Monday, October 10, 2016

Defining a Generation

I tried to stop it, this creeping feeling that I have to say something about the election, but I literally can’t avoid those words anymore. Not after last night.

As a writer, a documenter of the human condition, and a person who generally tries to operate from a place of logic, I feel that sitting back to simply watch it all unfold is, at this brief moment in time, a useless waste of my voice.

So here I am. And here you are too.

Maybe you’re here by mistake. Maybe by some miracle Google actually brought you here through a search and you have no idea what this blog is all about, who I am, how long I’ve been sharing my snarky opinion with the interwebs.

Or maybe you’re one of the people I know and love and you’re going to agree with everything I say here because we have similar views on the world and the people who inhabit this planet.

Regardless of who you are and what your political views might be, I hope you’ll stick with me through to the end and leave an informed comment if you should choose. I welcome debate. I do not tolerate hate, bullying, or meme-based “facts.”

While watching the debate last night nothing particularly mind blowing or shocking occurred. He talked, she talked, he lied, she tried not to laugh, she attempted to make points, he stalked around interrupting her at any chance he got, she tried to at least touch on some type of answer to the questions the audience members asked (sometimes), he proved he has no idea where or what Syria/Aleppo are and gave an actual answer to only one question all night (despite repeated attempts by both moderators to force his hand)– what do you respect in the other candidate.

As I listened to the words pour out of their mouths, I started doing math. Someone who is just eligible to vote today was born in 1998. Two years before Bill Clinton was voted out of the presidency.

Wow. Way to make myself feel even older.

Because the first term for, then Governor, Clinton was my first chance to vote. 1992. I was 19 years old. It feels like a freaking lifetime ago now but, still, I can remember my level of excitement at having the chance to vote in the next POTUS election.

My vote mattered! I was making a difference!

And you bet your ass I voted for Bill.

Because he was progressive. He was just a dude who thought he could unite our country under a common goal of reducing our deficit and lightening the hell up. Loosening the collar we’d tightened around ourselves to the point of a total loss of American air. He wanted to show that a President could be a human. That they could bring back fun.

And I was 19. That’s pretty much all I cared about or knew about at that age.

He seemed more like me, an average person with issues of my own, not just an old rich guy I couldn’t even understand or relate to. Not a guy who I felt fearful he could lose it one night and push “the button.”

I felt so confident that he could fix our country. Though, at 19, I had no idea what was even broken about it. I just knew he sounded really sure of himself and his eyes told us he gave a shit.

Because, and I’m being brutally honest here, I didn’t know a freaking thing about politics, how it worked, or what the hell I was doing. But I voted for him and then he won! Imagine how proud I was, that I had something to do with him being elected. I DO make a difference!

After that election I learned about red states, blue states, electoral college, crusty old politicians and how nothing actually happens unless they orchestrate it into existence. I learned my vote doesn’t matter as much as I originally thought, that, of course Clinton won my state because I lived in Massachusetts.

Fast forward all these years later to an older and (hopefully) wiser (or at least jaded enough to look at all the facts on both sides of the coin) me. I’m a bleeding heart living in a state that pours red from its very core.

I am the obvious political minority in Arizona. No matter who I vote for other than a Republican my choices are all but guaranteed to lose. There’s no hope for another candidate.

Or is there?

The AZ Republic publically denounced support for the Republican candidate (RC) and threw all their support behind the Democratic candidate (DC) for the first time in over a century.

And that was before RC’s pro-sexual assault tape was released.

But even here in our state where it’s guns for everyone, tent city for criminals, quality public education for nobody (AKA: the polar opposite of the place I grew up) even the Republicans are finally asking “what the actual fuck is wrong with that guy?????”

And with good reason. He has shamed, belittled, marginalized almost everyone on the entire planet with the exception of (hate to say it even if it’s true) rich, white people. And again, I almost hate to say it but at this critical time in our human history we need a leader who actually gives a shit about ALL people, not just the ones who can help that leader make more money or so they can say “I WIN!!!!”

All of us are so wrapped up in the he lied-she lied battle we’re missing the bigger picture.

The human race being the most important point of contention. Because, hello, without humans all that fighting over walls and emails is completely moot.

The Earth’s resources are dwindling, our food supply is being Frankenized, energy options are ignored instead of explored. While they orchestrate this glamorous meme-driven puppet show, the human race is literally imploding and everyone is so busy calling him a misogynist and her a liar, they’re too blinded to notice.

But that brings up a point.

I’d like to share a few definitions for words that have come to mind over the past 6 months or so while watching this debacle unfold because I believe being informed means turning a critical eye on all candidates.

Their pros and cons at being professional con artists.

Democracy - government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system. <-- words to note: vested in the people.

Narcissist - a person who is overly self-involved, and often vain and selfish. <-- every politician with Presidential aspirations because you pretty much have to be one in order to have desire to “run” the free world.

Demagogue - a person, especially an orator or political leader, who gains power and popularity by arousing the emotions, passions, and prejudices of the people. <-- words to note: arousing prejudices.

Egomaniac - psychologically abnormal. <-- for more, see narcissist.

Liar - a person who tells lies. <-- so let’s be honest, everyone’s pants are on fire.

Remorse - deep and painful regret for wrongdoing; compunction. <-- saying sorry doesn’t cut it, you actually have to mean it.

Apology - a written or spoken expression of one's regret, remorse, or sorrow for having insulted, failed, injured, or wronged another. <-- deep and painful regret isn’t something a politician can afford to show otherwise they’re deemed “weak.”

Misogyny - hatred, dislike, or mistrust of women, or prejudice against women. <-- don’t try to tell me this doesn’t apply because the extensive and exhaustive ringer DC has been put through has everything to do with her vagina and sheeple being afraid to admit that’s why they don’t like her.

Fact-check - to confirm the truth of (an assertion made in speech or writing), often as part of the research or editorial process. <-- a useless job in this election because nobody cares if it’s true, just how they feel about the story they read on Facebook, because that is considered research.

Historic –I’m straying from the actual definition to remind everyone that no matter who wins, this election will be historic. One party presents the first nominated female in history. Another party presents the first nominated non-public service member/military member in history. If any of the other parties win their states it would be another historical first.

That is the most important thing to remember in all of this: no matter how uncomfortable you are with change, it’s coming no matter what so suck it up buttercup, wake up and pay attention.

When the debate wrapped up I think it’s safe to assume most people turned their attention to the Sunday Night Football-esque commentary, as spouted by the people who were there to cover the debate and report back to you their thoughts on how it all went for both candidates.

AKA: Their skewed, flawed, and human perspective of how the candidates did (based entirely on which channel you happened to watch).

But not me. Nope. I turned my attention back to the candidates in question.

Want to know what I saw?

One candidate stepped further into the circle, shook hands with the people who came to listen and ask their questions of the candidates. The other candidate made a beeline for his family and, RC didn’t attempt to shake a single hand until the people came to him. He just allowed his family to cloak him, shielding his tremendous ego from all the people looking for real answers.

Even Chelsea flipping Clinton made her way over to every single one of his kids, shook their hands and smiled at them. They stood and shook her hand then Chelsea moved on while the gorgeous reality TV stars stood statue still talking to no one else but each other. Unless someone came to them.

There were 30 or so UNDECIDED voters who were right there, accessible, and willing to listen to both of you spit your rhetoric for 2 hours. They were there to make a decision. And maybe most of them don’t know where Syria is either but they do know where RC is.

He’s up in his tower made of money and gold, looking down on the little people. And I’m not being snide when I say I truly believe that he believes the little people are everyone besides him and his family.

He proved it last night by avoiding everyone when he had a golden opportunity to turn public opinion.

Maybe he’s scared because he actually has to be a politician, something he seemed shocked to have to say about himself, but if he actually wants to win over more voters than DC (the electoral college consists of 538 people, including women, FYI), he needs to do some miraculous damage control.

Pretty tough to do when you don’t understand that the first person you should have made a beeline to talk to was the woman who asked the question about Islam-a-phobia. Talking to her, taking an interest in that one person would have been damage control on so many levels: immigration policy fanatics, Muslims, women. But he shanked it by literally turning his back on those UNDECIDED voters to talk to his kids.

At the very least go talk to Anderson Cooper or, better yet, Martha Raddatz so you can clearly demonstrate how you don’t care who got to talk more because you’re classy and a friend to all women, especially those in powerful positions.

He failed to do that and meanwhile DC worked the crowd like a pro. Admittedly she has years of political experience so that shit comes naturally to her. But the fact is RC has been a public figure (if not in public service) for decades. Talking to people shouldn’t be a big deal to someone who dubs himself as that famous.

There’s less than a month until the election. I don’t care if you’re voting for either of the major party candidates, a mid-sized party candidate, or writing in “your mom” on the ballot this year. The most important thing of all is to get yourself informed.

Study. Research. Read. Learn.

Learn about all of it. Every point of contention, every issue that matters to you as a HUMAN and vote your conscience once you have all the facts in hand. Those facts being real actual plans for what any or all of the candidates hope to try to get done while they hold the highest level of public service in the country.

The fate of our nation lies in our hands. It is high time we learned about all the issues and stopped defining ourselves in limited Democrat or Republican terms and started investing in ourselves as humans first and foremost.

Educated humans.

• • • • • • • • • • •
In addition to this drivel I also write books, both fiction and non-fiction.
Learn more on my author page.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

I Feel Like We Were Just Here

And by “here” I mean, me, on the blog, announcing the release of a another new title.

Because that’s also the last thing I shared a month or so ago. Normally that would mean this post was full of apologies, swearing up and down that I’ll never disappear for that long again, that I really want to blog and plan to make a concerted effort to get back over here and load up on the snark.

But not this time.

Why? Because this time was all about getting my job done. And it felt so good I think I’m just going to keep doing that. When I completed the final edits on my most recent title, Carol + Chad 4-eva!, I actually gave myself a high five in the middle of my living room.

Two titles in two months! Thwap! <-- That’s the sound of my hands meeting high above my head to congratulate myself on the dedication to getting it done.

Let me tell you, when working this hard to release two titles in two months a lot of stuff falls away. Like communication with people, spending time outside my house, exercise, and this blog…

Of course that doesn’t mean that I don’t miss being snarky. Or that I don’t miss blogging. Because I do. I so desperately want to share my long-winded thoughts on any or all of the following:

  • The 3-ring circus people are still referring to as this year’s election. (So. Many. Posts.)
  • My very strong feelings on the term “mansplaining” (hint: give me a fucking break).
  • Pumpkin spice taking over the whole damn world and why I fear this phenomenon.
  • How much I miss food in the northeast and why I want a vacation just to eat pizza.
  • The debacle our upcoming vacation is turning out to be (but this story is funny).
  • That everyone who says “you can’t mess up with chalk paint” are wrong.
  • How many fucks I give about Brangelina’s break up (hint: as many as Aniston).
  • Why Toyota’s spokesperson (the idiot man) makes me embarrassed to own my Corolla.
  • A recent moment where I turned into a sheeple and my inability to stop it.
  • The Patriots work ethic and how Bill Belichick inspired artwork in my office.
  • Why it pisses me off that these whipper snappers have to steal ALL of our stuff (the clowns? Really? That’s the scary thing you’re going to revive from my childhood? Note to those idiots: there never were any clowns in my day, it was all about keeping kids from taking candy from strangers. You’re doing it wrong. RU-mor, morons, it was all about fear based on believable rumors. But I guess in my day we didn’t have snopes or knew what an urban legend was.)

As you can see based on the tangent I spiraled into on that last point, I definitely miss getting my opinion based snark out for all 4 people who actually read this blog anymore.

So, in an effort to get all the books done so I can get back to doing what I love – running my mouth/fingers about all that crap on the list up there – today I share with you the brand new book available through Saturday for FREE DOWNLOAD on Amazon:

Carol + Chad 4-eva! a novelette

Shy girl Carol Williams meets her dream guy in high school but her heart is shattered when Chad dumps her after only one month. Years later, Chad wants to reconnect. Is it a case of fate? Or will Carol make a fatal mistake?

Normally $1.99, and going back up to that price on Sunday, you can go get your FREE copy here: right freaking now!

A brief about this book…

It runs just shy of 15,000 words.
The format is diary style entries written by Carol.
Her friends and family are prominent characters through Carol’s eyes.

Did I mention it’s free through Saturday?

Go download a copy now and don’t forget to review it on Amazon!

Thanks folks, and now, back to work!

• • • • • • • • • • •
In addition to this drivel I also write books, both fiction and non-fiction.
Learn more on my author page.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

It’s Book Release Day!

I didn’t think this day would ever arrive. In fact, last year in November when I started, and stopped, the first draft of Reckless Mind twice, it actually felt like I might leave the whole series dangling like a participle.

Nothing seemed to resonate. Nothing sounded right. Shaw’s story wasn’t seaming up in the way I’d planned and I didn’t know what to do.

So I let the thing fester in the dark corners of my brain while I worked on other stuff. I started a short fiction (novelette length) which is nearing completion now too. I started another book that it’s too early to talk about. I wasn’t writing what I wanted to write but at least I was writing.

Then in March something clicked. Apparently, all the time I spent “not working” on Reckless Mind was nothing more than working on it after all! I sat down and opened a new document. I brought JJ back right away. First chapter in fact.

And it all seemed to fall into place from there.

See, Shaw McLeary takes off for Seattle, WA in this third installment. She needs to spend time out of her natural environment in Phoenix because JJ and all the lingering drama that resulted from her assumptions about him, all live in Phoenix.

Shaw needs to see her mom. She will begrudgingly see her sister as well.

Escape, of course, is fleeting. Isn’t it always for her character? This time around, though, her mother becomes a suspect in a suspicious death and Shaw is going to need as much help as she can get to clear Betty’s name.

And she might get even more help than she bargained for when an unexpected surprise shows up on her doorstep.

And this might be Shaw’s last appearance.

Well, to be truthful, it is her last appearance as far as I’m concerned right now. I can see her story continuing but I’m just not entirely sure I’m up for writing it right now.

Remember those other projects I just mentioned that I started while waiting for Shaw to tell me what she needed to do? Well, two of those projects are mere weeks away from The End!

But let’s not focus on that right now because


Have you read Reckless Abandon and Reckless Hearts?

If not you can find them on my amazon author page here.

If so then what are you waiting for?

Go and pick up your copies of Reckless Mind A Shaw McLeary Mystery #3 at these links:

And now back to your regularly scheduled ranting…

• • • • • • • • • • •
In addition to this drivel I also write books, both fiction and non-fiction.
Learn more on my author page.