in regards to Wicked Witch Boy

I think people should know that I’m not being dramatic or something. I took Wicked Witch Boy down because a startling number of people keep buying it, and I know I need to revise it yet again. I don’t want to keep selling something that needs editing, so until I get to it, it’ll stay down.

I wish I hadn’t asked anyone to read it, but I only asked one person so I guess it’s not a big deal. They read it and never cared enough to review it, so I’ll assume they hated it and leave it at that.

The truth is, I may never put the book back up. I don’t know. If I didn’t live under a rock and knew how popular YA was, I probably would have taken my time publishing that book. I had no idea people would actually buy it without me having to do a lick of marketing. Too bad I just don’t write much young adult.

Also, I think the cover is shit and the font needs to be adjusted. So there’s that.

Maybe the sad reality is the book is only selling well because a boy is the lead character. Which is really fucking dumb. If I went back and made Toby a girl, the book would be exactly the same as it is right now.  Only . . . the title wouldn’t make sense.

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from my ancestors with love

Last night I had a very weird, hellish dream in which I was stuck in a classroom with two of the biggest bullies from my highschool.

They weren’t the only bullies by far, but they were the ones who hurt me the most when I was a kid. It was a pretty horrible school, where everyone — even some of the teachers — joined in the bullying.

The dream felt like being taken back there, only in a college setting.

After being humiliated by a very mean girl, I put my head down on my desk and was very sad. Putting my head down was actually part of the game we were playing in class. Those who didn’t answer questions right had to put their heads down, so they weren’t chosen again.

My teacher noticed that I was upset and I was surprised when she came to me, put her head down next to mine, and expressed sympathy and concern. It was bizarre to me. In real life, no teacher ever cared about me or that I was being bullied. Perhaps if they had, perhaps if just one person had showed me any kindness, my life would have been vastly different.

The professor in my dream said a few very peculiar things. She told me she had been watching me a long time (as in all my life — very strange) and that I had a great laugh. She spoke like a family member, like someone who loved me (though she actually looked nothing like me). When I complained miserably about the bullies, she told me I could change things, which was — again — bizarre.

I suddenly realized I was dreaming and pulled myself out for fear it would become a nightmare.

There are many cultures in which people believe their ancestors watch over them from a spirit world, providing comfort and guidance. Even Catholics believe this.

I have never believed in anything like this — I mean, how boring would it be to sit around watching your ancestors descendants all the time? But after I woke up, I had the exact feeling that an ancestor, who’d been watching me all my miserable life, felt sorry for me and wanted me to know I was not alone.

The exact feeling.

I am still baffled that she told me I could change things. I think she meant that in a larger sense, as in I could have an impact on people, I could change the world.

That’s insane.

I’m a dot in the grand scheme of things. I don’t matter, not even to the other dots. I already learned a long time ago that no one cares about people like me. People like me don’t even get to be human. 

One thing I always loved about The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings was the message behind it, that message being that even the smallest person can make a difference.

In real life, it’s not like that. In real life, smaller, physically weaker people are oppressed and bullied. We live in a society that mocks and belittles women for not being as physically powerful as men — as if physical power were the only thing a person’s worth should be determined by. (Here’s a hint: a person’s worth is not determined by physical strength.) In fact, it’s so awful, women aren’t even allowed to have power fantasies in fiction. We live in a world where it’s feasible that a tiny hobbit can save an entire world, but not a feminine woman (because women have to be masculine to be worth something, apparently). And god help her if she’s a woman of color, because that’s given as even more inconceivable.

So do I live in a world where I can change things? No. Call me a pessimist, but I don’t believe I do. In fact, there’s an entire system in place to make sure I don’t change things. And it extends into the literary world.

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here’s how quinn (and all the entirian) looks to me

Finished Chapter 9 of SoA tonight (4/12/2017). Also, I found a picture of what I imagine Quinn looks like. (You’d have to come to my wordpress to see it, though.)

Chapter 9 is the chapter where Quinn is at boot camp and has to earn everyone’s respect there. It was actually a very difficult chapter to write because it gave me some unpleasant flashbacks and I had to stop writing it for a bit.

I did enjoy writing most of it, though. The only part that really sucked was the scene where Quinn finally earns everyone’s respect. It didn’t . . . resonate with me, so I doubt it’ll resonate with readers, even though it’s supposed to be a powerful and defining moment for Quinn. I just didn’t . . . pull it off. I’m thinking that scene will need many rewrites or else I’ll have to come up with a different idea.

Right now, I feel like SoA can be explained this way: the first half of the book is sex, gender, and sexuality, the second half of the book is friendship, family, blood and gore.

It’s like that because the book begins when Quinn is still a teenager and is getting her weird alien period and exploring her sexuality. Also, Ckylar and General Miora both give Quinn “the talk” since her mother Rose is not there.

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it’s true: stories really are only as good as their villains

Got halfway through Chapter 7 of SoA (185 pages so far!), which actually introduces the villain of this book.

Even though my fighting scenes kinda suck, this new villain is supposed to be a badass. I’ll probably go back and rewrite the scene many times in frustration just to get it across well.

The villain frustrates Quinn and Varzo with how easily she outmaneuvers them before escaping. This is basically to let the audience know what Quinn is going to have to become in order to stop this woman. She will basically have to become a badass too, the only challenge is realistically showing how she got there and also making her look good once she gets there.

Most of my villains are snarky and arrogant (Dr. Zorgone, Kimaria, Evrard, Pirayo) but this new villain is my attempt to go a different direction. When she insults Quinn, it’s not to hurt her but simply because she believes what she’s saying is the truth: Quinn really is pathetic, etc. And somehow, that hurts more than an actual insult.

General Phorott, the main villain across the entire series, is very similar in this regard. Because I’m kinda tired of writing snarky villains who joke all the time, I decided to make Phorott a calm, cool narcissist.

Chapter 7 also builds Quinn and Varzo up as a duo. Varzo is an amphibious mermaid person but has a crap temper, while Quinn comes from fire-lizard-people and is usually calm and serene. They are essentially polar opposites in temperament, and that works for them.

I’m starting to wonder if making Quinn reckless was right for a calm character. Usually a character with a temper would be reckless. I like to think Quinn is reckless when others are in danger, such as in The Harvest when Thalcu is dying and needs water.

you tried to hack me? how cute

I’m not going to schedule this post, so it’s going up in real time, out of order with my scheduled posts. I don’t care.

You know that saying “don’t poke a sleeping dragon in the eye?” Yeah. Fuck with me, hackers. We’ll see how this goes for you.

To explain my rambling, someone tried to hack into my old Outlook email. Someone in California. Outlook was kind enough to tell me and I changed my password to something really long and really hard (snort).

This must be the same person who’s been stalking me since I joined Goodreads, trying to scam me out of money with their “book promotion.” I’m guessing they didn’t like it when I told them to fuck off in that old post of mine, so they tried to hack me, in which case they can still fuck off.

In other news, I finished Chapter 5 of The Suns of Anarchy bk3 from PoQ tonight, which is about Thalcu’s imprisonment in a POW camp. She gets separated from Varzo and Mercy, so the next chapter will be about Varzo and Mercy slaving in the prison picking beans and getting whipped and the trouble they get into (right now, some murder is involved).

The side plot I made for the side characters is pretty interesting (at least to me) and I feel kinda crappy that my side characters are still more interesting than Quinn, the friggin main character.

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I’m so excited (and I just can’t hide it)

I’mma bout to lose control and I think I like it!

Finished Chapter 8 today (as of 4/2/2017) and I’m pretty happy with how it turned out.

After one of my last posts where I pondered what flaws to give Quinn, I finally decided to give Quinn the flaw of being reckless. You can do a lot with a reckless character, especially if they’re stubborn to boot, and Quinn has proven a little pigheaded thus far. She has caused a lot to happen in the book simply because she keeps rushing into danger.

The next step is to decide why she’s reckless. Is she really that foolish? Is she over confident? I like the over-confident thing. Might go with that.

Quinn often does things immediately and without thinking, and Thalcu is often the voice of reason, grabbing her arm and going, “Whoa, wait, are you nuts?”  It’s going to be interesting once Thalcu and Quinn are separated to see how Quinn’s recklessness screws her over.

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