in this? Oh, yes! Poor John. His uncle was the designer of the A Seriesen and oddly enough can be spotted in several different series on Earth for whatever reason. But back to John. He’s polished, stylish, and loyal. He’s also terrified of direct confrontation and often runs away. Only one person has been able to make him truly face himself, and what a number she did on him. As a matter of fact, perhaps she just made it worse. In any case, John also has one really dark secret that could possibly endanger the lives of the A Seriesen crew. The only hint the others get about his sordid past is the litany of curses he lets out whenever he’s angry. While holding it inside, he eventually braves up enough to wed Caily, who you’ll meet later. He also finally gets to be with Mark Blue after Stuart’s constant intervention decades before The Black Tree series began. Due to this and the fact that everyone wants to sleep with Stuart, it’s safe to say John hates his guts. John skips, or should I say he runs, through a few different series in the Cuilverse. His journey most notably begins in The Black Tree series. His song is Treatment by the talented Labrinth.

How Writing Saved My Life : Postmodern Woman

How Writing Saved My Life : Postmodern Woman

 

I recently posted to a blog run by an incredibly brave and awesome woman. This post outlines part of my journey through writing and is a bit more serious than what I usually write here. It’s a wonderful opportunity to be able to share the deeper parts of myself and my story with others. I’ll be writing other posts for that site and one other.

I also have other wonderful news. I have finished typing up Book Twelve of The Black Tree series. It is editing time, my least favorite part of the process but a highly necessary one. After that, there are two more books to go in The Black Tree series. Each of them is much longer than the previous books and rather more serious. They’re still fairly crazy but you start to see signs of the much darker elements coming into play. And here’s a special tidbit just for you: you’ll get to see Jean Claude again very soon. That should be interesting!

Time to jump back into it. Remember to send me your questions and you’ll find the answers in the next published work.

Character and Song #26: Sam Dayner

Sam is one of the crazier personalities. This is prob’ly because he’s not human in some of the worst ways. He’s a container, a vampire, and a clone. Talk about a rough background. I’ll talk more about containers in a later post. What’s relevant now is that Sam is highly athletic, is best friends with Amada (who you’ll find out about another day), is usually in a good mood, and unfortunately heterosexual. Still, he’s secure enough in himself to have slept with both Mark Ashton and Riel Shancus so I’m willing to forgive him. Since he is a container, his life’s task is to be the consort of Queen Aeryn, which, depending on her mood, can be either the best thing ever or absolutely terrifying. However, there is that one time he broke the Promise all immortal creatures make. You can find out the horrible way in which he broke it in the Allison Dutch series but as for finding out the punishment he so rightly deserved you’ll have to wait until The Colds series comes out. Because, yes I’m a jerk like that. The song I immediately thought of for the famous container is Sail by Awolnation.

No Time to Breathe

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Why do I write books the way I do? Why the insanely fast pace with every event toppling over the last and racing towards an absolute frenzy of confusion? Why such heavy topics running into one another, intersections borne of hints and cracks elsewhere in the cuilverse? It’s actually quite simple: my life has been insane.

Ever since I can remember I have been in such a rush. There was no time to breathe between episodes of bad and worse. For me everything seemed to happen at the same time or one right after the other. To say I was thoroughly stressed out didn’t even begin to cover it. I had to adapt, think quickly, act quickly in order to survive. I had to tuck my emotions into places so secure I only ended up screaming it out in my stories. I do not know how to relax. My partner (the one still alive) could not conceive of my inability to get comfortable.

I am very impatient, I’ll admit. Between the death, horror, trauma, and health issues I have long believed I have absolutely no time to waste. My appreciation for the truth and for efficiency also leads me to be rather direct and succinct. I walk fast, I move quickly, I think even quicker. I have been running for so long that it is still difficult for me to stop. Let’s just say I have a lot in common with the scaroth in terms of manic energy levels.

Yet I’m learning. To relax, to get comfortable, to stop running, even if only for a moment. It’s not that I don’t appreciate anything or enjoy anything. I feel deeply, intensely. I just have an enormous appetite paired with unique and crazy experiences. There is more that is true in the books I write than would seem possible. One day, the last book in the project, I will go over some of the past that haunted me, motivated me, and shaped me. That will be the hardest book I’ll ever write because I’ll be combing through the most painful details of my life. I can only include mine because the stories of others are theirs to tell. And you might not believe me anyway.

I like things to be exactly what they are. I like everything straightforward. That doesn’t mean I lack humor and excess from time to time but it does show in my writing as that seemingly harried and frenetic pacing. There is no fluff. Everything written directly affects the story, even if it may not seem like it. I’ve only ever had the bare minimum in my life yet my mind has always overflowed. It’s an odd combination. Time has always been a bitch to me. You’ll know what I mean when you meet Mark Blue.

I’ll never waste 100 pages describing every atom of a flower. I’ll rarely have characters taking four books just to realize they love each other for no reason. But I will explore their souls in depth. I will find singular ways to describe experiences few people go through. I’ll keep racing because there is so much to tell. And like I said, time is a bitch.

In Droves They Came Part Two

Update on the unaccompanied minors coming across the border.

Some estimates say 15% of the total population of the Dominican Republic now reside in the United States. Every day, more children from Central America and other countries to the south are crossing our weakened border in the hopes of finding a better life. These children are being sent all over the US, to be integrated into school systems, to be fostered to families with the promise of $6000 per month from the government (tax dollars hard at work), and in rare cases to actually join their family members that already reside here. So far there has not been a satisfactory plan implemented to remedy this situation. For those that offer to take these children in for a paycheck there is no real screening process; you simply need a room in which to keep the child. Putting aside the horrific situations these children can potentially find themselves in, there is the general health issue. These children often carry no identification or immunization records. Some of them have diseases that will be reintroduced to the US, partly due to the fact that some US parents no longer vaccinate their children. There is the financial strain of paying for their public education, healthcare, and housing. The government is actually paying (or trying to) groups to use hotels and resorts to temporarily house children-millions of dollars are being given to church and humanitarian groups to watch over the minors for a few weeks. One group had to back out after backlash from outraged citizens was directed at them when people found out that children would be staying in a resort. This is a terrifying situation and as yet there is no solution proposed. Meanwhile, each day more and more cross that line, some suffering from trauma, others with no idea of the trauma they will face here, a few with illnesses we’d tried to eradicate, and very few understanding the impact they will have in their new country. I’d like to think it will be rainbows and sunshine, that a reasonable solution will be put into place, but my heart is still breaking because it knows better. For now, the US has no idea what to do with these little ones and that means we’re all paying for it, aliens and citizens both.