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  • Am I ever going to get over paging through the hard copy of my book? The answer is no.

    I should also FINALLY have a dustjacket hardcover soon and I'm so so excited.

  • Sigh.

    I'm about 60% into Jessica Knoll's Bright Young Women, and this would be a five-star read for me, but unfortunately, it's significantly kneecapped by being a 1 for 1 retelling of Bundy. Some reviews I've scanned tell me the issue isn't going to get better, and apparently, she doesn't even change some of the victims' names. That's really not okay, and where I draw the line. I had the same issue with the Emily Bronte "biopic," where it was well done as a movie but I couldn't like it knowing that it was disingenuous.

    I was so excited to read this book because of the 1970s setting, crime thriller and fictional retellings of real events are fine (I mean, this is what I do with Eagle Rock) you have to strike a balance. What the author does in this book would be like if I called Margaret Kelly Sharon Tate but my Sharon Tate was a 25-year-old redheaded Olympic swimmer engaged to a Black photographer who died in 1971.

    Jessica, at least make some characters some composites. Change details. Anything. It's been a while since I've done a Bundy deep dive, but I had glanced at one review that said "Bundy retelling" and I just assumed it was to Bundy what Eagle Rock is to the Manson Murders, but I even recognized it even from the passing details (like really, right down to him being from Vermont and representing himself at trial, escaping from prison, the states involved, etc)

    While I do appreciate the effort to deglamorize Bundy and only calling him "The Defendant", that narrative choice would be a lot more powerful if she'd fictionalized more and included elements from other serial killers. The point she's trying to make, about how we remember his name but not the victims, is a good one, but again, it just would have been so much better if it wasn't a 1-for-1.

    For that matter, if it's otherwise sticking so close too Bundy, why are completely erasing Liz Kloepfer from this narrative? It's disingenuous to call Bundy an incel when he wasn't. I think it was in the Netflix doc where she was interviewed a fair bit and it sounded like they had a normal if terse relationship.
    While I can't speak for the narrative that he was always just a creep and people always sensed something off about him, actually, I think multiple things can be true at once. I've seen and heard clips of Bundy. He was charismatic. Multiple things can be true at once, and by ignoring that, Knoll is simplifying the narrative just as much as the media she criticizes.

    I do finally want to read Liz's memoir as an anecdote to this though. There was also something Bundy said in the Netflix doc about how "he could never hurt Liz," "he had to protect Liz," etc that always interested me because it makes you wonder how one person could have such an extreme level of cognitive dissonance.

    ... Also, Knoll has some gall to throw shade at Helter Skelter (the book) in this story. It makes me wonder if she's even read it. The book is 700 pages long in part because Bugliosi does spend extensive time with the girls, cataloging his interviews with them. Most importantly, he makes an effort to understand them. People love to criticize Bugliosi because of the strings he pulled in the courtroom, but it got Manson in prison, didn't it?

    Anyway, Emma Cline's The Girls, which I love, is also more of a 1 for 1 retelling of Manson than what I did with Eagle Rock, but I think it works because it essentially creates wholly fictional characters to serve the same functions as the real people involved and is more about the interpersonal relationships.

    I'm really, really trying to love some of the recent bestsellers in my genre, and I don't know what it says about me as a person that my favorite book by far that I've read this year is a book from 1847.

  • Well, I have 15 kindle pre-orders and 20 print pre-orders that I've done through direct sales. The latter won't affect my stats but it still puts me at 35 sales. Uh... you know how the vast majority of self-published books sell under 100 copies?


  • If impostor syndrome could stop screaming at me every time I try to sit down to write a new short story, that would be great.

  • LadyMysterio Awesome!
    May 17, 2024

  • Well, I just got my first one star, and 1) that wasn't so bad 2) I feel better now that it's happened. 3) big words big words big words

    I've made it now. 😎


  • The fact that this was uploaded yesterday isn't a coincidence either. Nope.

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  • I'm choosing to believe it's not a coincidence that I saw this video in my suggestions as soon as I logged into YouTube as soon as I finished recording, and even less so that it uploaded yesterday. If there was ever a sign from the universe, I'd think this was it. If you know, you know.

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  • Today I finished recording the audiobook.

    (I will 1000% have pickups to do) but the emotional release hit me as soon as I stopped.

    I think it's the catharsis of knowing I've done (almost!) all I can for these characters, and now... it's not goodbye... just sending them off into the world. They belong to you, now.


    Messenger You're doing so much good work in non-conducive environments <3
    May 13, 2024

  • I love when I see people that look like my characters out in the wild, and there's even an extra layer of cool when you see them in an environment where they'd actually be. IE, they're in LA in the story and would totally go to something like the thing I was at today.

    Case in point: I saw Kelsey and Angie at a food festival thing today. Their fashion, looks, and vibes were perfect. Kelsey totally saw me staring at her but I want to be like "I'm sorry you and your girlfriend are totally dead ringers for these fake people I created in my head" XD

    This could be just a reflection of how when your mind is on something you notice it more, or it's just a little synchronicity 🩷

  • Just recorded 3 chapters for a total of 42 pages today. I want to get this thing done ASAP, but realized the next couple of chapters are going to be vocally strenuous for me and I should probably pace myself.

    We are officially in the πŸ‘ trouble πŸ‘ in πŸ‘ paradise πŸ‘ era (ie when these two can't go 2 seconds without getting into a fight). I had a taste of it in Chapter 16 when they have their first screaming match.... and that was fuuuun.

    Cannot wait for this thing to come together. It's been a mountain climb on top of a mountain climb FOR SURE.

  • What I love about this story is I'm in the stage of it where I can experience it as a reader, and love it as a reader. But it's also something beyond that since I'm embodying Marcy for the sake of this audiobook and telling her story through her voice as close as I can manage it. I cannot WAIT for this audio to be in the can, I must have recorded roughly 12.5 hours already (that's just the raw audio, the book isn't going to be that long) and have about that much to go

    (that's not counting pickups and however extensive they may be we'll cross that bridge when we come to it)

    And yeah... I'm excited about this launch.


  • So the girl that was Juliet in the awful production I was in a while back (that was all a fever dream, honestly) just posted a cast list saying me "Me and [Boyfriend] are finally acting in a show together!"

    ... Um, you and your boyfriend were both in R&J?

    That made me giggle because I guess they're also in the school of "this doesn't count and we don't we speak of it" XD

    Just like I was totally only in two shows in 2022.

    Snoink Has anybody in the comments said anything??
    May 3, 2024

    Elinor Last I checked, no XD
    May 3, 2024

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  • I've been all over the place lately and I keep meaning to share here that I've finally found my first five star read of 2024 - Anne Bronte's Agnes Grey. There's not a wrong answer to "favorite Bronte sisters book" but this book was really, really good. I can see it not being everyone's favorite but it was one of those books that hit me right at exactly the right time. It feels like the universe said "you need this story in your life right now."

    It might not be as well known as her sisters' works because it's much simpler, and a small story, but that's where the book finds its power. I also deeply relate to Agnes for so many reasons, and the story has stayed with me in the days since I've finished.

    I didn't have to force myself to dig for stuff I enjoyed like with every other book I've read this year, or wrestle with conflicted feelings. This story just effortlessly worked its magic. It is kind of funny to me that I've been trying to make an active effort to read recent stuff (ie the current market) and my favorite book all year is one from 1847. But a good story is a good story, and the fact that it's so old makes it even more remarkable. People might change the way they express themselves and dress and develop new technology, but what they feel doesn't change.

    There's always a special relationship I have with art that makes me feel less alone, and this book certainly did that for me.

    β€œIs it likely my life all through will be so clouded? Is it not possible that God may hear my prayers, disperse these gloomy shadows, and grant me some beams of heaven's sushine yet? Will He entirely deny to me those blessings which are so freely given to others, who neither ask them nor acknowledge them when received? May I not still hope and trust?”

    (As a sidebar... imagine having so much creative talent in one family. That must have been remarkable to behold.)

    BluesClues Ooh I haven't read this one! I might have to try it out if I get some time this summer. I think the only one of Anne's I've read is The Tenant of Wildfell Hall
    May 3, 2024

  • Just got my first 3 star review that was literally just a description of the main spoiler. I know at some point I'm going to need to pull away from GR,but I'm still trying mid-ARC campaign so I think I have a little leeway. Having a full scale of ratings will definitely help my book seem like it's reaching enough people, and anyway yeah I'm ready for it to be June 26th.

how can i live laugh love in these conditions
— Orion42