#writerslife #selfcare Writerly ways to Sever Toxic Relationships in Your Life

NOTE: I am disabling comments on this post for a whole lot of reasons, but you can still like and share at will.

*see the bottom of this post for a disclaimer

We all have someone in our life who, even from a distance, is fully capable of sucking the life out of us. It’s more than a matter of keeping distance or holding your relationship at arm’s length. Rather, it’s your shoulders creep to your ears at their mere mention. You can’t deal with this relationship for whatever reason. It’s triggering, it’s hurtful, and you need to cut all the ties that bind you.

For me, it’s someone who, at my core, I love, but I simply can’t deal with them or get beyond their past behaviors. The trust is forever gone, and I refuse to give them the opportunity to do even more damage to me or to my relationships with others. (Note: I am using gender-neutral they here not because this person is nonbinary but because I’m keeping their identity unknown.) I will not be accused of dragging someone through dirt I’ve already slogged through, of doing harm in the name of my own healing. I will not trigger them or provoke conflict. It’s a waste of my limited energy and, sometimes, giving someone credit for their damage (this is especially true for someone w/ Borderline Personality Disorder) fuels them to continue their ways. It empowers them and gives them the attention they seek.

Those who know me will easily realize who I am talking about.

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#QueerLit #LGBTQbooks #WritingTip Ten Things to Know Before Adding a Non-Binary Character to Your Story

Note: This post has grown significantly in the past few days, so there are more than ten. If you want the short and sweet version, read the orange and bold-italic sections. That’ll give you the gist. However, if you’ve never written a non-binary character I strongly suggest you read the entire post. 

So I’ve been reading, a dangerous thing these days, I know, especially for an author. But really, I have been reading, and beta-reading too, and I’ve come across several problems that I believe need to be addressed concerning non-binary characters.

Authors, if you add a non-binary character into your story, please take the following into consideration:

  1. Non-binary characters shouldn’t have their assigned at birth gender revealed early in a story, if at all, and only if it’s totally necessary. If the character still goes by their assigned-at-birth pronouns, fine, but if the character goes by they/them or any other non-binary pronoun choice then an author should respect this. Negating the non-binary by revealing the birth gender is unacceptable unless it is a situation like a courtroom (most states in the U.S. don’t recognize the non-binary) or the bedroom (where there should be frank discussion IMO before anything happens) and then the author should tread lightly, more so if the author isn’t non-binary (#ownvoices).

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#1LineWed #amwriting #WIP Travel

Here’s another short-‘n-sweet  #1lineWed post. The theme is fun, travel, and adventure.  I’m plucking the travel out and applying it something practical, a mug.  Hey, that’s sticking to the theme, perhaps not as intended, but there it is.

 

 

 

    “Cent’s in here.” Aubrey reentered the kitchen with Conall behind him. “He’s come in search of coffee.”

     “Lexy’s got her drawers in a wad this mornin’.” Conall pulled off his ballcap and held out a Gow Welding travel mug. “You mind?”

     “How can we say no to that handsome face?” Tess took his mug and went to the live room.

FYI: live room refers to the homestead’s kitchen addition where the appliances are located. Live as in electricity.

#WIP #amwriting #KeepingHouseNovel #AppalachianElementals

#WIPpetWednesday #WIPpitWed #AppalachianElementals 11/21/18: Favorite Books

Welcome to #WIPpetWednesday! Since Mama, Me, & the Holiday Tree has been released I’m again sharing from Keeping House, novel two in the Appalachian Elementals series.

 

 

 

 

 

It’s Thanksgiving week here in the U.S., a time to celebrate family and generally overindulge in favorite food traditions.  I’ll be making deviled eggs, my elder son will be making an Under the Sea gelatin salad, and my younger son will be sharing a new recipe he discovered away at college. My mother, bless her, will be handling the bulk of the meal.  And Black Friday… y’all can have all of it you want. I’m staying home and waiting for Cyber Monday and the sales after to do my shopping aside from select local shops.

As for #NaNoWriMo… it’s going. I think I’ll actually finish Keeping House, but I won’t get to work on the novella I was wanting to and that’s okay. My mind has switched gears to another novella, one in the Appalachian Elementals series, this one about the characters Conall and Bea. Conall’s the strong, silent type and Bea’s dynamite in a small package. Those are both cliche’ archetypes, but it’s all I can really say about them at present. They’re talking to me as characters do to authors. Well, Conall is. Bea’s giving me the stink eye most of the time, but I think she’ll slowly open up. This novella might actually be a Romance, but if it is, it’ll be a really topsy-turvy one, mainly Bea’s doing, I think. This novella will be set in the Revolutionary War period. Historical Fantasy… that’ll be a new one for me, and it might be the first work I’ve written from a male perspective.

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#AppalachianElementals #FictionFri The Rhodes Family Tree

One of the major themes in the Appalachian Elementals series is family. It was central to  Cleaning House, to Mama, Me, & the Holiday Tree, and is central to Keeping House, my current work in progress. Family is also, like in many cultures, central to Appalachia. We’re traditionally close-knit, though that has somewhat changed over the last few generations. That said, I might, at a later date, take a closer look at Tess and Roslyn Rhodes’ generation (meaning write a story where they’re the MCs, but that’s for another day since I’m currently neck deep in #NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month).

When Cleaning House was a rough draft, I scrawled out the Rhodes’ family tree as it relates to Cent and her cousin, Aubrey, adding details like birth/death dates, where the magic derives from in each family member, if there’s any magic at all, and ended up with four-five generations (depending on your take), going back to Cent and Aubrey’s great-great-grandmother Amadahy, a fictional member of the North Carolina Cherokee tribal rolls (one of my own ancestors, six generations back, is listed on those same rolls, I’ve been told).

Anyway, that initial scrawl to set down a lineage has become the graphic below, an actual family tree.

Creating the family tree helped bring the characters to life, to give them roots. It helped me determine how they might have thought, their experiences,  how things developed between generations and, more specifically, where things have gone wrong. Continue reading

#HolidayTreeNovella Release Day Celebration: Quick Descriptions and Best Lines

It’s finally release day for Mama, Me, and the Holiday Tree! To kick this celebration off right, I’m sharing a little about every character in the novella and giving you what I think might well be their best line within the story. Like most of my stories, there’s an ensemble cast, and I’ve fourteen characters, two of whom are so minor in their presence that they really don’t have lines. That said, pay attention to them because you’ll see them in the second novel in the Appalachian Elementals series, Keeping House, which will be released next year.

 

Here’s some info about Mama, Me, & the Holiday Tree to get you started.

A dozen handmade holiday ornaments, that’s all, but it might be an impossible task.

Centenary Rhodes and her mother are at constant odds. It’s one of the many reasons Cent left home when she was eighteen. Mama’s difficult for anyone to manage, but now that Cent’s back home, she has to try. Mama, however, won’t acknowledge who Cent’s become, even though she’s repeatedly been shown the truth.

It’ll take more than popcorn strings and paper snowflakes to heal the rift that’s formed between Cent and Mama. It’s going to take bushels of patience, heaps of magic, and assistance from everyone on both sides of Embreeville Mountain to reset the Balance between them.

But with Yule and Christmas just around the corner, it might already be too late.

Mama, Me, and the Holiday Tree is available for preorder in both print and ebook formats. And the ebook format is only $.99 for a limited time!

Amazon | Amazon UK | Kobo | Barnes & Noble

And now, what I promised, quick descriptions of and the best lines (IMO) from each character in Mama, Me, & the Holiday Tree.

Centenary Rhodes (Cent) [protagonist]  in an obvious moment of distress or doubt

Nonbinary, she/her/they/their, happily married, multi-lived witch, possessor of important secrets

“I’ll try since y’all think it’s so important.”

 

 

 

Stowne [Earth Elemental]  (some of their many forms)

Cent’s spouse, they/them, a true mountain soul

“Patience. You said you find grace in it, so find that grace in yourself.”

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1: An Introduction to Jeanne’s YouTube Writing #Playlist – Best Played on Shuffle

10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 … This marks the final day of my ten-day countdown to the release of my novella Mama, Me, and the Holiday Tree. Tomorrow. Tomorrow? Yikes! Tomorrow! You can read more about #HolidayTreeNovella at the bottom of this post, but today I’m taking you taking you on a brief tour of my writing playlist because, why not? Because music, poetry, and prose are closely related and forever intertwined.


In my younger years, meaning in the days before children, post-grad studies and, eventually, illness and disability, I was a musician. I played several instruments including woodwinds, guitar, bass guitar, and piano. That said, I’m a music junkie. My tastes are diverse to say the least, and I almost always have my earbuds in whenever I’m writing.

Yes, I have a writing playlist on YouTube, a decent-sized one at 432 songs and counting, and it’s one that I frequently listen to via my Chrome browser (Hint: I use an ad blocker so it flows uninterrupted – cheater, cheater, yes, I know). I also use Pandora from time to time, but I keep getting blasted with music I simply don’t care for, so I never stay long. And, yes, before you ask, I sometimes use Spotify, but they often don’t have the songs or artists I’m looking for.

Why do I have a playlist and, more importantly, why do I have it set to public? I know no better way to get to know someone, from a distance, than accessing the music they listen to regularly.

So if you wish to get to know me as a writer, aside from my blog, this is the quickest means.

Here are the newest additions to my playlist (Note: this might change at any point because I add songs almost daily anymore).

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3: #HolidayTreeNovella #AppalachianElementals #FictionFriday Where do you Find Creative Inspiration?

10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3…This is the eighth day of my ten-day countdown to the release of my holiday novella, Mama, Me, & the Holiday Tree, #1.5 in the Appalachian Elementals series. Today, I’m talking about inspiration and where best to find it.

 


Inspiration (noun)

  1. An inspiring or animating action or influence: I cannot write poetry without inspiration.
  2. Something inspired, as an idea.
  3. A result of inspired activity.

(courtesy of Dictionary.com)

All artists, writers, and creative sorts, need inspiration. Ideas don’t generally manifest out of thin air. There has to be something to trigger creativity. An idea. An image. An emotion. A hallucination. A bender (not suggested).Insert your own trigger here.

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8: Yet Another Blog Post About the Need for Diversity in Writing

 10, 9, 8… This marks day three of my ten-day countdown to the release of my novella Mama, Me, and the Holiday Tree. You can read more about #HolidayTreeNovella at the bottom of this post, but today I’m discussing something I often address in my writing, and even in the subtitle of this website, diversity.

 


 

Yeah, you’ve heard it all before. We need diversity.

And we do, more so now than ever.

 

Spare me if you disagree.

Spare me if you’re tired of hearing it.

Maybe if more authors listened, authors like me wouldn’t need to keep repeating this.

 

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