Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category


Monday, January 17th, 2022

I don’t suppose any of you speak Italian?

I almost died again. It must be Thursday.

Monday, August 16th, 2021

Yes, I know this is posting on a Monday. There’s a method to this madness.

So. I had a GI bleed so bad and painful that I passed out and spent five hours on the floor. Was still intensely sick when I came to and had to call 911.

The paramedics couldn’t take me to my first choice hospital because they had no beds. Nope on my second choice for the same reason.


The medics suggested a third, and I said yes even though I’m intensely uncomfortable with new places. Because of some weird planetary alignment / twist of fate fuckery, every member of my support system was out of town for one reason or another. I was alone. Honestly it was the first time I had ever been alone in an emergency room, and trust me, if ERs gave frequent visitor points, my next ER visit would definitely be in Hawaii.

The symptoms I had… They were so similar to what my mom went through last year. I kept thinking of all the surgeries and other procedures she had to endure, and I wondered if I should have gotten a DNR bracelet.

This third hospital was full, too, but they weren’t overflowing like the other ones. I got processed and triaged. I noticed people in beds lining the hallways. The intake nurses put me in the world’s most uncomfortable wheelchair. The intake doctor told me that they were gonna put me on IV fluids and take a CT scan. Then I was wheeled into the waiting room.

No one came to do the IV fluid thing.

The waiting room was almost full too. There were a lot of people in so much pain that they would periodically cry out. But they still had to wait. One person was so exhausted that he fell out of his chair. The nurses helped him back into it and told him to be patient. There were two worried parents near me with a sick toddler. She didn’t understand why she hurt and just kept saying “Ma,” “Da,” “Ow,” and “Home” over and over in between fits of tears.

A nurse took me to get some blood work done. She gave me something for nausea and said someone would be hooking me up to IV fluids soon. She rolled me back into the waiting room.

More pained screams, moans, a child’s plea for home.

A couple hours later I was taken for the CT scan. Because I was lying down for the scan I nearly fell asleep. I remember wishing the process had been longer because I did not want back into that wheelchair. The tech said it was usually forty-five minutes to an hour after a scan before patients saw the doctor.

A nurse wheeled me back to the waiting room. She said that someone would be by soon to give me IV fluids. A woman to my left was sobbing. Her leg was braced and bloody. I saw a doctor tell a man that his wife’s chest scan showed that she had pneumonia and that she was currently being tested for Covid. The doctor said if she did test positive, she’d be moved to a different part of the hospital and they would come and get him.

An hour later, they came and got him.

Two hours later, they came and got me. Wheeled me into a curtained examination cubicle and transferred me into a weird recliner that was slightly more comfortable than my wheelchair. I could hear people up and down the hall crying out in pain. I told myself if the CT scan or bloodwork had shown something truly terrible that they would have gotten to me much earlier. I tried to turn the waiting into a silver lining.

The constant sounds of people in excruciating pain made it hard to believe in the lining.

Two hours later a doctor showed up. He said the scan showed a bunch of little things wrong with me but nothing life threatening. Blood work was normal. Ish. He was worried they couldn’t pin down the source of the bleed and was concerned that I was still in pain. He wanted to admit me so that a specialist could see me.

I said okay without even thinking.

Then he explained that they didn’t have any free beds and I might have to spend up to 48 hours in the recliner before one opened up.

I asked, “because of Covid?” And he let out an exhausted breath and said, “yeah.”

I took a moment, then asked if I was in immediate danger. He said no. I told him I had a GI specialist and going home, sleeping in my own bed, and calling her in the morning to make an appointment would probably be faster, yeah? He said possibly and asked the name of my specialist. She didn’t have admitting privileges to that hospital.

I really, really wanted to go home and he said that was a reasonable choice. He wanted to hook me up to some IV fluids before discharging me.

Three hours later, I happened to make accidental eye contact with a passing nurse. I smiled awkwardly and said hi. She said hello and started to walk past me, then backtracked to ask my name. I told her, and her eyes went wide.

“Oh, you’re the one everyone’s been looking for.”

The computer had listed me in a different cubicle. Apparently the nurses had spent a good portion of the last three hours searching for me.

The discharge nurse showed up with my paperwork. I mentioned the doctor had said I needed some IV fluids. She checked her little computer and I wondered if it was operating on the same system that misplaced me. No notes in the chart on IV fluids. I was too tired to argue and asked if there was a vending machine out front where I could get water. She said she would get me some and she actually did and it felt like a freaking miracle of medicine right there. I mean, the cup even had ice chips in it. Ice chips.

I tried to take it slow because my insides were feeling super sore and fragile, but that cup was empty in under a minute.

It was well into the morning when I finally got home. I called my GI specialist and made an appointment. Then, after 16 hours in the ER, I crawled into bed and slept for almost 20.

So, my doctor’s worried. To the point the C word was brought up. But I’ve had so many cancer scares at this point that all I could do was give a halfhearted shrug because I knew what was coming next and that it was going to suck.

Colonoscopy, endoscopy. Soon as possible. She’s going to do both at the same time so that’s something, I suppose. I’ve had both procedures done before (cancer scares, aka my new normal), so I’m not nervous. It is what it is.

I’m actually having a lot more trouble processing what was.

The screams, the wails, the moans, the crying. That little girl who didn’t understand why she was hurting or why she was surrounded by people who were hurting.

I called 911 on Thursday, July 29th. But I’m still hearing the sounds of all that sickness and pain.

And the thing is, it didn’t have to be that way, you know? Or, at least, not that bad. Not so bad that seriously sick people were parked in the front waiting room and doctors want to admit someone but literally can’t. Not so bad that a xyr dehydrated patient never gets their IV fluids. (A fact that horrified my specialist–not exaggerating).

It didn’t have to be so bad. But I live in Texas, and for some reason a lot of people here refuse to get vaccinated.

So I’m asking you to do just that. Get vaccinated. I got the Moderna, my father got the J&J. Months ago. It really isn’t a big deal.

You know what are big deals? GI bleeds, car crashes, heart attacks, COVID-19. Having any kind of emergency and being unable to get help because hospitals aren’t taking patients, and the ones that are have exhausted doctors and nurses working triple shifts and missing little things like that patient over there who hasn’t had anything to drink in roughly 24hours after losing a pretty good amount of blood.

Just… Get vaccinated. Wear your masks. Be safe and save others, okay?


Friday, October 23rd, 2020

First, thanks to a reader looking for a copy of Touching Fire: Paul’s Dream, I have learned that Liquid Silver Books/Publishing is no longer in business and Paul’s Dream is apparently out of print. sigh

But! Silver lining: I get to revise the book, which is something I’ve wanted to do for a very long time. So… yay?

Second, Yahoo!Groups is shutting down, which means my newsletter/mailing list will be gone come December. I…don’t really see a silver lining here. People can subscribe to my blog, but sometimes I put life stuff in there. I have a Tumblr, but that account is pure chaos. I have Twitter, but it’s, well, uh, Twitter. The Yahoo!Groups newsletter was strictly for book and contest news. All business so that your inbox wouldn’t be filled with personal/political/reblogged art of hot guys and Marvel memes.

I’m thinking of switching to MailChimp. What do you xudes think of MailChimp? Do you have a preference for another service? If so, let me know, yeah?

And now, finally, something cool.

As promised (months and months ago) here is the cover reveal for the third edition of Want Me—

What do you think? Since this will be the third edition, but with very few changes to the text inside, I decided to blend elements of the covers from the first and second editions. Check it out:

The base image:

Then, the color scheme:

Cool, yeah? I also added some shooting stars because you can never have too many shooting stars. Unless you’re one of those poor bastards in “Day of the Triffids.” If so, Walker’s brand of magic is the least of your problems. O.O

I am currently working on the final draft of Last Heartbeat: Flow. The book now has a cover. Which I designed. All by myself. But that reveal will be later. 😉

Edit: Just found out I can’t even send a message to my newsletter subscribers that there will soon be no newsletter. wtf?

Wear a mask.


All this Death…

Monday, September 28th, 2020

This post is going to be a mess so please forgive me. It’s also going to be highly personal, so apologies for that as well. As with my previous complete post, feel free to skip if you don’t have the spoons to spare. Your health is just as important as anyone else’s.

All right? All right.

First, thank you for everyone’s kind words when I posted about the passing of my mother.
I didn’t respond to many messages, but each and every one helped me so, so much. Some of you asked if there was anything you could do to help. I wasn’t in any kind of headspace to answer that question in the moment. But I have an answer now:

Wear a mask. Vote.

This is not a political statement. Like I said earlier, this is personal.

My mom did not die of Covid. So you would be forgiven for thinking that Covid-19 has nothing to do with me and the fact that I just asked you to put on a mask came out of nowhere. But even though my mom didn’t die OF Covid, it’s very, very possible that she died BECAUSE of Covid. Even her doctors said so.

In an earlier post I said that Mom is the heart of this house. She was then and she is now. She was loving, and brave, and strong. The strongest person I ever knew and ever will know. But she drew her strength from her family, and we weren’t allowed to see her for two months.

The hospital was on lockdown because of Covid-19. It happened so fast that they didn’t have the infrastructure for video conferencing. The nurses, doctors, and other staff were stretched thin because half were permanently assigned to the Covid wing in order to help protect the non-Covid ICU patients. Once, I pushed hard enough to convince a nurse to hold a phone to my mom’s ear so she could hear our voices. She was still on a ventilator, but every time we checked in we were told her eyes would open but she was otherwise unresponsive. So I pushed.

As soon as she heard our voices, her eyes opened wide and she tried to sit up. I didn’t have to push after that.

They gave her a tracheostomy. We had to approve it over the phone. I still wonder… well, I still wonder a lot of things.

Then, after the fifth or sixth week, we met Jen. Jen was a nurse with an iPhone. She offered to let us FaceTime with my mom. We’re an Android family, so we didn’t have FaceTime. She didn’t know how to Duo.

But we both had WhatsApp, and she was willing to use her PERSONAL PHONE to let us see my mother.

Nurses really are heroes.

Mom started to improve. Slowly. Slightly. When she got her trach valve and we heard her loud, strong voice say “Hi!” for the first time, Dad and I laughed we were so happy. We were sure she’d get better. We picked out a pair of sneakers so she’d be able to walk out of the hospital in new shoes.

The hospital got an iPad, so we got one too. Yes, I know iPad supports Duo, but the nurses were baffled by it, so we got the iPad. I mostly use it to write letters to her now. I like to believe that a metaphysical postal service delivers them for me.

Lockdown ended. We had to wear full PPE to see her, but we could see her and she could see us. Kind of. She told me she’d been sad because she was starting to forget our faces. She hated our masks because she couldn’t see us smile. She hated our latex gloves because we held hands all the time and she missed simple, human contact. Despite all that, she was joyed to see us.
She was relieved and grateful to know for sure—FOR SURE—that we hadn’t forgotten her. That we missed her as much as she missed us. That we still loved her. Her vitals began to improve that day. Her doctors were impressed and a little confused.

But… we’d been separated for two months.

Her body just didn’t have anything left in reserve. Her spirit was back, and she fought hard, but there was nothing to fight with. And everything the doctors did for one system made another collapse. They couldn’t do anything that wouldn’t make something else worse. One doctor cried when he explained to me that he’d brought in every medical team in the hospital, but there was nothing anyone could do. My mother said ”I’m sorry” and I told her that none of this was her fault, that she did everything right. I said it truthfully. I said it fiercely. I heard a thump and turned toward the doctor. His back had hit the wall and he’d slid to the floor, his face cradled in his hands.

2020 has been a fucking rough year.

We brought her home. Hospice. She got to hug us and tease us and see us smile. She was so very happy for one, wonderful week, and then she was gone.

I’m glad and thankful we could do that for her. So many families this year had to say goodbye via FaceTime.

This has been a very long post, I know, and I’m sorry. But I’ve been wrapped up in my grief and shutting out the world.

Then a teenager who lived next door to me died.

Then Chadwick Boseman died.

Then Ruth Bader Ginsburg died.

Then Then Then.

Everyone is grieving. And for some reason we’ve forgotten that we’re all in this together. I need… I need us to remember. I don’t want one more person to be hurt by this fucking virus. Because Covid-19 has killed over 200,000 people in America alone. 200,000 people have families, extended families, found families, and friends grieving right now. In addition to all that tragedy, how many families have lost a loved one the way I lost my mother? How many families didn’t have to get wrecked? How many people are crying like I’m crying as I struggle to write this?

If we had all behaved as one tribe, if we all had worn our masks–not just for ourselves, but for our neighbors–how many families would not be mourning, feeling that months, days, seconds had been stolen during that final spark of life? If we had all looked out for each other, would my mother be alive today? I don’t know. I just know that Covid touches everyone, not just the people who contract it.

So what can you do for me in my time of grief?

Wear a mask. Vote.

“Real change, enduring change, happens one step at a time.”

— Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Now, more than ever, the illusions of division threaten our very existence. We all know the truth: more connects us than separates us. But in times of crisis the wise build bridges, while the foolish build barriers. We must find a way to look after one another, as if we were one single tribe.”

— T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman)

Friday, June 12th, 2020

my mom died

You guys…

Tuesday, January 1st, 2019

It hasn’t even been 24hrs and you’ve funded 98% of my website. I… I don’t know what to say. I’m grateful to have you all in my life, and tomorrow I’m going to make sure to thank each individual donor on the Ko-fi site.

“Thank you” doesn’t begin to express my feels right now, but right now it’s all I’ve got, so thank you.

— Rowan

Great news!

Friday, December 15th, 2017

I don’t have cancer!

Release date!

Monday, August 7th, 2017

True: Ethan” will be out August 29th, 2017! W00t!

Good news, bad news, and “I’m not sure how you’ll take this” news.

Sunday, January 15th, 2017

Bad news first: All Romance eBooks up and shut its doors. What’s up with that? Those who got emails letting them know of the closure only got three days notice, so I genuinely hope that you were able to download your libraries. I’ve lost my books before and I know it sucks. Luckily this time I had my books downloaded and backed up, as I did not get a notice of closure. I did get an offer to buy advertising space from ARe less than a week before they closed, so that was mad sketchy. And really sad, given what a strong and trustworthy part of the community they had been. It’s also going to be a weird transition for me because most of my sales didn’t come from Amazon, they came from ARe, which I’m told is not the norm.

But good news! I’m writing again! Just a few hundred words a day, but that’s the pace I was going at when I wrote Paul’s Dream, so I choose to take it as a good sign. Paul’s Dream is probably my most thoughtful and intricately written novel.

Other news: I mentioned in a previous blog that sometimes I hop onto other sites with a different name and post stories to stretch my writing muscles and relieve some pressure. Also not to be judged. I like really weird things. There’s definitely a tentacle story somewhere in my future. The far future. My immediate future features a few comics. Aaaand those comics are in the FMG genre. FMG stands for “Female Muscle Growth,” as opposed to “Male Muscle Growth” (MMG), which is what I’m best known for.

FMG has a lot of similar tropes to MMG, as well as a lot of tropes specific to the genre. I’ll probably get into those in another blog, because that is a LONG post.

Anyway, when I write FMG I do it under the name Arie, and I used to post exclusively on a site called Which is down now. (Oh internet! Why do you keep disappearing on me!?) But I recently moved what I had written to a deviantArt account, and why yes, you can totally read my stuff! Thank you so much for asking!  XD

Here’s the link:

And here’s the link to one I wrote as fanfic to this:

I haven’t quite figured out the logistics, but I’ll be making room on my site for the Arie McBride stuff soon. It’s not going to be everyone’s cup of tea, but that’s okay. FMG is ridiculous. But almost every story I write is ridiculous. I have a character who makes a room full of people orgasm by snapping his fingers, and that’s from my “thoughtful and intricately written” novel. Ridiculous is my wheelhouse and I love it. So I hope that at least you’ll be entertained as you watch me jump from genre to genre.  🙂




Out of Print Blues

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

So I finally updated my website to indicate which books are out of print. I’d been avoiding it because it’s, well, depressing. On the upside, my health is a little better, and I’m taking that as a good sign that my little orphans will have new homes soon. 🙂