She’s Still My “kiss-virgin dork baby”

I am pleased as pineapple punch (and watching too much Doc McStuffins) to announce the imminent arrival of my new novel!

Like Two Opposite Things is a LGBTQ (heavy on the B) coming of age romance novel set in the 1990s, that addresses issues of sexuality and consent with an emphasis on positive, realistic teen relationships. A fun nostalgic read for 90s kids and a reinforcement of healthy social dynamics for modern teens, the fluffy romance is still smart and socially conscious. 

As I have already sworn to my mother, it is entirely fictitious (no, Mom, I don’t think you’re a neglectful, overly critical, irresponsible parent. Geez!) but based on some shenanigans that my camp friends back in the day may have gotten up to (like that time they played spin the bottle without me!!!).

It’s a pre-cell phone, not sure where anyone is unless you ask around, old-fashioned fun (I mean, if the 90s are really considered “old” already) figuring out how to have fun in the woods without getting in too much trouble kind of tale.

And it will be available on Amazon.com starting February 10, 2017.

 

ltot-book-coverLike Two Opposite Things
(available 2/10/17 on Amazon)

It all happens here, in the armpit of the jetty on the far end of North Beach. This is where Helia Desiderio–nick-named Hell-yeah by her friends–ends her reign as a kiss-virgin dork baby and finally gets up close to the campground jock, her crush, Patrick. But nothing goes the way she plans: not the kissing, not the crushing, and definitely not the no-big-dealness of kissing both girls and boys. When she has to chose between the surprisingly sweet boy who loves her and the best friend she didn’t know she had, Hell-yeah’s forced to figure out some things about life and love and who she really wants to be.

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Cartoons Be Sexist, STILL

It’s one thing when you’re watching reruns of Tom and Jerry and you see some sexist trope. You roll your eyes, remember what the world was like when it was made, and move on. But when cartoons written, drawn, and filmed within the last couple of years rely on some outdated stereotype, you have to ask yourself, “What freaking world are these people living in?”

“They’re girls. Girls like to shop,” says the dad on the Safety Patrol short that played today on Disney Junior. From the people who brought you Doc McStuffins, Sheriff Callie, and the new crown princess Elena of Avalor–girls who straight up REPRESENT female empowerment as an accompaniment to pink clothes and sparkles rather than its antithesis–goes right ahead and uses some trash, “women be shopping” joke to appeal to the poor adult audience that has to watch cartoons with their kid.

Ha, ha, I’m an adult and I understand that reference. Women DO be shoppin’. Right? Am I right?! Oh Disney Junior, your adult humor is spot on… in 1986 during the height of the backlash against the feminist movement of the 70s. It’s funny because we’re post-feminist, right? Women are equal now and it’s ok, right?

No, sir. Not when an Olympic athlete’s husband gets the credit for her performance. Not when a presidential candidate can get away with calling women gross and fat pigs and laughing about it instead of apologizing. The modern world has yet to see any signs of post-feminism, thankyouverymuch, so this bullshit aimed at CHILDREN in 2016 is unacceptable.

And I’ll tell you what else, since I’m rant-happy anyway: I’m tired of eyelashes representing the female version of something. I’m tired of there being a “female version” rather than just including females to begin with. I’m tired of female cartoon characters making bedroom eyes at male cartoon characters. I’m tired of internet trolls claiming ruined childhoods over any attempt at diversity. And I am so very tired of children’s programming that feature teams of boy characters with one token female.

Aren’t we better than this yet? Can’t we try to be? Isn’t it our responsibility to fix the crap that screwed us up as children so the next generation doesn’t have to suffer the same neuroses?

Props to Louise for telling her dad, “I don’t like to shop.” And you don’t have to, little homegirl. Not ever, if you don’t want to. Don’t let men like your dad or the stupid dudes who write his dialogue tell you what you should like and who you have to be to make their understanding of the world easier. You and your brother keep calling your safety violations and party fouls, or whatever. Don’t let the man get you down.

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Doc Knows Best

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If all of the “thought leader” articles on LinkedIn were replaced with Doc McStuffins songs (“She’s Not Bossy, She’s the Boss”, “Be Good to Your Tummy”, “Don’t Be Afraid to Play”), the modern workplace might not be so broken.