"When life gives you a hundred reasons to break down and cry, show life that you have a thousand reasons to smile and laugh. Stay strong."When news like today’s, from both Orlando and LA, crosses the wire–notwithstanding the whitewashing claiming “worst massacre” that forgets Wounded Knee–it’s easy to get lost in the tears for and anger against the misguided (non-)humans who think violence and hate solve anything. So I spent my day appreciating the beautiful sunshine, cool breezes, silly furbabies, and love of my family. They gave me thousands of reasons to smile and laugh, even while my emotions remain volatile because of the huge number of families now dealing with trauma and violence and death and the aftermath those bring to individual lives.

They too will have to find ways to stay strong, to find the reasons to smile and laugh. I’m not sure what has made this sickness of hate grow so strong in our nation, though I have quite a few ideas. Some relate to why voters are angry. Some to the inaction and obstructionism rampant in Congress. Some to the sexist roles of patriarchy encoded in pop culture. Some to the level of personal emotional paralysis that sets in when we are constantly offering thoughts and prayers, with no sense that anything will ever improve–regardless of how devastated we may be by the ongoing string of horrific events our news outlets insist on inundating us with.

Some of this is finding outlet in my fictional worlds. Re-reading passages from The Builders, where I was able to put some of my research about how horribly humans can treat each other, in the context of an alien love story, seems like the appropriate balance of hope, despair, confusion, and growth. I’m still waiting for my editor to send me my revision marching orders, though, so I know the story will evolve from where it currently stands.

Because of that I spent my evening re-formatting Dust to Blood for print. It’s been on my to-do list for almost nine months now, and I knew it would be a pain. Luckily, the template and style sheets didn’t need to be adjusted at all. While it took several hours, and I still need to do the same for Blood to Fire, finishing these tasks this week starts helping shift my story brain to consider how to proceed with Fire to Dragon.

I know I promised a longer post this week, but, honestly, too much of this is too exhausting. I want to go back to cuddling with hubs, hoping our little bubble of Light helps illuminate the rampant darkness in our world. In lieu of that, check out how my ROW80 companions are doing with their goals. May the coming week find you reasons to smile, and I will return again next week.

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2 thoughts on “Stay Strong

  1. I had to stay away from the news, it was too upsetting. When another story came on the radio about the shootings, I turned the dial to smooth jazz. I needed to center myself, come home, through music.

    I think the media plays a big part in why Americans are angry. And the hateful messages coming from the candidates. It’s like stirring up a hornet’s nest.

    You did the right thing, cuddling. If I had a hubby, I’d head right for the nest.

  2. I’m in favor of cuddling with hubs. Regardless of what’s going on outside our worlds, we still can make that aura of peace and love spread around us and those we see every day. For those reasons you summarize, my writing also has a dark side. For while we may work to bring that light to our lives, we also remember all else. May you have a good week ahead, especially with those coming revisions.

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