Announcing new stuff!

Announcing new stuff!

So, last week I went up to visit my First Reader in the near-middle of the United States. We had an absolutely great time together and are looking forward to many more great times together in the future. Additionally, while I was up there, I began working on my latest WIP series: the Blade of Fate. I am planning to release this in two versions: one version as a more straight-line fantasy story with just a touch of romance and another, steamier version (under a different pen name). I also seem to have gotten myself roped into helping a fellow teacher-person with some non-fiction books which may mean yet another name.

Therefore, if you see stuff that is identical to something I’ve written as G.K. Masterson but under a different name, check with me before you take out the torches and pitchforks. Chances are, it’s a re-release into a different market. I want to keep my brands separate instead of getting known as “that chick who writes kinky fantasy novels.”

In other WIP news: I am almost finished with Lanar’ya 3. I am planning to have a long talk with my publisher on that series about getting the rights back and then re-releasing it once I have found an editor to re-edit the series. And, I’m still working in the Cycle of the Eternals universe but I’m not planning to actively put out the first book until I have a few more in the kitty. Had I known that Lanar’ya 3 was going to be so stubborn about being written, I’d have held off a bit on that series, too.

Lastly, if I have time between all the traveling, other writing, and teaching-prep I have to do this summer, I will start trying to update my serials more often. I may give Patreon another go to see if I can make “gas and milk money” off it.

However, all that said, I am not going to promise to blog more often. As explained above, I have about eight hojillion projects on various burners not to mention finishing up my Master’s degree which involves plenty of writing there, too.

Thanks to all of you who have stuck around!

— G.K.

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Origins and the Canary in the Coal Mine

I think what bothers me more than just the whole “weak woman” thing (and, once again, thank you so much for setting us back again, Whitney!) is the chilling effect that dis-inviting folks like Larry Correia, Jon del Arroz, John Ringo, and Tim Bolgeo from conventions has on free speech and free thought. I mean, let’s assume for the moment that every negative thing said about these guys is true. Let’s assume — again, for the sake of argument only — that they are the horrible things that the crybullies say they are.

Does silencing them do anything to prove them wrong? Hell no. All you’ve done is show that you don’t have an effective argument against whatever it is you are strawmann-ing them to have said/thought/believed. You are, in essence, saying that they are right. Do you want to know how we got the Civil Rights Movement to work? It wasn’t by silencing the segregationists — it was by answering their speech with our own and proving them wrong. It was about refuting their arguments. It was about reaching out to them and connecting with them as humans and helping them to see that segregation was a bad thing for whites and blacks. And it took a long time to get where we are and, while we still have a ways to go, we’re all in a much better place than we were in the 1940s and 1950s.

In a way, this bothers me so much because gaming and sci-fi/fantasy have become the new canaries in the coal mine for the free speech movement. Everywhere else, people have caved in to the crybullies — tech, science, literary works, romance, horror, religion, history and historiography — but the geek world fought back. The geek world said “we really don’t care what you have in your pants, who you like to hump, or what the melanin ratio in your skin is — if you like our stuff, we like you” and refused to bow down to the crybullies and the Stalinists who would, quite frankly, like it if everyone to the left of Mao got sent to the gulag. When our world starts getting invaded by people who are NOT part of it — and seriously, a playboy billionaire and his rich bitch probably do not spend their Saturdays playing D&D — and who insist that we have to exclude people for wrongthink instead of engaging them, it’s time to fight back and to tell them to go back to their segregated, gated neighborhoods where the domestics are invisible and leave the rest of us the hell alone.

We are the gutter genre — we’re where everyone mixes together, tells good stories, experiments with exploring cultural problems by substituting elves and dwarves and whatever else for humans, and who honestly don’t care that much if you’re male, female, transsexual, gay, straight, bi, poly, white, black, yellow, red, purple with green stripes. We’re the place where all the outcasts are safe to hang out and talk. We are the United States of the writing world — a place for the oddballs to mix, have more oddball kids, and then dream up awesome stuff that the elites can’t think up because they’re too trapped in their boxed-in, fenced-in, invitation-only worlds. We need to stay what we are and not let the mainstreamers screw us over by imposing their whitebread blinkered view of reality on us and hemming us in with boxes — check boxes, tick boxes, political boxes, socio-economic boxes — and keep mixing it up. We need to bring in people who are interested in telling great stories with great characters — characters and stories that can appeal to many different audiences.

If we let them win, if we give up and let them segregate this last place where we all meet and mix, we’re boned. Big time. So, roll up the sleeves and let’s start building a new place for people of all races, genders, creeds, and socio-economic brackets (not just the chardonnay sippers from the “right” neighborhoods in the “smart” cities) to meet up, talk games, swap stories, and to have all the cultural miscegenation we want.

— G.K.

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Weak Woman Ruins Origins

Weak Woman Ruins Origins

So, I know I’ve not been blogging much. First year teaching, wrapping up a MAT program, writing, life… However, after hearing about Origins dis-inviting Larry Correia (one of my favorite authors and people) because some woman got her feelings hurt because Larry fisked her fiancé’s article on GenCon four years ago and decided that a fisking means she’s “not safe” at a convention with Larry goes to the con organizers and gets him dis-invited, I knew I had to come back because this. is. bullshit.

See, crap like this is why women don’t get taken seriously in male-dominated industries. So, screw you, Whitney Beltran. Screw you for setting us back with your inability to control your “vapors” and deal with the fact that not everyone thinks your HoneyBooBoobear is right. Screw you, you stupid fucking Mrs. Brady “my man knows best” for this.

You are a special kind of stupid

Women — real women — like Sarah Hoyt (an actual real minority and an immigrant to boot!), Cedar Sanderson, and even Cat Romero can handle the fact that not everyone thinks their husbands/boyfriends/girlfriends/whateverbecauseIamnotajudgymcjudgerson are right and perfect. These women can do remarkable things — like work with people they may not agree with, go to conventions that have Guests of Honor who might disagree with them, and can live without needing the world to think that their SOs are right about everything and that only wisdom and truth come from their men’s mouths. But you… you make us all look bad. Women like you are why women in tech can’t get mentors — we might get the vapors or make false accusations and try to ruin a man’s reputation or cost him opportunities if he says something we don’t like. Women like you are why we have trouble getting our games developed or having our voices taken seriously in gaming development. After all, we’re just going to make a mushy game all about feelings and where the characters have to navigate a minefield of never offending the perpetually offended and dealing with womanish vapors and no one wants to play that or walk on eggshells around other developers — not that you’d understand the desire to play a game that doesn’t involve the heroine being rescued by someone else.* Easier to just keep it all male. Women like you are why we have a hard time making it in the sciences — after all, if our hypotheses (or our boyfriend’s hypotheses) gets proven incorrect, we may lash out and do everything we can to ruin that person’s life, bringing it up years later and talking about how we don’t feel “safe” using the same grocery store as them.

So screw you. I hope that your fiancé protects your weak-minded, lily-livered, thin-skinned, meek self from the real world. I hope he’s provided you with the June Clever/Carol Brady cotton-wool-wrapped existence that you need, you delicate little fainting lily. I hope that you and your sister-in-spirit Rose Eleveth — who went out of her way to prove that women aren’t concerned about or interested in science; we’re all about what people are wearing and celebrity gossip! — are able to live in a bubble world where nothing ever happens to you and you never encounter any kind of disagreement. I really hope that is how it is for you and I really wish that you would stay in that bubble world and quit trying to bring your whole patriarchal “My Husband Knows Best” attitude on those of us who actually do believe in things like freedom of speech, having disagreements civilly, not ruining people’s lives over them not worshiping our husbands, and that women can deal with encountering things that they may not like or people with whom they may not agree without getting the vapors.

Don’t get me started on your ignorance regarding the Sad Puppies and the Hugos. Seriously — if you’re thick enough to think that “all whites + one Asian” counts as representing PoCs, then you’re too thick to be able to understand something as complicated as the politics behind the Hugos. Get your husband to explain it to you, Whitney, because I have neither the time, the inclination, nor the crayons to do it myself. I’m too damned busy working in an impoverished school district teaching students of color — the ones you probably shudder at and cross the street to get away from — and actually making a difference in the world, you chardonnay-sipping, privileged, white, limousine liberal.

I don't have the time or the crayons for this shit

— G.K.

*Seriously — Twelve reviews on Metacritic is all that thing got? Right. That’s beyond sad.

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These Three Things…

These Three Things...

So, yeah, I am a terrible blogger. I got a job teaching English at the high school level and haven’t had the time or the energy to blog much since it came down to “write” or “blog” and I opted for “write.”

That said, I’m in-between projects at the moment and figured I’d take a crack at trying to keep this place from getting too cobwebby. Granted, I did have to take a flamethrower to it in order to clear up the arachnid infestation…

But I digress.

In recent days, I’ve had love on my mind. No, not like that (not that I’d be against it but the likelihood of it working out is somewhere between zip and zilch). Rather, I’ve been thinking about how several of us who are single are probably not doing much to improve our chances of getting in a relationship because we’re confused about what love is at a fundamental level. It doesn’t help that we’ve been force-fed a steady diet of lies in this arena all of our lives, either, and that, really, it’s only through Orthodoxy that I began to get a glimpse of the truth about love (which means I don’t hold out a lot of hope for my Western brothers and sisters).

Living in our times, we’re confused about a lot of things. For instance, we have no clue what love really is. Speaking English (or any of the Romance languages) compounds the problem because we’re all using one word (“love” or a derivative of “amare”) to describe what is actually three different things. The Greeks had this one right when they used three words: agape (the pure sense of love/affection/connectedness), eros (sexual attraction), and philia (a more distant affection/affiliation than agape). Of these three, the “best” kind — the kind that makes marriage work — is agape (αγαπε). Now, relationships should begin with a touch of either eros or philia (ερω or φιλια) and that should be enough for both parties to decide that there is a basis to build a solid partnership on.

There’s no “falling.” No sudden epiphanies as seen on the Hallmark channel. There’s no Road to Damascus moment where you move from “not loving” to “loving” someone. Actually, as Christians (and yes, I’m Christian), we’re called to love all people. After all, God loved us all enough that He became Incarnate and died to free us from Death. So, I have (and am called to have) a basic level of love for everyone. For me, this is generally philia that, over time, matures into a platonic agape relationship or moves into familial territory (like my Orthodox Ma — the lady who sponsored me when I converted). For most people, this kind of love is easy and natural because it’s not been surrounded by cultural mythology, fancy advertising, and baggage enough to sink a cargo ship.

But romantic love? The love that most of us spend our lives yearning for? The love that our culture holds as the pinnacle of existence? The love that so many chase in the wrong places — bars, clubs, the hook-up scene, singles mixers, church meetings, etc? Yeah, we’re pretty good at chasing the “wrong” things and ignoring the “right” ones because we’ve completely lost sight as to what love and marriage really are.


We’re so blinded by our ideas of love that we can no longer see the Real Thing.

Y’all, it’s not complicated. Love, followed by marriage, is a decision. It’s as simple as that. It’s a decision that is consciously controlled — indeed, it only works well when both parties consciously decide to love each other and to commit to each other. They may base their relationship on a foundation like friendship, common interests, or a shared faith and vision of family. They may have a mild erotic attraction to each other — though I think many would be amazed to learn that simply getting to know someone can spark an attraction where one didn’t exist earlier — but they both understand that the attraction is like the paint, curtains, and furnishings of a house — without a solid foundation and support structure, none of those things matter. Without the “unsexy” part (the walls, the foundation, the siding, the roof), the fun parts (the romance) will be ruined at the first sign of rain.


Not as cool as it looks here, tbh

Now, I know some of you are thinking “but G, you’re divorced.” Yes, I am divorced. Yes, I made a lot of mistakes in my marriage. I feel like I demanded more from my husband than was reasonable — I wanted him to be more emotionally supportive than it was in his nature to be. I was a bit more introverted and more of a homebody than was good for him. I wasn’t willing to learn more about his field to help him and to support him in it while wanting him to listen to me yammer on about mine incessantly. In the end, I’m not surprised he was unwilling to remain married to me after a few really crappy years for us. I’ve spent a good bit of time reflecting on why my marriage failed and, in the end, it really did come down to a decision. We decided to let life part us and we parted amicably. He’s a great guy and I wish him well in finding another wife.

So, if, like me, you’re single and you want to stop being single, quit waiting for lightning to strike. Find a single friend and see if he’s interested in being more. Or, fellas, think about that one female friend you’re always saying would make an awesome girlfriend and go for it. Look around you and make that decision — the decision that you are going to see if that other person is willing to at least consider deciding on you. If they aren’t, then keep the friendship and move on to someone who is willing to decide and to choose to build a life with you.

Right now, that’s what I’m weighing for myself and it’s not easy. But then, nothing worthwhile ever is. And remember that in your writing. Take what you’re feeling — all of it — and use that to build a connection to your readers like I’m doing right this minute. The fear, the hope, the exhilaration, the guttedness, the despair, and then, at long last, the contentment.

I’ll let you jokers know if I ever get to the last one. 😛

— G.K.

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Epic Adventures in Aunting

Epic Adventures in Aunting

So, my niece Mini-me is down here making my life interesting. And, by “interesting,” I mean “why did you do that? What part of you considered it a good idea?”

An example of this that just happened: Mini-me has an old bike. She knows she is supposed to put it away when she’s not riding it. However, today she decided that “away” meant “right behind the Kabota.” Auntie GK needed to take some meat that had spoiled over to the dump so, like a moron, I got in the Kabota without checking all around it thoroughly to ensure that nothing would be destroyed. I put the thing in reverse and noticed that, after a few feet, it was dragging as if the tire was flat or something. So, I get out and lo and behold, there is a little girl’s bike wedged under the Kabota. And I mean wedged. As in “we’re going to need a hydraulic jack to lift the Kabota and get this baby out.”

So, I come inside to tell Mom and Mini-me about the demise of her bike. Mom takes it in stride — she’s raised two kids of her own and is used to Mini-me’s antics. Mini-me, on the other hand, is convinced that her Pawpaw is going to turn into a “complete psychomaniac” and seal her in a bottle and drop it in California. I’m just wondering how long the ribbing is going to go on over me running over her bike. This will probably be my Pizza Box story.

Kids. I love ’em.

— G.K.

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Inosculation Updated!

Inosculation Updated!

So, I have done something to my hands and it’s made typing a bit tricky. So, working out this chapter took me some extra time. Still, here’s the latest chapter of Inosculation for you to enjoy!

Cycles of the Eternals is still at about 70% because, again, typing has been painful.

— G.K.

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MBTI is a Tool, Not a Justification

MBTI is a Tool, Not a Justification

Occasionally, as a writer and a complete and utter smart-ass, I trawl through the deeper corners of the Intarwebz in search of information, funny meme images, and to find other writers who, for whatever reason, have decided to remain trapped in the Twelfth Circle of Online Hell known as Tumblr. One thing I’ve started noticing over the past year or so is the obsession therein with the MBTI.

The MBTI is a temperament assessment tool. It measures four “areas” of cognitive processing to determine how, in general and on average, a person will react to common situations and how they will process them. It doesn’t tell you if a person is an asshole, a saint, a liberal, a libertarian, a genius, or a twit. All it says is “this person is, on average, processing things in this manner.”

For instance, I’m an INTJ. That’s the rarest of all types for a woman (and yes, I am a woman). On average, that means that I rely heavily on introverted intuition to process things, I tend to plan ahead in everything, I value efficiency and effectiveness, I’m great at abstract concepts and theories, I like to learn, and I can be about as blunt as a sledgehammer to the head. It also implies that I tend to avoid most social situations, I get worn out in crowds, and I prefer to live in my head.

It does not mean I’m rude. My mother beat manners into me, y’all. It does mean I’m oblivious sometimes (like the time I walked right past the preacher in her church because I didn’t know it was him and, frankly, didn’t really care that much). It means that I tend to have better control over external expressions of my emotions and I tend to control them instead of letting them control me. It doesn’t mean that I’m heartless — though I can come across that way sometimes. It does not give me any excuse to be an asshole just because. No, if I’m an asshole towards someone, I have a reason for my behavior. Generally, though, I’m not much of a jerk to anyone. If I don’t like or don’t trust a person, I just avoid them entirely. I don’t make a big deal out of it.

I’ve written characters who are INTJs (and NTs of all types as well as a lot of NFs). They’re not always the bad guys or the heroes. They’re not Machiavellian-esque. They have no plans to take over the world and rule it with an iron fist. For the most part, they want to be left the fuck alone to chill with their friends (and yes, INTJs have friends. Few of them and only those who can keep up with us but we have them, dammit). Occasionally, one of them will get tipped over into extraverted sensing, go a bit off the rails, and Bad Shit Will Happen. However, they always have a strong moral and ethical code and they will not violate it. And do you know what part of that code is for almost every last INTJ?

It’s don’t be a dick for no reason. Honestly. It’s not so much because we care about how people will feel (though there is some of that to us). No, it’s more the fact that there will be fall-out and we’ll have to spend longer dealing with that than with the actual damned problem. Not being a dick to people for no reason is simply more efficient than being an ass just because we can be. We also don’t need to be dicks to people to get them to leave us alone. Avoiding social situations is something we can do without much effort and being a dick is often counter-productive to that since the person will want to know why we’re being such assholes towards them.

We also generally will plan out how we would, hypothetically, take over a government/nation/the world or destroy a city with minimum/maximum fatalities but, for God’s sake, most of us will never actually get pissed off enough to put those plans into action. After all, if we did that, we’d have to deal with people and, for most of us, limiting our contact with the rest of the world is simply part and parcel of our nature. We don’t hate people (though, in general, most of them annoy us a bit) and we have friends. We can be quite social and even charming at times. But, for the love of Cthulhu, we don’t want to have to do the thinking for everyone and world rulership tends to involve just that.

However, assuming that we’re all Machiavellian sociopaths isn’t the worst offense that writers, Tumblr, and others make about us.

No, the major thing that people get wrong about us is our emotions. See, we have them. We do experience them. We’re not cold, callous, and robotic. Hell, the other day when a man indicated he was interested in me in a manner beyond merely platonic, I felt an honest-to-Cthulhu ten minutes of pure exhilaration, a sharp upward spike in contentment, and enough happiness to actually make me smile for longer than a couple of minutes. However, yes, I did revert back to a slightly-higher baseline level of amused neutrality (more amused-leaning-towards-content than normal). The difference between me and a more normal person is that there were very few outward signs that I was feeling anything in the moment and it actually took me some time to realize that I was feeling something and analyze what I was feeling and trace the cause. Then, and only then, having come to a logical explanation for it did I allow myself to enjoy and indulge in the sensation for a reasonable amount of time.

After that, it was back to normal (albeit a slightly higher baseline level of normal).

I do feel flashes of emotions. I can get angry. I can feel sad. I can feel happy. However, yes, my normal state is neutral and calm. I also know that, for physiological and biochemical reasons, I cannot permit myself to be caught in the grip of a strong emotion for more than a few minutes unless I feel like going to the hospital for a powerful painkiller to rid myself of the migraine that will happen. Most INTJs will show little to no outward expression of an emotion and, if we do experience one strong enough to overwhelm our control, we will excuse ourselves from public view and try to reason our way through it or come to a more logical understanding of just what the hell is going on. That’s how we survive. That’s how we function. It’s not how most people do things and, frankly, I don’t recommend they try. It would be extremely unhealthy for an NF, SF, or ST to attempt to manage their emotions the way an INTJ does. The converse is also true — if we tried to “feel” things the way an NF does, we’d go insane.

That means that yes, powerful emotions can unseat and unsettle us. Especially if those emotions are our own (shit, just witnessing someone else’s emotions tends to frighten us a good bit because we’re not tuned into that, it takes a lot for us to manage to tune-in emotionally, and generally we’re better problem-solvers than we are shoulders-to-cry-on). It means that we can, if it is logical, be driven by an emotion. There have been times when I have been driven by annoyance, anger, outrage, sadness, or joy to do something. *shrug* Not often and generally the emotion peters out and I’ll either continue the action (if logical) or drop it (if I merely needed to exhaust the emotion so I could return to baseline).

INTJs, emotionally, tend to be like very deep rivers, guys. We’re calm and placid on top but the currents down below can be fatal. Unlike a river, we can analyze what is going on “down below” and we will spend time trying to trace the cause and determine if the emotion is logically justified or if it is superfluous. While we’re doing that we will come across as calm and rational because we’re so used to being in that state that it really and truly is no energy for us to maintain (certain rare exceptions aside). When we feel something, it’s generally quite intense.

This is also part of why we tend to be so blunt. Without taking the time and energy to consider that our processing methods aren’t universal, we’ll generally assume that someone wants what they asked for. Over time, we learn better but we do tend to prefer honesty over flattery. Some of you value that — some of you find it annoying. That’s okay. We’re an acquired taste.

— G.K.

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Inosculation Updated!

Inosculation Updated!

I just posted a new chapter of Inosculation! We’re finally starting to move into the more interesting bits. Coming up next will be The Basics I and II.

Also, I am happy to announce that Book 1 of Cycles of the Eternals is now around 70% complete!

— G.K.

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Inosculation Updated!

I just posted a new chapter of Inosculation! It’s a bit shorter this week because I’ve been under the weather with migraines since the actual weather can’t make up its mind as to what it wants to be other than “tormenting.”

Also, I am happy to announce that Book 1 of Cycles of the Eternals is now around 55% complete!

— G.K.

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Inosculation Updated!

Inosculation Updated!

I just posted a new chapter of Inosculation! Go read and enjoy! Things are getting more interesting and next week will cover the episode The Thaw which is, easily, one of my favorite episodes.

Also, I am happy to announce that Book 1 of Cycles of the Eternals is now around 40% complete!

— G.K.

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