I am going to try very hard to keep my blog updated regularly – unlike last year. Last year I had less than 20 posts for the year and that’s unacceptable.
I’m not sure what to write about that you don’t already know, or that you would actually be interested in, but I’ll do my best.
I’m waiting for the edits to make their way back to me from my editor for 90 Days. I am equally excited/nervous/terrified about its release because this is one of those books that just mean so much to me.
Writing about transgender people isn’t hard for me because they are just that – people, but these are also individuals who deserve a loud voice of understanding and acceptance. I don’t want to fail them. I don’t want to let anybody down. And yes, I know not everyone will like what I write, but this particular series, Prairie Town, has a very special place in my heart.
We all feel unaccepted in some way. We are all terrified of not being accepted no matter what it may be for. All I want with these books is for one person to pick them up, read them, and think, “Wow. I’m not alone. There is hope.”
Of course it doesn’t hurt that I’ve tossed in some love, hot passion, edge-of-your-seat suspense this time around.
That was really confusing, FYI. I usually try to keep series within the same genre and while they are all technically romance, 90 Days will be more suspense than anything else. You’re definitely going to have some WTF moments and “Oh, no she didn’t!” It’s inevitable.
Wow. Look at that. I’ve already lost track of what I wanted to say.
Bear with me. I know it’s painful.
Another thing I did want to talk about was the inspiration for the Prairie Town Series.
Do you ever have those late nights where you want to do something, but you don’t know what to do, so you end up browsing Netflix and you click on something random? That’s kind of what happened to me when I stumbled across BOY MEETS GIRL.
This is such a great movie. I can’t say enough good things about it. All I know is I clicked play and I was totally lost in their world within about 5 minutes. I can’t tell you how thrilled I was that the story took place in Kentucky. Maybe I just live in a REALLY small town, but stuff like this just doesn’t happen where I come from – and let’s be honest, people in my town are seriously narrow-minded and the bigotry is strong. Not all people here are jerks, but the majority are still stuck in the 1950’s and they haven’t caught up with the rest of the world yet.
(Fact: Chartreuse is also based on my hometown.)
So back to the movie: Boy Meets Girl focuses on a transgender girl (played by the impeccable Michelle Hendley) and her best friend (played by Michael Welch.)
Now, for anyone who knows me, I cannot stand him in most movies I’ve seen him in, but he really redeemed himself as an actor for me in this film.
Ricky is an amazing character with hopes, dreams, and struggles. She has an awesome dad and little brother, an awesome best friend, and an awesome *new* friend who happens to be a very gorgeous girl connected to a guy from her past.
I don’t want to give the movie away, but I will shove you towards Netflix to watch it. It’s so, so good.
After watching the movie, I decided to look up Transgender romances on Amazon because those are books I could really get into, but imagine my disappointment when most of the titles I came across where about boys magically/supernaturally turning into girls and vice versa.
That’s just not okay. There isn’t any magic involved. Magic is fine and dandy if you are a paranormal lover, but what about the books meant for people trying to discover who they are? What about the books that teach acceptance, love, and hope?
Where are the books that transgender folks can read and relate to? Where are the books for a 20-something trans person to read so they won’t feel alone, so they can finally realize they are totally amazing no matter what?
It was an outrage in my mind. It shouldn’t be allowed! I did find a few titles that were ‘the normal human stuff’ as I like to call it, but they are few and far between.
So I decided to change that.
I do honestly believe that Lydia and her friends have lived in my head for a long time, but she didn’t speak up until after that movie.
Now I know I am not a transgender person and I don’t know any personally, but I’ve always felt that’s the best thing about being a writer. With a little research and a lot of heart, you can write about anything. Just do it justice. Don’t go in blind and definitely don’t assume you already know everything there is to know about the subject, because you definitely don’t. Research doesn’t hurt. Asking questions doesn’t hurt. I have befriended several people from the trans community and let me tell you, they are the nicest human beings ever. I am forever grateful for their help!
(I’m looking at you, Jessica and Trevor. <3)
I caught the same flack when I wrote my first m/m novel. It’s really hurtful when someone says, “Leave the gay writing to the gay people.”
Sorry. Well, no – I’m not. If we had to wait for vampires to write about vampires I suppose we’d be waiting an awful long time. Those fangy fiends have priorities — blood. Writing a novel isn’t necessarily at the top of their to-do list, but hey, that’s an awesome storyline idea, yes? 😉
I’m off course again. That happens a lot.
Anyway, I’m nervous about releasing this story because there’s a lot in the book that reflects on my life. It’s terrifying putting yourself out there like that for the world to see. THE WORLD. I’m not even saying 2% of the population will ever read my books, but even the small amount of folks who have read them still make me nervous.
I think this post is long enough so I’m going to leave you with this:
Do you want to write that m/m novel? Go for it.
Do you want to write a book that will change the way the world is viewed? Go for it.
If you want to wait for a vampire to write a vampire book or a mermaid to write a mermaid book, good luck.
Happy reading, happy writing, happy life. ❤
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