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Showing posts from June, 2018

Books To Read When the World is a Dumpster Fire

Hey y'all.

It's hot as hell here in New York today. New York has this particularly humid quality during the summer that makes everything sticky.

I keep hearing rumors that in some regions of the country, there's this thing called a dry heat. What does that feel like? I've never experienced a summer with dry heat.

Anyway. The world feels like an increasingly dumpster fire-like place. When the world feels fairly doom-laden, I find it hard to be creative. Also, with limited time at the moment to be creative, the doom-laden parts of current events weigh a bit more because writing is not only a deep hobby and a continual puzzle and pursuit of mine, it's also my major mental, emotional, and creative outlet. So even if I want to unload issues in writing, sometimes I find that I can't because the world sucks or I'm just really tired or really, I only want to watch YouTube and not do anything else.

And that's when reading comes in.

I'm 5 books ahead of where…

"But this is America--this is not who we are." (Spoiler Alert: It's exactly who we are)

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Unless you've been living under a rock in the past week, you've probably seen news stories and Twitter feeds about migrant Central American children coming into the United States with their parents to escape any numbers of dangerous situations seeking asylum, only to be separated--the parents sent to one place, arrested, deported; the children sent to detention centers and not let go to be with their parents.

I've been seeing a lot of "This is wrong, this is immoral"--which it is--but I'm seeing a lot of "This is un-American." Now what exactly does that mean? "This is un-American. This is not who we are as a nation."

I feel like that's either a call to American exceptionalism, an overly optimistic view of the American government and nation, or a lack of knowledge of our history.

I didn't put this list together to diminish anything that's going on today, because yes, I see some unsettling echoes of bad eras of history going on. …

Reading Challenge 2018: 20 Books!

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IWSG June: Titles & Names

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Welcome to my June IWSG post! The Insecure Writer's Support Group is an online community of writers. We post our writerly insecurities into the world every first Wednesday of the month. Check us out here!

What's harder for you to come up with, titles or character names?

Excuse me while I give a resounding and hearty laugh.

Okay.

I'm terrible at giving titles to my stories. Pearl is Pearl because that's all I could think of. Last year, when I started planning the quartet of contemporary romance stories I'm still outlining, I decided that "Seeing You" (after a song) would make a good title for the first of the stories. "Hearing You" could work for the second, since there's a musician hero in that one. But then, the titles quickly deteriorated.

But I love character names. The character starts taking shape when I've named them. Sometimes they pop into my head already named--Alexandra and Madeline Keegan from Pearl came that way as did Kimiko…

Pink Nipples, and Other Romancelandia Peculiarities

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Every genre has its tropes and quirks, right? Mysteries have murders and murderers. Legal thrillers have complicated cases and courtroom drama. Fantasy and sci-fi have magical creatures or people with amazing abilities or feature the future or technology.

Romance has plenty of tropes--I've mentioned them in a few past posts--depending on the type of romance. And then there are the weird little things that have built themselves into like an almost romance-canon thing. That's not explained well. Sorry.

Okay, you know how in fandoms, whatever the fandom-ee is sort of takes on its own life among the fans? In the Downton Abbey fandom, for example, there was a widely-held belief that Lady Sybil Crawley's middle name was Patricia--because there'd been a photo in one of the Downton Abbey books of her carrying a briefcase with SPC stamped on it. And it just became like an established fact in the fanfiction and everyone wrote that in as her middle name, even though the show neve…