CHAPTER 1: SCENE 1
Wylie’s fingers twitched. He was ready to maul someone for a cigarette. His first burglary was already off to a shit start, and given how their luck was going, they’d all be dead or in prison before the night was out.
They were a small crew—four in total—but Wylie felt like the van was filled to the brim. He was crammed in the back with his boyfriend, Beck, while the other two guys sat in the front. Wylie stationed himself on top of the wheel well, which gave him a clear view of the windshield and the gate blocking their way. His head brushed the roof and his back was cold against the wall, but he refused to move unless absolutely necessary. Every scrape of his sneakers on the grit covered metal floor made his teeth buzz and body tense.
What the fuck was taking so long? He wanted out of this damn tin can. Hell, he just wanted out. Out of this night, out of this initiation. The only thing keeping him from snapping was the dark. It was easier to keep it together when no one could see how close he was to losing his shit.
“Damn it… No,” Adam hissed from the passenger-side seat in front of Wylie. The self-proclaimed hacker clattered away on his mini keyboard while muttering at a small, burning blue screen. The teen was so short his head barely cleared the back of the seat, and he hummed a caustic, nervous tune that did nothing to disguise his growing panic.
Wylie took a steadying breath and tried to block out the electric scent of fear filling the small, confined space. The little tech-wiz was taking too long. Adam reeked of anxiety and showed no sign he was even close to breaking through the security system. For all he knew, the kid had turned chickenshit and was trying to wait out the clock.
Ten minutes. Wylie’s eyes darted to the display on the dashboard when it flashed. Twelve minutes. The air grew heated the longer each second ticked and nothing changed. Wylie could smell the lingering scent of oil and stale blood beneath the annoying, fang twitching flood of testosterone. Diego was flipping. Their asshole leader for the night hadn’t said a word since they parked, but Wylie’s nose revealed the rage building in the silent gangster.
This was a bad idea. A monumentally dumb fuck idea. He seriously should have taken that last smoke before they left.
“Is this happening?” A warm hand grasped his arm, and Wylie held still as Beck pressed his chest up against his back. Hair tickled his cheek when Beck leaned over his shoulder and peered at the clock on the dash. “Shit, our timetable is going out the fucking window.”
Beck turned toward him but his gaze failed to find Wylie in the absolute black of the back of the van. Wylie’s pupils expanded, and shapes and colors began to reveal out of the darkness. He focused on Beck and his gaze traced his boyfriend’s familiar features and slipped down to the smooth line of his throat. This was a mistake. Beck was too idealistic, too fucking sweet for this gang bullshit. He had never spent a day out on his own and didn’t know shit about the real world.
Wylie bent forward and his lips brushed Beck’s ear. “We can still back out. No one needs to know we came out here.”
Beck shuddered, but it was only from the heat of Wylie’s breath on his skin. He turned his head and their noses bumped. It was surreal, and Wylie felt half a predator as he watched Beck’s limited human eyes blink uselessly in the dark. Beck fumbled and his palm found Wylie’s neck and moved up to his face. He rubbed along the peach fuzz of Wylie’s crew cut to the back of his head, and pressed forward so they wouldn’t be overheard.
“Don’t be dumb, baby. This is our ticket out of this bullshit. Once we make this score, we’re in.”
“B, getting into the gang is only going to lead to more…” Wylie trailed off when an angry growl tore from the driver’s seat.
“Come on, you little fuck. Hurry up!” Diego slammed his fist on the dashboard, and everyone jumped.
Adam’s incessant humming silenced with his yelp, as did the clicking of keys as he tried to steady his shaking hands. His voice was timid and small once he finally spoke. “I’m almost…”
“You said you were a genius. That this would be done in five minutes, tops,” Diego snarled accusingly. He turned in his seat and towered aggressively over Adam’s diminutive form. “Hurry the fuck up, you little shit, or I’m dumping you dead in some back alley where the freaks like the guy in the back will eat your fucking flesh. Crack the gate!”
Wylie gritted his teeth. He wasn’t a freak, and he sure as fuck wasn’t a cannibal.
“It’s not the same system Roth gave me the plans for,” Adam whispered from where he was cowering in his seat. “There’s another element I’ve never seen before. I think I’ve almost hacked it.” His narrowed shoulders scrunched tight as he hunched over his small computer. Adam ducked beneath mouse brown hair to hide from Diego’s glare and refocused on the screen.
“Hey, freak, you paying attention back there?” Diego threw his heavily tattooed arm over the seat and turned his aggressive stare to the back of the van. “You’re going to break us through the gate if the kid fucks this up. You might also need to beat the shit out of the little bitch if it turns out he’s screwing us over.”
Wylie tensed as his gaze fell on Diego’s brutal expression and blind eyes. He was ready to smash the guy’s face in. The gangster was as mean as a junkyard dog and twice as foul. Wylie might be the only one in the crew who could transform, but Diego was all human and still managed to be as despicable as it got. Everything about this situation was setting Wylie on edge, and it started all the way back when Diego showed up half an hour late to the heist and nicknamed him freak.
“Yeah, none of that’s happening,” Wylie said with far more apathy than he felt. “Unless the alarms are down, we’re not leaving this van. We signed up for a robbery, not a fucking suicide mission.”
“You little shit.” Red flushed across Diego’s tanned features, and his chest puffed like a jacked up frog about to explode. His hand gripped the top of the dividing seat and the vinyl creaked in his powerful grip.
Wylie carefully unwound from Beck and nudged him behind his stronger form just in case Diego lost his shit and started punching. Being saddled with three nervous, untested teenagers for a gang initiation probably wasn’t Diego’s highpoint of the week either, but Wylie wasn’t about to throw his life away over the gangster’s explosive temper. He’d rather fuck it up in the driveway before a crime was committed, than have it turn to shit when they were balls deep in the mansion.
“Listen here, you fucking freakshow.” Diego stabbed a finger in Wylie’s direction, but he kept enough self control to stop from reaching into the dark and losing an arm. “If you don’t want to end up dead tonight, you do as I fucking say. That goes for all of you. This isn’t some pussy high school playtime, and I’m not going back to prison over you dumb fuck kids. If any of you…” There was a sudden rattle of metal, and Diego whirled in his seat to peer out the windshield. Adam beamed when the wrought iron gate blocking the driveway shuddered and opened smoothly on motorized tracks.
“Halle-fucking-lujah,” Diego growled in relief. He seemed to vibrate as he slammed his hand on the key and the van roared to life. Diego showed thin restraint as he put the vehicle in gear, hit the gas, and they glided through the gate opening.
Wylie took a steadying breath as his gut clenched. There was no backing out now. Whatever happened, they were locked in.
“We’re in,” Beck gasped in excitement. He fell against Wylie’s shoulder to peer ahead through the windshield. The sprawling mansion came into view, and Beck’s breath heated his cheek when he sought out his mouth. If Wylie’s response was more tepid than usual, Beck didn’t mention it. “This is it, baby. This is our fucking future,” he whispered between quick, hungry kisses. “We’re finally going to be free.”
Wylie sealed their lips together just to silence Beck’s optimistic spewing. Running with Roth wasn’t going to be freedom the way his idealistic boyfriend envisioned. It was just another bunch of fucked up, hypocritical adults who used kids while calling it family. Doing illegal shit at the same time didn’t make it any better than all the other bullshit families Wylie had gone through. It would be money, though. Serious money that could buy him the future his fucked up arms stole.
Beck’s hand drifted down, and Wylie jolted when fingers fumbled for his zipper. “B.” He pulled Beck’s arm up and shot his boyfriend a smoldering look he couldn’t see in the dark. “Quit being a pervy kink. Focus.”
Beck rolled his eyes and with a wicked grin, threw himself into Wylie’s lap. He wrapped around his boyfriend’s muscular form and kissed roughly up his neck and jaw. “Don’t be that way, baby. We’re going to fuck tonight. We’re going to ace this shit, and you’re going to come over to my place and fuck me with those studly arms out.”
Beck rocked his hips against him persistently, and Wylie growled softly. Damn it, his dick definitely dragged him into all kinds of trouble when it involved a tight piece of ass like Beck. “B, you gotta take this seriously.” Wylie peeked an eye to the front of the van as Beck’s lips slid a hot path along his throat. “You know my arms are dangerous. One wrong move, and my scales could slice the flesh from your bones.”
“I don’t care. You’re arms are crazy hot, and we’re totally doing it,” Beck whispered breathlessly. “Tomorrow morning, I’m telling my parents to go fuck themselves. No more evangelical school. No more sick fuck Reverend Clark. No more pretending I hate dick. You’re going to move out of that shitty group home where they treat you like a monster, and life is going to be fucking perfect.” Beck’s lips found Wylie’s in the dark and crushed him in a desperate kiss.
Beck was totally fucked up and Wylie wasn’t complaining. He wrapped his arms tight around Beck’s narrow hips, squeezed his ass hard, and pulled him up into a deep kiss. Sneakers scraped the metal floor as Beck straddled Wylie’s thighs, and his palms slid hot paths over his chest and back.
Wylie broke from the kiss and grabbed the hand trying to get under his sweatshirt. He pulled Beck tight against him and pressed his mouth to his ear. “Just promise me you’ll watch your back tonight. If you get even a whiff of the cops, you run.”
Beck glanced toward the front of the van and turned back to whisper against Wylie’s cheek. “Dude, I’m the freaking lookout. I can’t just run.”
He was so fucking naive. “B, you don’t owe these crazy fucks any…” Wylie fell silent as the darkness flashed and light dazzled his night vision. Wylie hissed and covered his face with his arms. “Shit.”
Wylie stayed hunched until the blinding pain throbbing behind his eyes began to fade. An outdoor lamp illuminated the driveway where the van rolled to a stop in front of a garage. Diego cut the engine and silence descended. Wylie squinted up to the front once his eyes adjusted and met Diego’s dark glare.
Wylie bristled and pushed back from Beck. He didn’t like Diego, he didn’t trust him, and he sure as fuck didn’t want his eyes on him when he was sucking face with his boyfriend.
Diego didn’t say anything as he pulled a packet from his pocket and jammed a piece of gum into his mouth. Wylie gritted his teeth when he realized it was Nicorette. The fucker. “Alright, kiddies,” Diego drawled as his gaze moved from Adam’s pale, anxious face, to Beck’s excited smile, to Wylie’s defensive glare. “Remember, the owner flew south to some fucking island, and we’re the professionals called in to check on a busted pipe. Easy.”
Wylie pursed his lips. They didn’t have a toolbox or a sign on the side of the rusted out van painted in matte black finish. Anyone who saw them would see three wannabe thug teenagers and a career criminal, not fucking plumbers.
Diego didn’t look concerned with the plan as he jabbed his thumb at Beck. “B, you’re on lookout. I want you at the door with your ear on the scanner for signs of cops. No matter what we’re lugging, you don’t leave that post until it’s time to go. As for you, you stupid shit.” He grabbed Adam roughly by the head and shoved him toward the door. “Get your scrawny ass out. We need someone to tag the stuff worth grabbing. Don’t fuck it up.”
Adam scrambled to keep his computer from falling while avoiding Diego’s touch. He didn’t dare look up as he shouldered the door open and slid down the seat until his sneakers reached the pavement.
Diego’s dark eyes burned with hostility when he turned to Wylie, who hadn’t moved yet. “Freakshow, you’re with me. Alright, you stupid fucks, let’s rob this shit.”
Welcome to this week’s story. This may turn out to be a fever-dream, I warn you now. Perhaps an essay. I want this to tell the variety of perception, the way we filter reality and forget that the filter has more power than the intention. But the fever keeps coming back. Pretty sure it’s the flu. I added a month to every subscriber to the website cuz I don’t want to freak out about being sick and stressing. Also, I think it’s a good excuse to allow myself to tackle the final draft of Hellcat without feeling overwhelmed. Life happens, so enjoy your free month of reading The Library while I write complicated and potentially meaningless essays about reality. XD (Don’t forget, Heat is free this month!
I love it, though. I love the art of perspective. It’s everything I use to create a false reality out of words that is familiar enough to compel an emotional response. It’s also what allows me to read critical reviews directed at my work and not be held back, not feel pain, not identity with it at all. It’s where I can take the side of what some might think is a selfish monster and show that a belief system is the only reason they feel that way. This is everything I do on so many levels from writing, to living in the world, to overcoming PTSD and autoimmune and allergies.
This post is about empowerment for every single person on the globe.
This is going to be a long newsletter. Most of you are used to me talking about pushing boundaries when it comes to censorship and erotica, etc; this newsletter is about mental boundaries concerning reality itself. I hope you enjoy it.
Morality Is A Concept, Not A Fact
So, to start, I don’t believe in right and wrong. When I write characters and jump perspective, they all feel like they’re thinking the ‘right’ thing when you see through their eyes. This is because right and wrong are perception that only exist in the mind. Morality is a man-made concept to define how we want the world to be, while we dismiss how the world actually is.
There are those upset about last week’s post who believe right and wrong are facts, and they would like others to be punished for fitting into the ‘wrong’ category they have defined. Having an opinion that differs from these individuals is enough to be in their ‘wrong’ category. Yes, a thought—a simple thought—when in the filter of morality can define someone as ‘wrong.’ That’s the whole basis of shame right there. When a morality filter is placed on something like body image or sexuality to define someone as ‘wrong.’
Some people are so caught up in their emotional pain, they think my choice to type on my computer is an attack on individuals personally to ‘prove they are wrong.’ Sorry, there. I don’t actually know you exist. You don’t actually know I exist.
If you would like to prove you exist so I find your argument 100% fact, please send me your name, birth date, phone number, social security number, bank account and routing information, and a current photo ID. Now, I can’t process this information without $120, but if you’re willing to make a direct deposit to my Paypal…
Sorry, couldn’t help myself. XD Bad, Sadie. Bad. Am I not being serious enough? Whoops.
I remember not too long ago (I’m 35, for those wondering) I had expressed to my boyfriend of about 8 years now that it was more hurtful to be blind to someone else’s pain, than it was to hurt them intentionally. I likened it to walking and missing the fact you were crushing someone beneath your boots—how cruel! Ignorance was, in my mind, more intentionally cruel than intentional cruelness.
This is about the most irrational statement I have ever made in my life. Not knowing you’re hurting someone is a deliberate attack on them? Madness.
It was an irrational belief, and I once believed it wholeheartedly and expected people to conform to that idea. Surprisingly enough, they did not. XD But I can understand where that feeling comes from even if I don’t live my life by it anymore. I didn’t want my pain to go unrecognized. I certainly didn’t want to hear that people could step on my feelings and not be punished, even if they were blind to what they did. That wasn’t fair!
Some people are extremely angry about all of this. I am not one of those people. You can try to make me angry. You can hope I’m watching the screen while you’re pouring your righteous rage into your keyboard. It won’t do any good. My feelings come from within me and it is my choice how I want to feel. That people are blind to their choices when it comes to their feelings, beliefs and actions is what this week’s newsletter is all about. It’s what last week’s newsletter rant was all about. Did the angry people miss the point? Shocked. They’re trapped in their perspective, and whooo, it just makes them charming to interact with.
For Those Who Believe Words Hurt You; Brace Yourself For A Wakeup Call
I make a habit to question ‘reality.’ Most of the world as we see it is a story instead of real. We experience it in our heads, and things in our heads aren’t actually real.
To be exact, everything I read on my computer is text on a screen. Everything. That’s all it is. Sometimes it’s on a bigger screen, or a smaller screen. Sometimes I’m in my bedroom or grocery store or beside a loved one. Sometimes the screen has images, still and/or moving, and audio of a voice or music. On that screen are replications and interpretations of life.
Nothing on a screen is real.
Now, I understand people would like me to be very upset by the words and images I see on these screens, these replications of life. I, on the other hand, work very hard to not be outraged over the things that flicker across my computer screen. I do not always succeed in this endeavor. :D
It is an amazing challenge considering the political upheaval that keeps ending up on my screens, the end of the world certainty, earthquakes and fires and extreme range of human suffering just waiting to be known in my mind. But all I must do is step away from the screen and realize my life is not changed. The world is not in the screen. My cats know; unless a mouse pointer is zipping around, they don’t look at screens at all. There’s nothing real on a screen to a cat but motion.
So, what is in my computer, or television, or phone screen if not reality? My perceptions of the world. There is no one there but me staring at symbols and images and hearing sound while I choose to interpret a story out of it all. When I am sane and rational, I can see this. I can see that the things on a screen are no more than light and shadow that my brain interprets as ‘real.’ What happens when I’m not being rational?
A Rational Reaction To An Irrational Situation
Have you ever seen a dog go from calm and relaxed to suddenly alert and angry? It starts barking and growling aggressively for no reason. You can’t figure out why until you realize the dog is looking at the television screen. Usually the dog is fine; it doesn’t even seem to notice the TV. But sometimes it hears a noise or sees a shape that reminds it of something in the real world, and the dog reacts. It freaks. There is suddenly someone in the room when before there wasn’t. Danger.
This dog is acting in a rational way to an irrational subject. All these reactions to protect its territory from a potential intruder makes complete sense. It’s what the dog perceives as an intruder that is where we define the situation as irrational. It’s just a sound, it’s merely a shadow on a screen. The dog is believing a ‘story’ of reality instead of actual reality, and that is where it all goes crazy.
Eventually the dog uses its other senses to realize that there isn’t something alive in the room, just a screen. Once the dog realizes there is no scent of an animal, no dimension to the character on the screen, no actual being as a source to the noise, the dog calms down. It stops caring the screen exists because the dog knows there is nothing real on it.
Humans, on the other hand, have a much harder time differentiating fantasy from reality. They look at screens—the way you’re reading my words on a screen this moment—and think that what’s happening in the text is real. They react to that belief, be it through emotional response or physical. Some completely forget that the things on the screen are just imitations of life, and they spend most of their time thinking about what they see there.
Why should I be upset over anything I read on a screen? What would be wrong in my brain that I would feel outraged and emotionally distressed when I’m aware I’m safe in the world and that the contents on a screen aren’t real? Reacting would be irrational. I know it’s irrational because I used to have PTSD, where I felt like I was in danger all the time when there was nothing actually there to harm me.
PTSD Is A Perception Disorder
What should help to understand the context of last week’s rant is that I’ve had PTSD since a toddler. What is PTSD? Post-traumatic Stress Disorder. You’ve probably heard about it with veterans of war. Mine is actually sourced from childhood abuse. Basically, it’s when the brain gets trapped in an emotional and chemical loop as part of a built in survival mechanism.
This survival mechanism exists to keep you aware that danger can occur and you need to be ready. Except, PTSD disregards that the event that sent the brain into this coping response is no longer occurring. The chemicals continue to flood the body until the body breaks down, unable to produce the stress hormones that keep it alive. Or the brain finds it all too unbearable and seeks death. So while your body thinks it’s fighting for its life for years on end with no actual danger in sight, it is literally killing itself.
I spent over 30 years with my brain and body chemistry insisting constantly that I was moments from being attacked. Every day. It didn’t matter the beauty around me, the safety and freedom, the fact that I was an adult in a world of my choosing. I was trapped in my brain and it was a horror show. I learned to break free of that chemical survival response occurring in my body—years of IFS therapy and mindfulness, well worth the time spent—and the key of it had to do with changing my thought and belief patterns. It was the only way to become free of what my brain was insisting was ‘real,’ even though I could very well see reality was completely different.
What I found fascinating was once I removed the damaging belief system, the chemical system began to calm without the constant messages from the brain triggering the body to ‘fight, flight, freeze or submit.’ The stress hormones were being released in response to the thought patterns. And once the chemical response calmed, it became easy to see the addictive nature of thought patterns and how thoughts create chemicals in the body that we perceive as emotions.
Emotions are responses to thoughts, not to events. The thoughts may have nothing to do with the actual situation at hand, but usually something from the past. An example:
A little while ago, my brother went to the doctors to get help for a cold and they prescribed him antidepressants. I freaked out. How dare they prescribe him a psych med that could harm him and diagnose him while he had a fever! Something needed to be done to keep doctors from throwing pills at people without any fucking research!
It was an intense reaction, one that had me upset for days. What I was reacting to wasn’t the situation of ‘my brother was prescribed antidepressants,’ but my thoughts about the situation. Part of my thoughts had to do with my memories of how being prescribed antidepressants led to me considering suicide 10 years ago. It was an extremely unpleasant, confusing situation that lasted for a year as I kept waiting for doctors to ‘fix’ me like they promised, while their medication kept making me crazy. These thoughts and beliefs, which I refer to as emotional software, had more power over my perceptions of the world than the fact that my brother is not me, is absolutely responsible for his choices, and no one has forced him to do anything. You can hand anyone a pill, but it is their choice to take it.
When I came back to reality and realized this, the uncomfortable emotions and my need for ‘something to be done’ alleviated. I could see rationally again, stop wasting hours to days worrying over a moment long gone, and move on with my life.
I had mental associations that worked as triggers to pull me from the reality of the world and trap me in my mind when it came to that situation. Emotional software. Some of these triggers were words like SSRI and doctor. The words themselves were triggers for the concepts held only in my mind. When I think of the word doctor, I’m thinking of every experience I ever had with a doctor—or at least one really shitty experience. It’s extremely hard to see reality when I’m trapped in memories and thoughts that can pop up in a moment because of one concept.
A Rational Reaction To A Perspective Disorder
Remember the dog example? So, to give you an idea of what PTSD would be in the same sense, imagine a puppy is sitting, minding its own business, when a man walks by and trips over it. This puppy experiences extreme pain, and thinks it’s being attacked as this much larger being tumbles and crushes the dog beneath his weight. The puppy survives this, but doesn’t move past this event mentally. The survival process has kicked in—the need to fight, flight, freeze or submit—and all those chemicals are pumping through the system sending associated messages to the brain of danger, danger, danger. But the off switch is never flipped.
The puppy’s behavior changes. It’s alert, afraid, watching every corner; there’s no way to know where the danger will come from. But the puppy remembers: man. A man was what fell on it, so man = pain. The dog is aggressive/afraid toward all men from that day forward. It doesn’t matter if a man never hurts the dog again. If the PTSD switch isn’t flipped off or the perspective changed, the chemicals will continue to flow and the dog will react to its emotional software of man = pain.
If this dog’s behavior is observed by other dogs, lets say puppies of its own, and they keep hearing this message of man = pain, those dogs may take up this belief and change their behavior to match even though they never experienced the PTSD triggering event of the first dog. But if separated from the first dog, and allowed to make mental associations on their own, these dogs may become free of the man = pain concept far easier because they’re not experiencing the same chemical responses in their body and brain as the PTSD dog is.
PTSD On The Brain
I have lived both the trapping of the mind in PTSD and the process of breaking free. I still have a brain that can require my constant awareness. 30 years of a PTSD molded brain (and there is no way to know if my brain would have been different without PTSD) has revealed an addiction to thinking—this post is a total clue of that, btw. XD Long ass addiction to hearing myself type. A neurotic need to say things the ‘right’ way when I know no such thing exists. @[email protected]
I have an addiction to patterns, such as video games and mind puzzles (2048 and suduko were favs). I have felt addictive properties in digital painting and the need to reach a ‘balance’ on the screen. My brain catches on these simple things that other people can just ignore completely. I have a chemical addiction to opiods. I have had 3 opiod pain pills in my life, and it was the second pill when I knew it was an addiction. It is awareness that allows me freedom, otherwise I would be a victim to every screen, every pattern, every pain pill a doctor insists ‘one won’t hurt.’ That’s how I ended up taking that 3rd opiod, btw. I had an infected tooth pulled during emergency surgery and the nurse swore up and down one isn’t addictive, it’s just pain relief. I put myself in danger to please a perceive ‘authority’ because a part of me wanted that pill more than it wanted to accept the reality of my body chemistry and dependency.
I have a body and brain set up to be dragged into false realities, and I don’t believe I’m unique in this. It can be easy to see with a chemical dependency or even a screen based pattern. Thinking? Feeling victimized by everything? These too are addictive behaviors.
In humans, a concept can become emotional software depending on our emotional associations. This is a survival trait. Think of the first time you touched something that burned. You can’t feel that pain anymore, but you may have a memory of pain associated with that thought to prevent you from grabbing a burning branch. If that feeling memory is so strong you wince, your heart races, or you truly feel you’re experiencing pain, you’re looking at your emotional software taking over. It’s the difference of some people experiencing vertigo when they look off the side of a cliff while others don’t.
When we choose our perceptions—the ‘meaning’ of events—and they become our beliefs, we are choosing how we are going to emotionally respond to something. How we emotionally respond usually results in how we act. So, if you find you’re unhappy with your actions—such as staring at a screen ruminating for hours on end—the best place to start is to look at the emotions that spurred you to that action, and then deeper, to your beliefs of the world where the source of those emotions spring from. I don’t delete emails anymore. My inbox fills up with thousands of emails and I don’t bother to spend hours to ‘throw them away’ because I realized my need to have the inbox empty was dumb. Now I just don’t care and it’s wonderful.
The key in all this? By being aware of what we choose to believe, we are less likely to freak out over life and react in ways that harm self or others. When we do freak out, we have a way to discern and unravel the thought patterns that lead to the unwanted responses. When it comes to PTSD, awareness resets the emotional software back to a more logical, less reactive insanity.
Sanity Is Subjective
Someone described me as a psychopath because I don’t reflect their value of pain back on this issue. On any issue, actually. I believe pain has no value. I believe nothing has value, but instead, our perspectives give value to everything. Seeing as it’s clear this person perceives actual pain to be in words on a screen, the rational of their accusation doesn’t really hit home for me. I find it completely irrational that someone would put perceptions above reality. I’m not saying it doesn’t happen—I lived it for years with PTSD.
People have murdered, committed genocide, enslaved other humans, overthrown and forced religious beliefs on others all because they placed perception above reality. The Nazis believed that their beliefs of the Jewish people justified mass murder. There are politicians in the US who believe it’s acceptable to discriminate against LGBTQs because of their beliefs about the norms of sexuality. The belief that a gun might prevent murder is currently being held over the reality of people murdered by guns.
Believing that the things in your head are real—more real than the actual world—doesn’t really show as a sign of emotional stability. From this vantage, it looks like these individuals are so out of touch with reality, they can’t even discern it from their own minds. Mob mentality is very good at validating reactionary emotions and justifying them over real life consequences. All it takes is a bunch of voices raised in anger, and all the rational voices to be silent for a mob to win. So, as a hopefully rational voice this week (just ignore the fever XD,) I choose to not be silent and instead attempt to open closed minds.
Morality And Pain Are Beliefs
The point of the PTSD perspective here is, when I was ranting last week, I was taking all the experience I have in my life and really saying to myself, ‘Gabrielle, this is how you avoid falling back into the brain-fuck that is PTSD and addictive thinking. Do not fall back into believing pain has value, because if you do, then rape, abuse, neglect, foster care, survivor’s guilt, and all that self-esteem insanity will have to be placed back on your psyche’s metaphorical shoulders and carried to define everything you are. Pain cannot be your identity, it cannot be your psyche. It is unbearable to live that way. It will destroy you. This is how you free yourself from pain. Do not value pain, but release it and get on with your life.’
If you’re reading this and actually have PTSD, I’m sure you’re thinking about running away at this point, if you haven’t already. I understand. You don’t want that answer. You don’t want that freedom. I mean, you may tell yourself you do, but then you’d have to face all the things you hate about yourself to get it, right? You’d have to face the shit that happened, the way you reacted to the shit that happened, the way you believe you are the shit that happened. It was all ‘wrong’ and there is no way to fix it. You’d also have to deal with all the people who want you to believe that pain is important, that it’s more important than actual reality. They’re really fucking loud about it.
PTSD can make you really loud about pain being valuable, because PTSD tries to define a human by pain, by the avoidance of pain, by the pushing through of pain, by the numbing of pain and disassociation so that the inflicted person can continue to cope while still not returning to reality. In seeking to avoid pain, you are still defining everything by pain. It’s flight instead of fight, but it’s still a pain reaction. In contrast, accepting pain and realizing it has little value outside of informing you not to repeat an action, allows you to release your obsession with pain and move on.
Something the rabidly angry people reading things that ‘hurt’ them are not learning as they seek to repeat their pain and inflict it on those who disagree with their opinions. Those who value pain intend to inflict or avoid inflicting it. They believe pain is so important, they want to inflict it to prove how important it is to feel that way. They believe pain can live in words, so they hurl words hoping to strike and scar. At the same time, they interpret words to do the same—even words that were never intended to harm anyone.
For those unaware, Hitler was horrendously abused as a child. There are many brutal dictators abused as children; it’s a common theme. The effects of PTSD on the brain can turn a person into a rigid being of beliefs and rules that demand others to fit into those rigid rules so that the PTSD individual can feel comfortable in the world (as comfortable as the disorder will allow.) They create strong ideas of morality, right and wrong, and then demand others to stick to those concepts.
Now, you might think ‘how the hell could Hitler and his followers ever think what they were doing was right?!’ Perception. Their morality was as insane as going ‘my genetics make me superior to you, so I am right and you are wrong, and I’m allowed to murder you.’ Life is perception. Both sides of any war believe they are ‘right’ and it doesn’t stop the murder. Morality is a mental concept used to justify atrocious action all the time.
Fun thought: if you feel like something should be ‘right,’ and you actually *force* others to follow that belief to make it so, you’re being an intolerable dickbag. It might not be full out oppression or genocide, but it’s really not a habit of behavior to encourage. Social constructs and interactions are agreements among independent people, not rigid laws and fact.
Freedom from PTSD comes with acknowledging that morality exists only in your mind. If you believe that there is a ‘right’ and a ‘wrong,’ and that you must be one of the options, you will likely suffer with PTSD until you die. Your brain will keep trying to create rigid ‘rules’ about how the world can only be *this,* and if you are *this,* you’ll finally be okay. (Ex. The world is dangerous but if I am alert and prepared, I will be safe.) Your brain will forever cycle, trying to come to terms with the traumatic event that put you in that state, while also trying to define you and the world by morality and sense. It’s impossible.
People are not events. We are not actions. We are not moments in time or thoughts. We are not the things that happen to us, or the things people call us, or the things we want and achieve. We cannot be wrong, and we cannot reach being right. If you find you are ‘right,’ you are in a rigid belief system that isn’t real and cannot last. It’s all a big perception mess that feels real in the head, because PTSD insists it’s real. PTSD needs you to believe the thoughts in your head are real for PTSD to continue.
Intention Means Nothing To Perception
If my intentions actually mattered in the big sway of things, it would be far easier to communicate. But it is perception, not intention that has power over the human mind. What do I mean by that? Well, if you jlijj hiohiol oihh hoihow eerf…
As you can see, my ‘intention’ to explain can be limited by your perception of the meaning of words. We need a common language. Not just English, in this case, but common. As an author, I follow a trend of ‘dumbing down’ my words. I don’t think the term really suits, though. I like to think I’m avoiding uncommon, unnecessary words that might slow or stop most people as they go to look up what things mean. As an erotic author of darker subject matter, you’ll also find a lot of profanities in my word pool. One, because I swear like that in real life, so it’s a natural replication of my speech. Two, because if a reader becomes offended by words like fuck (my favorite curse word, btw,) I don’t have to worry about them getting to extreme concepts that will surely offend them far more. This can work against me if I really want a reader to stay and read, which is why I’m holding back on swearing for this post.
There are other things just in my writing style that could prevent anyone from fully understanding. When I write informative statements—a technique I learned in school for essay writing—there can be a double-edged reaction. Some people will find the way this post is written to be persuasive, decisive, and to the point. Others will find it condescending and pretentious. Not even for the content (although surely that will be a reason,) but because of the way I make statements as if they’re facts. Some people want to hear ‘maybe’ or ‘please’ or ‘this is only my opinion’ or a million wishy washy statements to ensure that these simple words aren’t attacking them. It will be very difficult to reach through such perspectives because already the language barrier is so great. I’m putting words on a screen and a reader has already decided the way the words are arranged is wrong.
Explaining my intentions still can’t mean they’re understood or even had an effect. I can tell you that in my rants, I have no intention of hurting anyone. I can point out how I choose not to name or link anyone in this situation because even in my fun rants, I choose to be responsible with where I direct potential shrapnel. I understand real life consequences can come from insanity on screens. I have no interest in creating more drama, more pain, or singling anyone out. Those who want pain will find it without me. I just want to remark with my opinion of things. But in sharing my opinion, I do my best to act as responsibly as I perceive it to be, because I don’t want to be shitty toward people while they’re freaking out over things on their particular screen.
What I think is shitty is different from what you think shitty is. Tomorrow, that definition may be completely different from today. Nothing I can do about it. We are all different with different beliefs and perceptions. So when I say something, be it in person or on a screen, I understand my words aren’t interpreted fully the way I intend. They’re read the way each individual perceives. I can do my best to express myself, but it will never be as powerful as whatever is going on in the mind of who is reading my words. You know, if they can get past me writing fuck all the time. XD
Here are a few examples of words that can be perceived strongly even though they’re just symbols on a screen. Cunt. Rape. Aids. Scam. Victim. God. Torture. Cancer. Traitor. Molestation. Trump. Slut. Mother. Failure. Prison. I could go into racial slurs but I feel the point is made. Earlier I mentioned Doctor and SSRI. These are symbols on a page—mouth sounds when spoken—but the power of these words lives in the mind of the person perceiving them. The power is the concept you hold when you think of these words. These concepts are part of your emotional software.
You might believe, ‘No, these words mean the same thing to everyone because it’s fact!’ I recommend you listen to a foreign language you aren’t familiar with, and find some mouth sounds that sound suspiciously like these mouth sounds and yet don’t mean the same thing. Your brain will still have the reaction as if they are the words you know.
Perception is stronger than intention because intention comes from outside us, while perception is our filter on everything that is let in. No one can see outside their filter, but they can attempt to adjust that filter to see things without their emotional software.
Reality Is Defined By The Mind
If I never saw another screen again, the Internet would cease to exist for me. Everyone on the Internet would cease to exist. The only reason I might think they are still out there would be because I would have memories of interaction. If I realize those memories are just thoughts in my head, or those memories are forgotten, the Internet would no longer exist to me. This is the power of perception. Our world is defined by our minds.
I stress ‘defined,’ instead of suggesting reality is actualized by our minds. For example, allergies. I am allergic to over 20 different substances, many of them mold. Mold is very prominent in foods, especially grains, as well as houses, buildings, growing on the lawn, etc. It’s everywhere. For the most part, I cannot see the substances I’m allergic to, therefore I cannot prove that they exist outside of my random reactions. When I first discovered my severe health problems were rooted in allergies, I felt victimized. I had the perspective that the world—nature itself—was trying to kill me (or at least keep me very sick.) It took a while for me to choose a new perspective. The one where I acknowledged that the world hasn’t done anything; my immune system has decided to target certain substances in the world and freak out. I was doing this. My body is doing this.
Now, does that stop me from being allergic? Not really. Reality is reality. But it allows for a completely different set of reactions and actions based off of my perspective. I no longer needed to obsess looking for ways to isolate from allergens or feel depressed because nature hates me. I could instead look into improving my immune function through supplements and allergy shots, and be conscious about how I feel when I breathe around things I fear might have allergens. The immune system is connected to stress levels, so to keep from having my body freak out over inert substances in the air, I decided to work on my brain not freaking out.
My perspective allowed me to have a different path, one that has made living with allergies and an autoimmune disorder (when the immune system attacks the body) far more bearable than the dramatic soap opera I had initially conceived it to be. Seeing as autoimmune disorders tend to go hand in hand with PTSD, there could be more than just a belief that being calm has calming results. PTSD is a battle in the mind about what can be real and part of self. Autoimmune is a battle in the body about what part is the body and if it should be attacked. Theoretically, when you stop attacking yourself in your mind, you may set a standard with the rest of your body to stop attacking itself.
When you walk away physically from something, but you can’t let it go, it’s because your mind is fixated on something not actually there. While one person can turn a screen off and never think of the contents on that screen again, someone else can turn a screen off and spend sleepless nights thinking of the contents on that screen. They might spend hours arguing in their head, not eating, snapping at their loved ones, ruminating over and over again day after day.
‘That thing I read or saw… That thing. It’s doing this to me. That thing is making me crazy. If only I could understand it. It needs to make sense. That person who wrote that thing—they’re the ones who did this to me! They hurt me. They need to pay.’
The choice to fixate is what makes people lose touch with reality. The need to understand and define the meaningless traps us in a world of beliefs. I would know; I’ve been there. But hey, let’s explore. Let’s have a look at that asshole who made you do that thing you didn’t want to do. Let’s meet an author.
An Example Of A Greasy Salesman
Who do you perceive me, the author of this post, to be? I can choose to offer a different perspective in the hopes of changing how you see me. Like, the fact I’m covered in butter right now! Head to toe, salted and everything, butter. I’m avoiding salicylates because of my allergies. Did you know you can have a histamine response without an immune response? That means you can have the same symptoms of allergies, just without the immune system going crazy. So, since salicylates are in just about every fruit and most plants we eat, and plant based oils are in all my body lotions, I’m slicking up with butter until I find something better. It smells delicious. XD
Now, did that paragraph force you to go out and buy butter, or research allergies and histamines? Are you covered in butter right now to see what it’s like? Do you actually know for a fact I’m covered in butter? There is no way for you to know, (but I am! XD) What if I told you Sadie Sins is offering a limited edition body lotion based off of my new butter research, and if you preorder now, you too can be buttery and histamine reaction free? What if I said, if you don’t preorder, I’m going to send mobsters to your house to force you to try my buttery concoction whether you like it or not? (I know, intriguing. Where would I get a bunch of buttered up mobsters to slick you up against your will? Are they hot? Naturally. <3)
I know, it all just seems so silly when it’s butter. What about if it’s a book? What about if it’s for my cat and dog who both need life saving operations asap? (My cats are fine, btw, no worries, and I don’t own a dog.) I could say absolutely anything to try to persuade someone to send money my way.
I can say anything at any time. It’s just an arrangements of symbols on a page. They could have been placed there months ago or a moment. Words are everywhere. But what are you doing when you’re reading those words? Well, what do you do when you interact with someone on the street? You perceive to the best of your ability. In the real world, you believe your eyes, ears, nose, mouth, touch, and brain are all working correctly to paint a picture of reality of the person in front of you. On a computer screen? All you have is your brain and eyes, sometimes ears.
When you choose to trust someone, you aren’t choosing to trust what you know about them. You’re choosing to trust what you believe you know, while ignoring what you don’t know. Some people, like myself, choose to trust while accepting that we don’t know for certain that anything is true or real.
You may have thought differently of me with that little butter example—like I’m weird, possibly very slippery atm. Quirky. A manipulative asshole. Whatever. I can’t control how people think or what they do—I can’t control if people continue reading. You could have walked away already because no one is obligated to read what’s in front of them. If they feel obligated, that’s a perception in their mind, not a reality.
What if you look at the date of this post and it turns out to be a week in the past? A month? A year? Is everything in this post a lie now because, hey, a year from now I may not be covered in butter? The text said I was in butter, so it must be true. What if a year from now, it comes out in Buttergate to reveal that no, I have never slathered myself in butter. Only margarine! (Margarine likely has salicylates, so I don’t recommend it.) You have been mislead. You have been betrayed. Or, you know, you got sucked into a story and lost track of reality, because you forgot everything you’re reading is just words on a screen. Everything on your screen is a story, an imitation of life.
I readily admit I do not know the world. I’m still discovering parts of my own brain and psyche; how can I know everything and be certain of its validity? How can I know anything without the filter of my brain? My brain defines my reality. I can only trust that how it’s defined is real, and part of that trust is understanding that what is before me might change in an instant to reveal something more accurate. It’s acknowledging that a computer screen is not a human being. That a drawing or photo is not a human being. That the written account of someone’s past is not a human being. A corporation is not a fucking human being.
If you would like to prove to me without a shadow of a doubt that you are indeed a real human being and be awarded a certificate to validate your existence, please send me naked videos of yourself. Keep it sexy. I’m afraid my email has a processing fee of $50 for every mb of data sent, so first initiate a direct deposit of $1000 to my Paypal, and I’ll refund you whatever is left over once the videos are received…
I know, I can’t help it. It’s funny to me. Lol. You can either be at my very whim, hostage to the things I choose to write on my computer, or you can admit you are the only one in control of your actions. Considering I’m not rich, I’m pretty sure when I say ‘give me money’ it doesn’t force anyone to do anything. (But please, feel free to prove me wrong. That’ll show me. Hardcore.) We all have the choice to walk the fuck away from the screen. We all have the choice to disengage our minds from the screen.
The Insanity Of Humanity
If I believed people were victims, then I would be blaming victims. Victim is a concept of the mind; a person can’t be a concept. I’m pointing out that there is a choice being intentionally ignored because people want to see someone be punished for what happened. A righteous ending to an angry, ‘unfair’ story. They want a sacrifice, and they will find as many as they can to make them feel like the world makes sense.
If the world made sense, genocide wouldn’t exist; wars wouldn’t happen; sexual attraction, skin color, and belief systems wouldn’t be a justification for murder, oppression and imprisonment. We wouldn’t seek out and attack each other for differences of opinion. Chain letters wouldn’t have ever been a thing—seriously, don’t get me started on this wanton choice of insane belief. Annoying as fuck madness, chain letters. If you disagree, forward this newsletter to twenty of your closest, dearest friends before April 1st, or a gremlin will hide inside your closet and turn all your clothes baby-poop green. I swear it’s true. My cousin’s, neighbor’s, best friend’s father-in-law knew a guy who saw it happen. His clothes were gross. Don’t risk it!
The world does not make sense, at least, the world created by human perception. The need for sense and reason comes from humanity, not reality. I cannot change it; I can only point it out. The same way I cannot change that pain is a perception that lives only in the mind.
Prove Your Pain Is Real
Can you? Can you even find your pain? Can you hold it up and show it? Can you let someone borrow it? What about a thought? Can you prove thoughts are real? Yes, you can describe and write a thought down or speak one, but that’s not a thought, that’s just an imitations of a thought. Thoughts aren’t symbols on pieces of paper. Both thoughts and pain live in one place; the mind.
Phantom limb pain is where a body part that is no longer attached is perceived to tingle, twitch, move and/or hurt. This is not a haunting by a limb; this is an indication that body sensations are all translated and defined in the brain to the point that we don’t need a body to believe we have one. It’s why certain drugs can stop pain; not because the wound or injury is gone, but because the perception of the pain is disrupted.
Pain feels real. That sensation occurs in the brain and is translated as being in the body, but it ‘feels’ real. Emotional pain can also feel real. You have a brain capable of recreating the sensations of an actual limb that is no longer attached. The brain is wondrous, but it can also trap you in a delusion depending on if you believe your emotional pain is real.
PTSD is a disorder that works with body sensations and chemicals to make an individual believe that thoughts of pain are actually real. That’s a good sign that even brains not inflicted with PTSD have a system in place that can create this illusion. PTSD is just the lack of finding the off switch when it comes to a built in survival mechanism. That means the biological machine you’re living in has all the systems in place to make you believe pure illusion.
You don’t have a body sensation to interpret a source with emotional pain. But once emotional pain is defined in the brain, the body/brain can release a chemical cocktail to insist that what you’re feeling is actually real. All emotional pain has to cling to is the mind’s belief that what you’re feeling is real and important. It’s a choice many people don’t think they have control over. They do. It is completely up to you to decide if the pain—the hurt, the anger, the outrage, the need for justice—if any of it is actually important and worth feeling pain over.
You may be asking if it’s right or wrong to no longer have huge, reactionary emotions to everything around you. That’s a morality judgment reserved for those who need to feel like there are rules and meaning to keep the world and society in order. If you can trust that you can exist in this world pain free (or at least, pain less) and not be someone who goes out and murders for kicks, then that trust is enough. You never knew the real world to begin with. Right and wrong never existed. If you honestly think that belief in morality is the reason you’re not a murdering psychopath, well, good luck with that. You might want to forget everything you just read to keep from murdering everyone you know including yourself. Clearly you’re not in charge of your actions (this is sarcasm, just to be clear.)
It’s just you and your brain in all this. There is no one to trust but yourself, so you might as well place it there.
How Do You Really Know Reality?
Can you look at another human being and truly know if they are thinking, if they are feeling? When you look in the mirror, can you see your thoughts and emotions?
You can see someone move and interact with their environment. You can watch someone stare at a screen for hours and hours on end, living in a false world in their head stimulated by images and text on a screen. But do you know if brain activity is occurring? What if the muscles in their face are paralyzed and there is no facial expression to go off of? Have you ever seen a thought? You’re reading a reaction to my thoughts, but this is not a thought, only text. Can you grab someone’s happiness and hold it? What about pluck someone’s depression from their shoulder?
It is absolutely your belief that defines if you perceive other people to be the same as you on an emotional and intellectual level, because there is no tangible way to truly know. I choose to assume that everyone is my equal, capable of doing the things I do. I choose to assume that my senses aren’t lying, and I’m truly living in a human body, on a planet, surrounded by other humans. Not to get too Matrix here, but this is a choice of belief because all we have are our perceptions. I can point out that screens can’t be lived in, but they are creating a perception of reality because of the brain. The brain is capable of creating layers of reality, and there is no way to know if our perceptions are honest to actual reality.
Our brains are the only reason we can perceive to have senses in the first place. Everything we know, everything we see, all comes from our brain.
I’m not a Flat-Earther, but the movement bring up an interesting point of perspective. Unless you can use your senses to fully perceive something, you can never truly ‘know.’ The scale of the Earth is too large to honestly know if it’s round through human senses. We know because we create tools to measure, compare, map, photograph, math, etc, etc, but to the human mind, our reality is still only what we perceive through our senses and what we choose to believe. Sometimes those senses can be ignored completely to be replaced purely by belief so things make ‘sense.’
Identity Is Crafted Through Beliefs
Last week’s newsletter was never about the author and what they did or who they were. It was how I felt about the reaction from the community. I’m not defending or blaming anyone; that author made every choice he/she/they made. Every person has their line of what they think is appropriate, but just because my line is different doesn’t mean I’m going to condemn someone for their line. I have seen this line everywhere, but it’s this particular community that takes it personally. People tell stories all the time. People get swept up into things all the time. I was commenting on the community—the same group of people who bought into the false identity in the first place, and who are now buying into the ‘pain must be avenged’ story. The community who keeps looking for justifications to feel hurt, while ignoring the pattern of behavior they’re perpetuating.
How frustrating to know it will continue because people don’t want to see the part they play. How frustrating to realize anyone could accuse any author for not being ‘real,’ and ruin years of work. I cannot prove to you I am real. How do I know that? Because you cannot prove to me you are real. (But if you really want to prove it, send money to… XD)
We are going on belief and trust here, and for all I know, you’re a Russian spy bot that signed up to my newsletter. Yes, all 6000 of you. *suspicious glare*
Perception of reality in this modern world has revealed to have real world consequences. The harder that perception is clung to, the easier it is to make someone act against their own interests as they buy into a story and lose track of their behavior. I’m not just talking financial consequences, I’m talking cults, road rage, self harm, stopping the activities you love because someone wants you to be different. It’s very easy to blame the trigger, the words on the screen or the author of those words, but it’s your actual actions in response to your beliefs that are the defining key in these scenarios. I watch people continue to feed the behavior of turning intangible pain into concrete vengeance, instead of stopping and learning and being responsible for their beliefs.
I feel connected to the MM and LGBTQ community. It is this connection where my emotional software lies on this subject. A part of me identifies with the community and the genre where there are so many readers who love MM. I see pain here. I see a disconnect from reality as people keep screaming their pain at absolute strangers, demanding they stop hurting them. I feel invested and want to see the best for the community, even as I know that is completely up to the individuals within the community. I see the rigidness of belief in identity the community clings to as the source of a lot of drama and pain, not to mention the justification of these witch hunts as they seek to punish those who don’t fit their expectations.
I do not say this to be shocking, or condemning, just honest to my experiences. I have never been discriminated against outside of the LGBTQ community for my sexuality. I have been discriminated against within the LGBTQ community repeatedly for my sexuality. This is a community obsessed with identity based on gender and sexuality, and how those things appear in the body and the world. But gender is a concept. Sexuality is a concept. Attractiveness is a concept. The need to escape these concepts is forcing these thoughts to be important in some people’s minds. It’s just in the mind, but people keep defining themselves and others by these concepts. Identity becomes integral for this community when identity doesn’t even exist.
In the same way the PTSD brain is obsessed with pain as value, so too does the community obsess with the pain of not being allowed to be who they identify as. It is an obsession. While others can change their clothes and be allowed to be exactly who they are—or someone else completely as they choose—those obsessed with identity must reaffirm all identity again and again, labeling, defining, insisting others cannot be really be who they are because *insert rigid defining rule that everyone must follow or leave.* The details become so important. The concepts define and trap humans in their perspectives, and try to prevent them from moving and being free.
This is not everyone in the community. This is not even the majority. It’s easy to notice the loud, critical voices and define them as an entire group—especially when they’re being really loud. But communities are groups of people who identify as similar in particular aspects, so these rigid beliefs of identity are more prominent within the community than those who hover at the edges or step away to be independent. In the need to escape, to be allowed to be free from being discriminated for sexual identity, certain individuals act in ways that discriminate against others for their identity. That rigidness can push others out.
Grand example: Veganism. A concept when forced on others can becomes so overbearing, people want to escape. Vegetarians aren’t ‘good enough,’ and meat eaters aren’t allowed to exist and need to be educated or removed completely. Not all vegans are like this, but the ones who are so caught up in the identity define the negativity of the entire concept of Veganism.
Last week I expressed my frustration with this pattern of behavior in the community. What was heard, on the other hand, well. That’s where perception trumps intention. I’m sure I wasn’t as clear as I’d prefer with the fever—and the fact I was ranting XD—but that is the way of communication. I can express myself to the best of my ability, but if no one else can read English, the message is already lost.
The Weight Of The World
I can tell from some comments, there are individuals who would rather I consider the events that brought these reactions into being in the author situation, instead of focusing on the community’s response. They want to tell me a story so that I will feel the same emotions of outrage, because they feel these emotions are important and justified. Some think I’m uninformed. Clearly if I were informed, I wouldn’t feel the way I do! It’s just impossible, right?
I’m informed, but it is still a story to me. I will not debate the right and wrong of punishing all of humanity when Eve gave Adam the apple; it’s a nonsense story that has no meaning on reality. I won’t get caught up in the morality of eating meat when we live on a planet where every organism consumes organisms to live. Reality is reality, and only things that happen now are real.
Many things don’t happen, but we believe they do. Many things happen that we will never know. Do they require our emotional response when they have never reached our knowledge? Why does knowledge of an event require the same pain as an event we actually experience? Why is that illusion of pain so important that every imitation of life requires it?
Let’s say a terrible event was filmed. During the filming, only the person with the camera saw it. This event only existed in reality for one person for that one moment. But when that film was shown, shared across the Internet, and repeated for years, the replica of the moment then lives in the minds of every single person who viewed and felt pain to know it could have existed. One moment of pain that could have been allowed to slip away, instead becomes a devastation across nations and generations with no end, carried in the minds of billions.
What if it turns out the film was actually fiction? The event was staged? Does it matter, when the response is the same and people believe that pain is real?
If it’s perceived as ‘real,’ people feel obligated to respond as if it’s real. Does the perception of pain make you obligated to feel pain? I say to be free, no. There is enough pain in our actual lives without carrying the pain of the entire human race, past, future, and fantasy. Today can never be today if we’re carrying yesterday’s pain in our hearts.
This isn’t some sort of hypothetical; this is a requirement in the modern world. People watch the news all the time and it’s filled with images of tragedy and pain on a loop. We’re dealing with dictators who send out absolute lies to populations including films of fiction, and insist it’s all real. Fox News is a perfect example of lies sold as reality to a nation. I’ve never seen the state news of North Korea, but it’s a false perspective fed to an entire population. We call Reality TV reality when it’s absolutely bullshit. We are living in a complicated world of perspectives, one that will be growing more confusing, more difficult to distinguish between reality and perception as our technology improves and lines keep blurring.
There is no changing that reality is filtered through our minds. Our perspectives are our individual reality. If we cling rigidly to our perspective, we will forever be battling with the inconsistencies as someone stands beside us and sees a new view. Even though an individual’s perspective is his/her complete reality, it actually does nothing to change the reality that individual is perceiving outside of ‘meaning.’ Reality will continue to change, grow, degrade, shift, adjust, adapt. We must be as malleable as the perception of reality itself, or we may end up killing each other to prove the world is a globe instead of flat.
You can carry all that pain you perceive with you, or you can realize that the events you view and read don’t require your emotional distress. Until you can disengage and realize you have a choice in your beliefs and actions, you won’t be able to truly understand the nonsense of the author situation. I understand some think their feelings are what’s important, but that is exactly why they can’t see past them. Those emotions and the concepts attached to them have become more valuable than the situation in their minds. Which is why they are filtering reality through those emotions to create a perception of the world where the emotions are valued above everything else. That emotional software is unique to that individual, yet they’re trying to define reality by it for everyone.
It makes it hard to find common ground. It makes it so someone can’t even express a difference of perspective without the individuals emotionally invested feeling the need to make that opinion disappear. It makes it so the people who feel that their pain is more valuable than all else must ensure it doesn’t happen again—something that is completely impossible to do, btw—and act in ways that restrict and harm others to ensure that intent.
While it can be easy without PTSD to step back and take stock of the situation and realize things aren’t as first appeared, PTSD requires far more. It requires the complete tearing down of reality depending on the individual and how deep the ‘triggering event’ is associated with concepts. For me, it required ego death, one I experienced fully for about a day and a half.
I lost about a month or so of writing as I slowly rebuilt back into a more relatable being (subjective, I’m sure! XD) But for a while there, I was completely unhinged from what most people would perceive as reality (or, as Wendy calls it—love this term!—consensual reality.) I read a passage about ego death and my brain had a moment of, ‘wait, that’s possible?’ and bam. PTSD memory released and the absolute rewriting of my emotional software. All because my brain perceived it was ‘allowed’ to change.
Everything was bliss, funny, interesting, including my own emotions. You think my response to this author thing might sound callous? I was laughing at the mudslide victims in California for not leaving their homes when there were forest fires. The fire didn’t get them, but the damn mud did when one was way more expected and seen! What a ridiculous joke, life. To ‘argue’ online was to do it while laughing at the amazing sensation of the emotions I would feel. My bf thought I was being patronizing or funny as fuck depending on the subject. We laughed so much those days because nothing could hurt, nothing could encroach on my perspective of reality and taint it with fears of the future or mental concepts of the past. It was freedom.
It did, unfortunately, make my writing very difficult. All the rules—there are so many rules! You don’t even understand all the stupid concepts we call rules—time, language, symbols, speech patterns and mouth sounds. Ugh. So much bullshit. I didn’t want to care, I didn’t want to write sentences at all or polish anything. I just wanted to throw words at the screen and let them stick. An idea was enough, damn it!
Lol, but Hellcat sucked. That first draft had no ego, no character life, and I realized I needed to don that ego persona again to write those characters with a more genuine feel. There is always the possibility that the persona of Sadie Sins can be slipped off and folded up when I stop writing. It’s expected, like any performance artist. But I also know the same is true of Gabrielle. Ego death was just a matter of slipping that persona off as well and realizing for everything I can do to write a character, I can write myself into being. And who is anyone outside of me to say I can’t? They have no control over who I can be.
Some people find this concept to be freeing, the realization that you are not the accumulation of everything that happened to you. When you have lived through ‘horrors’—be they real or in your mind—it is very easy to identify self as events or actions or thoughts or wants. Freedom from that identity is bliss. Others may find the concept of ego death enraging. They need their pain and suffering to have value because their identity needs value. They need to feel it all, and for others to feel it, and for every single human on this planet—before, now, and after—to conform to their beliefs of the world. One perspective demands people to change or disappear to make one human being happy. The other perspective asks you to accept the world as it is, and who you are in the world as a choice.
We think the events of our lives do this, that they define us, but really it’s our perceptions of what we value. We choose to pluck from the hours and years of past footage, add in values and beliefs and costumes, and go ‘this is me.’ And let me just say, how interesting a choice to seek all the misery and decide that is who you are instead of all the beauty.
The Dangers Of Rigid Thinking
The reason I came to this mindset was because I wanted freedom from PTSD. I had a severe perception disorder that caused physical and psychological damage in my life, and required so much more to break free than just touching a screen and going ‘oh, that’s just a flat surface with symbols on it. Stop freaking.’ The level of perception change I went through is unusual (to the best of my knowledge.) That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t seek to open the mind and adapt to the world as it is.
There is a danger to perceiving rigidly when the world is malleable. One is the reason I brought the whole thing up—being scammed. How many people have invested thousands into educational courses or business schemes only to discover ‘it’s a scam?’ They’re not getting what they perceive their money and time is worth. How many keep with it, still pouring money in because they ‘invested?’ They feel they gave their time and money and belief and they can’t back down now. They believe they have to make it work, or it proves they’re a failure or a chump.
How about cults? I just explained in this newsletter how reality is purely our perception. Do you think I’m the first person to figure that out? This truth is absolutely exploited by every religious institution out there (not to mention marketing company.) The more insidious are the ones who tear down the boundaries of ‘reality’ and then tell their followers what the only reality can be. They grab the brain when it’s malleable, and then they give their followers a rigid belief system that they lock in. It can start right in the cradle for ‘religions’ or at any other point in your life. Adults are not immune to rigid perceptions; quite the opposite. Suddenly you’re out millions of dollars, acting like a maniac on television while promoting your latest movie and praising Xenu. Or you’re promoting to all your followers on social media that the Earth really is flat because you can’t see the curve when you’re in a plane. Or that the Illuminati, a race of lizard people you haven’t met, is actually real because text on a screen said so. Or that it’s okay to murder someone over a drawing because they insinuated that it was a representation of Muhammad.
What about suicide and cyber bullying? There is an extreme rage, and an even deeper sorrow as the mind tries to comprehend what could drive a youth to take their own life. When you believe the cruel messages, you’re lost to them. When you give your self esteem over to the worst voices you hear or read, and choose not to walk away, you’re allowing so much pain to define you, forge you, and ultimately destroy you. No one makes you engage, no one makes you define self by the voices of others. We need to understand perception and our choices, because we make irrational choices when we fail to see reality.
This is not a morality definition on suicide (or any of the examples above.) I truly believe suicide is the ultimate choice of self and no one has a right to interfere. But to allow that choice to be made not from a place of acceptance of death, but to escape perceived pain can be absolutely mind boggling. If this is the only existence you perceive, why fill it with so much unbearable misery that you must erase from life completely? Ego death for a rebirth and you can have a whole new life instead of stopping it all.
You may not want to be the person who has a mental concept that the noise a car makes as it pulls up beside you means that the other car wants to run you off the road and you need to drive dangerously in response. You may not want to believe the water you’re drinking is safe—even though it totally doesn’t taste right and it lights on fire—but ‘an authority,’ the gas company said it was fine. You may not want to keep paying on a car loan you can’t afford just because you think you’ll have ‘failed’ or be ‘worthless’ or have ‘broken a promise.’ Don’t be the dumbass killing celebrities because you think The Catcher In The Rye is talking to you!
It’s not necessarily what people believe that leads to irrational or dangerous actions. We all believe things that can’t be proved and may never be. It’s that some believe so completely, that they ignored the basic instinct to not harm or be harmed. Consider a mouse still and content in a field, and a cat that doesn’t sense it across the yard. But when the mouse perceives a danger, perceives it *must* react, danger, danger, danger, and goes bolting out to avoid that mental concept of danger, the cat sees and pounces. It’s the same with the gun debate in America. The mental concept that a ‘gun will protect me because I don’t want to be shot’ is raging against reality. All guns do is shoot. That’s what they’re designed for, shooting bullets to hit things. If you don’t want to be shot, don’t surround yourself with the things that shoot.
What life are you trapping yourself in right this moment? Are you allowed to have fun? Are you allowed to pursue the things you enjoy? Do you deserve to suffer? Do you need to take an hour to ensure your hair and makeup is perfect or you’re not a valuable person? If you don’t make $20 an hour, are you a complete failure? If your loved one doesn’t read your mind and acknowledge your emotions, do they hate you? Do you spend your days writing erotica but perceive that the world thinks you’re weird/wrong for it (I fought this belief a good year while telling myself I was winning.)
The only way to break free is to realize you’re doing it to yourself. You’re choosing to believe these ideas have value, and as such you must logic your way out of them. You need to strip it away instead because there is no value to be found.
It can be difficult to see reality past the emotional software. I truly don’t know if it’s harder for those with PTSD or without, because I have only ever had one brain. But I do know you can be inflicted with a perspective disorder all the way back to the beginning of your life, and still find a way free. You don’t have to be trapped in your brain and the painful concepts you unwittingly create. You can open your mind and see that the real world is still the real world, and your thoughts about it don’t fuck it up or save it. Reality remains reality and you remain you.
A Note Of Compassion
Some of you smarties might be pointing out, ‘Sadie, if you’re so fucking with it, why were you ranting last week?’ Lol. Well, it’s fun, for starters. Because I’m a human being and wonderfully imperfect. It took me stopping, realizing I was perceiving an entire movement of pitchforks over some bitchy posts on the Internet about an author I don’t even know—although I liked one of his/her books. Nice sex scenes—and then I reacted like an angry mob was coming after every author out there and I needed to defend. Rawr! Partially because I’m well aware of how impossible it is to really know someone and how these techniques, such as pen names and ghostwriting are so commonplace in the writing community. Partly because I failed to stop and take a step back and remember just because a few voices on the Internet are saying shit doesn’t mean anything.
Like, legit. No offense, but someone bitching in a review about one of my books is not a book written. A minute to bitch verses hours/days/months to write a book? Yeah, I’ll let you know when I care. People bitch all the time, and it’s only if you listen that it even has an impact. We pay people to listen—looking at you, Congress—and they still don’t bother. But I had made a choice to listen. I read those little sordid details of ‘why this mattered!’ and I projected that concern of ‘you people are fucking delusional’ into the future and had a nice rant for the sake of all my author friends and for myself. I know, very mature of me. I also yell at the television for being dumb. (One of us is dumb and it’s probably not the two dimensional TV. XD)
This again comes back to the morality and value concept. I can choose to feel shame for fucking up by reacting to my emotional software—even though ‘fucking up’ is also just a concept and no one can actually fail. I can choose to ignore what I did, and steam forward while insisting rigidly that everyone should see things my way. Or I can accept that I’m human, I do things, and sometimes I would rather not do things. And it’s not the rant I would want to undo—it was a good, informative rant. I’d rather have not had the perception that a bunch of humans who I innately care about would forever continue to rail at invisible demons in their heads and blame it on the authors who are very good at crafting similar demons with words.
I trapped these people in my mind as being trapped. I don’t want them to be trapped, so I need to stop seeing them that way.
It comes down to compassion. I have compassion for self and for everyone I perceive. It’s not always seen, but the intention is there far beneath the messiness of emotional software and erratic reactions.
There’s Nothing In The Dark But You And Your Mind
If you find my rants entertaining, know I find ranting to be an entertaining way to spend some time. XD But my rants are short, they pass as fast as it takes to write them out, and I return to the real world because that’s where I want to be. What you’re reading is just an echo of my thoughts. For those who want to live in their computer screen thinking that is the real world, that is where they want to be and it will be very hard to understand each other because of it.
I don’t believe the world in the screen is real. I don’t even know if you actually exist; you’re no more than text on a screen to me—but you’re seriously awesome text, just saying. Whoot, sexy font. XD It is your belief that I am real that makes me real to you. Otherwise, you would notice all I am is text and a few images on your screen, and actual people are more than that. You supply my existence for you with your belief. For all you know, this post is years old and I’m dead.
I will leave last week’s rant there for those who need to say whatever it is they feel compelled to say. You will not be challenged by me, you will not be questioned, persuaded, embraced, asked to change or be judged. I will not be your witness or your conflict. I promise you silence as you vent, which I realize I should have offered from the very beginning. You are alone with only yourself and your perceptions every time you sit in front of your computer, and this is no different. You have only yourself to understand, insult, convince, struggle against, and ultimately forgive. It can feel very cathartic to bitch online and state your beliefs. I know I enjoy it. XD
I see your pain. You may want me to see your anger or your intelligence, but I see your pain. Truly, I hope you find peace.
We’re all trying to cope with the fact we’re alive. Some people find the way to cope is to throw themselves into the details, to swear up and down if they find some value in it all, everything will be okay. They will ‘do’ something, they will ‘be’ someone, and the world will change. They want control. They tell themselves things they can never know the truth of to make it through another dark night, then distract themselves with all the shiny bright things in the light. It’s fine. Cope. Scream at the world for not being within your control. I know plenty who have gone to their graves still screaming at the world instead of embracing and loving the moments they have. It wasn’t ‘wrong,’ just very lonely.
I choose freedom from pain while others cling tight, and it’s perfectly fine. I don’t need to protect you from your minds because you are not victims—no matter how many people would like me to believe you are too dumb and incapable of making choices. I will not take responsibility for your reactions and your feelings because they are yours, not mine. The way I conduct myself is by my belief systems, not by any social obligation to conform to perceived norms. You’re still the one in control of how you feel and act. If you don’t feel in control, I suggest mindfulness. It’s very calming and makes the world interesting instead of full of pain. Two sources that helped me greatly and eventually led to my current perspective is Byron Katie
and Eckhart Tolle
This post was about empowerment for every single person on this globe. If you find it to be otherwise, if you believe what I’m saying leaves people behind, leaves them victimized and broken while others are allowed to live the way they want, that is a belief you need to look inside and question. Because if you don’t believe you have an innate right to decide how you want to see the world, then you don’t believe others have that right or ability.
The human race is moving day by day closer to globalization, a reaching and connecting with absolutely different cultures with different belief systems all seen on an array of screens. It is very easy to feel ‘superior’ when we see a culture different, one where people act against their own interests, or more specifically, against our interests. It is only through malleable perspectives and responsibility of reactions and actions that we’re going to find common ground and keep a balance. America is still battling perceptions from moments far into the past, such as slavery and gender/race/sexuality inequality. How long will the human race carry every mistake and pain instead of finally moving forward fresh and free?
I hope your interpretation of my words is remotely close to my intentions. As for your reactions to that interpretation, well, I have no way to predict or control any of it. The text on the screen means absolutely nothing without a human mind to read, and as such, it is yours to own. I am merely the intention who wrote it. You are alone in your mind with your opinions and perceptions of pain. If you want to continue living in that pain while deciding it is meaningful and worthwhile to suffer, that is your choice completely. Just know it is a choice, and at any moment you’re allowed to feel differently.
Okay, you know how I keep saying sometimes you need to trick your brain into doing something? Well, I think I found a way to trick my brain into having fun instead of slamming it repeatedly on the desk in absolute boredom when it comes to editing the old books. How? Audiobooks.
I’ve been playing around with the video software I got to record and edit the speed paint thingies, and I realized it had an audio function, and me no audio. Now, I’ve avoided the whole audiobook thing. It’s a shit ton of money to start off in a lot of cases. I’m talking like 1/2 a grand to a thousand dollars to hire a narrator and a studio to get a book recorded. It’s also time consuming, and usually someone else is involved. Someone to sign a contract with because they’re fronting some of the costs to get this audiobook made. The whole thing turned me off because I like simple, easy, no strings. That’s why I liked self publishing. That’s why I get so affronted with censorship bs—I don’t like being held back from doing the things I want to do, when I want to do them. Freedom at the cost of being an outsider, usually.
Anywho, I found myself asking, ‘Just how fucking hard is it to make an audiobook, really?’ I have the content (the text), I have a recorder, and a way to edit audio. All I need is a voice. So I did some research to find the least annoying synthetic voice out there and gave it a shot. And in about 4 hours, I had made this.
It was fun. Lol, it’s still fun, the process is becoming faster as I figure it all out, because I just finished up recording the rest of the Demon Bonded Episodes so far. And I’m all, OMG, I want this for all my books! But all my books aren’t so well edited, and have some annoying writing patterns I don’t use anymore. So there, that’s my motivation. A mix of neurotic completionism of making audiobooks for all the books, and fun with playing with tech. Yay!
I plan to have all my books made into audiobooks in a way where I can sell them for the same price as an ebook. Audiobooks usually cost more, mostly because of all the other people involved, plus the cost of cloud storage—audio files can get freaking huge. Once I get all the components together on the selling front, you should be able to pick up the Demon Bonded episodes for $0.99 each, or audio bundles for $2.99 (same price as the Demon Bonded Collection books.) Plus the freebies will be free on the website.
This is the kind of shit I love. It’s good enough. XD And yeah, that might sound sloppy, or half-assed, or what have you, but I’m sick of watching people break their backs (myself included) reaching for perfection instead of being happy with what’s in front of them. No, the synthetic voice doesn’t read perfectly. But it’s good enough, it’s a fast process, and it’s inexpensive, meaning the end result can also be inexpensive for listeners. If I started self publishing by hiring a cover artists and editor and what have you, would I have ever had gotten anywhere? I’d have been broke—fuck, I was already broke. XD Lol. I’m a total do-it-yourselfer and I love it. It’s fun and there are so many resources these days to get professional results without the price.
Speaking of fun and tech, btw… So, you know that interactive novel I want to make? The Demon Virus Sequel? The one I was talking about a few weeks ago where it’s like a choose your own, but instead of hitting dead ends, you discover secret, sexy story paths and scenes? Okay, so my brain is on it again—also outlined more Sorcerer Slayer and the next Demon Bonded—oh, and Hellcat has 2 scenes left. Pretty sure they’ll be done this weekend if I don’t go crazy with the audiobooks. Anyways, interactive novel. I was thinking how to plot it. I have these scenes but I want a visual, I want a way for people to simply select and move forward in the story and not get confused when they want to go back for a different branch. Then I was thinking of old school Mario Brothers. You know when you’d complete a level and they’d shoot you to the map, and a new level would open up? That’s what I want to do, but for a story. Text and a Story Map.
I’m envisioning something like chapters being levels, and in each chapter you have the ability to unlock certain scenes, or branches to the story. When you unlock something, it pops up on the story map that you can select and read. You would have to unlock a certain amount—the key plot conflict points—to progress to the next level, aka chapter. If you unlock all the special scenes and story branches, I want to make it so you can unlock a totally different story arc, maybe a new character and everything. XD I think it’ll be fun. And it won’t be like a video game where you’re doing repetitive tasks, it’s still just reading. How you unlock things would be by the choices you make in a story scene. You decide if the character goes into the scary dark room (where a sexy monster awaits) or goes back to the party—that sort of thing. <3
Or maybe you need to find a 'key' in the text, like clues, that can be used as passwords to unlock other doors! Oh, or I might have 'items' you get when you complete certain scenes that can be used to defeat the conflict in other scenes, where, if you didn't find that item, you wouldn't be able to beat the scene and unlock a new one. I have so many ideas. XD Puzzles and choices but nothing tedious and grinding--the only grinding should be between the characters. *wink*
I’ll have to learn some basic game programming—but it feels really basic. Switches and branches, nothing complex at all. My biggest issue atm is just learning enough to figure out what software will give me what I want without extra shit I would just find confusing at this stage. I’m not sure if I want people to have to play the game through repeatedly—you know, once you pick a story path, you have to stick to it until you get to the very end, and only once you finish the book/game, will you be able to try a new story path. But have a way to save the data so they can see the choices they made and be able to unlock the other levels—until finally they unlock the bonus ending!
Okay, I might be crazy excited about this idea. XD It’s just so fun. Lol, and this is what I need when writing—fun! I can’t do boring, repetitive shit anymore. I used to RPG, I used to read (all the time,) I used to dedicate hours to television distractions. My brain wants to DO things, make things, and this is the way it has fun. So as long as I can find the fun in it, I can keep creating and getting shit done.
That’s another thing. I’m choosing fun. I’m choosing happy. When I find myself at a crossroads, that’s what I want. Fun and happy. Lol, and no, I don’t feel a single fucking bad thing about it. XD You ever find some people want to just drag you down, they want you to take shit so seriously and have decided life isn’t supposed to be happy? I'm good. Life is what you make of it and I’m choosing happy. Rose-colored glasses all the way. <3
Last Week Catchup
Oh, also, sorry I missed so many emails last week. I know, it’s becoming a ‘thing.’ @[email protected]
I do read them all, and have grand expectations to answer—you gals and guys are fucking amazing with such varied lives, and I love hearing about them all—and then life happens and the moment passes as I’m caught up doing something else.
Much love to the people who have had their lives torn apart because of careless doctors, and the wish to trust and have faith in an expert. We want answers that come easily, we want to know it’s all going to be alright, and sometimes it’s that blind hope that leads to more problems. My adoptive dad actually ended up without a working stomach for the rest of his life after a doctor made a really dumb mistake during surgery, and bile backed up and nearly killed him. They tied his esophagus to his intestines to save his life after the mistake, and it took him years to recover. And no, I don’t think it’s these individual doctors, that they’re there to hurt people. If anything, I think they’re working their asses off in a system so stressful, it’s hard to not sink beneath. 300-400 physicians kill themselves annually in the US. The current system of medicine isn’t just hurting patients but also the people in it.
Also, as much as I love my brother, I have to face the fact that he was the idiot who didn’t stand up for himself. He’s an adult who is still refusing to question another adult when it comes to his own mental and emotional health. If he hadn’t asked me for a pill cutter, I never even would have known he was about to take a psych med after going in for a cold.
And that is where I find my peace. It’s not my job to freak out for him. It’s not my job to hold his hand through life and make sure he doesn’t fuck up. I learned my lessons because I fucked up big time—repeatedly—and I’m not about to forget. Ever. XD If he wants to be so blithe, that’s his path. As long as he doesn’t go on a killing spree over the meds prescribed him, I really don’t need to freak out. I can calmly (one day, when I don’t get triggered @[email protected]
) still remind him he’s likely bipolar and should research any med he adds to his system.
But it’s still his choice, still his life, and there is little more I can do without taking it over for him—I’ve got way too much shit I want to do to take on that fucking job, btw. Just sayin. I'm glad I was paying attention, but he should have been taking care of himself and thinking.
Freebie Of The Month
Okay, I’m going to fly. HEAT is free this month
, and don't miss out on the audiobook--I think you can download it from soundcloud. Pretty sure I haven’t had Heat free in a while. I seriously need to make a schedule so I don’t keep forgetting… Ugh. I swear we created computers to have a brain outside our brain that could just hold onto all the shit we really don’t need to know until moments like these.
Romance Collections is proud to present these fourteen stories of love that know no boundaries. Like rivers flowing through the canvas of earth, these stories will run deep, touch softly and leave you breathless.
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M/M Dystopian, Paranormal romance. Standalone story.
In a world where only paranormals survived...
A cruel virus wiped out all humans. Now there’s a war between the supernatural factions…
Life is bleak for Angus. As a wolf shifter, living under vampire rule is intolerable. He hates the rules. He hates their power. He hates not having control over the lives of his pack.
He keeps himself under tight control…until he cracks. A young wolf is being beaten by his mate. Unforgivable. Angus reacts and everything changes. Saving Clayton may just turn the tide for everyone, including the true Alpha in Angus.
This new world for Clayton is hell, and living with an abusive mate makes everything worse. But when Angus saves him from that torture, for once in his life there is an inkling of hope
With jealous pack mates and vindictive rival gangs on their doorstep, danger is around every corner. Can Clayton pull on his Omega strength for his Alpha, and will Angus accept the love only his true Omega can bring.
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Everything is possible. Nothing is what it seems…
Ryan: Fate led me to Tristan Whitaker, the infamous alpha hero from Frisky Pines. When a hunter aimed his rifle my way, I thought my life was over. Tristan swooped in and saved my life. As soon as I saw him, I knew I was in over my head.
I wasn’t looking for a mate, but he swept me off my feet, literally. When I woke in his arms, I knew my life was going to change forever. Together, we decided to have a baby. I was the happiest omega in the world. What I didn’t realize was that the fate of the world then depended on us…
Ryan Moss is a werewolf long separated from his pack. He has no idea how dangerous his heat is until he finds himself stalking down the closest available bachelor. Unfortunately for Ryan, his wolf finds Shane Cooper, the gay bashing, angry, rich punk that’s been tormenting him for the last ten years.
Even though Ryan hates Shane, his wolf won’t be denied. Against all sanity, he bites the blond and drags him home to mate.
Bound and trapped in Ryan’s basement, Shane plots his escape. He has no interest in being anyone’s mate, especially to his long time rival. If only his body would stop betraying him, seeking out first touch and then pain, things Ryan knows how to gift just right.
Ryan discovers that underneath his lust and resentment, he might just love his angry mate. But after what he’s done, can Shane ever forgive him enough to see him as worthy?
This short story of over 23,000 words contains explicit m/m sexual content, graphic language, violence, and themes of bondage, discipline, and some humiliation. Although featuring mating/breeding with werewolf anatomy that knots and ties, there is no mpreg.
Shout out for all the newbies who picked up The Autumn Prince which was featured on Instafreebie Monday. I’m Sadie Sins and this newsletter is about free and discount mm (gay) romance and erotic books, and whatever I feel like rambling about at the time. You’re not obligated to hang around—click the unsubscribe button if you’re in newsletter overload, no judgments—but if you do hang around, hi and welcome. ^^
I’m putting my gun rant at the bottom. It’s not really a rant, it’s more just a thing. Life and death and not having the outrage in me anymore. But first, a quick update of all the things that happened book related.
You can read Drunk, Blind, Stupid Cupid on the site for free along with its sequel, My Broken Angel. Valentine’s special! I wanted to clean them up and get the edited versions up (Gail, you did an amazing job) but time just wasn’t on my side. When everything is a priority, nothing is a priority. (I’ve been saying this so much lately. @[email protected]) Still, they’re wonderful and heartfelt and, uh, pretty boys with wings. Can’t go wrong with that.
I’m nearly done writing Episode #3 of Teddy’s Naughty Adventures. I wanted a break from Hellcat before Hellcat broke me. Everything is turning into a long ass novel lately. I need to find a way to stop being so long-winded. Ugh. I’m going to be trying some speed writing, actually. Like, I came up with a template for the kind of formulaic erotic writing I do for the shorts (think Coffee Guy or The Drunk Email,) and I’m going to just fly through a story and see what happens. I need to finish something! My brain needs to be able to go ‘STOP!’ and I can feel content and satisfied in something. It’s getting overwhelming, all these novels without any end.
What else… oh, I did some pretty pictures of the Demon Bonded guys.
Wasn’t really even planning it, but instead looking for a break from the novel writing. I don’t know what it is but this week feels like it was twice as long as normal. So far I have Ky, and Lovely. And I did a little video thing of Lovely from start to finish! There’s something really satisfying to watch a painting get to the end. I think it’s the same trigger in my brain that paints in the first place—seeking a balance.
I want to make a video for the book covers I create. I don’t know if I want to put the time in to make it ‘instructional’ but you can learn a lot from a walk through about composition, placement, and how to get to the end of something when you don’t realize you’re still in the middle.
Okay, so Wendy’s book, Zeus: Conquering His Heart is officially live and free to read on KU! It’s all about Eros (aka, Cupid) so very Valentine’s Day related. Wendy has that beautiful way with prose I dream of fondly while absolutely ignoring it in my own writing. If anyone has some extra time, I know she’s looking for reviews. It can always be hard to get reviews—it’s the bread and butter for a lot of authors, and always greatly appreciated. <3
Don’t miss the books down below (aka, if you don’t want to read about my take on gun control, scroll away. XD)
Where all My Opinions Lead to PTSD... Again. XD
So I heard about the Florida school shooting in passing (I’m not watching the news anymore,) and as terrible as it might sound, I didn’t feel a thing. Because this keeps happening. It’s going to keep happening because nothing is being done to change it. There is a problem in this country and it will not evaporate on its own. It’s only February and there have already been 6,965 incidences of gun violence in the US.
I heard a line from someone who was previously on Cracked (can’t think of his name) that went along the lines of ‘just what do you think the generation who grew up afraid of being shot up in their schools is going to do to your guns when they’re in power?’ It really got me thinking. That statement sounds so obvious, right? When we can’t even get reasonable regulations, just what do you think people who have lived afraid for their lives will do when given a chance? They’ll definitely not want to be shot, so they’ll definitely call to regulate guns, maybe even ban them completely. The next generation will be smarter than this one. Except, every argument from people who want to keep guns is the same fucking thing—we don’t want to be unarmed against a gunman. Guns save lives.
Yeah, the instrument made solely to murder totally saves lives. That’s why we use them all the time in hospitals. To save lives. They’re totally not what puts people in morgues. When they made that model that literally brought people from the dead (Lazarus .45) I was sold. (I make no excuses for my sarcasm. Deal with it. XD)
Logic has no place in this problem because gun violence isn’t a problem of logic, it’s a problem of fear. Perceptions of safety. Every day people all around this country are sitting at home waiting for someone to walk through their front door and murder them. That’s why they want a gun; they don’t want to be murdered. They are terrified of the world, they believe people (or at least the people they don't know) are innately evil and murderous, and this is the only way they can grasp some sanity. With a gun, not a shield. Safe. They bring a weapon of murder into their homes to feel safe. This is not logical, but it is the human condition.
I don’t know what war is happening in America today, but there are a lot of people waiting for one. When people don’t perceive the world as safe, they want to feel safe and that drives them to do irrational things like kill a teenager for being black or assume a gun is unloaded after a safety demonstration or spend their entire life waiting for some huge disaster by stockpiling food and useless shit and telling themselves how smart they are for cheating death. Death is still coming no matter how far you push it off, and you have no control. Period. Nothing you do will stop death, but my fuck, people are sure causing a lot of death in their fear.
People who want guns to protect themselves from people with guns, really want guns to protect themselves from their own insane minds. And guess what, it’s not going to do the trick. The gun isn’t the problem, it’s the desire to feel safe in an unpredictable world. It’s choosing to see fear has more value than every single life lost because no one will regulate a series of machines made solely to murder. There is no other purpose for a gun than to kill. It is not a paperweight, it is not a collector’s item, it is not a magic shield that makes everything safe and shiny—it’s a specifically designed killing machine being put into the hands of people who are not required to train to make sure they know how to use that weapon, or even see if they have the mental capacity to keep them from using that weapon on fellow human beings.
There are no locks on these guns, no keys—imagine having a car where a child could just sit in the driver’s seat and start driving? How irresponsible, and yet the fingerprint technology we have is not being used for gun locks. Guns are made to murder people, and we have laws to keep people from being murdered, and yet, the disconnect continues because ‘guns save lives.’
What we’re seeing is trauma 101. Give me control over the uncontrollable. This is what turns rational human beings into unbearable assholes, religious fanatics, rule creating neurotics, and obsessive fortune tellers. They will seek any mental concept to allow them to feel safe in an uncontrollable world. They will create rules, gods, laws, constructs to a false reality, and tell themselves as long as they follow it all, they will be safe. Immortal. Maybe even important and brilliant cuz they have it all figured out. They know no harm will come, they can predict and control the future, all because they followed those arbitrary rules they made up.
As you can see, I’m enjoying my PTSD writing. XD And for this, my mindfulness. Because I cannot take the unbearable feelings of being unsafe away from people. This irrational pattern of thinking is a coping strategy people use when they’re overwhelmed. This irrational action of killing before being killed (even when no danger is present outside of the mind) is what humans in trauma do to feel like they have control. They do this to themselves, and to everyone around them because this is the only way they know how to cope. I have the ability to see through that problem and cope differently, but it’s not something you can stamp into people’s brains and force them to follow. Many are extremely happy to live in fear thinking they have the answer to it all. They have their rules; they’re in control.
When I sit in my house, I have a choice of how I want to feel, and I choose to feel comfortable, happy, loved, compassionate toward my fellow humans, joyful and free. I am not afraid. I don’t know many of my neighbors, I know even far less of the people in my state or the country or the entire world, but I love them all, and believe that they don’t want to harm me. That’s all a belief is and it allows me to live feeling safe verses fearing for my life. The world doesn’t change depending on my belief, but I certainly enjoy living my life far more when I believe there is nothing to fear.
I will never fear one of my loved ones being shot in this house by a gun, because there will never be a gun in this house. There’s no question of it. If a gun isn’t here, it can’t be used to shoot us. And if a gun is brought in, we had no control and that’s that. It just is. Control is an illusion, safety is an illusion, fear is an illusion. I will choose the world around me where no one has hurt me, over the lies in my head that people find me so interesting that they’re waiting to murder me—how interesting one must be in that scenario. XD
I truly feel for the people so terrified that they would rather surround themselves with the thing they fear—death—than live in life. But more, I feel for those who keep being victim, who keep suffering because these people refuse to wake up to the environment they’re perpetuating. When you believe the world is a dangerous place to be, you are very likely reacting in ways that make it dangerous. I am the kind of person who will help a stranger, smile, have a conversation instead of that cold, hostile, terrified girl I used to be because of my PTSD filter. The world didn’t change, it’s all my perspective.
I contribute to the world I want to live in, as do we all. When your inner world is consumed with seeking a need for control in a terrifying existence, the outer world you create will reflect it. Everyone will be a potential enemy who may want to harm you, every dark night full of potential monsters, every helping hand hiding a devious intention. And as someone who still struggles with those neurotic control freak mental patterns, I know what little joy there is being around someone like that. It’s fucking misery. The first part of this newsletter was me needing to explain how I’m ignoring or working around those impulses because living with a need to control shit that doesn’t matter is miserable.
Compassion is still my keys to living free. If I can be compassionate for my own flawed, broken, traumatized self enough that it got me this far into freedom, surely compassion for others can allow them to change. It cannot force them, even nudge them, but so many are waiting for permission to change and stop being so afraid. They can’t give themselves that permission for whatever reason, but compassion from others can. If we reflect our inner world, we can hope that the outer world can work to transform the inner worlds of those so lost inside. They’re trying to grasp control in the uncontrollable instead of enjoying this wonderful ride on this spiral of a planet hurtling through the galaxy in an immeasurable universe—maybe it’s why they’re grasping on so tight, huh? Do they feel the planet move? XD
We’re living on a fuzzy, waterlogged rock but we still think everything we do is so damn important… aka, I accept I’m probably not going to have Hellcat finished this week. Just sayin. >_> It can be hard to let beliefs go that hurt us, that construct a familiar world we understand but also terrifies us. But it's that need to understand what can't be understood that causes this in the first place. Sometimes terrible shit happens and you can't prepare and you can't avoid, and all you can do is love the people and the life you have right now. This is the one guarantee, this moment. I don't want to waste it fearing something that may never come to be.
I do not yet know how to be a god, for I am only 18 and still just a silly boy who has fallen in love with Love himself, while my father Cronus plots and schemes to lock me in his dungeon and make me his slave forever.
When I throw the lightning and summon the thunder, it isn't always out of anger, but often from a love so all-consuming it could only be the effect of Eros himself. Yes, he is beautiful. Of course he is. How could he be otherwise, with hair the color of sunlight and white-feathered wings that drape to the floor? And he is as ancient as the myth of time itself, an immortal with powers and glamour beyond my ability to imagine. He struggles to teach me wisdom, control, strategy, yet I sit here babbling like a child, for all I can think of is how I might try - at least let me try! - to prove myself to him in some way that will cause him to crave my company and my touch, just as I crave his.
A secret night of passion just got a lot more complicated...
Young and savvy CEO, Trent Davis has a reputation for being in control—of everything. But when a case of mistaken identity puts him in a situation more pleasurable than he’s ever imagined, Trent knows he needs more.
Hungry for success as a new junior analyst, Charlie Reynolds is determined to prove himself at work. Winding up in his boss’ arms isn’t exactly his best career move—especially since the powerful CEO has no idea who he is.
Will Charlie admit the truth and destroy his future in the company or will “spanking the boss” be the beginning of something deeper?
A rock star doesn't need a babysitter.
It's just the stupid record label forcing them together. They think a reckless Alpha like Seth needs a nice Omega from Nebraska to keep him in line. Whatever.
A self-made Alpha doesn't need another lover to bring him down.
After what his ex boyfriend did to him, Seth would rather stay single. Mister Rockstar in his pants can find his own action, without any stupid commitments. And Seth especially won't get involved with that beautiful "sobriety companion" the record label sent over.
Mike doesn't need Seth. But he does need this job.
What Happens When These Two Teammates Accidentally Get Married?
Free to Read for February!
Aiden didn't expect to spend Valentine's Day doing anything but cursing the color scheme. He's built a wall around his heart filled with bitterness and cynicism created by years of disappointment and neglect. A wall two winged boys are determined to ignore as they claim that Aiden is their destiny.
I didn’t know that one bloody kiss could change my life forever. I‘ve found my soulmate and nothing makes sense anymore. He’s a half demon, half angel who just got out of the pit. Danyal doesn’t know how to be human—Worse, he doesn’t know how to keep living. There’s nothing I won’t do for him but I’m only human and when Danyal runs, he flies.
Forced bestiality, humiliation, incest
Young man stays with his uncle for a week. The place is weird, and he has no idea how his uncle makes his money, but the boy is in trouble at home, trouble in school, and his parents are fed up. Uncle breeds champion dogs or something. Call with mother who warns him not to bother his uncle. When uncle asks how his mother is, the boy is rude about it. The kid has a mouth on him, defensive, and dickish. It’s clear why his parents are fed up.
Boy stumbles across noises at night, his uncle very disappointed to be interrupted. He told him to knock. Uncle goes to get washed up, having been helping a dog get off who is now off his focus. His prized pet. Nephew waits, only to have the dog start being aggressive with him, boy obsessed with the dog’s dick and the thick bulb. Sees the camera and asks when the uncle comes back. It’s important to document the process. Does he ever film the breeding process? You know, when they’re fucking the bitches. Of course. There must be some freaks into that, huh? There’s a freak for everything, kid. Now get lost. You’re throwing the dog’s focus. Nah, I think he likes me. Keeps humping my leg. Kid jokes but the uncle fixates on it. You’re right. You want to help me milk this dog. He’s a champion breed and it’s important. Uh, that’s kind of weird. Oh. You ever get payed hundreds for your sperm? Whoa, really? Do a good job and I’ll even pay you. Okay.
Kid realizes its probably not going to be worth the money too late into all the requirements. Has to strip down, something about his clothes being dangerous for the dog’s legs. What about him? Isn’t his skin in danger? He’s a trained dog, he’s not going to bite you and his nails are kept short. He’s a professional. Now get down on his level. He just needs to let him cover him with hormones and then the dog will do the rest. What, just let him hump me? Yes. I created a this device to collect the sample. You don’t have to do anything but kneel and act like a bitch. The boy glares but the uncle’s expression is bland. I’m not joking. I want you to act like a bitch to get the dog interested in you. Starts filming and the boy is mortified. You want to get paid or not? Gonna be hard to go live out on your own without money.
Dog rutting against him, the underwear supposed to protect him. The collection device fills up quick and the uncle removes it, and needs to get another container. During the switch, the dog refuses to let up and the boy calls, asking him to hurry. He’s a mess, feeling the cum splashing on him, wondering if that stupid camera is still filming. This was a bad idea. Nothing is worth this kind of embarrassment. Will you hurry! Chill the fuck out. Things take as long as they take. The dog starts rutting in earnest, the boy trying to escape but afraid he’s somehow going to throw the creature off its focus. The entire point was to get the damn thing into it. The underwear isn’t a perfect fit and the dog’s cock gets under it, gets inside him, fucking him, breeding him, his uncle filming and doing nothing to help. Uncle grabs the boy from the nape when he tries to escape, holding him in place as the dog jacks his bulb into him. He’s a champion, kid. You gotta give the big dogs what they deserve.
Something about the boy wasting the cum with the dog cumming in him, bareback. Uncle takes the boy’s hole after, fucking him raw and filling him with more cum.
goal: 1000 wrds