In which I am old and TAF gets a new release (probably, eventually)

Taking a brief vacation from the new vlogging obsession, I thought I’d compose a short post that actually pertains to writing – ho ho. I recently realized that my first novel, Talking About Fungus, passed its ten-year publication anniversary last year, and that is both impressive and deeply, deeply unsettling, for it further underscores the fact that I am old.

Old.

Old.

OLD.

So, yes, in sort-of honor of that milestone, I thought I would have another look at Fungus (I’ll take Weird-Sounding Sentences for 400, Alex), give it a little spiff-up, and then re-release it as Version 3. So, that is what I’m in the process of doing.

Unfortunately, Amazon Createspace, the platform I’d previously used to publish Fungus after its initial rights at Torquere Press reverted back to me, is now in the process of being swallowed up by the Amazon Kindle Store, and the Kindle Store – or KDP, as it jovially refers to itself – is giving me a great deal of grief in the republishing of said book. Rather than going into details about that (Cliff’s Notes Version: non-matching ISBNs, cover text, cover image, cover text again – DIDN’T I ALREADY FIX THE COVER TEXT??!!, etc.), I’ll just say that the whole situation is In Progress, and hopefully soon I’ll be able to link to the new and improved print version of Talking About Fungus.

The good news is that the Kindle version was far easier to create, and thus I can in fact share that:

Talking About Fungus, **NEW AND SPARKLY AND IMPROVED** Version

This updated version boasts a new and semi-attractive cover, which will end up being slightly different for the print version since…well, see above re: KDP giving me grief. :P

I fixed a few formatting errors from version 2, deleted some of Jamie’s monologuing (which, as a kind reviewer pointed out in his Amazon review, does tend to go on a bit), and just generally tidied things up.

Another sign of my advancing age, perhaps, is that I now look upon the sex scenes (which multiple reviewers have informed me are quite tame) with an excess of embarrassment, and in general I just feel as if this is 100% the book of a Young Person (TM), which I presumably am no longer. Regardless, it’s still a book I enjoy reading and which I think does some things quite well, so if you’re in the mood for a quick and youthful read, perhaps give it a go. (It’s only 0.99 cents, so hey, why not? WHY NOT INDEED.)

Evidence above re: why writers should not do their own marketing.

Anyway, more on the print edition when information becomes available, and/or when KDP decides to stop tormenting me and just publish the durned thing. And yes, I did just say “durned,” because…

In which there is a new cat, new digs, and general fawning over Jodie Whittaker

So…yeah. It’s been a while.

To all those impatiently tapping their feet, looking at their watches, and saying, “What kind of time do you call this, then?” I can only offer the excuse that I’ve been buried under piles of crazed and lovable children, struggling to complete my MFA, and spending the rest of the time sleeping.

The good news, however, is that I’ve actually managed to complete my MFA with a Hermione-worthy GPA (insert smugness and general academic fatigue here), and my tenure as a teacher of preschoolers is wrapping up in favor of shifting gears to writing, editing, teaching, and (hopefully) recovering somewhat from my eternal and unceasing state of exhaustion.

In any case, because so very much has happened since my last update sometime in the Mesozoic Era, I offer you updates now in the form of a handy list:
Continue reading

In which I return for a brief moment to share news of my continued survival

Greetings, friends and tumbleweeds. As it seems my last post was in the bygone days of September 2016 (a simpler time), I thought it might be a fine plan to make another post just to assert the fact that I am still among the living (just not among the living who have time for frequent blog updates).

So, yes. I LIVE!

gene wilder aliiiiiiive

Not much else can be said of the last year or so, except that I’ve been working hard imparting knowledge and sarcasm to the two-year-olds in my class, making my way bit by bit through an MFA program so I might one day aspire to my dream job of Cool College Professor With Old-Timey Blazer (or Roger Radcliffe-style vest), and fighting off various bouts of bronchitis and other ailments granted to me by my lovable but germy students.

kermit-typing

I’ve also, it must be said, been making incremental progress on my gay fantasy epic, Chosen, restructuring and rewriting and cramming as much glorious gay into the story as I possibly can. Lucas in Book Two, for example, now has two moms (both of the awesome variety), and his major love interest is a gangly, awkward guy from school instead of Random Pretty Girl #5. Lucas has always been bisexual in the land of subtext, but it’s nice to bring it firmly into the realm of the textual via a dorky/awkward school romance that simultaneously enriches his life and puts it in horrible danger. (That’s the way we do things in Chosen-land.)

And, of course, the main character in Book One is trans, which has been fascinating to explore from the perspective of a society where (a) being LGBTQ+ is no big deal due to the existence of queer gods and goddesses in their primary religion, and (b) magic exists, so it’s technically possible (though highly difficult/expensive) to alter one’s body to better align with gender identity.

So, yes. Life at present consists of work, school, and sporadic bursts of writing, hopefully culminating in eventual financial security + a finished and not-awful manuscript. And until then, I’ll try to check in here from time to time, hopefully with something interesting to say (though no guarantees on that front).

Until next time~~~~~!

tina-fey_YAY

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.

cm_jeff_clap-yay

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~*~*~*~*~

 

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.

ll_taz_tough

…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