Sexism and Female Figure

blog pic august 16th

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

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged anything. For those of you who listened to last week’s Podcast entitled Fatphobia and The Lies I’ve Been Told, this is pretty much piggybacking off of that podcast and adding more thoughts to the topic because I feel that there is so much more to talk about regarding this very important issue.

I read and re-read Virgie Tovar’s book You Have The Right To Remain Fat and she spoke so much to every problem I’ve had basically since I was a small child. I was raised to keep quiet, to be obedient and to just accept life the way it was without getting angry or fighting back. There were pressures regarding my weight and for nearly forty years I’ve tried every diet in the book to try to “fit in” with society and act and be just like everyone else. For years, I’ve blamed myself for looking differently than others. For years, I’ve blamed myself for being outspoken, for advocating for myself, for not allowing people to tell me how things are going to be, especially men. This has created so much friction for me in terms of finding full-time work.

In my twenties, I was much quieter in the workplace and just took life as it was, as I was raised to do. I was dieting on and off, wearing compression garments that made me sick to my stomach and produced too much acid reflux and would make me nauseous and made it harder for me to use the bathroom. I would slap on tons of makeup, do my hair, wear loud jewelry and wear sexy clothes because I wanted to be recognized as a beautiful, sexy, vibrant woman. After I went to school to work on my masters and Ph.D., my mind changed. I began questioning everything. I realized right away that everything I had been taught in the past was a lie to keep me submissive and to keep me obedient and to keep me “normal” and suitable to the eyes of those in society, particularly men. I was trained that if I didn’t diet excessively that I’d die early from diabetes, heart failure, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, etc. etc. etc. I’ve had an active eating disorder since I was in the first grade. I went from being anorexic to binge eating to being anorexic, and so on and so forth. I was so anxious, so neurotic, and made myself so sick for so many years. I saw my mother go through something similar. She married someone who was shallow and superficial and only cared that my mother was thin and never gave her the positive feedback she so desperately needed to hear in her life. My mother was always beautiful, my mother was always strong, my mother raised four kids essentially alone while my father did everything in his power to not come home until later in the evening where he would just end the day sitting on the couch watching tv until he fell asleep. The last thing in the world he wanted was to be near my mother. She developed such a complex throughout her life. But there was no need for it. She was and is the most perfect woman I can think of. She has beauty and grace and is such a fighter. She endured so much and keeps fighting each and every day and for what? So she can take care of a man who treated her so abhorrently throughout her life. She is a special type of hero as I watch her give my father such quality care each and every day while he is lying in the hospital bed in our living room. The man who called her every name in the book just because she enjoyed her food. That was her only flaw, food. I, to this day, never quite understood how it was such a sin to be full-figured.

I am my mother’s daughter to the T. I have her figure. I enjoy eating good food but the difference between her and I is that I’ve stopped caring what other people think of me. I don’t feel that societal pressure to be thin and perfect. I don’t wear compression garments anymore, I barely shave my legs and pits. I only wear makeup on special occasions and I have tiers of the type of makeup I will put on.  I call light makeup “Tier 1” makeup where I’ll wear a light BB cream, some blush, some gloss, some mascara, some cream-based eyeshadow and setting spray. Then the next level is “Tier 2.” When I worked as a sub/teacher full-time, I had “Tier 2” every single day. It was expensive, it was exhausting and I realized many years later that I wasn’t putting this on for my sake I was putting in on for other people’s sake. So that I wouldn’t look like a monster to them. So that I’d look pleasant in their eyes. So they wouldn’t have to suffer looking at this grotesque Grendel that I truly believed I was. Dressing the part and wearing all that makeup gave me attention I didn’t even want. I was sexually harassed in the workplace at my last teaching job. This crusty, old, toothless man on the brink of retirement kept coming on to me and kept saying wildly inappropriate things to me. He would tell me I smelled good and would ask about my perfume. Our students went on a class trip to this facility that taught kids about the workforce. One of the booths had a medical set up and he asked me to disrobe and put on a patient gown and wait for him to examine me. I was so desperate at the time for full-time work that I dutifully kept my mouth shut. But if I was the me that I am today, I would have ratted out his dirty disgusting ass so fast. This loser would also fall asleep in the middle of class and the whole building knew and no one said or did anything to reprimand him. They used fear to keep the non-tenures in check but now I have such an “I don’t give a fuck” mentality. I feel so empowered after all of the things I was able to accomplish that I don’t feel tied to these superficial rules or unspoken understandings. I realize that I won’t sacrifice my standards for anyone ever again.

Ever since I got laid off from my last teaching gig, I changed so, so much. As a writer, I read voraciously every article, I follow everyone’s social media, I read people’s thoughts, current events, what is really important to people and I’ve read so much about feminism, sexism, people fighting to be accepted in life and in the workforce and a fire awoken within me. I realized how fooled I was. I was re-living my mother’s life hiding in the shadows because of my physique, feeling guilty and ashamed for being heavier than the societal average. I fell for all those gimmicks and things that we hear about in commercials or see on t.v. or in the movies. The work culture shaming me into not buying that chocolate chip cookie that I really, really wanted.

I follow this body-positive woman on social media who discussed getting fat-shamed in public under the guise of being complimentary. She stated that the person sang the song “Baby Got Back” while she walked past her suggesting her backside was large. She brought up such a wonderful point stating, “How is that an insult?” I wrote and commented on her post and discussed my own experiences with being insulted over my figure also through similar means. The years I’ve spent substitute teaching, I was body shamed so many times by the students and they used supposed complimentary means to give me the hint that I was viewed as undesirable. They would tell me that I looked like Nikki Blonsky, Adele, or any other perceived fat celebrity out there. I knew it wasn’t a compliment. I remember when I first started substitute teaching, I was a lot thinner and I was once compared to both Amy Lee from Evanescence and Drew Barrymore. Why are we trained to view being compared to thinner actresses as a compliment but being compared to fat celebrities as an insult? I’d kill to be ANY of those celebrities fat or thin. They’re successful, rich, and financially set for life. Why wouldn’t I want to be any of them regardless of their physique? I’m so happy that I am able to live in a world where I finally see more representation in Hollywood of women who look more like me. I admire Nikky Blonsky, Adele, Britney Young, Chrissy Metz, Lena Dunham, Tess Holliday, Beth Ditto, and all the curvaceous and wildly talent beauties of Hollywood. I would love and be honored to be compared to any of these amazing women!

I just recently had my annual physical expecting to hear horrific news about my health. I was pleasantly surprised to hear that I am in damn good shape. No high blood pressure, no high cholesterol, no diabetes. My doctor said, and I quote, “You look like a healthy thirty-eight-year-old woman to me.” Thank you! That’s all I needed to hear. Now don’t misconstrue my words. I recognize and understand that some individuals have a genetic predisposition to have heart failure, diabetes, high blood pressure, etc. But I don’t have any of these issues. I remember my last doctor before I switched to the wonderful doctor I have now, he told me that someone my age that looked how I looked should be taking Lipitor.  He said this without doing any bloodwork. He based it strictly on how I looked! He also told me without doing any tests that I have sleep apnea. Just by looking at me. I don’t snore. I only snore when I have a cold and I sleep the whole night and don’t wake up gasping for air. I can’t believe I allowed myself to be mistreated for as long as I was with that horrible, horrible doctor!

I feel so free now. I realize that other people will have their opinions. People like what they like and that’s fine. Just like some people might prefer rock music and others prefer country music. Some people prefer to go to the gym and exercise and others prefer to enjoy food and not be slaves to what others think of them because that’s what it all boils down to. Anyone who says they want to look good for themselves is full of shit. You do all of that so that others will compliment you and praise you for being dutiful and doing your job at being socially acceptable to look at. Who wants to be fat-shamed? No one. So we are brainwashed and manipulated into being good boys and girls and starving ourselves so that people won’t mock or make fun of us. We are in a society now with raised awareness where we now respect and accept people of all races, abilities, sexual orientation, etc. How is body shape any different? We aren’t the last classification that you’re allowed to mock or make fun of. We, like everyone else, deserve respect.

I realize being back in the dating pool since my break up, I am having a bitch of a time finding someone, not because of my looks. I’ve had guys tell me how sexy my figure was and people automatically assume that fat girls are “Down to Fuck” which is how one guy described me. What I’m finding to be the issue is that I consider myself wildly ambitious with my writing, intelligent, outspoken, and fierce, and have accomplished quite a lot over the years since I started this venture. Money doesn’t equate success to me. The amount of time, research, writing, creating, executing, marketing, blogging, attending webinars, reading books, social media, etc. Doing all of that and then finally seeing your work printed that’s what success looks like to me. Not the money in my wallet or bank account. Not my hair or makeup or pretty clothes or handsome men who give me attention who will only end up mistreating me in the future. That doesn’t matter to me. Being a successful writer, that matters to me. I’m done with superficiality. I want something real and I realized going back to dating that I may never find another man to be with and I’m at peace with that. I realize that men don’t want strong and independent and smart women. They want obedient, thin, submissive women who will spend hours praising them and allowing them to be successful while the women are barefoot and pregnant making jam in the kitchen. That isn’t going to be me. So until I find a happy complement to who I am, someone who appreciates me for every flaw, my makeup-less face, my greying hair, my clothes with stains and tattered fringes, my sandals with holes and broken straps, my hairy pits and hairy legs, my stubbled face when I don’t want to use depilatory measures to remove my facial hair. This is me. The real me. The unabridged me. The unafraid me. The me who no longer conforms to societal pressures. I don’t have to lose weight to fit in because I’m a metabolically healthy woman who is smart, sexy in my own way, independent where I can be given my finances, and I will pleasantly surprise you when I finally make it as a famous writer someday.  And I will do it looking just how I look today. Like the me I want to be, not what you want me to be.

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Thanks for stopping by and reading. Remember if you comment to keep it positive and nurturing. Only positive contributions get published on my blog. I don’t even read negative ones they end up getting deleted after reading the first few words so don’t waste the time or energy being mean or cruel. It’s unnecessary, foolish, and futile.

I am currently working on my new project. I am nowhere near ready to announce what it is yet. I like to keep things pretty quiet until I have a good working copy of what I’m doing. When I’m ready I will blog about it and let you all in on my latest project.

John of Art’s audiobook is currently in production (Thank you, Chris!).

Click on the link below if you’re interested in checking out any of my writing. Thanks so much! Have a great weekend everyone!

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

 

Some Thoughts on Amazon’s The Boys

blog post august 5th 2019

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

I just finished watching Amazon’s The Boys and have some observations I’d like to share with you all. First of all, I absolutely loved the idea of seeing superheroes, for once, being heavily flawed, culpable, and not as infallible as they’re always depicted. I also really liked how “The Boys” were “the good guys” or anti-heroes, really.

I have always had several issues with superheroes that I never voiced out loud for many years. My views may be seen as a widely unpopular opinion but here goes anyway. I always quietly noted all of the violence, all of the deaths, especially all of the collateral damage that was done while superheroes purportedly “saved the day.” You rarely see the superheroes acknowledging or taking a moment to apologize, to grieve, or to recognize all of the senseless lives lost and if they do it’s a mere afterthought. These superheroes are always larger than life characters who were given these powers and decided to dedicate their lives to being noble while saving the world from crime. But what if it’s not so black and white as we’ve been accustomed to while watching or reading tales in the DC or Marvel Universe?

The Boys provides a view of what it might really be like living in a world with superheroes in this day and age. We are heavily tied to technology and you can’t get away with anything these days without someone catching your actions on their phone and posting it to several social media outlets. You have to be careful with what you say, spin your words in a way that will get people to follow you, believe in your actions, and even pick a group, and with this show, in particular, the religious community and have them support your cause. In this world, they were made to be superheroes at birth and it wasn’t by some freak accident or some other hackneyed cause that became commonplace with superhero origin stories. We see how the individuals who are known as “The Seven” cope with their superhero status and how they unravel in front of our very eyes in quite a sight to behold.

You have A-Train who is fighting to keep his status as the fastest man alive, facing the reality of aging and the limitations of his body and toying around with Compound V to help him maintain his status as a renowned and beloved superhero. He inadvertently kills someone while speeding through residential streets with little regard for anyone but himself. He even sacrifices his own beloved Popclaw to cover up one of his many messes. To what end do your actions persist without consequences? One of the most poignant moments in the series is A-Train’s last conversation with Popclaw before killing her where he recalls what foods she ordered on their first date. He told her that he was impressed by her choice and loved how she wasn’t afraid to be happy. That was the most authentic moment that character had the entire season and that was the only chance we got to see A-Train being truly vulnerable, away from the Compound V, away from the influences of Homelander and Stillwell and Vought.

These “supes” as they’re known, are so scripted and violated and destroyed mentally as they’re constantly reminded by those around them how privileged they are to be apart of this elite group but what they had to do to get there is just way beyond what the average human being would tolerate just to become famous.

I always equated superheroes with the popular kids in high school. These are the kids who naturally excelled at sports, the beautiful young girls who were cheerleaders or chosen homecoming and/or prom queen, the Ivy-league bound kids, etc. These were the kids that I had the least in common with growing up. I was always awkward, shy, overweight, never pretty, plain to look at, unremarkable in every sense of the word. I’ve been bullied, fat-shamed, emotionally tormented, and so on my entire life and it has become something I’m used to. With every hardship I’ve endured and whenever I happen to tell my story to other people they always tell me how they are so impressed by how level-headed, smart, and accomplished I am. They tell me how strong I am to have gone through everything I’ve gone through and never turn to drugs, or alcohol or worse. I take my pain and I turn it into something positive. My weapon of choice has always been my words. I use words to make sense of my feelings. I use words to educate others to be better people. I use words to teach people tolerance, positivity, compassion, empathy, love, and respect.

I’m no superhero. I often end up sympathizing with the villains sometimes. Not that I’d ever condone any of their abhorrent actions. I can just sometimes relate more to their backstories and can understand how these villains did not have the mental fortitude to turn an extremely negative and unfortunate event in their lives and turn it into a positive.

This show, I realize, relies heavily on karma to serve these so-called heroes and heroines their just desserts. From A-Trains broken leg, to Translucents unfortunate demise, to The Deep’s gill violation,  to Queen Maeve’s coming to terms with letting all of those people die on that plane and the bitter loneliness she exhibits on a day to day basis just being her, to Homelander’s desperate need to father a child only to find out that he had a child as a result of his raping Butcher’s wife but only finding out several years later that the child actually survived. All of those cliched colloquialisms apply here: Fate catches up to us all, You get what you deserve, You reap what you sow. You get the point.

This show had raised so many thoughts and questions and I was really impressed from beginning to end. I was kind of dragging my feet starting this series and I rolled my eyes at the mere thought of watching yet another superhero driven series. This concept highly fatigues me and the concept has to be really mind-blowingly good for me to not fall asleep or even forgo watching it altogether. I really liked how the tables were turned and made what we would normally consider the villains as the kind of heroes/anti-heroes of the story. I liked how the superheroes weren’t always perfect, were heavily flawed, and weren’t even good people most of the time. I liked how Starlight was the young ingenue getting into something she thought was so noble and worthy only to be disillusioned and wrecked practically from day one after her sickening encounter with The Deep. We’ve all had moments where we find out that some of our heroes are not good people in real life and how scripted the majority of people whom we admire actually are and how Hollywood lies, and how things are absolutely not always as they seem. Thanks for reading my observations. I’d love to hear about your thoughts on the show. Remember, if you decide to leave a comment, only positive comments will be published, so keep it clean, keep it polite, keep it respectful, folks.

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My new novella, John of Art, is out now and is available for paperback and Kindle ebook on Amazon. It is also available as an ebook wherever ebooks are sold. If you’d like to get a copy of the paperback, just click the picture below and it will lead you to Amazon to purchase your copy of the new novella. Thanks to all of you who have already purchased your copy. I am in the process of making the paperback available through other platforms and my voice over artist is currently working on the audiobook and that will be released in September most likely.  Currently, I’m working on a couple of new things. I am working on possibly doing some book signings. I have just sent out a few inquiries regarding that so I don’t know if that will happen yet but will let you all know if and when that actually occurs. Thanks again and have a great week everyone!

This is How We Do It

blog july 28th 2019.png

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

First of all, I’d like to thank each and every one of you for the overwhelming responses I received for the release of my second novella, John of Art! I am beyond touched and honored to have so many congratulations for this latest book of mine! This was the book that didn’t want to be written. With so many obstacles and twists and turns over the years, I’m so thrilled that this book was finally published.

For those of you who are interested in purchasing the book, for now, it’s only available through Amazon in paperback and Kindle e-book format, also e-book format through Nook, Kobo, iBooks, and anywhere e-books are sold. I am working on getting the paperback distributed through B&N, Lulu, and other outlets and will reveal that when it’s finally available that way as well. My wonderful voice over artist will be working on the audiobook soon and that will be out the end of August, early September and I will let you guys know when that’s available as well. There is a song that accompanies the book. If you purchase the paperback or ebook, the QR code scans directly to the song. I figured there’s no sense in waiting for everything little thing to be completely done when the book is just sitting there on Amazon so I decided to do a limited release for the paperback and e-book version through Amazon and trickle the remaining releases as they come over the next few weeks. If you’re interested in purchasing the book you can do so by clicking on the book cover below. Thanks again to everyone. I have never felt this loved! Hugs to all.

There is one thought-provoking phenomenon that I’d like to address based on the many comments, compliments, and praises I’ve been receiving regarding my latest book that has me thinking. One of the most common comments that I hear as an author when I talk to non-writers is “Oh, you wrote a book? I should write a book too!” Not only do I find this to be a backhanded compliment which, in my opinion at least, diminishes the accomplishment of the author and makes it seem like it’s such an easy task that any average Joe off the street can achieve this themselves, which they very well may, but there are some things many don’t consider.

There are issues many don’t realize when they decide they want to write a book. Writing the book is the easiest part of the whole journey, it’s what you do after the book is done that’s what really weeds out the weak. You have to shift away from being a consumer to being someone who wants to sell your product. An important thing to ask yourself too when you want to write a book is “Do I support other local writers?” If that answer is a hard no then ask yourself the next question, “If I don’t support local writers then what makes me think that other people will support my work?” I try my best to give shout outs, likes, and praises to fellow authors. Honestly, I just don’t have the funds to buy each and every book of authors that I really like but there are so many ways to show your support. Even a friendly shout out and kudos from a fellow writer is one of the greatest joys and pleasures that I get out of writing that surpasses the delight of actually publishing the book. I made a promise to myself that when I was financially set that I would buy books of fledgling artists but for now my praises are all I have to give.

I’ve been writing professionally since 2016, and I’ve learned the hard way that friends, family, acquaintances, etc. are not always going to be your target audience. Depending on what you write, your style of writing, what you’re trying to depict in your work may not resonate with those in your closest circle. You need to widen the net past those closest to you and start networking and talking to others and build a connection. The novelty wears off after the first book and your friends and family will buy less and less of your work. You need a fanbase and those who follow and support your mission and what you’re hoping to relay with your words. Writing is not a frivolous action. Writers write with meaning, with intention, with the hopes that with every word we write, our readers will decipher and decode our words to learn who we really are as human beings. Writing, to me, is my battle cry. Writing is my way of getting people’s attention to a certain issue that bothers me so that others will get just as passionate and join me in making the world just a little nicer for us all.

Marketing your work takes patience and takes hours of networking. Social media exchanges, blogging, podcasting, newspaper articles, interviews, etc. It’s a lot to digest. Building a writing community with other fellow writers and artists so you don’t feel like you’re in this all alone is paramount to any other action done to create a successful career as an author. A prospective writer needs to decide who they want their demographic to be. Consider why you are writing a piece and why should someone care that you’re writing? It’s so much more than saying here, here’s my book, now give me your money. No, it’s I’ve just poured my heart out on these pages, will you take a chance and read this book? And even though it’s a work of fiction, if you read between the lines, you’ll learn more about me than you’d ever hope to know.

Saying things like I should write a book too truly reduces the hard work that went into writing and presenting this work to others and makes it seem like just anyone can just pick up a pen and write and make a good book. I wrote about this in a blog a year ago where I stated that just because you can string words together in a sentence doesn’t make you a writer and just because you can write doesn’t necessarily mean you should. Everyone’s got a sob story. Everyone has a story they believe would make a great book. But there’s a significant gap between those who feel they could write a book compared to those who actually achieve that goal and make the book a success. I’ve known people who spent their whole lives just writing one novel. I also know people who can crank out book after book after book. Everyone is different. Writing is challenging. People are going to criticize you and diminish you and reduce you to minuscule proportions. Writers develop thick, reptilian skin and rejection and criticism comes with the territory of writing.

You will learn who your true friends are, who your true advocates and champions are, as well as the leeches who hang onto you for dear life hoping you’ll make it big so they have an excuse to follow you around wherever you head next in life and be able to say, “Hey, I know that person! She’s my friend!” When in actuality they are no friend of yours. Other questions to consider: Do you become self-published or traditionally published? What genre you want to write: poetry, short stories, screenplays, movie scripts, tv shows, Broadway plays, novels, fiction, nonfiction, romance, speculative fiction, etc.? Do you get an agent? Do you need an agent? What’s your budget for each work? Can you live without watching t.v., going out with friends and family, and living as a hermit for months until your work is finally finished? Who will edit your work? Are the people you choose to read your work willing to sign non-disclosure agreements? Do you have trustworthy people in your life that will give you helpful, supportive feedback that is not negative or mean-spirited? As a writer, you begin to weed people out of your life who don’t follow or support your mission as a writer. You are either Team me or you’re not. There’s no time for being on the fence or being unsupportive.

I have people who have been reading my blogs, listening to my podcast, and following me since I started writing day one and that is something that I cherish the most. Those who have proven themselves loyal and have stuck by me and have carried me through the worst patches of my life while also joining me in celebration during my triumphs. Life is a nasty road to navigate through and you cannot do it alone. It is an honor and privilege to have you all there alongside me throughout this Odyssey.

Also, the expenses for writing and working really hard trying not to get duped by companies desperately trying to steal your precious dollars for services you don’t need like editing, formatting, book cover creation, submitting to services like Amazon where it’s free to publish, book review services, etc. People just see the final product. The book. And everyone’s suddenly a writer and an expert. It’s a silly thing to say really. And those words shouldn’t be wasted. I don’t want to hear maybe you should write a book too. Come back to me when the statement becomes, “Look, I’ve written a book.” Then we’ll talk. Until then, saying congratulations followed by a period is sometimes all the commentary that’s needed. Thanks for the continued support and thanks to those who have or will purchase the new book. I cherish you all and look forward to new and exciting things that are yet to come.

 

Limited Release of My Latest Novella, John of Art, Available Now on Amazon!

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

John of Art, the second novella in the Seasons of Change novellas, is now available on Amazon in paperback or Kindle e-book format. Click on the first picture below of the book cover to get your copy now! $12 paperback/$10 Kindle e-Book

Click this picture below for your copy of John of Art!

ABSOLUTE FINAL BACK BOOK COVER

Back Cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is the blurb for John of Art:

John of Art, a sequel to A Wynter’s Tale, is the newest novella in The Moonlit Goddess’ Seasons of Change series.
Wynn and Lin are settling into their newly married life in Wister Bay, Maine. When Wynn gets some devastating news about his new fledgling business, he and Lin find themselves in a familiar predicament that brought them together years back. As Wynn tries to re-navigate his life once again, Lin’s business as a psychologist is thriving. Her new client, Simone Soares, comes to Lin seeking coping strategies for her depression and anxiety. The majority of Simone’s troubles stem from her caring for her ailing father, João “John” Soares, who is suffering from advanced dementia. What Simone got instead was a whirlwind of chaos she had not expected. A chance meeting with a mysterious, out of town stranger helps Simone handle her grief, financial hardships, and the origins of her birth. With the help of those around her, Simone learns compassion, empathy, inner strength, and above all else, forgiveness.

For the first time, my new work is now featured in e-book format in other outlets like B&N, iBooks, and anywhere e-Books are sold. Just look me up under any search as PSG Lopes (The Moonlit Goddess Presents: A Seasons of Change Novella: John of Art)  wherever you purchase your e-Books. Paperbacks through new outlets will also be available soon and I’ll make those links available to you all as the author copy of the paperback is approved in the upcoming weeks. I am using a different distributor aside from Amazon this time around in order to make my work more readily available to a broader audience. It’s a lot of fine-tuning and making sure everything is perfect before I release the paperback version through B&N, and other outlets. Lastly, the audiobook will be produced soon and will be coming out in late summer. I will update you all and provide the link for that as well when the time comes. The book has a song which accompanies it and you can listen to that here:

www.themoonlitgoddess.bandcamp.com

Thank you all for continuing to visit my website and supporting my work!

I’ve already got my eye on my next two projects and I’m in the developing stages of both! I’m always thinking ahead!

Mercury Retrograde and the Seven Three Seven Enigma

blog pic july 21st, 2019

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

A lot of really bizarre things have been happening to me over the last few days and I was wondering what the ever-loving fuck was going on here? Then I read an article that stated that apparently, Mercury is in retrograde (I’m not going to waste time explaining what that is, I’m not your teacher, Google it, that’s not what this blog is about). I am a hokey person. I love reading my horoscope daily and I may not necessarily “believe” in zodiac signs and follow it like a religion; however, I enjoy reading about all that stuff for entertainment purposes only.

The article said a lot of enlightening things about relationships and about how bad luck would come my way from now until August 15th and that now wasn’t the time to find a relationship and that I should focus on having a summer fling instead. Ha! It was a real hoot reading this article. I feel like I’ve lived my wild years in my twenties. After being in a long-term relationship for two years and now being single again, I miss that connection, the realness and seeming permanence of a lasting, monogamous relationship. I loved the intimacy, and I’m not just talking about the sex part, I’m talking about having someone to share my most intimate, deepest and darkest conversations with at all hours of the day and night, having someone support me and take my side when it seems like no one else will. I miss a lot about being someone’s girlfriend, cheerleader, fiance, and soon to be wife. That idea of being together in perpetuity. After almost seven months broken up, I’m only now coming out of my shell and just testing the waters very, very lightly to see what’s around. I have a very particular taste. I am picky and I don’t just pick anyone to engage in a relationship with. It took me thirty-six years to find my ex and wanted to stay with him until the revelation of his inevitable betrayal. I’m not in any sort of hurry to find the next individual to engage in a long-term relationship with. There’s time. I just feel fortunate enough to be in a healthy mental space that I’d want to date again after that whole ordeal. To me, that is triumphant in and of itself.

I rejoined this old pen pal site I had signed up for several years back when I got my gall bladder removed. The recovery was painful and I was suffering from mild post-traumatic stress over the whole ordeal and needed a distraction so I joined this pen pals program. I met so many people along the way and out of all of those people I only kept in touch with one of them. Now that I rejoined, I realized what a completely different person I became over the years since I last used that site. I realized how much more self-aware I am. I am more confident, self-assured, and much more intelligent. I am well-educated, very accomplished with my writing and art and other endeavors. It may not be demonstrative monetarily yet but I’ve learned a fuck of a lot and most people can’t do what I do. The things I’ve learned took great patience, many hours to learn, persistence, resilience, and perseverance. It really is not for the faint of heart. I feel empowered, outspoken, courageous, brave, opinionated, strong, and all of these unfamiliar feelings I hadn’t felt just a few short years ago prior to my relationship with my ex. During that time I was with my ex I was writing, blogging, photographing, creating art, etc. and growing stronger every day with everything that I had learned.  I picked up new neat tricks and utilized them. I learned how to podcast, how to create book covers, how to format my books, learned all these neat tricks utilizing social media, etc. I hadn’t realized that with each skill I had acquired I was becoming more and more intelligent and capable and independent.

I am finding it very difficult to find pen pals now to talk to because I feel that I am threatening to men. When you talk to me I can be quite intimidating, I’m not going to lie. Not superficially, of course, I’m average to look at. I’m a cherubic woman with a rat’s nest hairdo that I trim myself every few months that I can barely comb through. I only wear makeup on special occasions and when its cooler out. I don’t like the clown effect where makeup just slides off my face at the hint of a warmer climate. I don’t shave anymore because I don’t feel the need to and I really don’t give a fuck who complains about it. My body, my house. I have to live with myself and if I’m comfortable that’s all that really matters. I have no one to impress. I am a vastly different person than I was just a few short years ago. I have this confidence; however, and self-assuredness when I speak to men that regardless of my superficial imperfections appeals to a lot of men.

I have no fear when I talk to men. I feel autistic sometimes in that I can just fearlessly approach the ones I’m interested in and strike a conversation. I have an intriguing look but when I speak that’s when the problems arise. It becomes awkward and strange after a few minutes of giving someone the “who am I” part of the introduction. The effect I have on men is synonymous with the movie, “So I Married an Axe Murderer,” where Mike Myer’s character Charlie begs the bellboy to “Stay for a nightcap” and the guy is so freaked out after being asked numerous times he just storms out. That’s the effect I have on men after speaking to them.

I claim to be outspoken, argumentative, strong, powerful, etc. and men will message or approach me thinking they’re herculean and decide “let me attempt to tame the beast” and go in fully cocked and when I fight back with my cunning words, I actually get responses like “Uh, good luck to you, I don’t think we’d get along. Take care” or I don’t hear back from them at all. No more text messages, messages on messenger, e-mails, etc. Total radio silence. It kind of makes me laugh and I feel triumphant and more powerful that I actually have that power to intimidate men. I’m not interested in getting into a power struggle with men and I definitely don’t believe I’m better than anyone else but I know that I am a rare breed and I’m not an easy person to confront or get along with. I’m very choosy who I talk to and I don’t have the best luck and I realize that most will run when they speak to me. And I’ve accepted that. The attitude I have now when guys dismiss me because they can’t handle my intensity and intelligence is “Argo fuck yourself.”

To go full circle with this discussion, let me go back to the whole mercury retrograde and the significance of seven, three, seven. So another interesting point the article made about this mysterious mercury retrograde is that past exes will come out of the woodwork and reach out to you out of nowhere. And what do you know, at exactly four fifty-four, Eastern Daylight Time, I received an e-mail with the last three digits seven, three, seven that became synonymous with this man I knew many years in my past. To me, he and I had an interesting dynamic. We were never a couple, per se, we always knew each other just as online friends. But there was something different about this gentleman. The years I knew him felt passionate, wild, reckless, and freeing. Pardon me if this sounds strange, but I always felt that even though we never physically met, I always considered him one of the greatest loves of my life. He was someone whom I needed at that point in my life and I don’t regret the time we shared getting to know one another. He stopped talking to me inexplicably many years ago and I always wondered what happened and thought I was crazy, and worthless, and foolish, and dumb, the whole a la cart list that women pick and choose to blame themselves over a guy to justify what happened.

He messaged me yesterday and I messaged back and he saw my e-mail signature at the end of my e-mail with my author name, company name, work title, and all of my websites and social media. He actually commented stating, “How many social media accounts do ya need in ya life, woman?” And I laughed it off and explained to him what I had been up to. It felt good to tell him how I’ve lived these past few years when he was not involved in my life. Telling him about my education, my accomplishments and all of the hardships I faced this year (breaking up with my fiance, my dad nearly dying, etc.), along with all of the good things that happened (publishing three new pieces so far, the audiobook production, being in the newspaper twice, etc.). I felt so empowered, so damned strong. And wouldn’t you know, the enigma dissipated as fast as it approached, damned mercury retrograde! He did not return my e-mail. The old me would’ve been weak and e-mailed him repeatedly pleading with him to come back, apologizing, making myself feel like I was at fault or that I did something wrong as to why he didn’t want to message me back and spend hours neurotically overthinking what I had done wrong even though in actuality I had done absolutely nothing wrong. I feel nothing either way now. And that made me feel so fucking powerful.

This time, I’m the one in charge. I’m the one with the power. And that person can’t make me feel diminished any further. He took enough from me years ago. Ruined my self-esteemed made me feel like I was beneath him and not worthy. I’m more than worthy now, sugar. What have you been up to? You couldn’t even answer me because you’re probably right where I left you all those years back. Still running in circles chasing your own tail while I am out there working my ass off trying to make it in this world. Like Captain America stated, “I can do this all day.” Thanks for e-mailing me and helping me understand and verify that I’m too good for weak men. Take that, Mercury retrograde!

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

No One

blog pic july 16th, 2019

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

I am a little late to the party when it comes to Game of Thrones. I am in the process of a major binge of the series and I am about to embark upon season eight, episode three. I have done very well avoiding all spoilers and despite all of the heartbreak and sadness that the series delves into each season, there are so many valuable moments to pick apart at and consider that are worth discussing.

One major storyline that really struck me involved the wonderfully written character, Arya Stark. This poor young girl endured so much throughout the series and instead of floundering and balking, she persisted and became stronger, more determined, and more resilient. With each heartbreak of watching or hearing of the death of her family members and other massively upsetting setbacks in this young individual’s life, she, to me, embodies true power and strength.

The part of the series I was most impressed by was Arya’s journey in Braavos apprenticing under Jaqen H’ghar and the waif to become one of the Faceless Men assassins. All of these scenes were so striking from where Arya learned to tell stories about her fictitious personas and learning to make them sound believable, to the moments where despite wanting so much to believe she was “no one,” she stubbornly hid and buried her precious Needle as a means of maintaining a link to her origins.

Like every strong and powerful woman in the real world, no woman wants to compromise her own values in order to fit in or advance. And no woman should. Arya knew she wanted to be a Faceless Man assassin, but she did not want to lose who she was, all she knew was Arya Stark. That was her identity, her whole way of being. After getting beaten, chastised, blinded, and nearly killed several times, she finally learned the lesson she was meant to learn. She was not no one. She’s fucking Arya Stark. And she can do it all. She can be Arya Stark and the Faceless Man and whoever the fuck else she wants to be. One of the most satisfying moments was her last encounter with Jaqen H’ghar when she told him flat out, “I’m Arya Stark,” after she places the waif’s face in one of the spaces on the wall and he nods in acceptance and lets her leave.

I saw the parallels in my own life and my own struggles as a writer and living my life each and every day trying to make myself known and respected in the writing world. I’m unremarkable to the naked eye. A “no one,” if you will. You could walk past me on the street and feel nothing towards me, other than possibly pity, by how disheveled I’ve become due to extreme poverty along with my bouts of depression and anxiety. I am a beaten woman. But I’m far from defeated. I know my worth and I will keep writing. I will keep screaming in word form to show the world that I have value and that what I have to say has meaning and is worth knowing. And when I finally prove victorious, I will have my moment of shouting to the world that I am someone. I am The Moonlit Goddess!

My second novella, John of Art, is completed and is in the formatting and publishing phase. I am trying not to be hasty with its release because I want to make sure there are no formatting errors or other aesthetic issues before finally publicizing the release of this novella. Also, it is in pre-production for the audiobook as well. Special thanks to Chris for serving as a beta-reader for my novella, offering her advice and guidance, and also for agreeing to voice the audiobook for John of Art. True loyalty is a very rare thing in this day and age. I am very fortunate to have her in my life. She has never said anything negative and as a true educator, she beams with positivity and encouragement and knows that gentle push to steer me in the right direction without a word of malice or a negative petty or jealous slight that I’ve been met with by several people whom I thought were friends of mine. It is a rare gift having someone like that in my circle and I am perpetually grateful.

In the spirit of Prime Day, if you are interested in obtaining the audiobook for free for A Wynter’s Tale, the first novella in my Seasons of Change novellas, you may do so by redeeming one of the promo codes below and using the appropriate link below to redeem the code. I thank you for anyone who downloads the audiobook and if you listen and like it, please offer a review either through Audible, Amazon, or iTunes. I appreciate you all taking the time to do that. A Wynter’s Tale is the first novella in the series. John of Art is the second book in the series and should be released in August. I will let you all know as soon as it is available. Thanks, everyone for your continued support and continued readership. It means everything to me. Sorry I have not been very active blogging. I have really been working hard not only publishing the book but also writing away for some paid pursuits. I am really trying my best to get some funding for future projects and it’s hard for me to juggle social media, blogging, podcasting, and freelancing along with the publishing responsibilities as well. I thank you so much for your continued patience. I am very eager and excited to present John of Art to you all.

This little book was an idea I’ve been sitting on for two years. After many false starts, it took me six weeks to write, along with two more weeks added on to create the book cover, blurbs, edit, format, publish, etc. I do it all myself (with Chris serving as my second set of eyes for fine-tuning! Thank you!). So I’m spread rather thin at the moment.

Without further ado, here are the links for the free audiobook downloads. Just take one of the codes and redeem it in the corresponding link whether you’re in the US or UK:

Audible Page: A Wynter’s Tale

Promo Codes for A Wynter’s Tale:

For UK Listeners:

63YY6XLB44SX2

6SD66HTRRHZ5K

86WWER9THC4UL

9MFBR9DYZTWRY

A7W8DJA3QRCK8

UK link to Redeem Code:  https://audible.co.uk/acx-promo

For US Listeners:

2YWGDZFK55E82

3SAWYYYYBSP5U

5M3LUUT8JKEBK

5MQ4KUELAE2K4

6PAGMCWSY9ZRW

US link to Redeem Code: https://audible.com/acx-promo

Also, if you are interested in my other works you can check all of them out below. Just click on the picture and it will direct you straight to my Amazon Author Page. All of my books are available in ebook Kindle and paperback format on Amazon. Thanks so much for your continued support and patronage.

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

The Vulnerability of Humanity

blog july 2nd 2019

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

People often confuse hardships and moments of vulnerability for weakness and naivete. Some people have a knack for spotting the defenseless people and honing in on them and targeting them as their prey.

When I went through my hardships at the beginning of the year, I became more hyper-vigilant of those who genuinely cared and wanted to help me and those who thrived on my hardships. I’ve developed a saying for myself, “I like my friendships and relationships like I like my crayons–non-toxic.” That’s my motto for 2019. I am staying away from those who do not serve me in a productive and healthy way. There are so many people out there who are hurting and going through their own hardships. That’s the time to help nurture them and raise them up not expend negative emotions to tear them down. You don’t use that knowledge of an individual’s pain as ammunition to hurt or harm them in any way.

When I started my writing line and began publishing my own books, I started really paying attention to the people around me. People started changing the way that they spoke to me. You could clearly tell that some people were actually jealous of me. People started unfollowing me on social media. People started avoiding me when they saw me on the streets and those who I thought were my friends had all forsaken me. The writing journey has certainly not been an easy ride for me, that’s for sure. I consider myself wildly ambitious and if someone who I invite into my creative circle does not exhibit the same drive as I do, they become a liability.

It’s not easy to say no to people or to move on in a different creative direction. People are sensitive. People get hurt. But you have to be mature, and adult and people have to recognize that you have a vision and you work really hard for that vision and you want those around you to share in that enthusiasm without being cruel, hurtful, spiteful, or by saying disparaging words meant to psych you out and discourage you from continuing. I work really hard on all my work. I especially work hard on being original. I also pride myself on being a damn good human being and I respect everyone in my life and I respect their schedules, their struggles, their pain. I recognize that and I am supportive and I would never slight someone for their individual struggles in life. I aim to make every person who leaves my side at the end of the day to feel good about themselves. I’d never make any human being feel less than who they were simply because of what was going on in my own personal life.

Humans are remarkable. We will exhibit moments of sheer pleasure and moments of sheer anguish and we bounce back and we recuperate and we move on and we come full circle and experience sheer pleasure and sheer anguish on and off over and over for the duration of our lives. Despite my hardships this year, I choose to focus on all of the good I’ve done this year. I published my third poetry anthology, my second children’s book, I worked with a lovely woman to get my audiobook done for A Wynter’s Tale, I was featured in two newspaper articles, and in August my second song and my second novella will be released. I also have some other opportunities that I’m waiting to hear about that I’m really excited about and may help get me to the next level of my career. So with every negative experience whether it’s a soured relationship, soured friendship, illness of a loved one, or whatever I may be experiencing, I choose to remember that I’m going through the anguish part of my circle and I will eventually turn around and find the pleasure of my life circle once again. Just be patient. It will come. I just need to ride out the negative wave and I’ll get to where I need to be. And patient I am.

I had a long talk with my mother the other day and she and I agreed that medication for my depression was not a suitable option. She told me that she noticed that my confidence was gone and she saw how I interacted with others and realized that that stemmed from my weight. She agreed that if I lost some weight that would help me regain my confidence which would then ease the depression and anxiety that I am feeling. She bought me three self-help books to help me navigate the next few months of my life. I found one book that will help me creatively, I found one book that will help navigate through my traumas in life, and I found one book that is a diet and exercise regimen for those with depression and anxiety. So that is my summer reading and my self-help project this summer. I am working hard on being the best possible version of myself away from the toxic atmosphere around me. I have learned to stay away from those with nothing nice to say about others because they don’t have the tools to properly navigate the hardships that they’re experiencing. I will not begrudge others for the hate in their hearts because that’s just not who I am. I wish them well and I choose to worry about working on myself and being my best authentic self.  I don’t put myself into situations where I’d harm someone else. I don’t get into toxic relationships where I know the other person does not want me. I don’t fight for friendships that do not serve me in a productive and positive manner. I have nothing but pure-hearted love in my soul and wish only the very best of others and I will always root for them no matter how cruel or how rude, or how mean their words are. I know that with every cruelty, with every sharp lash of their painful words, those people are hurting too and my only wish for them is for them to find their inner peace. I am finding it in my writing and my music and my art and my photography. There are the doers in this world and the dreamers. In 2019, I have finally solidified my future as one of the doers. I am making my dreams come true. Sorry to those who don’t understand or who are jealous or who don’t have the courage yet to follow their dreams. My best advice is if you want something bad enough don’t focus on what I’m doing, worry about making you the best you that you can be. Don’t worry about my accomplishments, worry about how can you improve and make your dreams become a reality. I’ve learned my lesson in life. I know that I’m a good person who opens up to everyone I meet but I also am wary about those who use the words I’ve given them and allowing them to use those words as weapons against me.

My book is on track for August 15th release. My song will be done by then as well. I work really hard on my writing and my music and I work incredibly hard to produce something original, unique, and the words of my writing and the melodies of my songs are unlike anything else out there. Everyone on my team is positive, encouraging, nurturing and loving. These are people who have exhibited real pain in life but still know how to be a friend and work together for a common cause. Those who adhere to deadlines, respect other’s time and work, and will work together to put together some really great and memorable stuff. There’s no room for toxicity. We are all in this together. I love you all. And genuinely wish you all well. I will forever and always cheer you on.

John of Art is the sequel to A Wynter’s Tale. For those of you who want to read the first book before John of Art’s release in August please check out A Wynter’s Tale on paperback, ebook (Kindle), or audiobook in the following links below. Thank you as always for your continued love and support. It always means the world to me.

A Wynter’s Tale Ebook (Kindle edition): https://amzn.to/2xrnHZa

A Wynter’s Tale Paperback: https://amzn.to/2Jh33Ay

A Wynter’s Tale Audiobook: tinyurl.com/y234qddk

 

Here are some promo codes for the audiobook for my UK/US readers/audiobook listeners:

UK:

63YY6XLB44SX2

6SD66HTRRHZ5K

86WWER9THC4UL

US:

2YWGDZFK55E82

3SAWYYYYBSP5U

5M3LUUT8JKEBK

Promo Codes can be redeemed at the following websites:

UK: https://audible.co.uk/acx-promo

US: https://audible.com/acx-promo

 

Podcast: My Mental Health Journey

blog pic june 28th 2019

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

Hello, everyone! There is a new podcast up this week! Listen to this week’s podcast “My Mental Health Journey” here: anchor.fm/psg-lopes

This week’s podcast discusses my triumphs and setbacks regarding finding adequate healthcare. I provide tips and techniques that work for me throughout my own struggles with depression and anxiety, why America loves to shove pills down people’s throats, and accepting that not all health care professionals are created equal. I hope that this week’s podcast inspires and helps others who also struggle with depression and anxiety and encourages others to seek out alternative methods of treatment outside of medication. Thanks for listening!

Also, I am on track for the release of my new novella, John of Art, for August 15th, 2019! I am chipping away at edits and will be passing it off soon for editing/beta readers. I have also just released a very rough cut of my song, John of Art, on Bandcamp which you can listen to here: www.themoonlitgoddess.bandcamp.com

I am working with a very good friend of mine to put piano music to the song and alter a few things here and there. I hope that you enjoy what I have so far! The finished novella and song will be fully released on August 15th, 2019. In the meantime, if you’d like to read the prequel to John of Art, A Wynter’s Tale, that is on sale now on Amazon and is available as a paperback, ebook (Kindle edition), and audiobook. You can check this book and my other works here on my Amazon Author Page:

http://www.amazon.com/author/psglopes

I am working hard on my writing and am trying really hard to find paid writing opportunities to help me continue to produce my work. Because of limited funding, I release things as soon as I’m able to financially. By you visiting my blogs, listening to my podcasts, and buying any work on Amazon that all produces revenue for me so I appreciate you all continuing to click on my work and follow up on what’s going on in my life so thanks so much for that!

If interested, I also have a Patreon page. You can view that here: www.patreon.com/themoonlitgoddess

Thanks again for your continued interest in what I do! I appreciate each and every one of you. I wish you all a very blessed and happy weekend!

My Thoughts Moving Forward

blog post 2019 june 25th

ALL WRITTEN AND ARTWORK ARE THE INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF PSG LOPES, UNLESS EXPLICITLY EXPRESSED OTHERWISE. FEATURED PHOTO TODAY IS FROM HIDDEN TRANSFORMATIONS COLORING BOOK PUBLISHED BY MINDWARE 2007. ALL RESPECTIVE RIGHTS RESERVED, 2019. 

I realize it has been a hot minute since I have posted anything on my blog. I have been going through some personal issues that I needed to take care of in order to move forward with my writing and other ventures.

As many of my readers are already aware of, I have been a lifelong sufferer of depression and anxiety. I sought help in 2002 right after college but I didn’t stick with the regimen because my doctor ended up dying and I was sick of feeling like utter crap and no one helping me or understanding me that I went rogue and stopped going to therapy and quit the medicine I was taking cold turkey. Until then, I’ve endured many hardships but I’ve had some happy moments mixed in and was able to compartmentalize my depression and anxiety and bounce myself back to my own state of equilibrium and I was able to function in my own way. Yes, the underlying issues still remained but I was able to be a functioning depressed and anxious person for a very long time.

This year, I’ve faced one hardship too many and this was the very first time in my adult life that I found it virtually impossible to bounce back the way that I needed to in order to continue being a productive member of society. I just couldn’t handle things on my own anymore. The very last straw was how I was treated at my old doctor’s office in early May. I snapped and decided that enough was enough. I have been shit on my entire life and I wasn’t going to allow anyone else to speak to me in the way that I was spoken to that day. That was the very last day I was ever going to allow people to speak to me like I was lower than they were. I have accomplished so much in my life, so much more than most around me. I am not nothing. I have value and I deserve to be treated like everyone else. Today’s photo is a coloring book page that I found from a book in 2007. When I first saw the picture I thought it looked like me in my twenties, that’s why I liked it so much. Upon coloring the photo, the picture came to life to me and I wished I was that person in that photo: strong, powerful, beautiful, graceful, and poised, instead of the falling down mess I became in my thirties.

I realized I desperately needed help and the first step to getting that help was seeking out a new primary doctor. Due to the limitations of my insurance, I had to settle for another male doctor. I was very nervous going into the appointment the first time. I was grateful that my mom was able to go with me both times that I went so far. Thanks, mom! I have developed this new mantra based on Adelita’s Way song “Ready for War.” They sing, “I pray for peace but I’m ready for war.” That’s my new mantra. I go into every new situation hoping for a peaceful interaction but secretly my fists are clenched and I’m ready to fight holy hell if I have to to get to a healthy place mentally and physically. I went into my doctor’s appointment, not at all hopeful and waiting for the same spiel, “You’re fat, lose weight, here’s a bunch of prescription, come back in six months.” But what I found, pleasantly surprised me. He just had this positive aura about him right from walking into the room. I just knew instantly that I could trust him. I spoke to him, choking back tears, bravely telling him every single thing that had been holding me back for years and he not only listened, he handed me tissues, he gave me permission to feel how I felt, he gave me permission to relax and just let life happen, and not bear the burdens of the entire world on my shoulder. He is teaching me to tackle one thing at a time and that I can do what I can but I’m not a failure if I can’t do it all in one day. I was so relieved to finally find someone who fucking understands. I waited twenty years to hear those words even though, I really needed that every day my whole damn life.

I am finally getting my life back on track. I did bloodwork and I’m happy to report that I’m a fucking healthy thirty-eight-year-old woman! Fuck the assholes who are so concerned about my weight. I’m metabolically healthy and I’m proud of my body and I don’t need to fit into the standards of society. I go for walks when I can, and I mix good food with the bad so fuck everyone else who has a problem with me. This bitch is fat and she’s most likely staying this way for a while, at least until I get my shit together.

I am going back to therapy, I also made appointments for other doctors like gynecologist, dermatologist, etc. I finally feel like I have control over my life again. Everything was collapsing around me beginning this new years eve with my breakup, my dad nearly dying, and just trying to deal with all of the drama around me. The force field around me that I used to protect myself was weakening and I couldn’t hold on any longer. I was so relieved to unleash all of my heart’s burdens to my doctor. Like Carrie Underwood’s song, “Jesus Take the Wheel,” I’m not a religious woman, but I was so the personification of that sentiment that day. I gave all of my burdens to my doctor and he was more than happy to take them away from me, give me permission to feel, and help me acknowledge that I won’t get the answers that I crave for closure and described my life experiences as a gallery in an art museum and he said that some exhibits I can visit freely pain-free, but some I’m going to have to put a tarp over and walk by and that’s okay. Sometimes things just don’t get resolved no matter how much I grieve or revisit, or self-blame, or torture myself over. Shit happens basically. I needed to hear that more than anyone will ever know. I want to thank that man so much for not only saving my life, but seeing my life as something worth saving. He will never quite understand the immensity of his words that first day. Even his entire staff was helpful and kind and that meant the entire world to me too. So, thank you!

That all helped me put things into perspective and help re-set my mindset for my writing and other future ventures. I am a little behind on my editing of John of Art but I still have the tentative release date for both the song and the book as August 15th. I really want to make sure that this book is absolutely perfect. I don’t have any means of recording the song in a way that is professional so I’m just going to sing it and place it on my Bandcamp account when I’m releasing the book on the same day and will be sure to post links for both. If you noticed my Amazon Author Page, I did release the song lyrics already to the
John of Art song. It’s available for 99 cents for the Kindle, if anyone is interested in supporting me and getting a glimpse of song lyrics, I’d appreciate your support and feedback. You can access this and my other works on my Amazon Author Page here: amazon.com/author/psglopes

I found a wonderful resource in Amanda Palmer’s book, The Art of Asking: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People Help. This book opened my eyes for a lot of reasons. I always felt like a loser asking people for donations for my work. I first utilized crowdfunding in 2014 when I was hoping to finish my phd. I ran out of funding for the oral defense and sought out the help of others. I will never forget my cousin, Julie, gave me one hundred dollars. I felt so touched by this gesture. I was not accustomed to having family believe in me and when she told me that she believed in me that moment changed me forever. Even though I didn’t meet my goal for the crowdfunding, I never forgot her kindness and I always promised myself to return the favor somehow someday but I never was in a position to do so. I was always struggling and coming up for air my whole life. But I want her to know that I will never forget that one moment of pure kindness. That moment taught me so much. It taught me that there are still amazing people out there. It taught me that there’s no shame in asking for help when you’ve exhausted all your other options. I’ve learned that it’s not being pathetic or foolish reaching out and asking for others’ help. I have just befriended an individual who lives in the deep south and he told me that in that area they are big on being neighborly and that’s what’s missing in the area in which I live, that long-lost concept of neighbors helping out neighbors.

I no longer feel foolish in asking for help when I need it. I feel that what I’m doing is powerful and can help a lot of people and I wish to continue fighting for my work. If others come along and help I’ll always be greatly appreciative but I’m no longer going to see it as modern day panhandling. Especially in the arts where people have to fight tooth and nail to keep art alive nowadays. Every bit of help counts and matters, as long as we work together to keep art thriving and alive.

On that note, I do have a Patreon account mostly for professional editing services and to produce my song professionally. If you are interested in taking a look you’ll find that page here: www.patreon.com/themoonlitgoddess

I thank you all as always for coming back and checking up on me and what I’ve got going on in my life. I hope that my words prove helpful and encourages others to seek help if they need it. What I’ve learned from my ordeal is you have to be persistent and not give up after the first try. You have to shout louder and louder each time until someone finally hears you. There are people out there who will listen. I wish you all a productive and fruitful week full of laughter, love, hope, and friendship. Let us continue to be good to one another and lift each other up when things are not going well in our lives. Judgment has no place at my dinner table.