State of the Author: I Am Who I Am

I wrote this over on Mastodon earlier today and thought I would share it here as well.

I have had several fellow authors over the past few years tell me that I should keep my politics to myself lest I offend a potential reader.

So, here’s the thing.

My books almost all contain an overarching theme of the ill effects of prejudice and bigotry. They show the roles of women throughout history, and the challenges they faced due to societal constraints. Three of my heroines deal with health issues (two physical, one mental).

Nothing changes for marginalized people if we “keep our politics to ourselves” as artists. We need to tell our stories, yes … but we also need to stand up for those whose stories are being quashed by more powerful folks with harmful agendas.

So, no. I won’t be keeping my politics to myself any time soon. My right readers will find me, and they will understand.

State of the Author: Not Great

Hi, everyone. Just a quick check-in. I’ve been having some health issues of late, combined with a depressive episode. I’ve opted to work from home for day job things this week, so that I can lie down if I need to. Luckily, I have a wonderful and supportive group of colleagues; their main concern is that I remain healthy. I’m still getting things done, but picking and choosing my priorities. That’s why there was no Music Monday this week; little things are being let go for the moment.

The main thing is that I want you to know I’ll get through this and be back at full strength as soon as I’m able. I’m taking the same advice I give others, and being gentle with myself for a change.

I appreciate every single one of you.

State of the Author: Worn Out

Hi, everyone. I got back from my business trip Friday evening. I had a great conference, and a wonderful housekeeper. Mavis left me notes every single day. I not only wrote her notes back, but went down to the lobby to tell them in person about what a great job she was doing and how those notes lifted my spirits every afternoon.

When I got home, though, my suitcase had been irreparably damaged … and, worse, one of the feral cats we look after had been hit by a car or attacked by an animal. Her jaw was broken.

We were finally able to get her into a crate this morning, and to the emergency vet for euthanasia. There was nothing else we could have done due to the degree of damage. Sometimes, doing the right and most humane thing is incredibly painful. If you read my Hugs and Hisses, you know.

I’m home now, and things will settle down soon. That’s how it always works.

But I sure could use an encouraging note from Mavis.

State of the Author: Honest With Myself

Today, I have admitted defeat where Pompeii Fire is concerned. After three years, I have 35K words. Clearly the story is not working the way I wanted. I’m moving it to the proverbial parking lot and trying something else entirely.

I have the beginning inklings of a story for Bronwen, one of the side characters in Rose in Bloom, and already have 2.5K words after just a couple of days’ writing.

It’s time to stop banging my head against the wall of one story and let others come out.