Regarding Pima County and where I’ve been all this time (hint: not in Pima County)

So, I’ve just discovered that my second book, Following Grandpa Jess, is available to borrow from the Pima County Public Library in Pima County, Arizona:

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Pima County Library: Following Grandpa Jess

It’s not available in Chicago, sadly, or anywhere else that I’m aware of, but Pima County residents, enjoy!

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In other news, regarding my lengthy and unexplained absence from the interwebs, I’m afraid I’ve been somewhat distracted as of late due to (a) getting a new job, and (b) finally beginning to completely bankrupt myself pursue my MFA in Creative Writing. The good news is that both endeavors are going well (though the compensation received for one in no way makes up for the bottomless pit of debt the other is going to plunge me into), but the bad news is that I’m sadly left with very little time or brain for the composing of blog posts, hence my silence in recent months.

I’ll do my best to pop in from time to time and offer up rambling and borderline incoherent gif-filled posts, so you can at the very least look forward to that. I’ve also been doing a lot of work on Chosen as of late, and I remain confident that it may be ready for publication at some point between today and the end of time, space, life, the universe, and everything. So. More things to look forward to.

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Right. So. On that note, I must return to my teacherly duties. Wishing you all a pleasant first day of September, and I hope our paths will cross again~*~*~*~*~

 

In which closeted Teen!Me finds Dragonlance

Rereading Margaret Weis’ The Soulforge for the first time since my impressionable teenage days. I first happened upon the Dragonlance series when my high school boyfriend (who had the severe misfortune of dating someone who had not yet realized her general lack of interest in the male species) innocently lent me Dragons of Autumn Twilight one day. I’m sure he regretted it immediately afterwards, as our interactions from that point forward involved me begging for the next book in the series with the fevered intensity of an addict, and then ignoring him completely until I was ready for the next one.

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I owe a lot to Dragonlance, really. Not only did it help me get through the angstiest of my angsty teen years, but it inspired me to start work on my own fantasy novel, starring a character who was initially and most creatively named “Raisius” and bore no uncertain resemblance to a certain bitter mage from the world of Krynn. Raisius later transformed into Kaine Ikarra of Chosen, and over the years grew into a character all his own, who – while retaining a certain amount of sarcasm and bitterness – is now about as far from Raistlin Majere as it’s possible to be. But without Dragonlance and The Soulforge, Kaine would never have had his start, and I might not have spent the last 65,000,000 years working on a story that is even now causing me daily struggles and occasional bursts of pride and satisfaction.

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And I owe it all to my teen self’s mistaken belief in her own heterosexuality. Thanks, oblivious Teen!Me. You had a knack for doing exactly the wrong thing in almost every situation, but in this one case, you dun good. <3

Regarding The Soulforge, I will say that I’m very much enjoying reading it again, though it’s probably not the shining example of human literary achievement I once considered it to be. Raistlin, too, is a right unpleasant bastard much of the time, and it’s hard to remember why I idolized him so desperately as a teen. (Though I suspect it was because I secretly wished I could be more of a bastard myself. Plus, you know, magic.)

Anyway. Lots to do today, and as it’s actually cool enough outside that my sandals won’t melt the moment they touch the sidewalk, I’m looking forward to venturing into the world for a walk and a visit to the library. Exciting times, exciting times. Wishing you all a pleasant Sunday~~<3

On summer, Andy Griffith, and my emphatic availability

arthur-fingerdrummingGreetings, friends. As I have by now run out of ways to describe how very long it’s been since I last updated, I’ll just say that seasons have passed, babies have been born, aged, and turned into cranky old wrinkled people, and still this blog has been left to gather dust in its sad little corner of the interwebs. But never fear, for I am here now to update you on all the many, many fascinating things that have occurred since my last post.

Fascinating Things That Have Occurred Since My Last Post:

  1. I started watching The Andy Griffith Show on Netflix, then almost immediately stopped watching it as the sheer amount of quaint ole southern charm threatened to drown me in a syrupy, Yankee-eating river. Boredom led me back to Mayberry shortly thereafter, however, and I ended up watching five seasons in about as many days. No regrets, though I now find myself with the strangest urge to sit out on the porch I don’t have and sip sweet tea while strumming a gee-tar and sangin’.
  2. Work on Book I of Chosen (AKA, my frequently mentioned and inexplicably still unfinished gay fantasy epic) has been coming along decently well. I had a particularly impressive spurt of writing a little while back and was finally able to finish up a section I’ve been struggling with for months, which was nice. Of course, I’m now struggling with the next section, but at least the story’s moved forward a bit. I’ve also added another LGBTQ character of color, and my quest to diversify and gay-ify the Chosen world is progressing most satisfactorily. I hope to actually finish the bloody thing at some point in the nearish future, though it would probably be easier to do that if I’d stop binge-watching Andy Griffith and get down to work.
  3. Summer has come~~~~! And with it, unfortunately, has come the realization that my little shoebox apartment heats up to approximately 9,000 degrees when the sun hits it in the morning. Benny’s taken to napping in the bathtub to keep cool, and I myself have been doing a lot of lying on the floor with the fan trained on me and my pant legs rolled up high enough to scandalize all of Mayberry.

I’ve also, as it happens, resigned from my job and returned to the glamorous life of a poverty-stricken ESL Teacher and freelance editor. Nine months of a 4:30 AM wake-up time and four hour daily commute turned out to be too much for my fragile human frame, and I decided to choose life and health over the allure of sitting at a desk all day earning just barely enough to scrape by.  It’s been exactly one week since my last day at my previous job, and I’m pleased to say that I no longer feel like death warmed over, and I’ve actually even experienced some positive emotions here and there instead of being in a constant state of exhaustion and misery.

Of course, I’m also shopping at The Dollar Store and washing clothes in the bathtub instead of going to the laundromat, but that seems a small price to pay for feeling vaguely human again. And allow me to mention, also, that if anyone needs any editing or proofreading work done, I am extremely available.

Extremely.

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Here I come, ready to edit the crap out of anything you might have.

Anyway, my brain’s turned to early evening mush, so I think I’ll get back to the business of lying on the floor and watching the people of Mayberry chuckle good-naturedly as Barney Fife miraculously neglects to murder anyone in his immediate vicinity.

Laterz~<3

Women, amirite?

It intrigues me when people imply that women are weak or unsuited for *insert job here* because they get periods. Dude, we gush blood every month, have sometimes debilitating abdominal cramps, and just generally feel like crap, but we still get up and go to work and get shit done. Oh, and there’s also that bit where some women push tiny humans out of their bodies, which while not something I’d ever want to do, is still pretty freaking amazing.

So, yeah. It kind of pisses me off that “don’t be such a girl” is an expression meaning, “Don’t be so weak.” Girls are freaking TOUGH, man.

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…this post may or may not have been inspired by the fact that my uterus is trying to kill me today. Wheeee~~~

/very important post #897

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This weekend, alas, has been something of a bust. I’ve managed, against all odds, to accomplish a few things – I opened a Word file and stared at it for awhile, which is almost like writing, and I even rage-washed the dishes (a convenient way to expel anger, tidy up the kitchen, and keep warm on a wintry day).

But for the most part, I’ve been a sad, lumpy lump of sadness, lying around watching stuff on my laptop and shouting into the soul-sucking black hole that is social media.

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Buuuuuuuuuuuuuuut enough of that. Today is a new day, and there’s still time to turn this weekend around. I will Get Stuff Done, dammit. I will GET STUFF DONE.

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/very important post