Friday the 13th and The Moonlit Goddess

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019. 

Happy Friday the 13th everyone!  I wanted to update you all on what I’ve been up to lately in terms of my writing and other projects. This September, I decided to focus on getting myself back on track financially. I find myself constantly thinking of old, traditional ways and how they never worked for me in the past and even though I’m well aware that they never worked out, I still  have that idea of wanting to feel normal and wanting to fit in and wanting to have that traditional 9 to 5 job where I’d set my alarm at 5 a.m. and shower and get ready and make myself healthy lunches and go to an office and do my job dutifully and come home and eat dinner and shower and go to bed and do it all again the next day.

I don’t know how many times I have to make the same mistakes in order to get it through my thick skull that that person will never be me. I spent the beginning of this month putting my resume up through those online job finders and I got bombarded with e-mails from companies. I was excited at first. I was like hey, maybe I will find a regular, “normal person” job after all. But what I hadn’t realized is that the resumes are not read by real people. There’s software that sorts out keywords in people’s resumes and then if they feel that there are enough keywords then they present you with interviews. So, I got a few leads, made a few phone calls, wrote a few e-mails expressing interest in certain jobs. I was awarded interviews. I got excited. I was already spending theoretical paychecks I had not yet received from a job I had not yet been awarded.

There was one job I really wanted and was actually given a second interview for but this time I was meeting with the CEO. First of all, that person never even read my resume or knew anything about me when it came time for the interview. I cringed when the CEO opened my website and started playing my songs and going through all of my webpages and seeing all of my accomplishments. He basically thanked me for my time but gave me the ol’ heave-ho because there was nothing on my resume that suggested I qualified for the job. I looked at him and I said, well, I didn’t set up this appointment so someone must have thought I was qualified. Basically, thanks for wasting my time. I wasn’t very confident about getting this job because he blew me off the day before when the interview was originally scheduled for and I’ve experienced that in the past with teaching positions when I’d have to wait in the office for almost an hour for the principal to grace himself for the interview and I’d obviously not get the position.

So, I took this valuable lesson and said, fuck it. When are you going to get it through your thick, stubborn skull that you’re not like everyone else? Doesn’t mean you’re incompetent, doesn’t mean you’re unwilling, doesn’t mean you’re lazy, doesn’t mean you’re unmotivated. You just have to re-work your qualifications and make them work for you instead of trying to always fit and shove yourself into a mold you’ve never ever been able to fit in before in your entire life. I’m not unique. I’m not grandiose. I don’t think I’m better than anyone else. But I do know I’m different. And that is okay. I can use my difference to make a difference in the world and I kind of like that idea. I know that I’m a smart and capable woman.

When I first met my ex, one of the first things he told me was that I was a waste of potential. He said that I offered so many wonderful gifts to the world and was saddened that no one ever took the time to get through each layer. And for whatever reason, that was whether it was because of my weight, because I’m impossibly shy, because of my depression and anxiety, because I’m an emotional woman, because I’m down to earth and real and I don’t play the game that everyone wants me to play. I don’t say yes on no lips. I don’t nod in agreement on a head that wants tell you to go fuck yourself. I’m my own person. And because my life worked out the way it had, my opportunities were different than most people and that’s okay. I recognize that my difference is not a punishment and that I can use that to my advantage.

As a result, I’ve decided to offer my services which are highlighted on my main page. I have listed a whole bunch of freelance services that I offer a la carte for those who may be interested. I have a lot of things up there that may be appealing especially to those who are starting out as writers. Also, maybe to organizations who need public speakers to speak out about depression, anxiety, dementia, and other difficult topics to break the stigma and educate others what it’s like to live with these in your life. Whatever the case may be, I urge you all to look into my freelancing options and even if you’re not interested, maybe someone else might be and you can pass that along.

For September, that’s what I’m focused on for now is establishing my freelance business. I have a project that I’m planning on diving into for October and November to align with this year’s NaNoWriMo competition. Also, if you want to take a look at another important project I am starting around January 2020, take a look at my Patreon page here: www.patreon.com/themoonlitgoddess

Thanks so much for your continued support and interest in what I do. I was just recently told that this lovely woman I used to work with when I was substitute teaching bought two copies of John of Art. One for her and one for her colleague. When I released A Wynter’s Tale two years ago, she bought a copy and then the whole building ended up reading the book with that same copy. I explained to her that I am self-published and I don’t have a salary and every book I buy I get a very tiny portion of the royalties and that I don’t profit or benefit from the whole building reading my book for free. It’d be one thing if they were reading it for free and providing book reviews on either Amazon or Goodreads but they were doing neither. So they were reading the book and not supporting me in any way. So to combat the vultures, she bought two copies so she made sure she was supporting me. That meant just about everything to me. I was humbled and blown away by her kindness and generosity. It is because of women like her that I can get up in the morning and continue doing what I do. To know that there are still good people in the world, that’s just a lovely place to begin. I’d like to know more about good people out there which is why I will continue this fight to spread the word on my work and all that I wish to do with it. Thank you all again for always having my back.

For authors new and established, I’ve really been getting into reading again. If you’d like to provide me with a copy of your work, I’d gladly read it and provide a review for you via Goodreads. The only thing I ask is you extend the same courtesy. I get tons of free codes for my audiobooks so I don’t mind giving you a code so you can listen to either A Wynter’s Tale or John of Art when it’s formally released within the next few weeks. I thank you all in advance for anyone who is interested. Have a great Friday the 13th everyone and have a great weekend!

 

♥”I’m a stranger here, but I will learn its language and read its signs.”

-Amy Jellicoe, Enlightened, HBO.♥

 

 

Upon Wit’s End: How the Near-Fatal Sting of Rejection Invokes Passion

blog july 19th 2019 A

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019. 

When I was twenty-eight years old, I was smack dab in the middle of working on my master’s degree. A few years prior, I had just gotten fired for the first time in my life and I was so lost, so depressed, and I was essentially an empty shell of a woman. I lived in my bathrobe as I wrote paper after paper trying to finish up my degree. I overate and ate the worst possible foods ever, I watched a lot of t.v., I played online Scrabble endlessly for hours when I wasn’t working on school work, and I isolated myself from the outside world. The only thing that was going right for me was my educational path which I clung to for dear life.

One afternoon, my sister came home from work and forwarded me this writing contest. She told me to give it a shot and that the prize money was worth at least entering. So I did. I wrote this short story called, “A Breath of Freedom,” which I happened to include in my Dark Musings Poetry Anthology: Volume 2, nearly ten years later. Anyhow, one day I received a letter saying that I had won third place in the competition and was awarded $500. At the time, I had never cried so hard with gratitude. I had desperately needed that cash. I was able to use that money to buy my family Christmas presents that year. It was a true Christmas miracle. I even took my mother and sister down to Princeton to receive my award. I was even in the newspaper for the first time in my life. That period in my life was truly momentous and I will always be grateful to my sister for passing along that opportunity. I also remember showing my father that piece of writing. This was way before his diagnosis with dementia. He was a writer and artist as well and I remember him telling me that my story was corny after he read it. Instead of congratulating his daughter and encouraging her to move forward with writing, I was met with resentment and jealousy. I shook it off and didn’t let that sully this incredible event that happened in my life. This came at a time I needed to regain confidence, regain faith, regain the belief that somehow, someway, everything was going to work out alright for me. I needed this push in the right direction. I went on to finish my masters and work on my doctorate subsequently after and spent several years after that substitute teaching and long-term subbing.

In 2016, I was once again at a difficult crossroads in my life. I was laid off from a really wonderful teaching gig I had acquired. Being done with schooling, and wanting to finally start my life, I, yet again, was ousted from this security net I was provided with and found myself once more lost, uncertain of the future, scared, and most of all poor. I had to do something, and fast. I had been wanting to be a writer for as long as I could remember. When I went to Virginia the first year for my residency hours while working on my doctorate, I came across several amazing individuals. This one person, I will never forget, said something so profound on the last day of our residency that it stayed with me to this day. He said to our professor, “You’ve awoken a passion within me that I never knew I had.” That is what writing provided for me. Writing gave me a voice, which I never had before. Writing gave me a passion, which I was never allowed to have before. Writing became my salvation, my redemption, my hope, my peace, my sanctuary, my escape from all that ailed me. Writing became my therapist, my best friend, my confidante. Writing became my past time, my joy, my anguish, my pain. I spent hours, upon hours writing down everything that had ever hurt me in my entire life–every painful memory that still entraps me to this day. Writing gave me a release, gave me a reason, an excuse to finally let things go. Writing gave me permission to finally be the human being I had always wanted to be. Writing gave me purpose–a reason to get up in the morning. Writing became the one and only thing that no one could take away from me.

Since I’ve started writing in 2016, I’ve released so many pieces through Amazon. For funding, I’ve submitted side pieces to hundreds of organizations, magazines, contests, freelance opportunities, etc. But I had not been able to have a lightning strike for me twice since that day in 2009 when I won my first contest. Ten years later, technology is booming at its highest peak. Social media is swelling with promising new writers who practically step over each other, so desperate to be heard. My work has persistently gone unnoticed for years. I receive rejection more than I hear praise. If it wasn’t for my voice over artist/editor/mentor/newfound friend I’d quit completely. She has become such an advocate for my writing and encourages me to keep going every day.

 

blog picture july 19th, 2019

Writing provides me with so many ups and downs emotionally. There are some days where I feel so triumphant for how successful I was with my writing progress. I can belt out six thousand words in a day no problem and re-read everything and I feel such pride for how much I have grown as a writer over the years. Then there are the setbacks when I receive yet another discouraging rejection letter. I feel trapped sometimes. I feel like time is running out for me. Heavily in debt and fearful for my future, I often wonder how I became this foolish. I often blame myself and punish myself for not being “normal” like everyone else. I hate that I’m different. I hate that I stand out. I hate that my path has always been more difficult than other people. I just want to be like everyone else. But I know I never will be.

It’s been one heck a year for me. I have had to re-teach myself how to be strong and independent and break myself away from that mentality of being someone’s fiance. I hated that at first. I resented it even. I felt like Bella Swan from Twilight during the time she was away from Edward. You live your life and the time passes by around you but you’re not living. You’re barely breathing. You’re barely eating. You have no memory of the months that zoomed past you. You’re just surviving. Surviving was the very least my body was capable of in those lonely winter months. But then the sun comes out one day and its bright triumphant beams hit you smack dab in the eyes in the early morning and you wake up finally transformed and metamorphosed and you think, “Finally.” You finally breathe, eat, smell that fresh air, and feel the magnitude of what you’ve been through. You recall the harsh lessons learned. You become more protected, more guarded, more aware of your surroundings. You trust less, but you’re still you to the outside world, just this more polished version. I am not my mistakes. I am not my past. I am not my failures. I’m more than that. Way more. And with every rejection I receive, I’m only that much more determined to keep trying. To keep improving. To keep writing like I’ve never written before. If you don’t believe in me, who cares, I’ll keep writing until I find someone who will believe in me. I don’t write for you. I write for me. I write to keep going in this crazy world. I write for meaning, for inspiration, for perspective, for peace, for sanity. I write to make others see that triumph really does spawn from tragedy if you just keep going and let that sun reach your face. I will not give up. I will not allow you or anyone else to dampen my spirit any longer. Reject my words but somehow, somewhere, someway, someone will embrace me and I cannot wait for that day and tell you all about it.

PSG Lopes/The Moonlit Goddess’ Amazon Author Page: amazon.com/author/psglopes

Getting Schooled on Grammar By a Porn Ghostwriter-Seeking “John”

blog january 5th 2019

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED 2019.

I debuted my skills as a freelancing writer this winter and wanted to test the waters to see if anyone was interested in having me ghostwrite their book for them. I had a few people interested but I’ve also had some hilarious feedback and criticism of my work. Criticism is the nature of the beast and I am well armed when it comes to other’s critiquing my work. I am no stranger to having others dismiss my writing and I have a pretty strong backbone but this experience was definitely one to write about.

Many of you know that when I first started writing I started out as an erotica writer. I wrote erotica pieces as far back as 2008 but only started publishing them in 2016. Granted, I wasn’t really one hundred percent invested in my writing brand back then, I was still new to the business, and I was learning the ropes of my future profession. The erotica, although have strong storylines and expertly written sex scenes, they aren’t scholarly written, they also weren’t written by a knuckle-dragging beast either. Despite my minor grammar flubs back in the day, the pieces were still pretty strong, in my opinion. I definitely don’t like going back reading my erotica because I have always hated the genre and they are definitely not my strongest pieces as a writer.

I often wonder why people choose to ghostwrite instead of writing their own book but I don’t judge. I, after all, need the money and it would be an easy way to get cash to fund my own pursuits. This brings to me the point of writing today’s blog.

I sent a proposal out for someone who was looking for a ghostwriter to write an erotica novel. I sent out my specifications and my sample writing and she sent me this long winded reason for not choosing my piece focusing on things that had nothing to do with the actual story. I was giggling to myself for several reasons. First of all, this is erotica writing, if you didn’t get hot reading the story and all you’re focused on is the “there, their, they’re” mission, you’re doing it wrong! I just found her reply to be humorous and of course, she isn’t familiar with my more up to date writings and publishings. I also think it’s funny that if you are such an expert, why aren’t you writing the book yourself?

To me, as a writer, having published several serious pieces since the years of erotica, the editing is the last thing to worry about. That is the final stages of writing. I’m more concerned with the characters, plot, story structure, etc. If you’re just lost in the grammar then A. You aren’t a writer, you’re a reader, and B. No wonder you need someone to ghostwrite your work! Because writers don’t judge on grammar and mechanics, only reading critics do! Every mentor I have ever had, every teacher I have ever had in creative writing always told me the same thing. They always told me “Oh, the story was so good! We can always clean up the grammar later!” If you’re sending me a page long rant on things that have nothing to do with the story itself, you’re an even more rank amateur than you claim me to be!

If you find potential in the work, the mechanics and grammar are an easy fix. The woman was just looking for an excuse to tell me she wasn’t interested and that was her way of denying the proposal when simply saying “no thanks” or even a lack of response would’ve sufficed plenty.

This world is moving much too fast these days. I strongly feel that this world is always focused on the wrong things in life and that is why so many people are miserable and unhappy. People need to slow down, appreciate the process, appreciate potential and work with someone towards making them the best possible writer they can be instead of dismissing someone’s work over a passive voice slip up or some other minor fix. There is nothing wrong with finding potential in someone’s writing and working with them to make an excellent piece. Instead, people are so quick to crucify others and pat themselves on the back when they have pointed out another person’s flaws and called them out on it. How about having some empathy and considering what the writer is going through? Maybe that person can’t afford an editor and rely on their own self-editing to get by. I was doing my own self-editing with the erotica. It’s not a good idea to self-edit your own work but not many people are willing to edit erotica without their stomach churning. For my current publishings, I now have several editors and my work is a lot tighter and stronger. If grammar was this individual’s strong suit, couldn’t it be his or her position to oversee editing? Or was her position in the ghostwriting duo like the sex in my story? She just lays there as I give it to her. Eh, lol.