Julian Files, excerpt 8: stories

Another random excerpt. I don’t think I’ve shared this one before, but I’m not sure. Sharing now because I like the lines in the last paragraph.


 

Cedrick always found himself wondering what the story was of people he saw. He built fables in his mind; sometimes dramatic, sometimes heartbreakingly not.

To these strangers, he built a story:

The young man was named Max. He had always tried to find love in the girlfriends he had in high school, but it never worked out. Something was missing. In his first year of college, he met Trevor. They became best friends and Max had never been happier. They spent all their free time out of class together, and sometimes even skipped class to go on suddenly devised adventures. Max’s favorite thing to do was to go urban exploring, and Trevor had decided to go with him last night. They were looking for ghosts, which was particularly alarming for Trevor who refused to acknowledge just how afraid he was of the supernatural. They visited the old, abandoned hospital in Carson City; rumored to have housed the worst psychiatric patients the state had seen in decades.

Cedrick had visited the hospital once, and even as someone who was fascinated by mysteries and the supernatural, he had found it to be unbearable. The air had felt suffocating; metallic, as the taste of blood. The shadows had seemed so much darker, an umber hue on the edges but fading so quickly to pitch black it was akin to sharp drops in the sea floor.

That was how it had felt to Trevor, when he’d gone: the cold flutter of air on his skin like skeletal fingers dancing across his back; the creaks of the old building settling like the cracking groan of bones grinding against one another; the piercing silence as the pause right before Death drew in a rattling, endless breath. Trevor’s heart had been a drumline in his chest; tripping over beats and melodies but staying enough of a tune to keep him alive.

Anon Question: ICoS, Boyd and psychological effect of the Aleixo mission

I received the below question from an anon at tumblr, and since I wrote a really long answer I thought people here may be interested in it too.

boyd psychology aleixo

Hi!
I answer below the cut to avoid any potential spoilers, but since I know a lot of people won’t click that I want to highlight something before I answer.

Please check out the below links—and research more—to find out more about human trafficking and sex trafficking that’s happening right now in the world. Some of these links lead to organizations you can support through donation or advocacy, and others tell you ways you can help fight the issue on your own.

If we ever were to publish Fade, I would really like to be able to include some of these links in the book for people to get involved if they were affected by anything in the story itself.

Okay! Onto the answer. (and once again it’s super long, I’m sorry)

Continue reading

Anon Question: ICoS, Boyd and brainwashing

Since I completely geeked out on my answer to the below anon ask I received at tumblr, I figured I may as well share it here too.

anonask010615

Hi! That’s a great question but I feel a little hesitant to give you an exact timeline without having done a ton more research. Also, I’m sorry I took a day to respond but I wanted a chance to think about the best answer and also to gather some of the different topics into one place.

Sorry this is the longest answer ever, especially considering it’s probably not the answer you were hoping to get 😦

The reason I can’t give a super succinct answer is there are actually a lot of background pieces to this topic.

Continue reading

An asexual’s view of love

I’m going to use this blog now and then as a normal blog, not just related to specific excerpts or art pieces to share but also about some thought processes that are central to me as a person or writer. I hope no one minds.

A week ago Sonny mentioned a blog post he was writing about tropes vs reality and said he wasn’t sure how to conclude it, because tropes don’t always work out the same way in reality. I wrote the below post but then forgot about it in the holiday rush. Today he wrote a post about what descriptions or exposition to use in a diverse cast (read here), and through the ensuing conversation I was reminded of this post.

Everything below is what I originally wrote.

The question of tropes vs reality got me thinking about the romance genre (regardless of whether it’s straight, LGBT*QA, or something else) and how it seems to me it’s a fetishization of love.

You might have seen me mention in the past that I’m semi-asexual. There is a specific list of terms I can call myself that gets at what I am but I don’t really go by that. Basically, I’m not often attracted to other people, and when I am it’s usually first for their personality, and then I’m only interested in other women. But most of the time, I have no romantic interests in anyone.

As a result, I’ve spent most of my life seeing the idea of “love” from the outside. Throughout high school, I couldn’t understand why all my friends seemed obsessed with constantly cycling through boyfriends, and in college when others seemed to have hooking up and/or partying as a priority, I wanted to sit in my room and watch anime with friends. After college, when people started to settle into long-term relationships, I lamented that I couldn’t get a dog.

This may or may not be normal for other people who identify as partially or totally asexual; I really don’t know, you’d have to ask them. I can only say what it’s been like for me, regardless of whatever labels I might give myself to try to understand why I am how I am. Even now, I don’t know how asexual I am except I think I must be because when I’ve read the descriptions of different terms, they fit.

As the years have passed, I’ve watched the lifecycles of all these other people doing the things that are “expected.” Friends and family settling down with their significant others (SOs), moving in together, getting pets together, buying houses, getting engaged, married, having kids… All of this feels so disconnected from me as a person, yet as a writer I’ve found it to be interesting to watch the way “normal” people progress.

I don’t truly understand love. I mean, I understand it in terms of how much I love my dog, my family, my friends. But I don’t understand the human connection of love between two significant others: the way it might differ from other forms or the way different people experience it. All I know of love I learned from books, fanfiction, movies, and the way people interact around me.

Despite not understanding it on a personal level, I’ve come to recognize the variations in other people. Friends ask me for advice in dating or love a lot, and I always say, “Well, I don’t really know anything, but it seems to me…” and I explain based on my objective view of what seems to happen with two humans in love.

What’s interesting to me is that I’ve started to notice trends.

Continue reading

Julian Files, excerpt 7: Vivienne POV

This Julian Files excerpt has Vivienne POV. Again, it’s unedited and some things may change, but I can’t remember if I ever released anything with Viv that showed a bit of what her childhood was like. I know she mentioned it in Fade but I don’t think she gave many details because, to her, the details are unimportant.

What’s interesting to me is as I’ve been writing Julian Files, especially Cedrick POV, I’ve realized the parallels between Vivienne/Cedrick and Hsin/Boyd, particularly the slight parallels between Viv and Hsin, and the way Cedrick and Boyd viewed their respective partner. Those parallels had existed before but I’d never thought about it to any extent to realize they were there.

Anyway, there will be more on Vivienne’s life in Domino, but here’s a glimpse.

Continue reading