Wednesday, September 7, 2016


So, this is exciting: this morning, going through my usual attempt to find some reviewers I think might like my book, I hit a user's 'send message' button on goodreads and noticed, for the first time, the following message:

Note to authors: We don’t recommend contacting users to promote your book or request reviews. Nearly all of our members consider unsolicited messages from authors or their representatives to be spam, and sending such messages may result in your account being flagged.

Ah.  You don't say. ::cringes::  I think I've done this three times, at most, but I feel like an asshole.  Sorry!  Sorry ladies!  I don't know if it was the morning fog or just the general anxiety of asking someone to read a book I've written or whatever combo, but I'm sorry, I wasn't ignoring it, I was completely flaking out.  So that's fun.

I'm still learning how to do this (promotion).  And frankly, my prior method of just doing nothing is looking kind of sweet right now.  (That is the sound of a very long sigh you are hearing).

On a slightly related note, if you have reviewed my book and haven't heard back from me about it, it's because I don't read them at all, good or bad--I have someone else read them, once, in a nice big pile, and pick out what I can emotionally handle hearing (or what complaints keep coming up in a practical sense, like editing glitches or the like).  There's not a lot, to be honest, I can handle.*  I'm very good at internalizing everything, which is terrible for a writer.  Instead, I try to acknowledge the incredible service reviewers do writers and other readers in my approach, and I am sincerely grateful for the kindness of looking at a work that might not have grabbed you if you just stumbled across it on a shelf.  This is doubled for self-published and MC/IR novels.  Thank you so much!

UPDATE 9/20/16: So far I've gone through this process twice--once to get some numbers on my reviews in order to ask for more reviews, and again because I am neurotic.  I would like to very much thank the many patient, incredibly kind people who review and help authors with promotion--more and more show up every day, from other authors to people who swear they will never write and just do this out of the goodness of their hearts.  Thanks for looking out for readers; if you hate my book and I send another cheery email asking you to review a new one, please know that I'm probably not aware you're not interested and don't mean any harm, and also that I really, really appreciate you looking out for other readers.  I'm a reader.  I rely on thorough reviews too.  Thank you for the time you spent on my book, and every book.

*This goes about triply for Galaxy of Scars, which took four years to write and contains about 80% of my guts.  I cannot handle.  I'm a mess when it comes to that book, no lie.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

ARe's Great Big Sale

ARe is having a ginormous sale--if you've got a book you've been scoping and have been waiting to grab it on sale, this is probably a short cut.  Check out the details on the site; they have an Android and an iTunes App also, if you read on different platforms.  I'm going to buy some stuff now, good hunting--

Friday, August 19, 2016

A Galaxy of Scars is UP!

It's done!  It's over, finita, you can find my new book here and here and here and even here.  If I'm really lucky, it'll make it over to apple and in print some time next week.  High five!  Feel free to review it and send it to all your besties and buy extra copies to give to strangers at airports.  What?  Is that weird?

Thank you again to Renee Lewin, book designer extraordinaire.  Thanks again to the Russians that read my blog, if not my books--I less than three you.  I am going to go back into internet hibernation, but still.  <3.

What else?

So many songs informed this book.  Here is a partial playlist, related to each character, without any chronological or other kind of order (I'm sure, if you're interested, you will figure out which relates to whom):

Cannibal Ox, The F Word
Beyonce's Crazy in Love--both the original and the sexy re-make for that movie I forgot the name of
and also of course the cover by Kadebostany
The Glitch Mob, Drink the Sea (album)
Robbie Robertson, Broken Arrow
Pet Robot, I'm Alive
El-P, Time is Out of Joint
Lucero, Slow Dancing
Outkast, Elevators
Warpaint, Billie Holiday
Milo Greene, Autumn Tree
John Legend, Made to Love--NPR's Tiny Desk version is the best, just saying
Jeff Buckley
Fantasia, Without Me
Scream Club, And You Belong
Miguel, Sure Thing
Lauryn Hill, Sweetest Thing
Giles Apap and the Transylvania Mountain Boys, Valse Triste
Grizzly Bear, Ready, Able
Method Man and Mary J, You're All I Need
The Mighty Hannibal, The Right to Love You
Rolling Stones, Miss You
The Walkmen, We've Been Had
Justin Timberlake featuring TI, My Love
The Toadies, I Want Your Love
Estelle, American Boy and Come Over, though not back to back, come on
Lissie, Everywhere I Go
Mary J. Blige with that scrub, Wyclef, 9-1-1
The Platters, I Only Have Eyes
Foxy Brown, Candy
That Mr. Little Jean's cover of The Suburbs
The Pixies, Hey
Erykah Badu... I mean.  Yes, just Erykah Badu, but perhaps with a special emphasis on her spot with the Roots, You Got Me
Enon, Cruel

Should I keep going?  I guess it's my blog, I can do what I want.  Here ya go, my Russian friends:

Meshell N'Degeocello, Bitter (and again, the whole rest of that album, really)*
Lorn, Acid Rain
The Band, It Makes No Difference
Amanda Palmer and the Grand Theft Orchestra, The Killing Type
Jason Molina, Lioness
and for the honeymoon sequence, Magic City Hippies, Fanfare and Slowly by Tricky.

*Yes.  I am old.  I say 'albums.'

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Is it a lie if it's unintentionally untrue?

I'm not sure, myself.  At any rate, Galaxy of Scars will be published this summer, and it is a whopper.  It's huge.  Gigantic.  Enormous.  And hopefully that will be alright.

I've had a lot of tough talks with myself about this book.  It is a lot of things I've never been particularly comfortable with, being a novel, foremost, and very cathartic, secondly.  It is absolutely a means of exercising some demons, without a doubt, which by nature also makes it self-indulgent and potentially rubbish.  But I'm publishing it anyway.  Because that is my nature.

I have a lot in common with all of these characters; I'm not a Richmond native, I wasn't born there, I lived there for 2 decades and made a break for it in my mid-twenties--so this gives me some things in common with some characters, others with others.  The reason this book exists at all is that I was also a big, white weirdo who was deeply in love with a beautiful black woman that ran off to New York and went to school as a genius prodigy while I stayed back in sweaty ole RVa and lost my mind.  That was a normal thing, in Richmond, at the time.  There were a lot of us in that situation.  We should have formed a club to manage our dysfunction, but instead I waited fifteen years to write a giant book about the feelings involved.  Catharsis!  This was also during the time when Richmond was murder capital of the United States, and I knew some people who were wonderful and who were murdered, senselessly.  I knew some murderers too, and that erases none of the sadness or senselessness of murder.  I hated the racism and poverty and gutting desperation associated with all of that death.  And this book is about that too, a little bit, or maybe a lot, because anything that talks about a real relationship in Richmond in 1998 is going to have to talk about that, particularly if it involves a couple made of black and white partners.  And I wanted this romance to be a bit real, the way the feelings I needed to sort through are very real; I wanted it to be mysterious, if not a mystery, I wanted all of the major players to be black, and I wanted it to be good.  Damn good.  But I loved it so much and was so emotionally invested that it might not be, and I will never know.

That is basically a great argument both against and for independent publishing.  On we go.

So I'm aiming for the end of July, and then I will probably sink back into hibernation; I have a couple other things I'm working on--the last "chapter" of the Harder series, a story about cousins who act like sisters who are bi-polar and B movie actresses, respectively, and the ever-expanding Mercyverse, which I will probably all publish at once (that's like 12 short stories and 4 novels, at this count, so no idea when that would be)... And this really dark fantasy trilogy about colonialism and mortality.  That's also going to be a while.  There's lots of sex in that one though,  Eh.  Anyway.

That is what I'm doing with my summer, Internet.  I hope you're good.

Look for that giant cathartic mess of a book at the end of July!  I hope it's good too.

Monday, June 15, 2015

It's been a long time, I shouldn't have left you... Without a weird blog post to step to--

Or something.  Anyway.

Just a head's up--Galaxy of Scars will be published this fall (that's right, I actually finished another book) and if you're crazy fiending to read some of my nonsense in the meantime, I'm still writing about feminism on Supernatural on my other blog.

Aloha, imaginary friends, and be good to yourselves.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

So... I'm writing another book.

 I mention it to ask about ARCs.  If anyone is interested in reading a MC/IR romance/suspense-ish that kinda reads a bit more like literary fiction with an erotic undercurrent or something it's-hard-to-describe-your-own-book... Let me know.  First three comers will be accepted, apologies to all else.  The book should be ready to send out sometime late in November, maybe December, and I would appreciate honest reviews published on blogs, amazon, goodreads, etc.

The all too brief summary I have up right now is: When her brother is murdered, successful but spiritually starved film-maker Imani returns home for the first time in years, determined to uncover the truth. The prime suspect is her brother's best friend, and Imani's first love--Roman O'Malley, a contender for UFC heavy weight champion. Is it possible to right the wrongs of the past?  Doesn't quite do it justice, but it fits for an informal intro.

Head's up: if you are not comfortable with epic love stories filled with angst, heavy sociopolitical commentary, character deaths, or MC/IR romance in general, this is not a good fit for you.  I would love someone who is interested in all of the above to get a look, though.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Update: Activism and also, I am Crazypants with Ambitions

So, I have lost my mind again and am committing to a ridiculous, unrewarding task that is sure to end in tears and (probably) bloodshed: I started a blog that will have an episode by episode feminist critique of the show Supernatural.

Also, since if you're going to commit to insanity you should just go whole hog, I'm reviewing Horror movies on another new blog with my lady eyeballs here.  I can't help it.  This probably should've been the blog I started in the beginning, but, hey, live and learnmake stupid mistakes and live again.

Also also: this was in my inbox, I apologize for the late notice, and please forward accordingly:

A Training for Advocates and Protective Mothers
Friday, May 9th, 10am to 4pm
George Washington University Law School
Moot Court Room 101, Lerner Hall, 20th and H Streets
2000 H Street, NW, Washington, DC 20052
The NCADV and Battered Mothers Custody Conference will sponsor an advocate training designed to help protective mothers.  The training will occur on Friday, May 9 at George Washington University Law School from 10 AM-4 PM.  The law school is located at 20th and H St. NW in Washington, DC.  This is a critical issue to the battered women's movement because the success of abusers in manipulating the custody courts to regain control over their victims has undermined our work to prevent DV and reversed the downward trend for DV homicides.  We are excited that new research, especially the ACE research and Saunders' study is now available to help reverse the disturbing trends in the custody courts' response to DV.

During the morning session, Barry Goldstein will share information about current scientific research that demonstrates the enormous health risks to children exposed to DV and how the inadequate training and other flaws in the courts' response to complaints about DV and direct child abuse frequently result in courts disbelieving or minimizing true allegations of abuse.  Rita Smith will discuss the best ways for advocates to help protective mothers facing common abuser custody tactics.  Kathleen Russell will offer ideas for informing the community about the failure to protect children in DV custody cases and the best ways to seek the needed reforms.

The afternoon session will provide advocates with training to obtain certification as an expert witness in DV. Although the courts have tended to look to mental health professionals for DV expertise, which is one of the reasons they get so many cases wrong, the Saunders' study from the US Dept. of Justice confirmed what should be obvious that DV advocates have exactly the training and experience in DV that courts need to recognize and respond effectively to DV custody cases.  Advocates will learn the requirements to be qualified as an expert witness, how to answer questions from supportive and hostile attorneys, current research that can support protective moms and the importance of the experience advocates already possess.  Training of advocates to be expert witnesses will give protective mothers access to genuine DV experts and help educate court professionals about information that is critical to protecting children.

The training is free and advocates can participate in all or part of the training.  There is a $10 fee for the certificate from the NCADV and BMCC.  For more information check out the BMCC web site at   

Please register so that we have an idea how many advocates will be attending.   

Any questions can be directed to Barry Goldstein at   

The training is part of a group of activities that include the Battered Mother's Custody Conferenceon Saturday the 10th, rallies on Mothers' Day the 11th and a Congressional Briefing and lobbying on Monday the 11th.