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Well good morning, evening, maybe afternoon depending on where you are! Yes, sadly I will be doing the blog today so apologies are sent out to everyone I might mess up with me doing it . Well now that we are done with Valentines week, let's take a look back on all of the different offerings this week.
- 2018 Summer Novella Anthology: Summer - Due April 15th, 2018
- 2018 Spring Anthology: Now or Never - Due May 15th
- 2018 Spring Anthology: Encounters - Due May 15th
- 2018 Fall Anthology: Fight Back - Due Nov 15th
- 2018 Fall Anthology: Good Intentions - Due Nov 15th
Story Critique: Open to all GA authors. Sign up here.
Ask An Author: Send your questions for your favorite authors to @Carlos Hazday (no questions = no Ask An Author)
3 Story Promo: Open to all GA Authors. PM Renee Stevens to participate.
Author Interview: Open to all GA Authors. PM Renee Stevens to participate.
Favorite Self-Written Story: Open to all GA authors. PM Renee Stevens to participate
Story Recommendations: Open to all GA authors & readers. PM Renee Stevens to participate.
Harbinger by Cia *Premium*
The Friendship Ring by Ronyx
You Promised Me a Tomorrow by Ronyx
Boy Valentine by Comicality
Denied by Cia
GA Writing Prompts by Dolores Esteban
I Could Tell by Comicality
Insomnia by CassieQ
Martyrs of the Heart by Cynus
Mojo by AC Benus
Promptings from Valhalla by Valkyrie
Second Chances by Cynus
Shadow Honor by Cynus
So Weeps the Willow by Cole Matthews
Bless Me, Father by Parker Owens
Disasters, Delights and Other Detours by Parker Owens
Fractions for fun by Puppilull
Only Prompts by Mikiesboy
Special Occasion Stories by Caz Pedroso
***Check out this GA Classic***
A coming of age story about Andy Collins and friends. As he deals with his sexual orientation, he and his friends must also confront abuse and murder in the small mining town of Pine Hills, nestled away in the Appalachian Mountains of Eastern Kentucky.
Don't forget.... Read, Write, and REVIEW!!!
Youtube's random suggestions just gave me a reminder to one of the funniest Christmas inspired TV moments.
Advisory, if you love Santa Claus, don't watch this clip, but if you love to laugh at Always Sunny in Philadelphia's warped type of humor, watch it:
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Joy. Just pure joy. I'm sitting here in my living room (I decided not to go out because I honestly don't want to deal with crazy crowds) and I'm just savoring the moment.
I am so proud of this team, and I'll never forget this moment. E-A-G-L-E-S!!!
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Since the beginning of November, I have been posting regular blogs in various places. A big part of this has been getting into the habit of writing regularly. Some of the blogs I do in batches and others, like this one, is posted when I'm done writing it. For the last few years, I've had a lower profile on the site and lot of the new folks don't know much about me. So, I've also been trying to be more personable. Well, as much as a grumpy bear can be personable at least. lol.
So part of this habit is to make sure that I write something every single day. Now, that all of that is blogs, as I am working on entries for the anthologies and other writing projects. I've found that my creativity is flowing better if I write a blog entry of some sort before jumping into story writing. Not sure why, but it's working for me for now.
I am at my mother's this weekend. I've been going through the slow process of moving back in with her. I built my mancave in her barn last year and now I'm looking for a job I can jump to in her area. Saves a ton of money for both of us to share resources. And moving back in with her frees her up from a bunch of stuff so she can help my grandparents. So, anyway, we're talking about more renovations to the house. Upgrading the bathroom, the kitchen and turning a room into my dedicated office. The office will give me a place to close the door and do work. It would not be a place to play. Apparently, psychologically, it is much easier to discipline ourselves when we keep the areas we work and the areas we play separate.
I seem to have rambled a bit I'm going to get off the computer for now and go take care of some of the stuff I moved back here, then go do some organizing/planning in my mancave. I plan on doubling the size of my mancave by converting the backroom of the barn into my little rec room complete with a pellet stove for our long winter months. I'm also planning on sticking a 3d printer in there when I'm all done so I can design and make stuff.
When I say barn, by the way... this is what I mean:
It is 120 years old for those keeping score. We've got some work to do in a couple of places, especially after last year's internal roof work. They installed collar ties and supports for the roof trusses, as it is basically wide open upstairs.
Unbeknownst to me, my shrink replied to my voice mail yesterday when I was at the restaurant and not expecting any calls. I suppose I should’ve set my phone to vibrate, but I didn’t. So, today I called her voice mail line and, shock to me, she actually answered. She wanted an explanation why I upped my Depakote intake from 1000 mg to 1500 mg. What could I say? So, I said I’ll have taken one form or another of valproic acid off and on for the past 10 years, as of April. I know the difference between 1000 mg of Depakote and 1500 mg. 1000 mg is on the edge of total mania and 1500 mg is like a warm blanket.
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Wow, I guess it's been a month or twelve.
So yeah, I actually had a minute to sit down at my PC and look over some of my old files and realized that I haven't written anything in almost a year (sigh). I guess now's as good a time as any to start moving again on my stories, since the wife and baby are out of town until Sunday.
I can't honestly say that I don't know why I haven't been writing lately, but it's the same old shit.. work, school, family.... everyone gets it. The fact of the matter is that I haven't taken the time to sit down and write because I never take time for myself anymore, and I think I've burnt myself out, so to speak.
That said, there's only one way that I know of to relax, and that's to sit down at my desk and either read or write. Preferably both, but if I had to choose right now, I think I'll write something. Not sure if it'll be good enough to post on my site here at GA, but if it is, I'll put it up.
I'm in love. I have fallen in love all over again! WITH THE SAME PERSON! hmm...anyway,
since my last blog post, I have taken Kevin's advice and rekindled our friendship (between Joe & I) again (read blog post below to get up-to-date). We are starting out as "new" friends, and are just becoming comfortable with ourselves. The funny thing is, it seems as if we were never apart! The words just flow, our bodies just feel comfortable, and we just really connect. We went to the movies on Monday (just the two of us... ) and we watched The Hills Have Eyes which was uber fun! I forgot how frightened joe gets in scary movies, and it was such an exhilerating high watching him squirm, close his eyes, cover his mouth, jump, shake, and tremble with fear. I laughed so hard during the movie that people around us got antsy.
Oh well...after the movie was over, I just sat there laughing at him, which was then concluded by a sharp punch to my left shoulder (the bruising is just starting to wear off). It was so much fun. We then went to go get icecream from Coldstone (except I'm on this strict 500cal-a-day eating diet so I can drop a weight class in Wrestling) in which he bought a huge LOVE IT size of my favorite icecream...vanilla bean with reeses... mmm...we then ate out of that one bowl (we had half left-over...which was dumped out) and then he dropped me off home.
It was a great night.
I'm still dreaming about it.
Anyway, the next day, I saw him at a 7-11, and I was wearing a work-out shirt with cut-off sleeves, and he saw the bruise that he left me so graciously the night before. When he saw noticed the black-blue-purple, his face fell with a really...sullen look. He ran up to me and like...starting feeling my bicep! he started rubbing softly over the bruise, and he actually starting mumbling to himself. He finally stared up at me, and said that he was sorry, but I replied with, "hey don't worry bud, I'm a big boy, I can handle it," followed with a (i'm such a bad flirt!)
I haven't seem him since tuesday, but I have talked to him over the phone (4 hours for the past week to be exact!) and I also conversed with his parents at a party this week (I was very close to them before, because of Joe's younger brother).
I'm just so elated right now...I'm going out with him tomorrow....gosh I can't wait....
I <3 him!
p.s. I hope...that he has the same feelings for me...
p.p.s. (OR IS IT p.s.s.?): GO MICHELLE WIE!!! YOU ROCK!
p.p.p.s (OR IS IT p.s.s.s.?): I loved the new chapter of With Trust by Domluka...ANYONE WHO HAS NOT STARTED IT...SHOULD START IT! IT'S SO GREAT!
The last couple of weeks, my gym here in the city has been under threat of closure. A few months ago, the building was bought by a New York real estate company that has a track record of demolishing older structures and building condos. The building sits right in the heart of the Gayborhood here in Philly, which in turn is located in the heart of Center City. There has been a huge influx of luxury apartments being built the last ten years, like any other big city in America. I guess it was only a matter of time before the Gayborhood succumbed to that. The gym has over 4,000 members, many of whom are gay with strong attachments to the Gayborhood. It serves as a gym, but also a gay social and community center. I've been a member here for the 3.5 years I've lived in the city, and it's been like a second home to me. In those three and a half years, apartments, jobs, boyfriends, fuck-buddies, and friends have all come and gone, but the gym stayed the same and was always there for me. I got to know a lot of people in the scene from this gym, and it's where I first hit on my boyfriend over two years ago (he was terrified of me at first, lol). The point it, it is more then just a gym to thousands of guys, and now it is closing next week for good. After being Philadelphia's gay gym for 3 decades, it's going to be gone forever. And that is genuinely depressing to me. Everyone at the gym is being forced to disperse to multiple other gyms, thus completely diluting the sense of community the place brought. Sigh.
Unfortunately, the Gayborhood has been changing a lot since the first time I stepped foot it in in 2010. 3 gay bars have closed in those years, while only one new one has opened. The best gay club in the city, Woody's, has now been overrun with obnoxious straight people and mostly abandoned by the gay guys who made it such a great spot. Voyuer, the popular after hours club across the street, is starting to suffer the same fate, with more and more straight people invading and ruining the things that made it such an amazing place to dance until the wee hours of the morning. Unfortunately, the building that houses the gym also houses another gay bar, Tabu, and 18 other businesses with a strong LGBT focus and clientele. There is also a beautiful mural painted several years ago of Gloria Casarez, a well-known LGBT rights activist from Philadelphia who died several years ago (picture posted below). All of that will be demolished to make way for most likely another luxury high rise, and further water down one of the most fun, unique, and funky neighborhoods of this city.
I guess this is a byproduct of gay rights and the gentrification of cities. As we become more mainstreamed, we begin to lose so much of what makes us unique from the generic, mostly bland and boring straight world. I'm not quite sure anymore if it's a price worth paying, because I don't want to become like my straight friends. It's such a pre-determined, mind-numbing path that ends in a suburban track home with 2.2 kids and a hour long commute to a job you hate. No, I want what I had in the beginning and what the older gay guys had back in the day. I don't want to be assimilated anymore. I'm okay with being part of a minority that is different and unique. We've lost so much of that, especially here in Philadelphia, and I'm not sure we'll ever get it back.
It's time for me to start looking elsewhere in the world.
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Once upon a time… That’s how these things start, right? The line that starts the whole story. After that, nothing else even matters but getting to the happily ever after. I used to think I could see mine, out there on the horizon, but each time I think I’ve got it in my sights, something happens that shows me differently.
The settings and circumstances change, characters come and go, and there’s plenty of romance and drama to make it interesting. Even if you could predict how it ended, it’s so much fun to get there that you wouldn’t want to miss a thing, wouldn’t change a thing. And in the end, that’s what matters… that you lived and loved with your whole heart.
No matter how much or how well I plan, no matter how much I might work toward it or want it, the truth is that happiness is elusive, evolving, ever-changing. It’s conditional and comprehensive and you haven’t got a chance at actually attaining it without perspective. It’s different for each person, without justification, and the same. We’re all searching for it.
We pack up our hopes and dreams in our knapsacks, swing them over our shoulders, and head out into the great big world in search of it. Things happen on our quest, as they inevitably will, that make us change what we think will make us happy. Force us to examine our original plan or dream and decide if it’s still worth pursuing, if it’s still the thing that’s going to make us happy and whole.
So often, people hit a wall, and instead of figuring out how to get over it or around it, they just turn around and go back the way they came. We justify it to ourselves, the giving up, by telling ourselves that we were mistaken, that we didn’t really want that after all. The truth is it was too much work to learn to climb the walls. It was easier to just walk away.
That entire idea is absurd. Of course, we don’t know that then. Not only are we walking away from our dreams and our potential happiness, but we leave little pieces of ourselves behind every time we do. Living our lives as a fraction of our whole selves isn’t easy or conducive to finding the happily ever after we’ve been looking for. Worse, it’s actually more work in the long term to continually have to convince ourselves that we happily left those pieces behind.
Sometimes, actually, a lot lately, I wonder how much one person can take before they give up. It’s been said that you’re only given as much as you can handle at one time. I don’t know if that’s true or not, but I’ve been given an extraordinary amount. Definitely more than any one person’s fair share, then again, as I was often reminded as a child, life isn’t fair.
My life has fallen apart so many times now that I’ve lost count. Not really, but I don’t like to recount them. It’s not a contest and no one knows the rules. Does the scoring work like golf or like bowling? Does the survivor of the worst situation win, or is it the person who never had to find a way to exist in spite of the worst happening?
Being a party to the first group, having set aside my dreams repeatedly for the good of the cause, literally learning things the hard way, and learning to breathe with a broken heart makes a good case for the people in group number two. Still though, I wonder. In return for survival, I’ve earned an appreciation for making the most of each moment, for putting my whole heart and self into everything I do, being genuine, and the value of true happiness. That’s definitely got value, and it’s something the people in group number two will never have.
Without perspective, and a heap of optimism, it’s fair to say that a lot of people who have suffered some upheaval in their lives miss the things they were supposed to learn at the time. And that’s what life is all about, isn’t it? Learning the lessons, learning from the experiences, growing as a human being, and finding happiness. Not that it’s easy to remember that in the moment.
Often it comes to us in flashes, tiny pieces of clarity and knowledge that we grab on to and use to pull ourselves out of the ugly hole of despair. It’s a slippery slope, and for some, it takes years and a Sherpa to find their way out. Even with a trail of breadcrumbs and trail signs, it’s one of the most difficult journeys a person will ever make. One would think the third or fourth, or even the fifth time, you’d know the way out, but it doesn’t work that way. No one ever said life was for the faint of heart.
I rummaged through one drawer in my mom’s old, cherry wood jewelry box that sat atop my dresser before moving to another until I found it. It wasn’t in great shape when I pulled it out from amongst the old watches, the matching one I’d gotten for him a month later, and the shamrock pin I wear once a year. Tarnished and so scratched from years of wear, you could barely make out my name where it had been engraved on the front.
Still, I turned it over and read the inscription on the back of the very first gift he’d ever given me. It was to celebrate my 16th birthday and our one month anniversary. An ID bracelet, simple and silver, with a message straight from a heart experiencing those first delirious moments when you fall so crazy in love for the first time.
I wanted to wear it again, to remind me of what we once had, what we could have again, if he can find his way back to me. A reminder to soothe myself with hope when I’m so scared that we’ll never get it back, and because it’s the closest I’ve been to feeling his love in weeks.
I squeezed a little toothpaste into my hand and rubbed it between my palms a second before cleaning the bracelet the best way I knew how in the absence of any silver polish and wondered if he’d even remember giving it to me, remember what it said. Eventually, I silently admitted to myself that I hoped it reminded him of what he’d promised me all those years ago.
Forever yours. Love, Rich.
Hours later, when I was serving dinner, our daughter, Annemarie, just weeks from turning sixteen herself, noticed it and asked, “What is that bracelet?”
Unsure if I was relieved that she wasn’t complaining about the peas I was putting in front of her, or suddenly nervous that Rich had taken notice now also, I vaguely answered, “It’s mine. I’ve had it a while,” and handed Rich a plate of beef stroganoff that he eyed cautiously. He doesn’t like mushrooms or sour cream, but he’d have to actually speak to me to find out if it contained either. Instead, he just ate it.
Like any typical teenage girl who is all wrapped up in her own life, she let it go, and in an effort not to let me down, went on to complain about the peas. It was a welcome piece of normalcy, something I could count on in the chaos that had become my life. Besides, I like peas and beef stroganoff.
It’s equally horrifying and comforting to know where Rich and I were in our lives at her age, and knowing that she’s so far from that place. We were so sure at sixteen that we had it all figured out, or if not, that we’d conquer the world together. We’d show them, prove them all wrong. What the hell did we know?
There are two types of people in this world. The type who crumble in the face of a crisis, who panic and act without thinking, who let their fear and their emotions control their behavior and decisions, and then there’s the other. These remaining people are the logical type. They keep their heads when times get tough, are always thinking their way through several scenarios until they find the best one, and easily separate their emotions from their thought process.
That’s not to say that these logical thinkers don’t have emotional reactions to things. They certainly do, it would be inhuman not to. They just typically don’t act on them. As it turns out, intuition and emotional responses don’t usually lead us down the smoothest or the safest path. Certainly not the smartest.
Typically, it’s the outbursts of anger, the confessions of love made with such bravado, and the feeling as if you’ve just had the wind knocked out of you leaving you with a horribly painful sadness where you would normally find oxygen that can create the biggest opportunities to make the worst moves. I would have said decisions, but to be decisive requires thought, consideration, and evaluation.
Being a logical mind can be both a phenomenal power and a crippling weakness. To know that you’ll always know what to do and how to go about getting it done, to take things literally and to be able to count on that as a constant, and to feel the comfort that logic is your default setting can be immensely comforting in a world that changes faster than many of us can keep up with. Consequently, it makes it a major difficulty to let that default setting go and find enjoyment in basic things.
Personally, I can’t make it through most cartoons. Even if I could overlook the fact that there are talking animals who can lift anvils that weigh twenty times their own body weight or drive cars along the ocean floor, what I cannot discount is that the responses those cartoon characters have to whatever circumstances they find themselves in, become moot, ridiculous, illogical.
Instead of being entertaining, it’s frustrating. Possibly as frustrating as being the person on the couch next to me watching a movie or a TV show. Perhaps it comes from my depth of life experience, or because I’m a writer and a storyteller, or because, as logical as I am, I’m more in touch with my emotions and the emotions of those around me than most people, but whatever the reason, when I can predict the ending, most people would say there’s no point in watching anymore.
I disagree, for it’s there, in that moment when we’ve connected with that character enough to know what will happen in their future, that we learn about ourselves. How would we act or feel in that situation? What would we do? What would our next move be? Little lessons and explorations that can be learned and taken without consequence. A free pass.
Logical people watch everything, analyzing, organizing, forming patterns. They are supervisory and certain about what they feel is right or wrong. These people are easily adaptable and energetic, have a keen eye for details, and typically, a logical person is the decision maker. They are realists.
I’m not sure anyone but a logical personality could understand what it feels like to be faced with a situation that is anything but logical. To be able to do nothing to make it right or organize it so it can be dealt with. To be the one not making the decisions. There are no ‘right’ answers; there are no ways to best this dragon. The only thing there is in bountiful quantities is a frightening feeling of helplessness.
After 19 years, Rich has decided he's not in love with me anymore, started sleeping with a girl he works with, and has destroyed my dreams, my marriage, broken my heart, and crushed my children's entire existence with his selfishness.
After 19 years, I've crossed more things off my 'I Never Want To Experience This' List than my bucket list. Here's one more: I'm getting divorced.
I figured I would let everyone know I'm still alive and functioning. Just been a bad year.
I have managed to get some stories done. Luckily I did them early. This has been a year of things going boom. My car died. My computer dies. I became a full blown diabetic. I lost 70 pounds. I've been really sick, but I keep going.
I do apologize for not being around. Hopefully things will get better in 2017.
Wishing everyone all the best. Just know I'm thinking of you if not here.
Thanks to those of you who have sent me e-mails, pms, or otherwise showed concern as to where the fuck I’ve been. To answer the first, most obvious question: I’m fine. Life has its challenges, and I have mine, but there’s nothing there that’s debilitating.
There are three major areas of my life that can impact my writing. My health/wellbeing is obviously one of those, but as I’ve said, that’s pretty good. The next one is the relative level of activity in my life, and I’ve had an awful lot to do. This looks to be a pretty active year for me. To do what Will does to JP, that means I’m busy. J The combined forces of work, home stuff, research, etc. are a bit crushing right now.
The third factor is my muse, or ability/desire to write. For some reason, that has temporarily left me. When I’m busy, but still want to write, I usually find time to do it, but my production fades. In this case, I really haven’t wanted to do much writing, so with the added pressures of real life, I’ve let my online life sort of drift unattended. And I’m finding that there’s really no fighting the relative apathy that envelopes me when I’m in this mode.
In the past, this has happened when I’m in a conundrum about a story, but I have a very clear idea of how I want to proceed with both of my series. With CAP, I have an idea of how I plan to end “Streak” and the initial parts and premise of the next story is already forming in my mind. With Bridgemont, it’s a bit more open-ended, but I have some pivotal events in store.
I’ve been feeling a bit more motivated lately, and I’ve actually done a little writing, but I’ve spent more time reading than anything, and that includes going back over my recent stories for reference. Spring Break approaches, so I hope that in the next month or so I’ll be productive again.
I really do appreciate all of you who read my stories and give me feedback, and I feel bad for leaving you in a lurch. At the same time, I know that you’ll understand life’s pressures, and how a perfect storm like this can really impact my writing.
Yikes, I can't believe it's been, like, 8 months since my last blog! It's amazing how quickly life passes by sometimes ...
Anyway, since my last blog post, I closed on my new house, spent about a month dealing with contractors to completely renovate the whole place (quite the undertaking -- both in terms of the stress involved and the cost!) But, I'm all settled in and love it. The commute to work is awful, but living sort of out in the country is nice -- peaceful and quiet! Moving from a 600 sq. foot apartment to a 2,400 sq. foot house required me to buy lots of furniture and spend lots of time decorating. It's not all done yet (will it ever be?), but it's probably about 80% complete.
Work is busy, busy, busy ... and more stressful than usual lately. When I get home in the evening, I just want to crash on the couch and watch television (or just pass out from exhaustion). But, it pays my mortgage, so I can't complain too much.
On to more 'important' things, though ... Yes, I have started writing again. WISYA hasn't been 'speaking' to me lately, so I'm not sure at what point I'm going to pick it up again. I've 'tentatively' started a new serial novel, called "Home By Now" (unless I change). It's a bit on the 'dark' side, but I like how it's going so far. I at least want to complete a few chapters or more before I start posting, and I really have no clue when that will be, but progress (or something like progress) is at least happening ...
Final note for the evening ... I'm now reading the 'Twilight' series for the third time, and saw 'New Moon' on opening weekend. For the longest time, I refused to read the books or see the movies, but I finally caved when I was bored one weekend, and now I'm hooked! No, Stephenie Meyer won't be winning any literary awards anytime soon, but there is something really captivating about the story ... and it doesn't hurt that Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner are soooo dreamy! ;-)
Anyway, that's it for now ... Hopefully I'll be back again soon ... :-)
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I don't know what it is about politics that makes us all foam at the mouth. Sometimes--like the people who rubberneck at terrible auto accidents on the highway they're traveling--I can't keep myself from looking at the comments to political essays posted to the Internet, but most of the time it just depresses me. People are mean, hateful, and ignorant on matters of politics, and they seem to be enjoying being those things and beating up other people with those things!
We had a politics-place in the Forums here once. And, predictably, it got mean and ugly too. And that's why we don't have it anymore and why we're not allowed to talk about politics here.
I'm a team player and don't wanna tick anybody off. The good people here host me and they make decisions they feel are best for the health of the site. And I'm not gonna argue (much) with them...athough from time to time I poke a little bit of fun at the enforced "niceness."
But a thread devoted to exploring people's visions of the future got locked here because people couldn't keep politics out of it...and something in me offered up a silent "hey, now, waitaminnit."
How you gonna do a vision of the future without reference to politics? The state of income inequality? The environment? Etc., etc. At the heart of all our hopes and fears for the future are realties which are inescapably political. So I guess we just can't talk about the future at the Forums.
Or the state of health care in this country and the rest of the world? This is no inconsequential topic, and it actually has some specific relevance to gay men as gay men, though not only to them. Seems like it would be something we should be able to discuss here.
Or how about how society looks at and treats people of Our Community. Marriage is only one of the issues in this category. These have inescapably political ramifications, too, and seems like we could have some great discussion. But I'm not sure how to discuss these without venturing into politics.
Is your state board of education trying to put non-science in science books, rewrite history for their history books, and legislate about the moral worth of gay people? Doesn't seem like we can talk about it here, because it inevitably involves politics.
The more I think about this topic, the more subjects it appears we can't talk about here in the forums. Because politics touches us all over the place.
Which leads me to wonder...instead of banning a topic from the site, can't we just warn people that the political threads will be aggressively moderated, and that we have a two-strike, or even a one-strike-and-you're-out policy regarding rudeness or incivility or flaming or whatever it is that has made political discussion taboo here? Maybe that would take up too much time from moderators, but would it take any more than they're having to give over to it now, locking down threads and warning people? That way the people who play nice would retain their ability to discuss, and the "problem children" would be escorted out and sent to the nursery to play with the Duplo blocks.
And we could have a fun thread like "What's your vision of the future?".
Just my wandering brain, wandering and wondering.
I like blogging. I like just sitting around and thinking or chatting about a topic. Writing out my thoughts is nice because it helps me frame them in a more concrete way. It's nice just doing it in my head, but it's more fun and more satisfying on a computer screen...not on a piece of paper, physically writing sucks. Typing is nice though. Anyway, over the years I've grown thoroughly attached to this site and its members and whatever else I'm doing in my life I still enjoy a place to just sit and thing, and type about it, so I figure it might as well be here.
A few short updates about my life since I figure that's the least I can do before I ramble about inconsequential topics. The boyfriend and I are doing well, in exactly a week it'll be two years. Work is lovely this time of year. This is our slowest time of year, and since I work from home anyway, it mostly means that I can sit around all day doing whatever I like as long as I keep one eye and ear on my work computer. Not a prob
I've been enjoying my hobbies quite a bit as well. It's very hard to avoid reading. Despite being a technophobe I opted to get an Amazon Kindle (I once started a thread on these in the Lobby when they first came out! :-P) as well as finally jumping on the Ipod wagon. So anyway, I adore the Kindle, strongly prefer it to physical books. I go through a couple of books a week, which is a lot for me given what a slow, methodical reader I tend to be. Interestingly though, I also tend to read more on the Ipod than I listen to music or do anything else. The graphics, browser, and interface are much better on the Ipod (which I think is called an Ipod Touch) than they are on the Kindle. Which is fine because I didn't want the Kindle to be flashy and distracting. I kind of want it to be only good for reading books (and buying new ones), because that's all I want to do on it. So I read the books on the Kindle, but I've found that "web reading" is so much better on the Ipod than it is on the Kindle or the computer screen. The thing I don't like about reading for hours on a laptop that you're stuck with this big, heavy, bulky thing. A tiny handheld reading device like the Kindle or Ipod (or *gasp* a real book) is way better to read on. So with its flashy browser capabilities the Ipod is ideal for handheld reading...but yeah I keep getting distracted with games, music, and the rest of the internet when I use it, so I'm glad the Kindle's there for more hardcore reading.
Anyway all this reading has, unsurprisingly resparked my desire to write so I've taken that back up again. Unfortunately I have to admit that I don't really plan to post the stuff here. I'm hoping to attempt real life publishing and as a last result might try eBook publishing. In any case I don't intend to do it for years. I'm working on a series of books and I have no intention of publishing anything, or even showing it to anyone, until I have like the first four or five completely finished. That way I can make them as complicated as I would like since I can go back and add/remove things to all the previous stuff. I find that when I post online on a chapter by chapter basis, even if I'm pretty far ahead, I end up wishing I could change something, but it's too late (or at least feels too late) since it's already "out there." I'd really want to shoot myself if I had a great idea in book four that was being precluded by something I'd written in book one. So yeah, gonna wait and work a long time on these before they see the light of day.
This winter has been surprisingly pleasant. One of the best ones I've had in years. I've been lazy and energetic, like I get every winter, but I've avoided the anhedonia and enveloping numbness this year. Granted, I haven't felt like going out and partying, but at least I've felt like staying in and reading and writing rather than being disinterested in everything and marking time till spring.
The boyfriend and I have been living together about a year and a half now. Overall it's been remarkably smooth and pleasant. The main conflict comes from the fact that I'm a really tidy, organized person. I really am the sort of person who has a place for everything. I don't own any items that I leave in random places. What's more, I don't even acquire new items unless I can mentally figure out where I'll be keeping them. I definitely like for all items to go back to their designated places at the end of every use. The boyfriend on the other hand is the sort of person who picks something up, uses it, and then just puts it down wherever he happens to be. He'll think nothing of leaving the soy sauce sitting on the coffee table or at his desk indefinitely. That really doesn't work for me. I'm also the sort of person who won't even think about going to bed until everything is put away. Him on the other hand, when he gets tired that's it. Since I have to go to bed earlier than he does for work, that means that every morning I end up cleaning and tidying. Somehow I'm still always shocked by it too. My god! he left his half full glass of tea on the table next to saran wrap from something he opened! Somehow this just shocks me more than it annoys me. I couldn't have slept knowing it was out there if I were him.
I'm also generally just a great deal more organized than he is. I got really ticked off last month because he just up and told me that we had to drop everything and go visit his mom for her birthday. I like his mom, I agree that it's important to visit family for special occasions. What annoyed me is that I had zero notice, and why? Not because he forgot to tell me (although he probably would have ), but because he forgot her birthday was coming up at all. He hadn't known at all until his dad texted him. That also meant of course that he didn't have a present, and although I tried to insist that we just go pick something up on the way, he refused because "he doesn't like to get things just to get them. It has to be something he knows the person will like" and he didn't have any ideas. Which is fine, quite thoughtful actually, but that ship had sailed and personally I would have rathered gotten something nice, but generic than shown up empty handed.
Of course I'm not trying to make him sound bad or difficult to be with; he's certainly not. He's very thoughtful and agreeable. He's also quite a lot less set his ways than I am, and in all honesty he puts up with nagging, neurotic requests far better than I could put up with similar such things from someone like me. If he were as particular as I am about how things are done and where they go then we never could have put up with each other.
This probably isn't a sudden revelation for many of you, but my writing is officially (at least my GA writing) on hiatus until further notice. After chatting with Myr, I decided the best option was to close my forums and my site here until further notice. It doesn't make sense for me to steal bandwidth when I'm not actively contributing.
I'm not packing my bags and going anywhere, I simply feel that I don't want to string anyone (especially the ever huggable Myr) along when my priorities are elsewhere.
Thank you for reading this udderly (moo) pointless service announcement.
lurve and huggles
I figured after my last blog I owe you guys an update about what's going on. I'll start with my cat. She's still doing great. She's gained about three pounds though and I'm kind of scared to take her back to the vets at the end of the month, cause he may yell at me for over feeding her. But I mean really, if someone tells you your kitty is not going to be able to eat for much longer wouldn't you feed her anything and everything she wants in the meantime? I just didnt' expect her to live another four months and now she's in the habit of eating whenever she gives the slightest hint. When I don't feed her she gets aggressive by digging me in the face. Not real hard but hard enough to jump me and say 'okay okay you win!' I tried feeding her less every time but then she just asks to be fed twice as much. Sam suggested 'light' cat food so I think I'm going to buy some of that this week and see how she likes it. I can say one thing though, she's awful cute as a little fatty! But the last thing I want is for her to struggle with this cancer only to die of a heart attack from being overweight. I guess I'm a big ole softy cause I can't seem to say no to my cat.
As far as my back is concerned I'm doing better. I spent a week in bed since my last blog and after that it gradually started to get better. It's still there and still hurts when I move just right but nothing compared to what it was. My doctor still wants me to have surgery though. I have some nerve damage and my leg is still very weak. He said there was a 1 percent chance of him making me worse and a 99 percent chance of him making me better. I guess most of the reason people wouldn't get the surgery is because of a risk of nerve damage but since I already have that he says there's no reason not to go ahead with it. It's not a major surgery, I won't have to spend anytime in the hospital except maybe one night and that's just cause I live so far away. They expect I'll only be out of work for a couple weeks too and that's good because I only have two weeks of time coming to me. So the surgery is going to be in September, so I have plenty of time to fret over it in the meantime.
I hope to get started working on One Moment again soon and I really really thank everyone for being so patient with me.
It is weird to revisit stories written. Kind of like wondering down the street you used to live on as a kid. There are a lot of memories bound up in the words. The gloss of nostalgia is tempered with the clarity of experience.
Its hard to say what my aim was with the stories I wrote. I do know that if i were to write them today they wouldn't be the same. Who knows maybe there is yet still another draft or two living inside of Living in surreality. Decimate it to the basics of the story, and build it back up stronger and better than what it is.
I spent too much time trying to emulate domluka, trying to mimic CJames. the truth is I can't. I get lost in Dom's interrelationship intricacies. I utterly lack Cj's flair for plot building and tension. So I have to wonder what am I left with? a characters personal struggles, seems the most obvious. Perhaps that is what I should focus on. Jacob and Matt both want to ditch there past. Poor Valerie is just along for the ride. She needs to fight harder against the change that rushes at her. Can she accept that change in the end and remain a friend? That seems a more compelling story than just a willing cheerleader.
But everyone needs a cheerleader, especially Matt who seems so left without.
And then there is Cody, suck waiting to find who is outside that door. Trouble with Cody is that everyone wants him, when he truly wants no one. I need to cut out all the chasing boys and focus on Cody. The big problem is I just don't know where to start.
from the beginning. Thats always the best place.
Yes, it has been forever and a day since I added anything to the blog. I feel like one of those co-workers who leaves the office for a new job and promises on their mother's grave they'll stay in touch. Then you only see them when lightning strikes and you're in the same place at the same time and you swear once again you'll stay in touch, but in reality you know the demands of your job will never allow for it. That's a convoluted way of saying, sorry I've been so absent, but I've been crazy busy.
That said, I need to say thank you to GA and Caz Pedroso for nominating Chosen of Honorus for story of the month. Chosen of Honorus was the precursor to The Last Grand Master - the first book in the Champion of the Gods series that DSP Publications is publishing. It was/is the book that jump started my publishing career. I owe a big debt to GA for taking a chance on me and giving me the confidence to push out into the wide literary world.
There is a prequel to Chosen of Honorus - First Love - that is available on the DSP Publications site or you can find a link on my website. If you sign up for my monthly newsletter, there is a link in one of the welcome emails as well. If you want to sign up for my newsletter, you can use this link:
In addition, if you like Chosen of Honorus, there are now three more books in the series available from DSP Publication and the last book in the series will be released in 2018. Books 1-3 are also on sale now through the end of April. Here is a link to the sale page on my website:
Despite what I said above about being the co-worker who left, sometimes a little jolt reminds you of what you're missing. In my case, I realize how much I miss the people I met here. I think if I have time to socialize with fans on Facebook and Twitter, I can use some of that time to come here once a day too. I'm going to do my best to do that. That said, the new set up is going to take me some time to get used to so if I miss your comments, you can always email me - Andrew@andrewqgordon.com. I'm usually very good at responding to emails.
Thank you all again. It's humbling and flattering to realize people haven't forgotten you. It's a very good feeling.
PS In case you forgot what I look like or want to see a new picture of 'lil q (way more likely than wanting to see me) I'll post a few pictures in a few minutes. .
Right, I am somewhat in a dizzy miffed off mood today.
So this one is a bit of a rant.
There is something that I really just do not get! What is it about sex with a child????
Right, sex is about giving pleasure and taking pleasure right? It is about enjoyment and climax and orgasm right?
It's about love and lust and emotions.
And you can get ANY of that from a bloody kid???
Ian Watkins today pleaded guilty to a series of depraved child sex offences, including the attempted rape of a baby!!!!!!!!!!!
Oh for heavens sakes man. Come on!
For those who don't have a clue who the hell Ian Watkins is, he is lead singer of the massive Indie Rock band The Lost Prophets.
They are a South Wales band, and as I used to live down that way, I've seen then perform at several gigs and concerts and really love their music.
The singer has always furiously denied the allegations which surfaced a few months ago in the wake of the whole Kiddy fiddling scandal that came to light when Jimmy Savile popped his cloggs.
Now ok, the allure of youth I can understand to a degree. A young man in his teens can be remarkably good looking and have curves and shapes that are not worn down by time and over indulgence.
But I am talking about a young man that's into the latter half of his teens.
In the UK the age of consent set by those that have wisdom in these things is 16. Now exactly what that is meant to mean, I am not 100% sure.
I guess, what they are trying to say is that by the age of 16, young people have some sort of understanding of what sex is and the fact that a whole load of emotions and feelings and all that other mumbo jumbo is tied up with it, even if they are not equipped or experienced to deal with it. So if they are going to get sexual, at least they are capable of some reason and sensibility.
Look, kids are going to be kids. They will want to experiment and try it out and get into mischief. Bloody hell, I did it, and I am pretty sure most of you did too.
We all did right?
But, for the most part, we did it with someone we chose, most probably with a peer or friend within our own age group, and if it was with an older person, that decision was probably made at a time when we decided we really wanted to find out what all this sex stuff could feel like when done properly, and with someone who had experience.
Am I being sensible when I say that this is normal, natural behaviour for a young person?
To suggest that a child, one that has not even entered into sexual maturity, or let alone puberty is sexually active and desires a relationship with an older person??????????
How do you get gratification for a kid that cannot even perform yet?
When I see people that I have looked up to and admired as celebrities and heroes abusing their position of trust and access, I feel really mad first and fore most, but completely disillusioned and let down. Why?
Look, this has been going on for ages, I know. It is a very dark and dirty part of our world. It is something we know about, hear about, but never really want to discuss or think about, because let us be frank, it is appalling and sickening to think that young, beautiful children are subjected to this wickedness.
So no one really says much.
But, the worms are crawling out the woodwork here in the UK recently. The police are doing a lot to sort this. About bloody time.
I just really needed to have a rant, and put my thoughts down on paper. I work in music, have always admired some of these people. How many times have I sung that song by Rolf Harris called Two Little Boys. It's even moved me to tears! Now, to find out he another of these men?
We live in a sad world. I suppose that stuff like this has always been there, but now that it comes out into the public domain so easily! It hurts.
Tell me, is there a limit to our depravity? Just let a kid be a kid for crying out loud. They have a whole life to grow up and get caught up in the shit that goes with the emotional roller coaster of sex. We all know this right? Our youth is a precious time, let the young enjoy and build treasured memories, ones like you and I have. Not stuff that they should NEVER have to be thinking about.
Meh, enough said, rant over, but just really needed to get this crap off my chest today. Thanks for listening.
Thought for today - "Virtue is bold and goodness never faithful." - William Shakespeare