Hello Internet, my old friend

It's been more than eons since I posted anything. Which doesn't mean I've dropped off the face of the planet. Mostly, it means I've been really, incredibly, truly busy. If you follow any of my other social media accounts or The Ravens Crossing then you've seen me around.

I've had quite a bit going on. I did the background parenting thing for two semesters while my youngest embarked on the college journey. During that time I decided to return to grad school, because you know I've got some time on my hands. I also became the co-president of our newly formed, local PFLAG chapter and that's been a whole lotta something, considering where I live. I attended PRIDE two weeks ago and it was amazing!

PRIDE 2014. Getting things started on an overcast day that soon turned beautiful.

All in all, I probably had time, but not the inclination, to post updates to my journal. But, when I glanced at the last dated entry I was SHOCKED! So, here's to picking back up to where I left off.

It's Been A Long Time

This is by far the longest hiatus I've taken from posting anything. Last year swirled past in a blur of deadlines, basement floods, and my youngest child starting college. That last bit is sort of weird since it's really weird to have adult children, considering I am still figuring out how to be an adult.

In between all of the busyness of life I have worked on a lot of stuff... obviously this website. It's new, it's improved, and I love it. I hope you do too.

Thanks and Congratulations

My thanks go out to everyone who stopped by during the Hop Against Homophopia and Transphobia.

The winner of eBook versions of The Ravens Crossing: Book One, Book Two, and Book Three is Peggy!  


Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia

Today begins the Second Annual Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia. Today is officially the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. Last year, I participated by talking about diversity in the workplace, diversity in my own company, and diversity at The Ravens Crossing.

This year, I am taking things more introspective. Getting a little personal.

I grew up a teenager of the 80’s in and around Los Angeles. My own experiences were incredibly diverse, including my friends. I never knew a closet existed, not until I was older.

When I began my own family I knew I wanted my kids to be raised in a home that was totally accepting of whoever they were. Let me just say, many years ago, this was easier said than done. But, I managed to do it. I surrounded my kids with diversity and made it all just part of what the world was about. And no topic was taboo in our house. If you ask my kids, they’ll assure you that there have been many an odd conversations in their life and probably expect to have many more.

So, that’s the set up.

My reality was challenged when I realized I had gender non-conforming kids. Let me interject that I fostered this with toys, clothing, etc. And I am only painting you one part of the picture, because honestly, I could write a book about my journey.

At times, life was joyous. At other times, I found it heart breaking when we encountered ignorance. I even found myself caving to societal pressure on a few occasions. It was difficult to maintain my resolve, so I made sure we lived in well-known LGBT neighborhoods and had countless friends in the community. I never tolerated bullying and I was outspoken every time I encountered intolerance. But, I am not perfect. I had my own moments of doubt. Thankfully, my kids are amazing, as all kids are.

First, I find it astonishing that I have college age kids now. I don’t feel that old. My kids and I spend a lot of time together—we like the same music, movies, clothing, and we work together on several grass roots campaigns to wipe out homophobia and pass marriage equality in all 50 states.

I write LGBTQIA fiction for a living. Everyone in my family is aware of this and I am lucky that they all support me. I am also fortunate that I don’t have to hide who I am, what I do, or who I love. But, that isn’t the reality for so many people. I cannot fathom what that must be like. It is so far removed from my own reality, that I often have difficulty wrapping my head around it. I cannot imagine throwing a child out of my home because of their DNA.

The choice is about how one deals with diversity. Does one accept it? Embrace it? I believe we are beyond the tolerance/intolerance debate. We are at the point of acceptance. I want more for me, my kids, my family, and my friends. I don’t want to be tolerated—I want to be accepted.

Wiping out Homophobia and Transphobia takes grassroots movements. It takes social interaction. It’s one person helping one other person. Pay it forward.

Help me, by helping others. Check out the other authors and websites participating in the Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia. There are lots of prizes being given away too! Who doesn’t like to win stuff?

So, if you’d like a chance to win The Ravens Crossing: Book One, Book Two, and Book Three just leave a comment below (with an email address). The contest runs May 17 – 27, 2013. I’ll announce and contact the winner on May 28, 2013.

Win Books and Learn Something About Me & TRC

The authors of The Ravens Crossing- me, Amanda Corlies, and West Thornhill are being featured over at True Colorz a website that is an amazing resource for YA LGBT literature. So, if you wanted to know more about The Ravens Crossing and Me-- this is the place to go.


I've Been Dreading This Since Last Year

So, last year Google let users know that Google Reader would be discontinued in July 2013. They formally announced it on their blog a week or so ago. The interwebs response has been a combination of frustration, outrage, petitions, and odes to Google Reader.

Mostly, I've been deluding myself that this service isn't really going away. Honestly, I don't know how to get through the day without my Google Reader. I've been using it since it began in 2005-- it's a brilliant RSS reader.

I've looked at the options that everyone else is looking at. Nothing comes close. They all suck. I just want to keep my Google Reader. It's almost the end of March and I am running out of time to organize the hundreds of RSS feeds that I follow. I should see this as a challenge to find something new, shiny, better. Honestly, the prospect brings me to tears. Google Reader is by far one of the best platforms that Google has ever created. I feel betrayed by my bestest bestie.

I'm really freaking mad at you, Google. Break ups suck.

Much Ado About Nothing...or Something

When you find yourself surrounded by gifted people, don't miss an opportunity to do something amazing.  I'm sure you've all heard about Joss Whedon's adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing... Shakespeare had me hooked, Joss and cast had me curious, and the trailer has me salivating. I studied Shakespeare for many years and am always on board for adaptations. Shakespeare's themes are classic and timeless, full of pop culture and rich with dialogue.

You might be saying to yourself, "Yeah, but that's Joss Whedon and his merry band of talented friends. I'm not him, or them, and don't have the resources."

And I will tell you this: You are only limited by your imagination, or lack thereof.

Don't miss an opportunity in your own backyard to do something amazing. Even if it's just for you and your friends. You never know when one small idea might catch on and become something that is much ado.

Ars longa, vita brevis. Life is too short to not give art a try.


It Must Be Tuesday in London

You might wonder what the heck that means... in a nutshell, it's Tuesday in London and it's Tuesday in Virginia. Where am I? NOT in London. WHY does it matter? Because Alan Moore is in London. And he's giving a talk and signing books you nitwits. Did I mention that I am not there?

It's a darn good thing I have plenty of work to keep me occupied so I don't dwell on the fact that I am not going to see Alan Moore tonight. In fact, with the time dfference he's appearing in an hour.

Somewhere in my blogging journey I sort of strayed far off course and forgot to blog. It pretty much defeats the whole purpose. But, then there are millions of people blogging now, so I figure you've found other people to inform and entertain you along the way.

I have a list of blogs I've followed since forever, a few that I picked up along the way, and some new ones that fit into the niche I like to read. Blogging and blog reading are strange bedfellows. And author blogs can be as boring as watching water boil, unless you like that sort of thing. Which occasionally I do, you know like when you get mesmerized by the microwave plate going round and round?

Anyway, I hope that if you are still around and checking in, you will continue to do so. I can't promise everyday. But, I will try to be entertaining and occasionally informative. Sometimes both at the same time.

In the meantime, check out www.theravenscrossing.org for 6 adventurous stories each week.

I'm Not MIA, AWOL, or Otherwise Detained

It's been a busy couple of months. I've been around... if you follow The Ravens Crossing, then you know you can find me over there several times a week.

In the near future, musings & shenanigans aka andi-lea.com, will be getting a dusting off and some updating. Blogging will return to a regular, yet less often, schedule.

I've missed you interwebs.

While you wait for my new and improved website, go do some good in the world: