Tears and Anger

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I can’t. I won’t go in there. Not with them. Not in there. Not ever again. There is suppose to be people in every child’s life that take care of them. A mother and a father. Two separate beings whose love of their child transcends everything. They will cross heaven and earth for their child. For their child they will do everything to provide for the happiness of their offspring.eyes

I was born with a sense of destiny. I know what I want and what I need. Give me that one thing then I will be the nice and respectable young woman you want. What I don’t want is to tell my business to another social worker,counselor or PH.D. jerk.

They couldn’t satisfy the volcano inside of me. My English teacher might be proud of me for that metaphor. Maybe I could write a poem about my internal rage volcano and get some extra credit. Then I would have to admit that I understand some poetry. Not that boring shit that she reads to us, but other stuff. My secret stuff and yes I know that I am suppose to read along with her, but I don’t feel like it.

Just like I don’t have time to sit here and listen to everyone judging me, including my English teacher who now knows more of my business than she should. Everyone who thinks they know more about me then I do. They can’t. I am not angry because I have daddy issues or think I am always right.  I am angry at how unfair life is. Angry at the lies that have been sold to me.

It doesn’t come from my mother who isn’t so much angry as she is insane. That isn’t a hyperbole. She really is crazy. It runs in the family. Five generations of schizophrenic fun waiting for some brain doctor to study us and find nothing, because they don’t have any answers. Never have and never will.

Mom is gone. There is only one person who can help me. The man who has been both father and mother to me. The man who isn’t listening to me now as I shout. It isn’t a issue. It isn’t an issue. But if I am crying there is an issue. And I shouldn’t be dismissed. Every time, I am angry I am dismissed told to be grateful for what I have.  All I need to do is finish school, but I am not going to be happy until I have a car, a job and a place of my own. Or I am heard. I am tired of waiting. I don’t want to go to school after this twelve year sentence is over.

Things are switching around in my mind. Every time I am mad. Every time I feel like I am going to explode. They, he, brings up my mother and her family.  Another lie. Another shoveling of the truth off to someone else. The truth is I need to be heard and no one but my daddy should be telling me what to do.

No one, not even his wife . It doesn’t matter that she has taken care of me since I was kid. She isn’t my mother. She isn’t my mother. I have nothing to lose. Nothing.

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If you’d like more information on Lucinda’s work subscribe to this blog, follow her o nTwitter or like her page on Facebook.  Her new novella, Blood Child is available onAmazon.

An Open Apology

There you were

nervous shaking

keeping it cool

while your fingers

ran over and over

the cash in your palm

the hard earned benjamins in your pocket

You knew it was close

you tried to do the math

all in your head

figure it out

tax included.

 

In the end,

you were one jar

of double chocolate

peanutbutter short

 

You didn’t even sigh

or make excuses

just looked at the totals

and had the clerk take it

 

You apologized with your eyes

saying sorry for your lack of cash

sorry for the condition of your financials

sorry for something you didn’t have control of

in that moment of time

 

I wanted to yell

STOP

Have you cease your apologize

and pay for that jar

of double chocolate

peanut butter

tax included

 

But you were out the door

before I could find the words

out of the parking lot before

anyone had a moment to

consider who that jar was really for

or why you were apologizing for

something beyond your control

 

I am sorry because I have been there

and might be there again

sooner than I like to think

and know how hard it is to keep all the numbers

in your head

making sure the tax is included.

How the dialogue goes in

your head as the numbers keep adding up

and up

and up

and one decimal up

one can of tuna fish

or bagels too much

and you suddenly feel the need to explain

why you only have

$31.00 in your pocket

and bank account to back you up

 

Character Revelations

This weekend, I learned that my protagonist doesn’t like air conditioning and habitually collects pennies. Strangely this is the hump that I know I have been waiting to cross. After months of wrestling with Rae, I now know enough to go forward with the story and stop tinkering with it. She is finally her own creature and not a reflection of all my favorite female characters. I feared that her story wasn’t going to be genuine and unique.

I read the books that I want to write, but the biggest fear that I have is that my books are going to get lost in the crowd because they are too much like my favorites. I want to create my own stories and worlds. This summer, I have also been working on some research to help give the worlds I create more flavor.

I have to thank my friend, Kathy, for messing me in the middle of night about her own tinkering dilemma and the ensuing conversation. I needed it.

Now, I am back at it. Thirty thousand words in and a killer to catch.

 

Killing Elsa

Elsa was caught in a nightmare. Everywhere she went they knew her. Called her by name, knew her favorite color and foods, and always they tried to hug her. She hated hugs. Hated all of the attention.  College in England was just what she needed. She needed to go some place where her fame would not be impressive. She thought of going to France, but her accent had always been horrible. There was no desire in her soul to be tormented over an accent when there was so much better material in her film catalog.  She would have been ready to go in just three short weeks. Everything was being handled by her manager. Everett Millstone was making a hefty fee as Elsa Bravo’s manager. His fee was doubled by her parent’s generous bribes.

She cursed her father for years for putting her on that damn show. She was America’s sweetheart for ten years. Ten miserable years for her. Ten years of smiling and sing with her bratty sister. Ten years of her parents lining their pockets and skimming money from their trust fund. It wasn’t enough for them. No matter how many deals they made, it wasn’t enough. Ten years of flying their kids around the world and back had made them rich on paper. The greedy, however, are always hungry.

Elsa was currently cursing her father for putting her in the trunk of his Jag.  She couldn’t fault his reasoning, although it was definitely a cliche, kidnapping and killing your own child to get the insurance money and the money in the trust fund would automatically go to the grieving parents. They had already decided on wearing black for a year after the body had been found. It was difficult for Elsa’s mother not to begin shopping for her mourning wardrobe immediately upon hatching their plan.

They looked incredibly lovely in their newly purchased ensembles in court and were properly horrify at the discovery of her body. Even dead,everyone knew her. And they won’t let it go…

If you’d like more information on Lucinda’s work subscribe to this blog, follow her on Twitter or like her page on Facebook.  Her new novella, Blood Child is available onAmazon.

 

Eight things

Months ago, I was tagged to write one of those things you didn’t know about me posts.  I delayed, procrastinated and then finally decided to turn it into a blog. And then I delayed, procrastinated and repeated until today.

Sorry, Lisa A. that it took me so long to do this.

And thank you for giving me something to help work my way out of my current writing funk.

1) Wishlist Obsessed ~ When I want to shop and can’t, I make wishlists on Amazon and now Modcloth. It distracts that party of my brain that keeps attempting to destroy my budget.  Sometimes it back fires when friends find these lists and obtain for me the item desired in a moment of on-line passion which seemed like a good idea at the time.  Luckily it has only produced one embarrassing Yuletide moment when I didn’t know what the item was.

2) Gardening Reduces My Stress ~ Taking care plants or playing in the dirt has always been soothing for me.  I like having dirt under my nails and grass between my toes.garden4

3) Complaining LessI am working on complaining less and being grateful for all the things I have in my life.  This isn’t so much of a goal as it a life philosophy. And you know what I am really happier than I was a year ago. My depression is still with me, but it has less power.

4) Dancing ~ I love to dance, but going to clubs for me is scary so I haven’t been out to one in a long time.  My anxiety makes it difficult for me to go out as much as I would like especially if I think people will be looking at me.  I still dance nearly everyday, just not when people are looking. This also makes attending dance class tricky.

5) Reading ~ I re-read the Anita Blake series from start to finish at least once a year. Twice if I a new book comes out.  Currently, I am re-reading Skin Trade before I read Dead Ice. There are books in every room of my house and a special shelf for my signed books. DSC_1640

6) Skulls ~ I have a collection of skulls which my mother started when I was a teenager.  I still have that skull pendant that she and Poppa gave me. At one point, we all had one. Now I think I am the only one who managed to keep hold of it over the the years. Being a pack rat helps. There are probably thirty or more skulls in the collection. They also remind me that life is precious and fragile. DSC_1643

7) Year-round Halloween ~ If you come in my house, you will notice right away that something a bit spooky is going on. This has lead some people to speculate that I never put my Halloween decorations away. This isn’t true. There are five boxes in storage that prove otherwise.

8) Minister ~ I have been an ordained minister for the last sixteen years.  It all started in college when some friends asked me to marry them. Since then I have officiated at over a dozen weddings, funerals and naming ceremonies. It has been one of the greatest blessings of my life to watch couples begin their lives together and to stand with families as they say goodbye to their love ones.

 

Why Support Patreon?

Last month my royalties for my book, Blood Child, were less than $5.00.  That’s right. I made less than a fiver for a book that took me nearly two years to produce, not including the time it took to write. And you know what I am overjoyed… seriously. I am happy about it. My writing is bringing in money.Is it the amount that I need to quit my day job or even one of my second jobs? No, but it means that people are buying my work which makes me smile. It takes a long time to build an audience/fan base.

So why do I support Patreon? Why I am writing this to convince you to support it? It is simple. It takes time to produce art whether it is music, books or a mural. It takes time to perfect the skills that make that art something of beauty and value. There is value in an artist’s ability to create. Patreon  is a crowd funding platform that allows artists and patrons to interact and engage.  Like in days of old, Patrons are treated to exclusive content from the artists as well as sneak peeks on new projects. Patreon says that it is empowering a new generation content creators.

Amanda Palmer 's photo from her famous Kickstarter campaign -

Amanda Palmer ‘s photo from her famous Kickstarter campaign -Now, Palmer is on Patreon.

That’s the key phrase, content creators, artists of all types create content that we enjoy. We, the patrons, pay them for that content. Just like we buy songs on i-Tunes or books on Amazon, we can buy content from our favorite artists. The difference is that you are contributing to that content being created. You are helping your favorite artist have the time to create their content. You are contributing to the art you love. You are giving them the breathing room that they need to create.And all the while you are communicating with them and creating a community.

Stant Litore

Stant Litore- Master Storyteller

Stant Litore was the first person that I have supported on Patreon.  His goals were small and have grown with the support of the community he has help to build. He gives inside looks into his writing process, the ups and downs of the writing life as well as what they funds have helped do for him and his family.

In his words, “it puts the community back in storytelling. Patreon is perfect for those writers and readers who are very social. It lets readers get involved in the process and lets writers share more of the process with readers. It takes us back to when telling stories was something that happened around a community fire, rather than in an isolated study. It also represents an opportunity for readers to fund more of the work they like most and for writers to make a more sustainable income.”

That sustainable income allows patrons to get more of the content that they want. It is a win-win for artists and other content creators. I support Patreon not as a writer, but a reader and lover of music and games. I support it because it inspires me to continue creating. Inspiring me to keep working through the all obstacles in front of me.

These are the people that are currently inspiring me – Amanda Palmer, Stant Litore and The Galaxy Next Door . Check it out…

*A special thank to Stant Litore for taking the time out of his schedule to talk to me. Check out his books on Amazon.

A poem without a name

Stop the madness

the relentless drive to

be comfortable

there is no comfort

no lasting bit of piece

no moment that will take away

all the time spent being abused

by myself or others

so many of the scars

inflicted upon our souls

are self-inflicted

Stop the madness

do more with less

and give up access

to the world of want

Want leads to desire and

desire to suffering

Currently, this poem has no name.  I would love suggesting from readers.  Submit yours below. Please and thank you. 

Manic Monday ~ Why I Am Staying?

There are brighter days on the horizon.

There are brighter days on the horizon.

Last Monday, I spoke about why I am going to be leaving my current teaching position and seeking something new and healthier.  Today, I want to talk about the good things in my life and why I am not leaving everything behind and heading for the hills.

The work stress has been counter-balanced by a great deal of happy.  Ironically, it was the happy that made me realize that I didn’t want to be unhappy and stressed so much at work.  I worked for over a year to earn a promotion that I am not even being considered for and at the end of the day, I am not longer sure I want it. I want time to experience life; to actually living it.

And you know what?

I have been.  In the last year, I have been to out and about more than I was in the past couple of years. In February, I went to see Amanda Palmer and Neil Gaiman in Tampa. In March,  I escaped the gravity well of Florida and made it to Virginia for a wedding.  And April, I was overjoyed to be able to reconnect with a dear friend. I have been out to the movies and chilling with friends and family more. I love being able to hang out with my nieces and nephews.

My sister and I are closer than ever and it is awesome.

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Writing and letting my muse guide me…

I have three different book projects going and am taking some classes on Coursea. Two of which are really research for future books.

There are good things and great people in my world.

So I am staying here on this blog, writing, loving and learning.

Thanks for listening.

Love,

Lu

 

Manic Mondays or Why I am Leaving….

Lately all my days are have been intensely crazy as I try and navigate from the life I have to the life I want. A life where there is more time to write and enjoy with my family and friends. So after eight years in the classroom, I have decided to leave.  It isn’t that I don’t love teaching or my students. I love my profession and my students have keep me going day after day through the stress of being a teacher in the era of Common Core and accountability. It has kept me going through the politics that invaded my school.

Still after much thought, I have come to the conclusion that I am burnt out.

I am fried beyond belief. I can’t do it anymore and be effective in the classroom.  My days as a teacher have never ended at 3:31 in the afternoon, but this year they don’t end on Friday and the weeks of preparing and working through the weekends. Even my “breaks” have been filled with either on lesson plans or other school related projects or working a second and third jobs. It has been exhausting. Financially, I am doing better.  I am at least gripping solid ground. But, mentally, I am so exhausted that I find myself dragging every day.

I know I am burnt out on the constant pile of work and never ending feeling like I am not doing my job right.

So what to do.

Find a new job or position in education.

Yes, teaching is a calling, but after eight years in the classroom. I am tired of being dumped on. Tired of being praised for my work on one hand, but criticized for how well I am juggling everything.  Observations are dog and pony shows where you trot out what the administrator wants to see and hope they like you and don’t have something to prove. I once got a low score because I didn’t say “this is important” during a lesson on critical thinking.  Another time, I was criticized for misspelling something even though I turned it into a teaching moment for my students. Friends have been given needs improvement scores even when their students aced the state tests.

The quest for data on everything has been particular hard on me. There is no time to really teach my students. No time to teach them to love my English or learning. Just time to go from one test to the next or in my case one meeting to another.

And this year, I was tossed backwards in a fight. This year, I woke up in the middle of the night by a panic attack after dreaming about school. I don’t trust my administration to have my back and work with me to help my students. I feel like the county that I work for doesn’t care about my health just their numbers.

I am tired of being told you will do this and this in your classroom and you are a great teacher, but why aren’t you doing this? And surely you can do this as well. I work and work and my administration praises me, but does not promote me. They talk about it. Even say they are training me for it.  And then give the job to someone else.  I was never even spoken to about the latest opening (or given an interviewed)  even after expressing an interest and told on more than one occasion that I had it.  It was a slap in the face to learn that someone else would be assuming the position and becoming my boss. (If I make it to the next school year, I won’t take on additional duties.)

I am tired of working three jobs to pay bills and still failing to build something for my future. When countries slash budgets, teachers make up for it out of their wallet. I don’t need to work harder which is what I have been doing. I need less work. Ironically, with the start of summer school I will be working longer days.

I have lost the spark that I had when I first started teaching  and I feel like there isn’t enough time or energy to recover it.

So, I am working my resume, looking at teaching other subjects (English is a beast) and working on graduate school. It is time for me to go and when I do I know I will be crying because I love my students. I love them enough not to do this to them any more. I can’t give them my best. I haven’t been giving them my best for a while.

They deserve better and so do I.