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Everything posted by Ghost-of-a-Chance

  1. I wanted to share a real zinger for anyone who needs a laugh today. For this to make sense, you need to know three things: 1, I'm bi with a very supportive straight husband; 2, I'm in the closet IRL because of homophobic loved ones, and 3, I'm "out" online under my pen name. Oh, and 4, my husband Cold is an adorable smartass.

    I spent some time today working in our big hall closet, up on a stepladder. When I heard Cold come through the front door, I warned him to be careful coming through the hallway because "I'm kinda in the closet."
       "Kinda?" he retorted. "You're entirely in the closet." 
       I could hear the unspoken bi joke like a cat hearing a can opener. "I'm only in the closet IRL," I reminded him, "online, everyone and their gay stepdog knows I'm bi." 
        Cold poked his head around the door. "Either you're in the closet or you're out of the closet," he teased me. "You can't be both. You're not Schrodinger's bi."

     And that's how I realized it is entirely possible to laugh yourself right off a ladder, and that, despite getting older, Cold IS still able to catch me before I can fall on my oversized rump. I'm still grinning about this, and it's been over an hour!

    1. Show previous comments  1 more
    2. WillowDarkling


      That guy is definitely a keeper! :rofl: Schrodinger’s bi, indeed.

    3. BronxWench


      He’s perfect! :lol: 

    4. Ghost-of-a-Chance


      Knock yourself out, @InvidiaRed! I told him I’m stealing it, too, so he’s been warned. @WillowDarkling and @BronxWench he is a hoot, let me tell you that! I’ve gotten some real tongue-choking jokes from him in our eleven years but Schrodinger’s bi may just top them.

      Earlier this week, I complained about finding inch-worms destroying my plants. His response? Paraphrased, “I hate inchworms. They need to learn some assertiveness instead of always inching around like they’re expecting to get stepped on.” I. Just. About. Died.

  2. Ghost-of-a-Chance

    Injuries, illnesses, and etc!

    Surely I’m not the only one who wonders “is this medically possible or am I exposing my n00bitude?” Alas, I couldn’t find a thread devoted to such a thing! So...uh...I guess if you find yourself with questions regarding injuries, illnesses, and other such junk...ask here?
  3. There’s only so much an automated spelling and grammar checker can accomplish; sometimes their ones and zeroes get crossed and they suggest incorrect corrections. If you know already that your work is correct in that instance, it’s easy enough to just delete the flag and move on, but what about when you’re not sure? What about when you actually start questioning whether the checker’s suggestion, wrong as it sounds, might be right? I give you the “am I wrong or is my grammar checker an idiot?” thread. Here you can post your spelling and grammar questions and – I hope! – get answers. For clarity’s sake, try to follow this form: The sentence: Write out your sentence in its entirety. The problem: Describe what part of that sentence has caught your checker’s attention, the proposed correction, why you think the checker might be wrong, and if possible, why it might be right. Good luck, and I hope this thread becomes a valuable resource for those of us about to go round an’ round with our grammar checkers!
  4. Well. It took close to a year and a half but we finally know why I’ve been having nerve pain and numbness and struggling to stand and walk. The ‘why’ is not an easily fixed condition (...possibly not “fixable” at all, from the sound of it...) but having an explanation for the problem is the first step on the path forward. I can’t even express how relieved I am to have physical proof that what I’ve been struggling with wasn’t just in my head; the fact that such was bothering me as strongly as it was should say something about how folks with invisible disabilities are often treated in the US. 

    I’m still stuck with walking with a cane for now. There are also orthotics, braces, medication, and routine specialist visits added to the equation now. I’m not crazy about that...but I’ll live. At least it’s not neuropathy and there’s a chance of some improvement with treatment, and so long as those two statements are true, I’m sure I can find a way to not whine too much. It’s a bonus that the medication I’m on now is helping with my bad knee (why I had the cane, to begin with) and I’ve got a very courteous and understanding doctor taking care of me. Maybe now that the testing and waiting are over, I’ll have a little more free time. If so, maybe I’ll be more able to use said free time for writing and updating. In the meantime, it’s good to be back on here even if only occasionally.

    Anyway. Dropping off the face of the earth without warning is kind of normal for me but...well...this is why I’ve been exceeding my usual DOtFotE statistics. In the coming months, if I get unusually bristly on here, say something unfriendly, or come across as short or rude, I apologize profusely in advance. I’m hanging in here the best I can...but...frankly, my nerves are compressed and sending pain and itching signals through otherwise healthy tissue, and there’s not a whole lot I can do when it gets really bad. There are days when it’s so bad I just want to cuss a blessed blue streak, cry, or both at once. Generally, I try to stay offline on days like that but they’ve snuck up on me before. If it happens, please be patient with me and let me know I’ve been a dick (because I probably won’t even realize it until later on when I’m trying to sleep) and I’ll apologize for it.

    Until next time, I hope everyone’s having a comfortable and safe spring, and wish y’all the best.


    1. Thundercloud


      Very important to know when things are real and not something we imagine. Sorry to hear they don’t have easy way to fix the issue, but medical science advance so who knows what might happen in the future. I hope things will improve for you even in the absence of a cure.

    2. BronxWench


      I’m very glad you have an answer now, and I’m hoping that treatment does continue to make a positive difference. I don’t think there’s anything worse than having to live with constant pain. So, gentle hugs from me! :hug: 

    3. JayDee


      Wish you all the best too. At least diagnosis gives you better options.

  5. c9bf5b8880f27365f0ffccb8933bb05ea7638a92

    Porg-give me if this is out of line, but I wanted to show off the little buddy my hubby got me for Christmas last year. Folks, if you’re looking for love, find you someone who respects your nerdities and odditudes.

    Y’all can keep y’all’s his and hers towels; in this home we have Pikachu and Porgs.

    1. InBrightestDay



      Y’all can keep y’all’s his and hers towels; in this home we have Pikachu and Porgs.

      You got very Southern there for a moment. :D

      That is a really sweet gift!  I hope some day I can be married to someone like that!

    2. Ghost-of-a-Chance



      You got very Southern there for a moment. :D

      In my defense, I was born and raised in Missouri maybe an hour from the M’Arkansas border, and I still live in the same region. Missouri is Southern enough for the awkward stuff like accent but too far north for the sweet tea to taste good. :lol:


      That is a really sweet gift!  I hope some day I can be married to someone like that!

      It really was just the sweetest thing, really. I grew up in a family where fannish behavior was supposed to be kept secret and treated as an embarrassment. When Cold started bringing his Playstation and anime over for dates I knew I hit gold. Honey, if you can, try to find you a man (or woman, or both, or neither, or ancient eldritch entity, etc) who respects your inner nerd and lets theirs out around you. I hope you can find someone who appreciates you for who you are, too. It’s worth everything in the world when you can be dorks together. :tup:

      By the way? We’ve been together 11 years this April, he regularly lets me pull the “rubber ducky” maneuver on him when I’m stumped on a scene, and I’ve taken up gaming with him on occasion. He’s my favorite dork and I’m his favorite nerd, and it’s just what we both needed. :D 

  6. It's Thanksgiving. My mother-in-law invited herself over for dinner and will be here around five. I barely managed to get the place clean. My husband is cranky, I've got cooking left to do, and Woozle just tried to pee on his sister. least the apartment smells like orange cupcakes.

    1. Show previous comments  1 more
    2. Ghost-of-a-Chance


      Well, there go my after-dinner plans. I'd rather not get shanked. :fear:

    3. BronxWench


      *dies laughing* I was referring mainly to family. I have certain relatives, mostly on my husband’s side, that I’d rather drop-kick from a great height than entertain. You, on the other hand, are welcome! :lol: 

    4. JayDee



      ...I’ll get me coat.

  7. Ghost-of-a-Chance

    Names for OCs

    My process varies depending on what exactly I’m writing. For some of my original fiction, I tend to use a blend of “words from nature,” “elaborated words from nature,” and “take parts of actual words or names, mash them together with other syllables from other words and names, and boom, insta-name.” It’s gotten some pretty interesting results like Anabreth, Kessenjer, and Benekeed. It fits for a fantasy-setting culture in another world but it would not fit for most stories. Fanfiction and other fiction? That process is more...complicated. Sometimes with some characters, a name for them literally just pops up as I’m building the character and sticks. Other times I scour baby name directories, popular media, and websites, and choose what works best for the time. Usually I follow a precedent my family (unintentionally?) set: “Every girl needs an adult name and an old lady name, and one of those names needs to be adaptable into a cute nickname for when they’re kids.” Some fandoms (or families) also have trends for naming – characters in a lot of anime have names based in nature, especially food, and sometimes families follow naming customs passed down. Heck, I know of a person who has several kids, all of whom have an X or Y somewhere in their name. (Yes, he’s white.) Overall, I think, if you’re worried your OC name will sound Sue-ish or too unusual, there’s an easy way to figure it out. Imagine you just met a new friend and you’re introducing them to someone. Could be your parents, your Nana, or even just that fusty granny who lives next door and always gets up in your business. Imagine yourself saying the character’s name to this person. Did they cringe? Did their eyebrows disappear into their hair? Did they snort under their breath, imitate a codfish, or otherwise react impolitely? If so, the name’s probably going to stand out and maybe too much. Sometimes having an outlandish name can be a good thing – ie, recurring jokes or character reactions to their names – and likewise for excessively bland names. Whatever you choose, just be sure you make it work.
  8. divider___books_by_ghost_of_a_chance_13_

    Writing Advice from my former professors

    largely paraphrased

    • If a point can be delivered with a pinprick, avoid substituting a sledgehammer unless the situation really calls for a sledgehammer. In that case, illustrate the fallout from said sledgehammer.
    • There are good writers, and there are popular writers; rarely are the two the same, but overtime, they may become viewed as the same. CoughcoughSHAKESPEAREcough.
    • If your narration has to include “somehow,” you’ve probably got a plothole. Get a shovel and fill the damned thing.
    • Books aren’t gardens – take it easy on the flowery prose or your readers may start sneezing.
    • Hook them in the first sentence or you’ll have to fight to reel them in; land them in the first paragraph, or all you’ll have is a fish story.
    • Know your audience and choose your vocabulary accordingly; learned middle age Brits may know what it means to dandle a baby but teenagers will assume you’re a sex offender.
    • Dickinson never said anyways. Austen never used the word orbs. Orwell didn’t write bugged eyes. If you’re going to emulate someone, pick someone who knows what they’re doing, not a teenager who just discovered twilight and writes in emojis.
    • Mark Twain. You either love him or you hate him, and if you love him, chances are, you also kinda hate him a little bit.
    • Avoid the monologue – your characters need to breathe! They need to process things! They aren’t standing alone on a stage bitching at a bleached human skull, let them be interrupted!
    • Adverbs. Know when they contribute to the story, and slaughter them when they don’t. It’s okay to gate-keep parts of speech.
    • Sheep is already plural, you bloat-brained mindless self-important turnips. Pluralizing plural words will earn you a failing grade and a sound brain-dusting.
    • Keep a hard copy of common references handy while writing, especially a decent dictionary. It takes a minute to flip through pages; checking online leads you to Facebook which leads you to Twitter, then your favorite blog, then five or six click-bait articles, then next thing you know, it’s one and your assignment was due at midnight.
    • English is bullshit. Next question.
    • We’re taught that Paragraphs need to be 4-6 sentences, but guess what? Paragraphs aren’t prescriptions. Sometimes they need to be smaller. Sometimes, larger. Always, they’re prescribed for one speaker at a time except in extenuating circumstances. Start a new one for each new condition and each new patient, or you’ll never break down the text walls.
    • You can’t apply the same rules and fixes to every single situation. Learn what to apply and when, otherwise you’ll just confuse yourself.
    • Vary your fucking sentence structure and length, you filthy rotten philistines. Don’t line the entire page with rows of naked uncut spaghetti noodles and olives and expect the reader to call it delicious! Syntax! Variety! Don’t leave your readers lost and hungry!
    • Do! Your! Fecking! Research! You! Lazy! Impudent! Brats! Don’t write about high wind warnings on planets with no atmosphere or gravity or you’ll look like an out of this world idiot.
  9. Things dog people should know about cats:

    • They don’t hate everything – some of them just have resting bitch behavior.
    • They don’t want to kill you in your sleep – they want to cuddle...your face.
    • Some are picky about food. Others? “Feed me right now oR i WiLl ScReAm!!!”
    • The fat ones are the cuddliest. The skinny ones make good parrots.
    • They’re not lazy – they conserve energy for their one-am zoomies. No, they don’t care if that doesn’t work with your schedule.
    • Hairballs...that’s really just a euphamism for “fur-filled barf-cigar.”
    • If you treat them right, and don’t treat them like dogs, chances are they’ll love you for life. If you treat them like dogs, they’ll become assholes.
    • On the other hand, some really are just assholes from the start. It’s a toss-up.
    • Toe-beans. ‘nuff said.

    Brought to you by my two babies, Heiferlump Chance and Woozle of whom is screaming for food right now. Cats.

    1. InvidiaRed
    2. Ghost-of-a-Chance


      The title said cats annoying their owners, but most of what I saw was sweet neglected babies demanding (and some receiving) attention. :kittenpurr:

  10. I’m so ready for Fall.

    ...if I break my neck on the stairs tomorrow, that’s NOT what I meant.

    1. BronxWench


      I’m ready for 2021. Tomorrow would be nice.

    2. Ghost-of-a-Chance


      YAS! I like your idea better. 2020 has been a nightmare from beginning to’s gotten to the point where folks ask me “how’s life going?” and the only response I can think of is “it’s sharting blackbirds.”

      But then people who’ve never acquainted themselves with Hieronymus Bosch’s work are totally lost and wonder if I’ve got a screw loose. It’s an accurate mental image, though.

  11. Ghost-of-a-Chance

    message 004

    Ladies, it looks like this thread needs some Ignore the fine print. Can I interest you in a case?
  12. An ongoing beta would be awesome but I’m not holding my breath or asking for one currently. (I had a beta for this...once...I miss her.) What I really need is – as the title says – a second opinion on a single completed chapter of my WIP Shifting the Paradigm. The last few scenes just...don’t feel as urgent and oomph-y to me as I hoped for. Wanted: Second opinion on oomph, intensity of suspense/threat, and cliffhanger. Fandom: Dragon Ball/Dragon Ball Z. There’s maybe two canon characters identified on-screen. Type of story: Drama/family/romance, heavily influenced by the characters’ traumatic histories and recovery from them. There won’t be any real romance until the OCs Rio and Sierra start getting their shit together and recovering from the damage they’ve done themselves, and any smut will have to wait until after that. The basic setup of the story (I’m heavily paraphrasing so this is gonna be weird, feel free to skip.) Main OCs are three sisters (Sierra, Rio, and Cordelia) and Rio’s teenage daughter Rowan. Rio got involved with an older man as a teenager, was nearly killed after she wound up pregnant and went to him for help, and has raised Rowan despite mild-to-moderate brain damage, serious post-traumatic stress, and stalking/abuse/physical attacks from the father when he’s not in prison. Rio’s sister, Sierra, was always there to help but when Sierra needed help (her health started failing, she got a diagnosis of something that would eventually cripple her, their parents died, and a few other crises) Rio shut her out and threw blame. Cordelia washed her hands of the entire family and shut herself away because she’s an asshole. In a fit of pique, depression, and desperation, Sierra ran away to a forest in hopes she’d die there instead of have to actually keep living with her new medical problems and her family falling apart. Instead, Piccolo and Gohan find her and bring her to Bulma, and Piccolo’s attitude and shouting helps her realize she’s throwing her life away over nothing. Sierra has spent the last several months getting medical help, undergoing counseling, and working up the nerve to confront her family and take back her life. Meanwhile, Rowan found herself on Dende’s radar (and he commenced guardian-stalking her because he’s an awkward teenage alien with a crush and nothing to do) and Rio still hasn’t figured out that Sierra’s running away was partly her fault. Cordelia is still moping at home with her dog. Most recently, Rowan’s sperm-donor was paroled, Rio got warning and they started packing to leave town until he’s gone. In this chapter: Rio is an asshole, we see that she’s not just an asshole and how her anger issues have affected her relationship with Rowan. Planning. More drama. Shtuff. Dende finds out Rowan’s sperm-donor is coming after them and sends help, it doesn’t go as planned, a family ally beats the tar out of Dad on the front lawn, and Rio and Rowan are brought from their home to the Lookout for their own safety. Sierra FINALLY reaches out because she knows her niece is in danger, but the call goes unanswered because Rowan forgot her phone. Cliffhanger followed by furious readers with torches and pitchforks. A whole list of triggers in this chapter alone: violence some mild referenced gore panic, panic attacks, and Post-Traumatic Stress complicated relationship between a mother with PTSD and her teenage daughter references to previous physical assault, child abuse, coerced sex between an adult and a minor resulting in pregnancy, stalking, attempted murder physical assault and threatening with a firearm (happens mostly off-screen) alien abduction (because...ya know...they get taken to aliens. It fits the canon.) ...suffice it to say this is WAY out of my usual writing boundaries and I’ll be slapping some heavy warnings on it when it’s posted. The scenes in question have no romance or sex, just impending doom followed by DOOM. Work examples: I’d love to read examples of y’all’s work – or, alternatively, some examples of what you would consider well-written stories – but it isn’t an absolute requirement. Again, I’m just looking for an opinion on the impact of the last few scenes here!
  13. My brain does the weirdest shit sometimes.

    A little-known fact about PTSD: even when it’s ‘managed,’ it can affect your ability to concentrate and focus in entirely awkward ways. In my case, this often means losing concentration when there’s background noise, getting distracted, and visually blending words, sentences, and lines together when I’m struggling to focus. Blame hypervigilance and its many little cohorts.

    Stressful? Very.
    Annoying? Definitely.
    Amusing? Sometimes.

    This is one of the funny moments. I’m doing research on TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) for the next chapter of Shifting the Paradigm, specifically looking for details about common materials used for cranial plates. (...I may need help.) I hit a generic article, beginning...


    Brain injuries can be acquired in a variety of ways, including:

    ...and I began scanning down the bullets on the list. I stopped – THAT doesn’t sound right! – I double-checked.

    ...yep. I seriously managed to read

    • Haemorrhage; 


    • Disorders (e.g. Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis)

    and visually combined them into Hemorrhoids. The funny part? There are folks I know IRL for whom TBI by hemorrhoids could be a valid know...they’re such massive buttheads.


    ...I’m gonna shut up now. :safetocomeout: 

  14. Fair warning: next person to call me "Gimpy" gets my cane up their ass. 

    (...I'm looking at you, ColdWarriors. I know where you sleep.)


  15. The state of the world has finally convinced me: humans are too ridiculous for words.
    From here on out, I choose to identify as a porg...


    ...because I, too, am small, awkward, chunky, incredibly useless, frequently in the way, and undeniably adorable, and I, too, make obnoxious sounds to communicate with others of my species.





    1. Strange_idea


      This went in a much Better direction than the first few words made me think

    2. Ghost-of-a-Chance


      What can I say? Porgs make everything better.  :thumbsup:

  16. Next chapter of A New Lease on Life“61: Forgiveness Goes Both Ways” – is complete, sent out for beta-reading, and with a little luck, should go live on ALL SITES (except Tumblr because Tumblr is run by censor-happy dickbags) by the end of the month! 

    And just think: it only took almost a YEAR to get that chapter completed. :eyebrow: Kimber Bryant is, again, a very large part of the delay. She’s so hard to write, I swear, sometimes I want to just give in and kill her off AGAIN. Forget second chances in other worlds, it’s too hard to get in her headspace to deal with writing her often. At least we only have two more Kimber-centric chapters before we can get back to our regular programming.

    ...why did I commit myself to her arc? I must be a masochist or something.

  17. Ghost-of-a-Chance

    Title Help

    It’s been a good minute since I’ve had a chance to pop on here to reply, but your suggestion hit the mark! I wound up going with “Forgiveness Goes Both Ways.” Thanks, everyone, for your advice and time. Until next time!
  18. Ghost-of-a-Chance

    Title Help

    Thanks, but...that’s the exact opposite of what I’m going for. It’s also the opposite of the ‘lesson’ I quoted from. The basis is “Forgiveness is for the person who has been hurt, not the person who has done the hurting.” Traditionally we’re taught to forgive those who have hurt us but we’re not always taught WHY we should forgive them. If the person who hurts us regrets doing so, then yes, forgiveness is for them more than us. If the person who wrongs us regrets nothing and hasn’t/won’t apologize – that’s the case here – then forgiveness is to help US regain control and move on from the injury. Despite trying to make amends, Kimber doesn’t regret her actions, only what those actions led to; even knowing what happened on account of her decisions, she’d still do everything all over again because she stands by her reasoning. She is not sorry, but the people who have paid for her mistakes are learning to forgive her anyway because they need closure. The other main party concerned – the ‘boss’ who led her down a road of destruction and eventually death – is definitely not sorry for what he’s done, only sorry that he got caught and incarcerated. Still, Kimber has decided to forgive him because she’s tired of being afraid of him – she’s taking back control. Not what I’m looking for, but thank you anyway.
  19. 20165486_2020-04-19(1).thumb.png.7580f40bfbb133c883b6204d3739f224.png

    THIS is why I have no faith in Reverse Dictionary. Granted, I suck at summarizing phrases and that doesn’t help the AI anyway, but its best guess for “Someone who has had wrong done to them” is VIRGIN?!


    ...I can’t. I just can’t even.

    1. BronxWench


      I have never actually used Reverse Dictionary, and I think I may continue that way… 

    2. Ghost-of-a-Chance


      The idea behind the site is a good one but the, it’s horribly lacking. I’ve never gotten a single good answer from the site no matter how many times I rephrase what I’m looking for.

      Highly suggested. It’s more trouble than it’s worth unless you’re looking for a laugh.

    3. Ghost-of-a-Chance


      Another recent flub from the Reverse Dictionary:

      “frustration over a recurring unpleasant event.” Suggestion: Pantaloons.

      I have a feeling that wouldn’t even make sense in the Matrix. I may never cease to be frustrated by my brain’s inability to find the words I need, but at least that makes sense. “Pantaloons,” however….


  20. Ghost-of-a-Chance

    Title Help

    Oh, I forgot – in case anyone’s wondering “does it really matter if the title fits the theme,” the answer is YES. The previous arc – “Absolutes,” Amber’s return to her world to clean up her messes and tie off her loose ends – also had a theme and a similar setup: Intro chapter – Secrets, Solutions, Certainty Crossing Worlds is Impossible The Living Cannot Hear the Dead Parallel Worlds Do Not Collide The Dead Do Not Rise Conclusion chapter – The Choice Between Darkness and Light The four main chapters related things which are supposed to be absolute laws, but each of these is explored and disproven in their titular chapter. 1, Amber and Kimber crossed worlds, though by no choice of their own, and Amber and her S.O. managed to return to her world of their own accord. 2, During Amber’s visit to her world (where she is dead) she continually ran into people who knew her in life. 3, Despite all logic pointing to the opposite, evidence abounds that Amber and her S.O. were interacting despite their separate realities for many years, and that may be the reason behind her being dumped in that world after getting herself killed. Lastly, Amber died once before and lived again in another world, found her way to her old world only to start dying again without any injury. TL,DR: Yes, it’s important. I’m a symbolism nerd. Stuff.
  21. Ghost-of-a-Chance

    Title Help

    Looking for some advice for a chapter title...or, more specifically, how to word said chapter title. There’s a particular theme I’m using for this set of chapters and a specific message I want to get across with this chapter title but I’m having trouble with the wording...and ReverseDictionaryDOTorg thinks the word for “someone who has had wrong done to them” is “Virgin.” No help there. (No, I’m not joking. I took a screenshot.) Incredibly Vague Explanation: Chapter in question is part of a 4-5 chapter arc unofficially entitled “Reclaimed Honor.” Setup: “Kimber” both screwed up her life and had her life screwed up by others, then unintentionally bit the dust before she could make amends and fix her shit. In another reality, “Amber” died of TBI and was yoinked out of her afterlife and dumped in Kimber’s recently-vacated corpse. (long frickin’ story) Over the time since waking up and starting over, she has paid for Kimber’s wrongdoings, was targeted by Kimber’s enemies and former friends on account of being mistaken for Kimber, and nearly died again, more than once. Kimber, meanwhile, was dumped in another empty human body in Amber’s reality and told “don’t screw up again.” Currently: In the previous arc, Amber found a way to her home reality, met Kimber, and after spending too long there, nearly died of the same injury which killed her before. After going over the facts, timeline, and details, Amber’s S.O. hypothesized there might be a time limit on how long someone can be in the world they died in without dying a second time, but none were willing to test the theory. Kimber, upon finding out Amber nearly croaked, volunteered. During this arc Kimber returns to her world to intentionally risk her life to prove or disprove the S.O.’s theory, all to make amends and fix her shit. She apologizes to people she’s hurt, finally takes responsibility, makes good on promises she didn’t keep, etc. Atop of that, she finally stands up to the person who sent her down her destructive path in the first place and was responsible for her going into hiding, and thus indirectly responsible for her untimely death. The chapters in this arc are all titled for feelings Kimber’s finally admitting and lessons she’s learning. A Matter of Honor – intro – feeling: she’s risking her life to reclaim her honor. I Slipped Along the Way – feeling: she’s finally admitting to herself “Wow, I fucked up good, huh?” and realizing she really needs to fix her shit. [CURRENT CHAPTER]: - Lesson. (This is the one I need help with) Redemption is a Process – (projected, may be combined with previous instead if [current chapter] comes out too short) – Lesson: redeeming yourself isn’t something that happens overnight; it’s a process that can take years of effort. So here’s the problem. The title is a much-condensed version of a lesson sometimes taught in abuse, assault, and trauma recovery: The beginning of the title is, and needs to remain, Forgiveness is for the, but the last word/words are what I’m struggling with. The initial idea (and the one that’s stuck with me) was Wronged but it sounds weird to me for some reason. Other ideas are Victim or Victimized but those aren’t a very good fit. Kimber isn’t an innocent party here in the slightest. She’s done wrong to other people and had wrong done to her; she’s both forgiving her unrepentant transgressors and being forgiven by those who have paid for her transgressions. This chapter is a two-way street and using a word like victim in the title sounds (to me) like it’s supposed to be one-way. Does anyone have any synonyms for “person who has had wrong done to them” which would work for this title, or should I just stick with “wronged?”
  22. Quote


    For the first time in his life, Leon was entirely, utterly alone, and with no end in sight. Unbidden, he recalled his brother’s final words to him: it was always you or it’s just you. Yet again, he wondered what Norton meant by that; yet again, he wondered if, in some backward way, it meant only one of us will survive this life, so I’m choosing you to do it. The suspicion always left a twisting, burning, aching feeling in his gut—something somewhere in the messy middleground between resentment, heartache, and resignation. That middleground was nothing new – before Norton’s sudden and grisly death, it was where Leon’s heart inevitably landed after any length of time around him.

    ...and that, Leon admitted if only to himself, was what hurt the most.



    Excerpt from A New Lease on Life – 61: Forgiveness is for the Victimized (WIP)


    Sometimes when I read back over what I’ve written, it feels like I just vomited up words on a page, swept it into a pile, and called it good. Other times, like this, I wonder if I carved them out of my chest and walked away without realizing a piece of my heart was missing. :cry: All I meant to do was get into the groove of the chapter and I stabbed myself right in the feels.


    *From a WIP/rough draft, no checking done yet – expect mis-comma-ing all over the place and maybe a spelling/grammar error or two.)

    1. InBrightestDay



      All I meant to do was get into the groove of the chapter and I stabbed myself right in the feels.

      I do that all the time.  It’s actually how I write, and I’ve made myself tear up multiple times while crafting scenes.

  23. Specifically, I’m trying to find a suffix which would be considered intentionally rude and insulting for a situation involving bullying. Beware, long post to include all relevant details. The story in question (Shifting the Paradigm - WIP, don’t recall if I’ve posted it here yet) portrays a fair amount of culture clash between Western/Japanese cultures and Earthling/Alien cultures, and racism (both ways) is touched upon and implied. These conflicts are a vital part of the story’s character-building and required for certain characters’ growth, and they foster a feeling of mutual-unbelonging within the human/alien pairings. (Dragon Ball Z fanfiction, knowledge of it shouldn’t be required to answer this question.) I’m going to try to keep this as concise as possible but I’m a bit scatterbrained on a good day. Background: characters “Rio,” Sierra, and Cordelia Stone have a Latinx American mother (call her E) and Japanese-born father (call him T) in southern/midwestern America. (specifically Missouri. It doesn’t really fit with either region culture-wise.) The family bounced back and forth between E’s hometown in Missouri and T’s hometown in Japan while he finished his schooling and built his career. In her mid-teens, Rio became an underage mother. (messy complicated situation, skipping the details here) T urged for abortion and shamed Rio, while E insisted keeping or aborting was Rio’s choice and the family needed to support her, not condemn her. Rio chose to keep and raise her daughter and named her Rowan. Rio dropping out to provide for her kid (and, specifically, her parents’ inability to agree about how to handle it) was the last straw in E & T’s strained relationship. After the divorce, Rio, her sisters, and Rowan remained in Japan with T because his income was more stable and capable of caring for four kids, and they spent school breaks in America with E. Rowan and her aunts all have dual citizenship though they’ve (permanently) settled in Japan. The character in question, Rowan Stone, attends a traditional Japanese high school with a few canon characters and is finishing up her last year. She doesn’t fit in with her peers in appearance or behavior, and she’s gotten into some trouble, one of which incidents resulted in expulsion from her previous school in her second-to-last year. As a result, Rowan has undergone various amounts of bullying, exclusion, and harassment. Rio hasn’t encouraged Rowan to fit in – if anything, Rio’s got a “we’re different, they can suck it” attitude which is just as toxic/exclusionist as “you’re different so we don’t want you” – and Rowan hasn’t yet felt much inclination to make friends or socialize. Her only goal at the moment is to finish school, get the heck out, and take up full-time work. She’s still very much finding herself as the story progresses. Finally, the scene in question takes place from the POV of a neutral Canon peer just now noticing Rowan. I’m including the scene [with a few non-vital bits redacted in a belated attempt at brevity] below. No spelling/grammar checking or proof-reading has been done yet – this is a rough draft. There will be too many commas and grammar mistakes. Canon characters, Bullying OCs, sentence in question.) SO. What suffix would be the most insulting and offensive in this situation? According to what I’ve read, the word Gaijin can be seen as A, an innocuous social descriptor, B, a compliment to a foreign associate, or C, a racial slur depending on the situation, tone, and context, and the personal beliefs and biases of those involved. I believe the article said it means roughly not one of us or not Japanese. I don’t know the accuracy of these statements and have done as much research as I can to determine what I can. In this case, Saschelle is trying to provoke Rowan to retaliate (and thus get in trouble) by using the word as a slur, and she’s adding an honorific to cast doubt among the rest of the class that maybe she isn’t using it as a slur. (Obviously it didn’t work; the others’ reactions show they recognize Saschelle’s bullying for what is) Rowan and Saschelle are the same gender, grade, roughly the same age, etc; I think using -kun would thus be more insulting because it would insinuate Rowan is of a lower class/inferior to Saschelle on account of her non-Asian ancestry. What I’ve read indicates -kun is used by upper-classmen referring to lower-classmen and, in the workforce, superiors referring to their inferiors...but I’ve also read that -kun is normally just used for male persons outside of the workplace. The other option I’ve considered is -chan which can seen as childish or affectionate. Saschelle isn’t denoting affection, she’s a stereotypical mean girl spewing nastiness from behind a superiority complex, but that might emphasize her pretense of I’m actually sweet and nice, you’re the one with a problem. So. I’m honestly trying to keep this socially and culturally accurate instead of just spewing out what feels right. Do I go with -kun, or -chan, or is there something entirely different which fits better? Anyone got an answer? This question (and the proofing) is the only thing keeping this chapter from being complete and posted.
  24. Grammarly had a blonde moment. :coffeescreen: Grammarly identified “blonde” as two different incorrectly spelled words somehow jammed together. 

    This is why you always, always, ALWAYS either do your own proof-reading or have a beta proof-read your drafts instead of just running them through spellcheck and accepting all corrections. Grammarly’s free checker is, so far, the best I’ve come across, but it works best in combination with proof-reading. No checking program can replace proofreading.1755767260_Grammarlyhadablondmoment.thumb.png.d56c9ea1ec0dcd66fd9cc0c38e84265a.png

    1. InvidiaRed



      I’ve had similar mishaps. Been using grammarly for ages.  It’s helped me become a much better proofreader well that and microsoft word having an audio function where it reads whatever you wrote back to you.

  25. Ah, that makes sense. Thanks for the explanation! I’ll try to keep that in mind from now on, WillowDarkling. Thanks again for your advice! Y’all are a blast!