Thursday, February 11, 2016

Happy Valentine's Day from the Twelve Beats Girls! (BLOG HOP)



Happy early Valentine's Day!

Oh, Valentine's Day. A day where everyone does elaborate things for those they love or passively aggressively discusses their hate for Valentine's Day.

I celebrate Valentine's Day by amusing myself watching people scramble to figure something to do for their significant other the morning of, and buying Valentine's Day chocolates on February 15th, because nothing says love like pink, red, and white M&Ms.

When Tamsen and Rebecca approached me about being part of a blog hop celebrating Valentine's Day, I was super excited, mostly because I get to write more Hayley & Nate and Olivia & Thierry. (In related news, I miss the Beats girls SO MUCH. *sob*)

And so, as a Valentine's Day gift from me to you, (and because I cannot send all of you chocolate on the 15th) here's a little Twelve Beats Valentine's Day.

(NOTE: said little Valentine's Day gift takes place a year after THIS MUCH SPACE)
*****

If you ever wondered what it would look like if cupid threw up all over somewhere, the bakery is a good example, I think as I stretch the kinks out of my neck. This much homework and no patience to do it means I'm in the bakery, where Megan can glare at me from across the counter if she caught me procrastinating. And someone who wasn't me had made my coffee. And I get to watch Megan snipe at Ian, which continues to be one of my favorite things to do.

"Olivia."

"I'm working, I swear," I protest. 

"I'm going to text Thierry and tell him he's not allowed to come here if you don't get some work done," Megan says.

"Well, that's harsh," Hayley says, carrying out a tray of eclairs. "You, standing in the way of true love?"

"Megan would never," I say, heavy with sarcasm.

"Is Megan like the Grinch of Valentine's Day?" Nate asks.

And yes. Nate is here. He surprised Hayley, and is here for the weekend. He's just as wonderful and charming as she's described him, and when he looks at her it hurts, it's so beautiful. 

"Nathaniel, you're lucky Hayley loves you," Megan says.

He grins, and Hayley dashes over, drops a kiss on his lips, and tries to dash back to the kitchen. Nate's got reflexes for days, and manages to catch her before she can escape. He kisses her noisily. "You taste like chocolate," he says, grinning at her.

"Of course I do," Hayley says, wriggling out of his arms. She dashes back toward the kitchen, letting in the sound of Regina singing about Summer Lovin', rather loudly. Ever since they announced the live version of Grease aired, she's sang nothing but Grease, which was okay for the first week or so, and now it's just ridiculous. 

"I used to think I liked Grease," Ian muses. "But if I have to hear about anyone being lousy with virginity again I may have to do something rather unladylike."

Megan flips him off, and mutters about 'being ladylike' can fuck off, which makes me laugh until I snort.

The other upside about doing homework in the bakery is that instead of procrastinating by doing random crap, I get to watch Megan and Ian flirt. Well, their version of flirting, though they both deny that it's flirting.

"You're not doing any homework, Olivia," says Ian, peering onto my screen. "I mean, unless Etsy is considered homework?"

"Snitch," I hiss, clicking out of Etsy and reopening my homework. Ian grins, especially when Megan reminds me that she'll call Thierry. Her threats don't really pan out, especially since said handsome boyfriend of mine walks into the bakery.

He drops into the seat next to mine and rests his head on my shoulder. "Hi, handsome," I say, running a hand through his hair. "How was your afternoon?"

He sighs. "Long. But better now."

"Sap," I say, laughing a little. Therapy takes a lot out of Thierry, and, as always, some days are better than others. "FYI, Megan tried to blackmail me into doing homework by saying she'd ban you from seeing me."

Thierry laughs. "Has that threat ever worked?"

I think back. "Not so much, no."

"I'll just up my game," calls Megan from behind the counter.

"I'd like to see you try," I say.

"Don't tempt the beast," Ian says, and ducks when Megan throws an empty coffee cup at him.

I shove my laptop back into my bag, and stand up to stretch the kinks out of my back. It's a surprisingly warm evening, and considering the amount of snow we've had, I'm enjoying every second of it. "Just wanna drop this off in my room first," I say, swinging it over my shoulder.

"Sounds good," Thierry says, and follows me out the door after saying goodbyes. 

We walk back to campus because when the weather's this gorgeous, you kinda have to. We're almost by campus when we pass the tree. Thierry turns to me. "Remember this tree?"

"Very much so," I say. I shamelessly flutter my eyelashes, because it makes both of us laugh. "Wanna do a reenactment?"

"With or without the Civil War era guns?" he asks.

"Okay, that kiss definitely blew my head off my shoulders, but I don't remember any Civil War era weapons," I muse. "Unless that's some sort of euphemism. Like, is that just a Civil War era gun in your pants, or are you just happy to see me?"

"I'm never going to be able to look my American Lit professor in the face ever again," Thierry groans, which only makes me laugh. "I'm just going to spend all of his classes thinking of innuendos based on historical facts."

"Oh no."

"Your text messages are going to be X-rated," Thierry says, slowly pushing me against the tree. "But they're gonna be educational and X-rated."

"You can send me dirty texts about 1800's America, but just know that I may not actually find them sexy," I say as he starts nipping at my ear. 

"You wanna bet?" he whispers into my ear.

"Maybe?" I can't think straight when he does that with his fingers. "You play dirty, Thierry Acosta."

"Of course I do," he says, dropping a kiss on my forehead. "How else would we have gotten here without me playing dirty?"

"Well, I walked, I don't know how that involves you playing dirty," I say between kisses.

"Smart ass," he says, and kisses me. 

A lot has changed since that first kiss against this tree, but kissing Thierry is just as magical now as it was then. If anything, there's more magic now. There's more love in it, there's more of us in it.

Thierry pulls away a little and looks down at me. "What happened?" he asks, brushing a tear off my cheek. 

"I'm happy," I say, burying my head into the crook of his neck. "And sentimental today."

His arms tighten around me. "I love you, Olivia."

"You better," I joke. "Because I love you, too."

We stand there like that, reveling in memories of the past year, marveling how far we've come as individuals, and how far we've come as a couple. Thierry still has his good days and bad days, and sometimes the bad days get pretty bad. But we still draw butterflies, and still cocoon if we need to. 

Life isn't perfect, but it's never going to be. Life doesn't work like that.

But recently, life has proven itself to be a pretty wonderful place to be. 

"Olivia?" 

"Hmm?"

"If hypothetically someone arranged a romantic something for this evening as an early Valentine's Day celebratory type of thing, because I know you have a Beats thing on actual Valentine's Day, how much time would you need to get ready for it?" 

And this is one of the many reasons I adore Thierry. He knows that I like to be dressed appropriately for wherever we're going, and so his version of surprise outings is him telling me in advance. Maybe not specifically where we're going, but what kind of place it is. Always. Even if we're going to the grocery store.

"You little sneak," I say, drilling a finger into his chest. He grins. "What sort of romantic something would it be?"

"A surprise type," he says. 

"THIERRY."

"A sort that involves driving to a certain favorite eating establishment? And sitting on the second floor of said eating establishment?"

Every time I think he can't do something more thoughtful and wonderful, he does. "I love you, you wonderful sap."

"I love you too," he says. "And, just by the way, it's not a Civil War era gun in my pants."

****

Curious who Thierry and Olivia are, and what happened at the tree? Make sure to check out THIS MUCH SPACE, book two of the Twelve Beats In A Bar series. 

Olivia is Anna Wintour’s worst nightmare, and she doesn’t give a shit. She’s wanted to go into fashion design her whole life, and nothing is going to stop her fabulous plus sized self. Not even her boss from hell, or the fact that she’s the fat Cinderella of the most exclusive lingerie store in Bushwick, Ohio. She’s sworn off dating, because she is focused, dammit, and will not get distracted by anyone in college. She has shit to do and places to go, be it on her own with the clothing she makes, or with the girls in Twelve Beats In A Bar, the all-female a cappella group she’s part of. 

Why do group projects always have to ruin everything? 

Thierry Acosta has it all. Shortstop on Bushwick University’s baseball team, amazing grades in college, everything he could want. When he gets paired with Olivia for a group project, things are only getting better. And then his dad loses his job, and Thierry’s life falls apart. He can’t manage to get himself to practice, to class… anywhere. He’s got the scars on his wrists to prove that this has happened before, but he thought he was better. He thought he could deal with something like this. The cuts on his thighs say otherwise. 

Before they know it, Olivia and Thierry's relationship has gone from casual project partners to not-so-casual more-than-friends. But when things take a turn for the worse, can they face the growing reality of a relationship that's become much more serious than either of them expected- or wanted?


BUY ON AMAZON

***
And just when I thought Thierry and Olivia couldn't get any more adorable, they do. The next stop on the hop is the everly wonderful Rebecca Paula (see what I did there? See?)! Be sure to comment on each story to be eligible for the massive giveaway at the end. 

Thanks for joining us for #ValentinesRewind! ♥

Happy Happy Thursday! 

xoxo

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Two Years Later, And Definitions of Success

(This is a post brought to you by a girl who should be working on her NaNo WIP but can't focus.)
The two year anniversary for the publication of HEART BREATHS was earlier this month, and for various and sundry reasons, I didn't end up posting anything.
For some reason, this morning, I decided to pick up my paper copy and read.I haven't read it since it was published, and it was, to be very honest, a bizarre experience.
I mean, I know I wrote it. I remember writing it. I remember the revising, revising, revising, reading it over and over and over until the words blurred together and the story didn't mean anything to me anymore.
By the time I published it, I was a little sick of it. I mean, I loved the characters and the story, but I was so ready to talk about literally anything else. Even though I hadn't necessarily talked about it with other people, I had spent so much time in my own head with the story that I was just done with it. 
I think that might be why promoting is always difficult for me- I'm so tired of thinking about the book by the time it's finished.Two years has definitely given me space and objectivity.

So. Here are my thoughts about HEART BREATHS, as someone who has finally found objectivity.
I...liked it?
It's so weird to say.
But I liked it.
I ship me some Maddie & Gabe, in all their complicated and emotional baggage, and watching them fall for each other, and learn to trust each other made my heart happy. I loved me some Noie, and some Grandma Ev. I adored Sam, ME, Hannah, and Mrs. Mendez. All the song references made me smile, because they're songs I love.The end made me a little teary eyed.
And then I read the acknowledgements, and realized how much has changed, and how little has changed.
I started writing as a kid to have stories that I wanted to read but I couldn't find.I kept writing as an adult to have stories that I wanted to read but I couldn't find.
The past two years, I've spent a lot of time thinking about the concept of success, and what exactly it should mean to me in the context of writing and as an author. I have spent way too much time worrying about things that I shouldn't have worried about. Things that weren't in my control, things that had absolutely nothing to do with me, things that didn't matter, no matter how much I was convinced they were.
It's hard to go into something like writing without having a concrete definition of what success means, especially when everyone else's definition would be different than mine.
I tried to adopt other people's definitions for myself, and they never worked. The only thing that happened was I disappointed myself. I hadn't sold x number of books. I hadn't hit any lists. I hadn't ever done an in person signing. I hadn't, I didn't, I'd never...
The only thing that I did was hurt myself. Berate myself for not being the success I wanted to be. 
Even though success should not have been the same for me as it was for someone else. Our lives weren't the same. Our responsibilities weren't the same. Our faiths weren't the same. 
I had no right to take anyone else's definition of success without living the life they did.
And so, by default of not living the life of someone else, I let myself down when I did not reach their expectations.
Rereading HEART BREATHS today made me realize that my definition of success is the same thing it's been since I was five, when I wrote an essay about my blanket. 
It's the same thing it's been since I was eight and writing stories about boarding schools and tree houses.
It's the same thing it's been since I was thirteen, writing about road trips and friendships and solving ridiculous crimes.
It's the same thing it's been since I was twenty one, and had finally started writing again after too many years of not writing, when I wrote about teenagers and college students and people falling in and out of love and figuring out who they were and who they weren't.
It's still the same, now, with six stories published, and a seventh one coming next month.
I just forgot.
I write stories that I want to read and I can't find.
I write stories to make myself happy.
I write stories to work through things that have happened to me with a little more objectivity than I'm capable of for my own life.
I write stories to understand myself, to understand the world, to understand who I am, who I was, and who I want to be.
Having other people read stories I wrote and love them like I did, back when they were just ideas I couldn’t stop thinking about is great. Having someone tell you your book made them cry, made them feel, made them think, is amazing.
But my definition of success should be something that I am in control of. I don’t want to rely on other people for my version of success. I want success to be something that I can do on my own. 
It's very hard to see yourself or your work objectively, as you sit in the middle of your life and the middle of your work in progress, and it is very hard to give yourself credit for something you do not think you've done well.
Two years after pressing publish on my first book, two years of a little too much stress about who I should be or what I should be, things slid into place.
My definition of my own success has always been being able to read a story that I wrote, knowing that it's something I want to read, and something I created. 
Two years after publishing my first book, I have realized something supremely cool.
I'm a success.

(Reference point: this book)

Monday, August 31, 2015

Get It Together, Girl!


It's been quite a while, hasn't it?


When Lexi emailed me about joining the blog hop, I was ALL IN. Mostly because I love when people blog about their planners and productivity and all the things.

I am a shameless yenta.

While this blog post could be about approximately eighty seven bazillion different things, I decided to concentrate on my one true love: list making.

Am I one of those people who writes things down on her to do list just so I can cross it off?

Obviously. Come on, y'all. What did you think?

I work a 40 hour work week, I'm in graduate school, and  I write. It's a lot to juggle, and it means I need to be super organized about all the things. Especially deadlines.

To keep track of what I have to do, I use the following:
-my paper planner (Erin Condren)
-Google Calendar (all of Google Drive, really)
-Sticky Notes (an app on my laptop)
-approximately all of the Post-Its

(For pictures, check my Instagram.)

MY PAPER PLANNER:
All hail the planner. I use both the month-at-a-glance as well as the weekly.
I use the sticker method, which I learned about from Victoria Schwab. And as a teacher, I appreciate and understand the magic of stickers. I use little labeling circle stickers- nothing fancy.
One sticker is equal to 1000 words written (if pink, yellow, or orange), or a half an hour of exercise (if green). I chose 1000 words as a sticker marker, because I do 1000 word sprints, and it's easiest to count this way. I keep track of the precise amount of words by that day in the weekly part of the calendar. The stickers make for a great overview and approximation of how many words I wrote a day.

The stickers I use on the planner can all be moved around, which makes for a cleaner planner. It also means I actually use the stickers.

I use little post its on the weekly pages. I'll break up my lesson plan into activities and books that I'll use, and post it them all on the day I'll be using them. If I decided to switch things around, it's painless and clean.

I also use post its to meal plan, because if I don't meal plan, I will inevitably forget to make lunch and that never ends well.

GOOGLE CALENDAR: 
Most deadlines that I put in my paper planner, I'll put on Google Calendar, too. And set all of the alarms for everything. Work, school, and writing are all color coded, as are subtopics in the three. Cover reveal will be a different color than Deadline will be, but they'll be in the same color family.
I have access to my Google calendar on my phone, so I can add things in as soon as I know about them. It also means that I'll get notifications not only via email, but on my phone, as well.

STICKY NOTES:
Sticky Notes is a magical app that came with my laptop. It's basically virtual Post-Its, which are just excellent.
I have four main Sticky Notes on my desktop: one for writing, one for work, one for school, and one for miscellaneous things. Those four main Sticky Notes I use as a never ending to do list. I'll write down all the things I need to do (and break them down into manageable tasks), and when I'm finished with a task, I'll change the task to italics. Every few days, I'll go through the list and delete all the things I've finished.

APPROXIMATELY ALL OF THE POST ITS:
I have Post-Its everywhere. On my planner, in my notebook, on my walls, on my laptop....anywhere where you can have a Post-It, I probably have one. I'll write down short term to do lists on lined Post Its, and stick them where I know I'll be seeing it. Sometimes that's in my planner, sometimes it's just on the screen of my laptop, so I can't avoid it. As I mentioned before, I use little post its to write down different activities or deadlines and shift them around if necessary. I flag pages in my notebook with little post its if I know I'm going to be needing something specific that I've written down, and use them in textbooks to keep my place on the page.

There's plenty more in the 'How Does KK Attempt To Keep Her Life Mostly Together' blog post, but this seems enough for today. If you want me to blog about any other part of HDKKATKHLMT, let me know, and I will.

(Or I'll post pictures on Instagram. Because YAY Instagram!)

Make sure to check out everyone else's posts over the next few days, and make sure to enter the giveaway!

Have a wonderful Monday!

xo


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, June 22, 2015

I'm Not Even Sorry.

This post has been a long time coming.
*collapses in a heap*

HOORAY!!! IT'S BEAUTIFUL LITTLE FOOL DAY!!!

BLURB:
Eighty seven billion dollars.
One dead New York business mogul.
No heirs.
No wives.
No relatives.

Eighty seven billion dollars.
Not hers yet.
He doesn’t deserve them.
He doesn’t know what to do with them.
She does.
She always has.

Eighty seven billion dollars.
He’s overwhelmed.
She’s prepared.
That will should have had her name.
Not his.

Eighty seven billion dollars.
His looks are a bonus.
Her looks are her weapon.
He’s fighting a losing battle against his heart.
He doesn’t know it yet.

Eighty seven billion dollars.
She gets everything she wants.
He’s what she wants.
Love has nothing to do with it.
To get to where you’re going, sometimes you need to step on a few people to get there.
Good thing her heels are sharp.

AMAZON * ITUNES * KOBO

*tosses confetti* *pops open the champagne* *makes a general nuisance*

If you've read any of my books or have hung out with me on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere, you know that this book is a bit of a departure from the 'usual' KK books. Which has made for quite an interesting writing experience.

And while this book was probably the hardest book for me to write, it has been the most fulfilling, because thinking you can totally switch your writing style and plot is one thing, but actually doing it? It's pretty cool.

And yes, sometimes my brain is this twisted.

So I'm sending off my little nightmare dressed like a daydream, flinging it up and hoping it will fly.

Some Things To Know About BEAUTIFUL LITTLE FOOL: 
1. This is a short book- around 50,000 words.
2. It is best if you go in blind. It makes the story better. If you review BLF, I ask for you please not to spoil much, as it would take away the pleasure from other readers.

OFFICIAL WARNING:

Don't trust anyone.
Don't trust anything.
Don't assume anything.
Don't hope too hard.
You may be disappointed.
Good luck reading.

Don't ask me to apologize for any of it.
I won't mean it.

(Please let me know what you think! You loved it? Awesome. You hated it? Fabulous. I'd love to hear from y'all!)

Have a lovely Monday!
Much love,
KK

Thursday, April 23, 2015

That Time I Decided To Do Something Fun (And Also, Coincidentally, Book NEWS!)

Y'ALLLLLLLLLLLLLLL.

First of all, Beautiful Little Fool comes out in 26 days.
I'm totally not freaking out.
(I lied. I am.)

Second of all, it is spring, and that alone should be cause for celebration and happiness and general merrymaking.

BUT TODAY!
Today I get to tell you one of the many, many, manyyyyyy things I have hiding up my sleeve.
*bounces around*

It's not like I didn't have enough books to be writing or anything. But I have been toying with the idea of writing a serial and releasing it through my newsletter exclusively. Because fun times, yes? Fluff, yes? Ridiculousness and awkwardness, yes?
YES.

And then recently, the idea crash landed into my brain and has not left.
I am slightly in love.
Only a little bit. :)
INTRODUCING.... 
One guy.
One girl.
Two exes.
One crazy plan.

Meet Coco, the secret (figurative) love child of Albert Einstein and Marilyn Monroe. Her ex-boyfriend dumped her and is now banging her next door neighbor.

Meet Boston, the secret (also figurative) love child of Captain America and William Shakespeare. His ex-girlfriend has dumped him and is now banging some geeky science nerd.

Two drinks too many.
One crazy plan to either win back their exes, or doing the world's greatest job of forgetting said exes ever existed.

This is either the smartest idea, or the dumbest.
118 Ways To Get Over You will be available only by subscribing to the newsletter, and episodes will be sent out every Wednesday afternoon, starting MAY 27th. 

You can sign up for it right here!




THERE WILL BE AN OPTION TO HAVE THE EPISODES SENT DIRECTLY TO YOUR KINDLE. 
I'll be updating y'all on that when it's closer to May 27th. :)
Each installment will be around 1000-3000 words. Here's the thing. I know what happens in the story. I know where the story goes.
But my characters have a terrible habit of ignoring me.
So who knows what's going to happen?
Not me...
So if you're into things like sass and ridiculous shenanigans and a science geek and an English nerd and also a bunch of other fabulous people, make sure you're signed up to my newsletter. :)
And if you know anyone who would appreciate any of those things, let them know about it!
EEEEEE I AM SO EXCITED!!!!
*bounces everywhere*


Hope you're having a fabulous day! 
xo,
K.K.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

That Time Of The Month, Aunt Flo, Shark Week, Exclamation Points, And Other Things People Don't Like To Talk About

I was eleven years old when I got my period.
Getting your period was a big stinking deal when you were eleven. It meant you were one of the first ones to get your period, making you infinitely cooler than everyone else.
It meant your friends would ask you questions in hushed whispers at recess or in lab or at sleepovers. Like, “does it hurt?” “do you feel different?”
No, and no.
Well, back then it was no and no. Now it’s yes and no.
My mom bought me pads, and I hid them in the furthest corner in the bathroom closet so nobody could see them.
Minus the annoyance of bleeding for four days a month, I didn’t really see the big deal in getting my period. Wasn’t like I was going to be having any babies anytime soon.

Summer.
An all-girls sleepaway camp in the Catskills.
If you were cool, you left your pads in the bathroom.
If you were EXTRA cool, you left your tampons in the bathroom and taught your friends how to use them.
If you weren’t cool, you hid your pads in the bottom of your suitcase and made excuses as to why you suddenly didn’t want to go swimming.
There was at least one girl in my bunk who pretended she had her period, and really didn’t. She wore pads for a few days and didn’t go swimming then.
I wonder what happened to her.
We nearly suffocated under the weight of the excess estrogen, but somehow managed to survive.

I read my first romance novel in seventh grade.
I was twelve.
It was by accident, but I was hooked.
I don’t think my parents were really all that thrilled.
Okay, I lied. I know they weren’t.
There was a pregnancy scare in the book, and her getting her period was a relief.
I read more romance novels.
And more.
And a few more.
Nobody in any of those books ever had their period.
Or shaved their legs, or waxed, or had cramps.
Maybe that was a thing that went away when you got older. Maybe if you shaved your legs enough all the hair would just stop growing.
Maybe your period just stopped when you were twenty one or something, because all those ladies in the books were over twenty one.

One Saturday night, eighth grade. Staying over at my best friend’s house.
After we went to Blockbuster (RIP), we walked over to CVS to get a bunch of things.
She needed more pads.
Her mom wasn’t around that night, and I hadn’t brought any with me.
But heaven forbid should she actually buy pads, because then people would know.
I didn’t think that was all that strange, because even though at some point, I *knew* that all ladies got their periods, it was still embarrassing.
I honestly don’t even remember what ended up happening that time, but that scenario happened far more than once.
Eventually, I would be the one checking out instead of her because I was less embarrassed of buying pads. But only if it was a girl cashier. If it was a guy cashier… well, I don’t know. It depended.

More romance novels.
Still no body hair.
Still no cramps.
Still no uteruses mentioned unless it was in relation to someone getting pregnant.
A lot of happily ever afters.
A bunch of babies.
But no periods.

High School.
All girl’s high school.
Small class.
“Ugh, I have my period early. Who has a pad?”
Pad critiquing.
Discussing tampons and TSS.
Whining about cramps.
An emergency chocolate stash.
But only in the classroom- never in another class.

More romance novels.
Starting to notice how all heroines have mysteriously perfect bodies.
I don’t.
Why don’t they have cramps? Buy pads?
I wish I could identify with them, but it’s getting harder and harder to.
Unlike romance novel heroines, my period keeps on showing up.
I’m better at buying pads now.

After High School.
Live in a dorm with over 100 girls for two years.
Shit gets REAL.
Pads, tampons, cups, Advil, Tylenol, Motrin, and heating pads are everywhere.
We revel in our femininity.
I still feel weird about buying pads.
I still read romance novels.
They still don’t have their period outside of pregnancy scares.

I am not ashamed of my body.
I am not ashamed of getting my period.
It takes me a long time to get to this point.
I’m not always there.

I wonder why having your period is like some dirty secret.
It’s not like people don’t know you get your period.
Most females get theirs.
It’s not like I was the only one who does.

I read more romance novels.
I still look for periods and cramps.
I wonder why we gloss over the things that make us female.
I wonder why we are ashamed of the potential of creating life.
I wonder why we have let ourselves become ashamed of who we are.
I wonder why we let parts of ourselves be erased in the books we read.
I wonder why it makes me so angry.
I wonder why I’m sometimes still ashamed.

I start writing romance novels.
I realize I like to write ones that don’t feel like pipe dreams.
So I don’t write pipe dreams.
I write messy.
I write heartbreak.
I write periods and cramps and body hair and awkward flirting.
I write happily ever after.

I’m on my way to meet a friend.
I’m bent over on the train from cramps, and have no pads on me.
There’s a little bodega at the corner on the way to the restaurant.
The guy working there is super friendly.
I look around for pads, and realize they’re behind the counter.
Which means not only do I have to buy pads from him, I have to ask him to get me some.
I ask.
I am not ashamed.
He asks me what kind I want.
I tell him.
I am not ashamed.
I buy the pads.
I buy some Advil.
I am not ashamed.

I read another romance novel.
There still aren’t any periods mentioned.
I write another period scene.

I am not ashamed.
I am not ashamed.
I am not ashamed.

Monday, March 16, 2015

A Letter From An Angry Fat Girl

To Everyone Who Has Called Me Fat As An Insult,
You can stuff the word down your throat and choke on it. Fat is a word that describes me, like tall, like loud, like gives good hugs, like drives her sisters crazy.
I’m not insulted. I’m just mad.

To That Sales Lady In A Store That Only Sold Clothing For Plus-Sized Women And Tried To Offer Me Diet Advice,
What the hell is wrong with you? No, seriously. Were you not paying attention to anything when they trained you into the job?

To That Medical Professional Who Wasn’t My Doctor Who Tried To Insinuate That I Was Sick Because I Was Fat,
Nope. I was sick because of germs. Who the hell gave you a medical degree? Your mom?

To The Random Asshole Who Yelled, ‘Hey! Fatass!”
I don’t actually have much of a butt at all. If you wanted to make sure I knew you were yelling at me, you should have yelled something that actually described me.

To The Lady In The Changing Room Who Told Me The Shirt Wasn’t Flattering (And Would Be If I Lost Some Weight),
Did you hear me asking for your opinion? Because I don’t ever remember asking for it.

To The Lady Who Told Me I Probably Wouldn’t Get Married Because Of My Size,
Do I even know you? No.
Also, if marriage makes me walk over to random strangers and say things like that to them, I’ll stay single forever, thanks.

To The Former Coworker Who Told Me I’d Look Great If I Lost Twenty Pounds,
I did loose twenty pounds while working with you. And you never noticed.

To The Same Former Coworker, Who Suggested I Get Surgery Because My Shoulders Were Too Big,
What on earth were you smoking?

To All Those Books And Articles On Dressing For Your Body Shape,
Thanks for nothing. “Curvy” is not an umbrella of all fat girls, and I don’t think I look attractive in “Flowing shirts and flowing skirts” because an empty bag of flour look but in all black and nasty chiffon (as you insist looks nice) is not actually flattering on anyone.

To Every Store That Has “Women’s” or “Plus-Sized” Sections Hiding In The Back Like Some Dirty Secret,
Just because it takes up more fabric to make me a dress, it doesn’t make me less of a person. I am not your dirty secret to hide.

To Every Person Who Thinks They Can Comment On My Body Because I Weigh More Than Conventional Society Has Dictated,
My body is not public property. My body is not yours to comment on, or yours to change. If I want your opinion or advice, I would ask for it. But I didn’t.

To Every Person Who Thinks They Can Comment On My Body Because I Weigh More Than Conventional Society Has Dictated,
Nope.


To Every Person Who Has Had Others Comment On Their Body Because They Weigh More Than Society Has Dictated,
I'm sorry the world sucks sometimes. I'm sorry people are rude. I'm sorry that there have been days that the world has made you hate a body as beautiful as yours. I'm sorry for every time someone has said something that made you cry. I'm sorry for all of the people who have dared to criticize the perfection that is you.

To Every Person Who Has Had Others Comment On Their Body Because They Weigh More Than Society Has Dictated,
You are gorgeous. You are beautiful. You are a damn work of art. You are magnificent, you are perfect, and fuck all the people who tell you otherwise.
Take up the space you were given. Take up the space you need. There is nobody on Earth who has the right to stop you.

To everyone who buys THIS MUCH SPACE:
Thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you.




Olivia is Anna Wintour’s worst nightmare, and she doesn’t give a shit. She’s wanted to go into fashion design her whole life, and nothing is going to stop her fabulous plus sized self. Not even her boss from hell, or the fact that she’s the fat Cinderella of the most exclusive lingerie store in Bushwick, Ohio. She’s sworn off dating, because she is focused, dammit, and will not get distracted by anyone in college. She has shit to do and places to go, be it on her own with the clothing she makes, or with the girls in Twelve Beats In A Bar, the all-female a cappella group she’s part of.

Why do group projects always have to ruin everything?

Thierry Acosta has it all. Shortstop on Bushwick University’s baseball team, amazing grades in college, everything he could want. When he gets paired with Olivia for a group project, things are only getting better. And then his dad loses his job, and Thierry’s life falls apart. He can’t manage to get himself to practice, to class… anywhere. He’s got the scars on his wrists to prove that this has happened before, but he thought he was better. He thought he could deal with something like this. The cuts on his thighs say otherwise.

Before they know it, Olivia and Thierry's relationship has gone from casual project partners to not-so-casual more-than-friends. But when things take a turn for the worse, can they face the growing reality of a relationship that's become much more serious than either of them expected- or wanted?
 

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