I suppose it started when I was vacuuming in my underwear. I have no curtains, and the people who live in the building across the street have a direct view into my room. I have ever fewer f*cks to give in my ornery age, and with the self-destructive world of apathetic people p*ssing me off, but I noticed a flash of light and I turned around and two guys in the window across the way were holding something that flashed and… taking my picture? Hard to tell when there’s a two-lane street between your windows.
I put on some shorts just to be safe, but now, sometimes, the guy who lives there will take out a light and flash it at me–not just a normal light, but this really annoying spastic strobe–and I’m like what do you want, my attention? To yell at me to cover myself with curtains? Or to request more underpants vacuuming? With my no f*cks to give, I don’t even bother opening the window to find out. I clean my cat litter while in the strobe spotlight. Here are some disco cat turds, yay.
The guy likes to walk around shirtless and he’s pretty ripped. If there’s a woman there, she pulls the curtains shut. He pulls them back open to lean out to smoke.
I feel like a hamster in a cage sometimes but without the energy or the f*cks to buy curtains. Or the funds, because I ran out of money… again. I had to borrow some just to get groceries because my fridge wasn’t stocked and my paranoia now apparently won’t let me eat the canned goods I have at home. The paranoia has spoken: no canned goods ever again. Yay, mental illness. *winning*
And, you know, here is another truth for those of you who don’t know: I would rather half-starve than not write. I skim by with minimum work hours that barely pay my bills every month, so when I say I run out of money, it’s standard-issue fare in my life. Actually, the truth is a little more complicated than that, but to quote Holden Caulfield: “I don’t feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth.”
I live on high hopes and too little sleep while trying to stretch out time to indefinite.
Is there a point to this? I guess it’s that it’s been forever since I posted last, and I’m still writing for those of you who want to know, and to tell you that I still want to save the world (to breathe clean air and spare the majestic beings that roam our wild terrain and get people to live rather than simply buy crap that doesn’t bring them joy and also [boo!] depletes the planet), and I haven’t given up that fight, but right now I’m in the trenches, struggling from bombardment by a world that seems to enjoy being bleak. But I wrote something the other day, this –>
“Everything is lost. We lost.”
“No. We’re losing. But that’s exactly when you fight harder.”
And that made me realize I haven’t given up; I’m just taking a breath. Plus, someone reminded me that those who want to keep polluting and depleting the world want us to think the battle is over, but it isn’t over until we put down our hope.
Let us never put down our hope.
Yeah, I guess that’s what I wanted to say.
Thanks for bearing with me, and for those of you who love my work and have been wanting excerpts forever, I’ll share some here (although longer excerpts will only be on Patreon, not because I want to hold out on you guys, but since they’re supporting me, then I feel they deserve more, ya know? And I feel like I give so little, being distracted so much). So…
From Cascade and Lunar’s bookReams of moonlight pouring through the kitchen windows illuminated the island in the center, the metal drones recharging in the corners, and someone tall and slender and in buckled boots leaning against the counter, a glass bottle in hand.
I caught my breath, my progress halted in the door.
I mouthed his name.
He looked up without a word under messy hair.
Our gazes met.
With deliberate negligence, he dropped the liquor. The bottle shattered on the tile, so like the thousands I’d dropped myself that I almost—almost—thought he knew my vice, my thirsty oblivion with Bacchus.
But he couldn’t know.
His vicious smile curved up as he licked liquor-wet lips. “There you are.”
He pushed off the counter and commenced a slow stalk across the tiles, the moonlight catching on his studded boots, his glinting eyes, the scimitar-curved hair across his cheek. “Talk to me like a textbook.”
From Heiress of RebellionA picturesque cluster of thatched houses, the village nestled in the forest like a quaint town from a child’s story.
Too silent, though, too still, with a curse befallen upon it.
The shadow-hungry curse.
Once thriving, the hamlet now lay abandoned, or rather, gone, with shapechangers sprinkled across its premises like toy relics with breath, thrown out by a cavalier god.
Yngret swayed, dizzy, standing barefoot in the middle of the perished village, her crazy-curled locks drifting in the wind that skimmed her cheeks…
I suppose I should put a lighter excerpt after that. Here is another with Yngret, when she ends up naked in the palace (after transforming from an animal) and has to find her lover.
From Heiress of RebellionAll heads swiveled to where she posed in nude glory on the threshold of the salon, her spiral curls corkscrewing every which way, her posture arrogant. “Juxtain!”
Conversation stopped utterly, dropped wineglasses shattered, and slackened jaws displayed crooked teeth.
The crowd – likely by accident but eminently expedient – parted with a clear path to where Juxtain stood by the sideboard, a wineglass in one slender hand and his other clutched languidly around his cane, leaning his weight on it. His lip still curled at someone’s recent pathetic comment, and even amidst the competing plumage of those surrounding him, his purple and yellow-orange attire burst in a headachy kaleidoscope of gaudiness.
His nostrils flared, inhaling a whiff of her even as he heard her challenge.
He met her gaze above the rim of his wineglass, his expression unreadable, and took a sip of wine. “Yngret.” His gaze traveled over her nude form, a heated spark in his eye and a vicious grin hidden behind his glass. “When I suggested you start a new fashion, I did not mean for you to dispense with clothes altogether.”
Sniffing, she stepped lightly into the room. “Actually, you said ‘Screw fashion’. Instead, you screwed me and left me in your bedchamber without any clothes.”
“The hazards of making love, I’m afraid.” Another sip of his wine. “Clothes must be sacrificed along the way.”
“You haven’t sacrificed yours, so I’ve come for my due.” Settling into a loose-limbed sway, she let her predator out in her promenade between the staring pantywaist nobles.
“Oh, no, the fashion suits you infinitely more.”
And here is my villainess – is it terrible that I’m enjoying writing her so freaking much? 😀
From Heiress of RebellionAgainst my will, my gaze creeps surreptitiously around the room, darting on tiptoe like a furtive girl.
I seek my fellow brazen traitor, for despite my rejecting him out of hand, he squeezed a bit of fascination out of my soul.
Perhaps I was too hasty and should have requested a way to communicate with him.
The thought makes me seethe. I despise how he’s beguiled me.
It is the face—my lost lover’s face that he took as his own.
What would my life have been, had my love lived—if we’d wed?
I am cruel to have the thought, but I sink that cruelty deeper into my grief and imagine the nights—
In shadowed naves and forgotten corners, in the chapel’s candlelit library littered with papers. We’d share nut cakes and cider and communicate a thousand words with a touch, a caress.
I dig my nails into my chest, wishing for the talons of a raptor to stab straight through, for in the shrunken hollow where I locked my heart, something dares to beat again.
A whisper draws my wrath to the window.
There he perches on the sill, his long silver hair unbound, the immaculate white robe billowing against the stars.
His cherry-red lips kiss the air with their malice. “Queen Trista.”