An Open Letter To Myself

….well, a letter to twenty-year-old me.

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Dear Self,

First, you’re going to be okay. Divorce is scary, but it’s not the end of the world.

Second, you’re autistic. I know you think you have some terminal illness because you get so tired after being around people. It’s okay. You’re autistic. And you’re going to be so relieved when you find out.

Third, you will fall in love again.

Fourth, the divorce was about him…not you. He’s been divorced three more times since you.

Fifth, you’re brilliant. And you can write. You just have to believe enough in yourself to try.

Now, stop crying into the ice cream.

He’s not worth it.

You’re going to be fine.

Love,

Me

 

A New Adventure.

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Want more from the World of Dahlia?

Join my Patreon for exclusive flash fiction, short stories, vlogs, and a host of behind-the-scenes insights to my novels.

https://www.patreon.com/dahliadonovan

What’s on tap for this month?

Behind-the-scenes for my upcoming Urban Fantasy MM Romance along with an exclusive excerpt.

A Flash Fiction featuring Freddie from The Caretaker.

Storytime with Dahlia vlog.

A Q & A for the Main Characters of Here Comes The Son.

Plus a bunch of other fun stuff.

 

Fear is the mind killer.

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I don’t know about other authors, but I tend to give my characters traits and background stories that never make it into the novel. A prime example would be the fact most of my characters have phobias.

And of all my main characters, I think only one or two of them had their phobias actually show up on the page.

BC from The Wanderer with his fear of spiders, for example. Or, Bishan who hates cotton wool and would happily set all of it on fire.

And has.

I am a pantser of sorts. While I rarely fully plot out a story and I never have an outline, I do attempt to flesh out my characters fully. I want to know who they are since it helps me write.

How can you tell someone’s story if you don’t know who they are?

So, I keep book bibles on all my stories. At the moment, I use slender A5 individual notebooks from Muji. They’re the perfect size for keeping track of everything related to a story.

The first thing I do is to begin a sort of profile of my two main characters.

What do they look like?

Do they have tattoos?

Who are their friends, family, enemies?

What are their dreams, hopes, fears, etc?

Now, a lot of the time, most of the information will never make an appearance in the pages of their story. But, it makes them real to me. I’m not a visual person–I can’t conjure up their face in my mind’s eye, yet all the written details make them more real than if I had a photo of them.

I believe phobias tell you a lot about a person.

Maybe not a lot, but a little. Some fears are rational–some not so much. Cotton wool, for example.

Toshiro from One Last Heist has two great phobias that are connected–the Ocean…and drowning in it. His beloved Mack is afraid of darkness.

How about you? What are you afraid? I have quite a few phobias–heights, spiders, bugs in general. lol

Book Excerpt: At War With A Broken Heart

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Excerpt

Would you stop ignoring me?”

“No.”

“Morrie.”

“How about you quit butchering my name? If you insist on using my first one that no one else uses, stop making me sound like a five-year-old schoolboy. It’s Morogh, though you know I prefer Fie.” Morogh Fie Russell scowled at the former love of his life over the top of his reading glasses. He hadn’t seen Edmund in close to eight years, not since Fie’s return from Afghanistan. War hadn’t been kind to him, leaving him a changed man in many ways. “I’ll ignore you if I want, as I didn’t invite you inside.”

“I refuse to call you by a name that sounds like it belongs in Jack and the Beanstalk. What were your parents thinking?” Edmund took a few steps towards Fie, grimacing when he stepped into a stray bit of wet clay. “I wanted to talk. How do you stand it out here in Bideford? I’m surprised you didn’t move back to your family’s farm in Scotland. Devon doesn’t seem your sort of place.”

“You refused to call me anything at all for years. And how is where I live any of your business?” Fie honestly didn’t want to revisit their failed relationship. “What’s changed? Did your latest fling kick you out?”

“I missed you. Us, even.” Edmund gestured towards Haggard, Fie’s blue merle border collie service dog, stretched out across a blanket in his corner of the pottery shed. “I can help. What can your old mutt do that I can’t?”

“Help? You broke me. You lost the right to put me back together.” Fie wiped absently at the sheen of sweat on his brow; he hadn’t even gotten close to his kiln yet. Why am I suddenly overheating? “Sod off with you back to your posh London penthouse.”

“I’m sorry.”

“Hell.” Fie dragged a hand roughly through his greying hair. His dark brown eyes examined Edmund and found him relatively unchanged. Still as selfish as ever. He’d missed seeing the fault in his ex-lover’s personality until far too late. “Well, I hope the apology made it all better for you. I still feel like shite.”


Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2S8sZl4

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2QLaEhs

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2BvQQE7

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2AbDmNZ

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2Km1ku3

Apple Books: https://apple.co/2DwNovA

B&N: http://bit.ly/2S7gXIr

 

Happy Birthday to me!

To celebrate my birthday, At War With A Broken Heart is 99c! Yay!
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Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2S8sZl4

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2QLaEhs

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2BvQQE7

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2AbDmNZ

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2Km1ku3

Apple Books: https://apple.co/2DwNovA

B&N: http://bit.ly/2S7gXIr

Own Your Shit. Dump The Rest.

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The gif has nothing to do with this post aside from the fact that I’m writing it on a Thursday morning when not even coffee is enough to get my brain in gear.

So, buckle up.

The other day I was playing a video game. It’s a multiplayer game. Now, I turn off the open chat because I’ve no interest in listening to the misogynistic nonsense that is prevalent in the gaming world.

While standing around waiting for an in-game event to start, another gamer began harassing my character.

This is how it started.

My character is literally just standing still playing a lute. (It’s a game emote you can do to kill time.) My character is female. Another gamer comes over and begins trying to engage me.

He swings his weapon at my character.

I keep playing my lute.

He gets tired of being annoyed, so he runs over toward a group of enemies nearby and uses one of his powers to drag the enemy over to my character which forces me to engage with the creature to avoid being killed.

I kill the enemy then go back to playing the lute.

This happened four times.

And I’m starting to get pissed off. Why does this always happen? I just want to play my lute and wait for the in-game event. Being pissed off causes me to also be stressed out, which is terrible for my blood pressure issues.

And that’s when it hits me.

You know, this jackass is just doing this to get a reaction.

So, I leave.

Own your shit. I can only control myself. No matter how annoyed another person makes me, I can’t force them to change. So? Controlling my shit means leaving an area to find somewhere else to play. It’s a massive game, I easily found another event without the annoying asshole.

And that’s the dump the rest part.

That dickhead? Not my responsibility. I shook off my annoyance and continued to enjoy the game.

Why should I let a perfect stranger ruin my enjoyment?

I owned my shit. And dumped the rest.

Can you relate?