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Archive for September, 2018

Hey.

This isn’t going to be a nice post. It’s going to be raw. It’s possibly going to hurt you as much as it does me to write. But the time for silence has ended. What is said here, shared here, needs to be said and shared.

I believe women and men when they say they’ve been assaulted. I understand exactly why they don’t come forward for 30 years. Because I have my own story to share about being assaulted and staying silent.

If you don’t want to read any further, I understand. May you find solace in your own way.

It started when I was 8. A neighbor boy (brother to my best friend at the time) had spent some time with other family and came back, saying he learned a new game. He wanted all of us to play.

At the time, there were around 7 in the neighborhood gang. 3 boys, 4 girls. Ages were 7-10 or 11. He was the oldest.

The next two years were filled with him grooming us to his whims. Him teaching the other boys how to do the same. Touching, molestation, and rape. I remember one time when he said that sometimes ‘boys just need to do this’. With no care about me whatsoever.

My sister (older) broke free of the situation, tried to talk to our parents. She was called a slut and whore, and that we didn’t talk about the neighbors that way.

I tried to break free. He threatened me, blackmailed me. Said he’d kill my cats, or tell my parents I’d done things to him.

One day, he threatened to rape me on our front lawn if I didn’t let him in the house so he could do so on my bed. That’s the day I tried to tell my parents.

My mom, on the phone, told me I had to ‘calm down’ and stop overreacting so I didn’t frighten a younger cousin who was staying with us. That night, my dad walked across the street to talk to the father of the boy. All I know was that he came back and told me I was never to have anything to do with that family again.

It was never reported to the police. Because it wouldn’t look good on our family name.

I hid within myself for another 30 years. I ignored what I wanted, tried to please everyone else, so they wouldn’t hurt me for saying no. I pushed aside my own hopes and dreams and stayed numb, certain that I was damaged goods.

I met my husband while I was in therapy (again). He loves me for who I am, even with the days where I’m out of sorts and can’t explain why. Even when there’s days when I don’t want my own skin touching me.

Ten years ago, I started to write. There’s a lot of me in my characters. I put them through the same sort of hell I lived. Why?

Because I draw strength from theirs. If they can get out and be a survivor, so can I. I know, because I heal myself as I heal them through the words I write.

Almost 2 years ago, my youngest was assaulted. During a class where the lecture was on consent, of all things. I was guided by them as to charges, etc. They were stronger than I ever was, ready to testify in court. The decision, every step of the way, was theirs. The miscreant pled out, and our youngest has moved on.

It’s easier for them because they got to see the legal system believe them. They saw parents and staff around them take immediate action.

So, yeah, for some of us it does take 30+ years. Because we weren’t believed then. Because we were made to believe we were to blame in some way. That ‘boys will be boys’.

That’s bullshit.

I believe Dr. Ford. I believe Ms. Anita Hill. I believe every single story of survival I hear. Because I know the pain of not being believed.

BB

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Happy Saturday everyone!

I’m working on a new project while I plot out the next Waystation Guardians book in my head. I’m joining this century and importing all of our cds to our iTunes accounts. After that’s done, it’s purging the physical discs time.

We’ve got around 400 cds, so this is not a quick project. LOL

I’ve been processing everything I experienced on my trip to Scotland. When you go to a place that you’ve always wanted to go to….when you make connections to a land and culture that transcends lifetimes and imprints your soul….it takes time to really understand and articulate it all.

One thing I’ve come back with is a new sense of the global society we’re all part of. It’s beyond having pride in your nation. It’s the idea that there’s countries….ideals….people outside the borders you’ve grown up in.

I’ve spent my entire life in the western US. Outside of a few vacations in Canada, that’s been it. For 50 years, the only real concept I had of the world was that it was a huge place and my country was big.

Heck, Washington state is larger than some countries in Europe.

While I was in Scotland, I grew into a more global citizen. It wasn’t all about me or the US. It was seeing how the rest of the world saw things, related to each other.

I met people who regularly made trips to other countries for the weekend to enjoy a hobby. The same hobby that, here, I could do just as many events over the summer and never leave the state.

I met people who got that I was a tourist, driving under new rules, and were happy to give me pointers (parking places are wonderful things on single track roads, but you gotta use them the right way).

I found out that citizens were okay with their government saying they believed in climate change and banning gasoline powered engines (all new cars sold were to be hybrids or electric) because they wanted to preserve the earth around them.

I discovered that people still read. A lot. That libraries, books, bookstores, and knowledge isn’t frowned upon. People spoke in complete sentences, without a lot of slang.

I heard more languages being spoken in the breakfast area of my B&B in Inverness than I did in a year around Seattle.

I met people who didn’t hesitate to follow their dreams, take the trip they’ve always wanted to do. That didn’t believe in waiting for ‘the perfect time’. Who realized travel has an impact on us beyond the money spent and the souvenirs we bring home.

I realized, deep down, that this earth we all share is connected in a way that border walls, oceans, customs kiosks, and guards can’t separate.

Will I travel overseas more? I don’t know. I’d like to, but there’s places in the US I’d like to see. The trip I took taught me a lot. About myself, how I fit into the world, and that the best way to interact with other cultures isn’t from behind a computer screen.

We need to experience life to write about it, after all.

BB

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Happy September everyone!

I’m someone who adores the fall. Yes, I’m drinking pumpkin spice coffee already. LOL. Give me days with crisp air, leaves on the ground, and cozy sweaters! I bought myself a sweater while in Scotland that I plan to practically live in for the next six months.

To celebrate the coming change, I have a guest today! Please welcome author and friend, Cyn Ley!

Hi KateMarie! Thank you for the opportunity of visiting with you today!

What genres do you write?

 I write multi-genre—short stories mainly, but am venturing into longer works. Paranormal, horror, social satire, humor, scifi light, general fiction, and stuff that’s rather odd. I’m currently working on the second installment of a new cozy mystery series, the first having debuted in PINK FLAMINGOS & OTHER FOLLIES (It’s A Mystery I: The Lost Boys). I also have several new short stories in the works.

Tell us about your books!

I’m delighted to say that I am a top-reviewed author on Amazon for all of my titles. Never saw that coming! LOL

There are currently three available in print and Kindle editions, and one short which is available on Kindle only. The first book, ENCOUNTERS TALES RECOUNTED AND REBORN has the best of the stories published between 2014 – 2016, and ranges all across my spectrum, including several written for other Solstice Publishing anthologies. There are 20 stories in all. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MUYCFBC

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The second, THE OSSUARY PLAYGROUND AND OTHER TALES, has a special place in my heart. Published in 2017, I was living very close to the Veil, my Beloved Husband having brushed through it a few months earlier.  I wanted to explore the Afterlife as I’ve experienced it, seeing it from the Other Side as well as this one.  Consisting of four stories, the book has been described as “literary fiction,” and contains some of my best writing to date, I think. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B071JMBPZM

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Next came PLOT TWIST, a weird and funny tale about what happens when a demon on assignment shows up at a science fiction convention.  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B078YC35LX

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After THE OSSUARY PLAYGROUND, which is fairly intense reading, I felt I needed to lighten things up a bit as well as introduce something entirely new to me. PINK FLAMINGOS & OTHER FOLLIES (2018) is funny, quirky and engaging, consisting of five tales. One of these, “It’s A Mystery I: The Lost Boys,” is the first installment of a cozy mystery series. I hope to release the second installment later this year. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07BR15J71

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Favorite part of writing? Least favorite?

They’re actually the same thing: when my Muse whacks me upside the head at 2am and orders me to write stuff down. LOL Be that as it may, she’s always right!

 What’s your process? Do you outline or just let the story unfold as you write?

I don’t have a process per se. A lot of times stories come to me in bits, then build on themselves. I have yet to use an outline. For me, writing is very organic—it will happen where and when it wants to. While I’ll have an idea of where I want a story to go, sometimes the story has other ideas! I usually end up writing all kinds of alternatives. The story will shake itself out. Even if I Have A Clue where it’s going, those alternates are still important to write down. I might be able to use them at another time, and if they’re not written down, they’ll be lost forever.

Most surreal moment since you were published was?

It still is! Reading reviews of your work is always a little surreal. I love hearing from my readers, both good comments and not so good comments. I think it’s essential for authors to keep an open mind and learn from the feedback they receive, whether or not they like what they’re hearing. This is not to say one has to concede to the reader–after all, they’re not living in your head–but they can draw your attention to areas where you may need to tweak how you communicate your story.

Name three places you’d like to visit so you could incorporate them into a story/book.

 For me, it’s not so much places as it is things I’d like to do. Go ziplining. Take a helicopter trip over Mt. St. Helens. Visit places where the residents may be dead but are not sleeping. See a Sasquatch, and remember to bring fresh fruit with me as a gift. Stuff like that. As the saying goes, “Life is a banquet!” Maybe I’ll sit down and share an apple with a Bigfoot.

Thanks for stopping by, Cyn!

Readers, if you want to connect with Cyn, you can find her via social media:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/CynthiaLey2@cynthialey2

Blog: https://authorcjl.wordpress.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cleyfiction4/

A top reviewed author on Amazon, Cyn takes much of her inspiration from the part of the beautiful Pacific Northwest she calls home, where fire (the active volcanoes) and water (the many rivers and the Pacific Ocean) actually do mix. Among her many interests are history, embroidery, folklore, and things that are generally rather strange.

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