Thursday, June 30, 2011

Pride post/rant post

Here are some things that PISS ME OFF:

1) abuse of power
2) abuse of power
3) abuse of power

Also: 4) discrimination, which is abuse of power, and 5) violence, which is also abuse of power

You get where I'm going with this.

I bring this up because it's Pride month (the last day of), and because I write books with LGBTQ themes (novels #1, 2, and 4). Also because I have heaps of friends and family in the community, so it's a community I support and love and have fun with.

Also, even more importantly: there is no good reason NOT to be an ally.

Seriously, friends--show me one good reason. One founded, considered, critically thought out reason not to be an ally to this community--or any other community that can benefit from your support and love. We are in this together, people. Be supportive. If you believe in humans, if you like being a human, if you like other humans to be happy, be an ally--to anyone, to everyone.

AND--put your allied thoughts into action, and get out there and do allied things. Go visit the Stonewall Inn (see above) and feel the importance of the history there. Or do something local--go volunteer at a shelter where LBGTIQ youth hang out--did you know the suicide rate in teenagers is HIGHEST among this population? Or something even smaller--go smile at your mail carrier. S/he might not be LBGTIQ, but it's a way to start a chain of good things.

Rant over. Happy Pride! And yay for New York and Rhode Island!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Outlaw Boots, pair #8: Geoff Herbach

Friends, meet Geoff Herbach. I made his acquaintance in April, and I was thrilled--I had no idea we had another YA writer in the community (he teaches at the local four-year). He is a cool dude, so I liked him immediately. Then I had the honor of serving on a panel with him at a local literary conference, and by then I was sure he wore Outlaw Boots, so I'm thrilled to have him visit today.

This is Geoff.

This is his book--a boy book! Yaaaaay!

What’s STUPID FAST about? From Geoff’s website: “It’s about a boy. It’s about sports. It’s about being a serious dork. It’s about a paper route. It’s about bullying and the opposite. It’s about a girl. It’s about hair growth. It’s about a little brother. It’s about piano. It’s about a depressed mother. It’s about learning to be who you are. It’s about not hiding.”

This book is right up my alley--and my kid's alley, too. Geoff’s adult book, THE MIRACLE LETTERS OF T. RIMBERG, is also on my to-be-read pile, but STUPID FAST is first. More info about the book is here. And there’s a sequel coming next year! Awesome. Both me and my kid will be grateful.

Without further ado, here's why Geoff wears Outlaw Boots:

Who's your most outlaw character (in any book)--why?
13-year-old Andrew in Stupid Fast. He burns all of his clothes, shaves his head, and dresses like a pirate!

Are you an outlaw too? How do you know?

I shoplift! Just kidding. I write what I think is important, even if it's rough.

What kind of shoes does your outlaw wear (you or your character--maybe outlaw boots?)?

I had some badass combat boots that I wore through college. The fell apart. Now I wear speedy track shoes.

Pirate, ninja, nerd, other outlaw title for you/your character:
I would like to be called Geoff the Perplexing and I'd like you all to see me in the coffee shop and to know I'm staring at you.

Best thing about being an outlaw:

Freedom to be as I am, which makes being a freak feel fine.

Favorite outlaw/badass food:
Old School Tacos: Hard shell, seasoning packet, wild-ass cheese all over the place!

Favorite outlaw/badass role model/why:
Kurt Vonnegut. That guy said eff-you to everyone who deserved it, but remained the kindest soul on the planet. Perfect.

My copy arrived about fifteen seconds ago--the post dude just rang the doorbell. Something to read this weekend! Check out STUPID FAST today, and buy one for a young guy who reads. He'll thank you.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Anthology cover!

So, friends--here's the cover of the Debs 09 anthology, out as an e-book later in the year. Look at the author list! Some seriously amazing writers. I feel very blessed to be included.

I also want a dress like this, and a field to goof around in, though I'd probably keep the dress and the field separate. Imagine the sticks and crap that would get caught in the skirt. : \

What's amusing me is this: I keep wondering what Morgan would be wearing if she was sitting on that fence: flip-flops, cut-offs, a t-shirt, and a scowl, or at least a smirk. Not very glamorous. I hope the anthology editors (the wonderful Jessica Verday and Rhonda Stapleton) don't mind her snarky presence.

It's been challenging to write an epilogue to SKY--way more challenging than I expected. I'm getting happier with the results as I go along. Short stories are *hard*. Yowza. Novels have a lot more room to wander around in.

Look for the book in the fall!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Outlaw Boots, Special Edition: Girl with Fuzzy Yellow Slippers

Please know this is not a slam. It is an observation.

I am currently listening to a NYT-bestselling YA (movie rights optioned, I just read), and I'm out of my depth. Good writing, some interesting action, but so far, this book is about virginity, roses, and matching tank tops. One girl drives a Range Rover. It may have gotten to be a NYT-bestselling YA because of the reasons above, which is cool, and it does have a cool premise. But it just doesn't resonate for me.

The narrator is rambling on about popularity right now--we know it when we see it, right, like a lazy eye or porn? (said with upward inflection, of course) She and her besties can get away with stuff, she says, like wearing fuzzy yellow slippers to school.

And I thought: that's the difference between my characters and these characters (aside from the Range Rover and the matching tank tops). My character would wear fuzzy yellow slippers because they mattered to her. She'd do it because they were her grandmother's, and she misses her, or because they were comfy, or because she's depressed as hell and they help her feel better. She'd do it because she would. She'd be COMMITTED to those goddamn slippers, and they wouldn't be "ha ha, look at me aren't I cute?" wear. They'd be part of her.

I'll keep listening, and maybe I'll identify more as time goes along, but I know the book wasn't written for me. I believe in quirk, weirdness, the indie spirit, and funk music. Because of those things, I may never be a NYT-bestselling author. Fair enough. I don't write about popular girls because I wasn't one, and I can't identify. I am the fuzzy yellow slipper-wearer, and I'm OK with that.