Help get the It Gets Better book in schools and libraries across America!

You can’t always change the world.

You can’t open the eyes and heart of every bigot out there. You can’t make every LGBTQ kid feel loved and accepted and wanted and safe. You can’t see to it that every LGBTQ kid, all the world over, will be free to grow up and legally marry whoever the hell they fancy.

There’s no sparkly, proverbial magic wand that you can wave.

But sometimes, all you need to spark some magic, to spark some change, is a single book.

And to that end, the It Gets Better Project has come up with a fantastic idea:

Donate $25, and they send a copy of the It Gets Better: Coming Out, Overcoming Bullying, and Creating a Life Worth Living book to a school library of your choosing. (Or they can select a school for you, if you prefer!)

You can’t go out there and hug every one of these kids. You can’t look every one of them in the eye and tell them that you are proud to be looking them in the eye, that you are proud of them, that they deserve to be truly seen and wanted for who they are.

But you can tell them it gets better. You can show them that people out there do care.

And you can give them the kind of validation that only comes from picking a book up off the shelf and suddenly realising This book is relevant to me; this book is mine; I am holding my own life inside these pages because someone thought it important enough to write down.

You can give them hope in a tangible form. You can give them something to literally hold onto.

It’s only $25. It’s ‘only’ a book.

But the right book, in the right hands, really is maybe the closest thing to magic that this world has.

It does get better, and this is a damn good start.


Dexter’s Law: Animal abuser registry bill on the table in Florida.

Dear Florida:


Also, there are not enough FUCK YESes in the world.

Animal abuser registry bill on the table in Florida

This, otherwise known as Dexter’s Law for the tiny black and white kitten beaten with a baseball bat by a woman and her two children to the point of having to be euthanised, really cannot happen soon enough. It should have happened a ridiculously long time ago, and there should never ever be another Dexter and never should have been in the first place.

But the most important thing is that it does happen, and spreads, and becomes commonplace all around the country and hopefully all around the world.

If Dexter’s story (and the thousands more like it) don’t break your damn heart enough as it is, well, use common sense. Would you be comfortable knowing that the sort of people who can bludgeon small defenseless creatures with baseball bats could be living right next door, with you and your family completely unawares?

That is what this bill, and others like it, can help prevent. (I myself once used to live next door to two charming gentlemen who went by the names of ‘Big Bub’ and ‘Lil Bub’ and apparently had quite the fondness for killing neighbourhood cats. Sadly, I am not making this up, and would have sorely loved a law like this then.)

So raise your voice. Take thirty seconds and make yourself heard — because they can’t.


Hippie posts: The greatest people of the day.

When I idly go about sifting through the news, I typically do not expect to find much of anything positive or inspiring at all.

Tonight, however, managed to prove me rather soundly wrong.

At first, I stumbled across an article called “Lessons from Sharing the Story of My (Possibly) Gay 6-Year-Old Son”, and all I can say is how very very glad I am that this woman is raising a child. If more mothers were like her, this world would be one hell of a less shitty place.

And I wish I could tell all of these kids to keep their heads up. That even if their own parents might not love them the way that they deserve to be loved, there are at least people out there who would. ♥

(That story also reminds me of this wonderful little boy who is forever wandering about the childrens’ department of my store — his parents leave him with nannies, who then turn and dump him into said department and ignore him while instead he latches onto us. The first time I encountered him, he quite sincerely complimented me on my glitter nail polish, and then followed me around asking for books on both Rapunzel and sharks. On one of the most recent times I saw him, he flagged me down to inquire as to how he could go about watching Lady Gaga videos. He is probably all of five, and I sincerely hope that when he gets older, his parents will at least support him in liking whatever and whoever the hell he may like, and not just freak out over the fact their son enjoys glitter and princess and Lady Gaga right alongside his awesome sharks. Hey, doesn’t every parent claim they want a well-rounded child?)

And the second story then somehow made me even happier!

Tom Wargo is the greatest person of the day, indeed.

Tom Wargo is another of those people that the world desperately needs more of — he runs a pet food pantry by the name of Daffy’s. My default emotion is generally just “oh my god I must go scoop up all the homeless animals” anyway, but Daffy’s story sent that emotion right into overdrive, and I cannot thank this man enough for what he does.

(I’ve been on every side of this coin, myself. All of my cats were originally homeless — and for a time I actually ended up homeless with my cats, too. But we found each other and we stayed together and I do not hesitate to say that doing so was the best goddamn decision I ever could have made. ♥ It goes without saying that I want other people to be able to make that decision, too.)

So there you are. A little bit of positivity to help get you through your day. Now go help make things a little bit less shitty yourself. :)


On finding the meaning of life in science-fiction writers and cats. (Translation: Yeah, I’m still a hippie nerd, and proud. ♥)

Dear Ray Bradbury:

Where the hell have you been all my life?

With sudden but-not-really-surprised love,

I finally had my first taste of Bradbury today — The October Country. (No, not Fahrenheit 451.) And even my boycat was almost instantly delighted:

I was sold from the very beginning, myself, from the forward about writing that spoke of May I Die Before My Voices. I sympathised and agreed and just continued to fall steadily more in love…at least, when my cat wasn’t using it as a pillow, anyway.

Reading Bradbury almost reminds me of some of the things I love best about reading Stephen King, only more polished. Poetic. With less man-eating cars.

Needless to say, I am a happy happy girl, and will undoubtedly produce more squee on this subject forthwith.

But the happiest discovery of the day was this:

Meet Halo and Nell, Boycat and Girlcat #2. (And please do ignore the incongruous smatterings of pink smeared about the bed; such things tend to inexplicably happen when I am involved. Please don’t ignore my puppy pillow-pet and beloved stuffed kitty Smokey, however, because they are cute and I would be sad.)

Now, Halo and Nell do not normally get on. At all.

It’s not through any fault of their own, really. Nell was a stray, declawed in all four feet and then dumped by some even-I-don’t-have-enough-profanity-to-fill-this-void into a goddamn New England winter. Needless to say, it’s a wonder she managed to survive at all, and did so with injuries to the face and head that I think damaged both her sense of smell and hearing, making her even more skittish and afraid than she was doomed to be regardless.

And she only did survive because some family happened upon her and took her in, giving her to their older mother to look after and take care of. The woman did so, getting her medical attention and giving her as much general attention as she could — but as it turned out, the woman was unknowingly allergic. No one else wanted Nell, but neither would the woman just dumb her off again, so Nell ended up mostly confined to a back hallway, where she couldn’t set off the allergies as badly, but she couldn’t be properly socialised, either.

But she also ended up on Craigslist, and I saw her, and I couldn’t say no.

I emailed the woman, who was bizarrely surprised — she hadn’t even thought of putting Nell on the site herself, and it was done by a vet assistant without her knowledge. But while she was surprised and intimidated, she liked me, and so we arranged a meeting.

Long story short (we’ll ignore the bit where she pulled up outside my flat and indicated I should meet Nell in her car, and I then willingly got into a car with some stranger from Craigslist because holy shit there’s a cat, shall we–), I liked Nell, too, and she stayed home with me that day. ♥

I can’t say that Nell liked me too, not then. Understandably, Nell didn’t like too much of anything, and had moodswings to match any hormone-addled teenage girl. (Ever hear a cat purr and hiss at the exact same time? Ever been viciously bitten and then immediately sweetly groomed? No? Then you haven’t met Nell.)

So I employed the patented Jacey Kitty-Taming Method, and gave her lots and lots of hugs anyway. (You think I’m kidding. I am not. Much like I will wander into cars with strangers from Craigslist for the sake of a cat, my reaction to a cat attempting to maul my face off is in fact to just give it a giant hug.)

You will also think I am kidding when I say that the patented Jacey Kitty-Taming Method works. But Nell is an entirely different kitty, now. ♥ She is still nervous and mood-swing-tastic, yes, but she both accepts affection and the fact that she wants it. She sleeps in bed with us — alternating sides to be nearest the one of us who is most awake, and more likely to give her pets. She sits and sleeps in my lap. She happily smashes her face into mine to purr. She grooms me more than she gnaws me. She lets me scoop her up and dance around with her in my panties to K-pop. (Which I do in fact do. I admit it. I’ve no shame.)

The one major issue still left unresolved was Halo.

Halo, bless him, is an extraordinarily stupid creature. He’s the apple of his mommy’s eye, to be sure, but even that kind of maternal adoration will not stop me from admitting that, yes, he really is that dumb. (His favourite hobby is eating curling ribbon, for the love of god.)

And so when Halo decided that Nell was a shiny and thusly deserving of being his friend, he went about making her acquaintance by stalking up behind her, attempting to shove his nose into her bum without warning, then crying at me in piteous confusion when her immediate reaction was to growl. And the more she rebuffs him, the more he cries, which probably just annoys her even more too. Then Extreme Pattycake ensues.

Lather rinse repeat. Every bleeding day.

She’s too nervous to trust other cats, and he’s too stupid to catch onto the fact he really ought to let her alone or at least approach her in a somewhat less obnoxious way, so you can understand my concern about these two.

And you can understand how happy I was when I wandered into the bedroom this afternoon, and saw what I did. :)

Because at the end of the day, what can matter more than things like this?


Open spines, open doors.

The more that I think about it, the more I am realising that I really, really want to start a charity to give books to orphanages/foster kids/kids otherwise in undesirable situations.

Because I think, when you get right down to it, that this is what I write for.

It isn’t why I write — I write because, well, I do. Because even as a baby I was clinging to books while in my carriage and the moment it first clicked in my tiny little brain that those stories came from people, that people could tell them for a living, there was absolutely no question at all that that is what I would do. I write because I emancipated myself from the womb to do so, and was only ever waiting for my fingers to catch up to my brain. (Even at two, I was dictating poetry to my mother, because I myself couldn’t physically write the words down. I was a very strange sort of girl.)

I want to write for the underpriviledged kids, the kids whose ‘home life’ has no actual ‘home’ to speak of, the kids who don’t have a better companion than the characters brought to life for them on the page. I want to write to give those kids a corner.

I believe, more firmly than maybe anything else in this world, that books and stories are the closest thing to magic that we know. They can take you away, hide you when you can’t bear to be found, give you a multitude of homes inside them when outside there are none. (I myself grew up in River Heights, in Yavin IV and Coruscant, in Middle Earth, in Hogwarts, in Luster.)

And I want to offer those children that corner myself, with my own wishes for them and words and worlds. I figure that it’s only fair; if books gave me so much, then it’s only right and proper that I start giving something back in turn.

And it stands to reason, therefore, that the next logical step would be to start such a charity, on top of the writing itself. Not everyone is an author, but I know I’m not the only one who found their true home between the pages and who now wants to offer that to someone else. And I’m certainly not arrogant enough to believe that my own worlds would be enough to suitably shelter every kid who needs them, no matter how good my intentions or how hard I try.

Therefore, a charity to gather up more books for them it is.

I don’t know the logistics of all this, not yet, not beyond the obvious of writing some childrens’ books myself and putting the proceeds from them towards this — and seeing if I can talk any other authors into doing the same! But I’m a stubborn sort of girl. I’ll make this work. (Tim Gunn is one of my heros, after all.)

No one can take all of these kids home. But goddamnit, we can still help to at least give them a home that’s theirs.


Hippie Post: On confusing the hell out of people by having long hair!

I never really enjoy the realisation that I need to go clothes-shopping (not least of all because I am far more coltish than clothes-horse, and so finding proper-fitting clothes can quickly become a bit of an adventure).

However, that realisation can in turn prompt far more amusing ones.

Such as this:

I am one of those people who can wear annoyingly ridiculous amounts of rainbows, without anyone ever even suspecting that I’m not actually straight (or assuming that I’m just a Lady Gaga fan).

This is endlessly entertaining, to me.

And even more hilarious is the very-related way that hippies, former hippies, and even people with just Epic Hippie Experiences will automatically gravitate towards me.

For example, there’s an older gentleman who frequents my workplace and flocks in my general direction — because he could tell at a glance that I would be the one to appreciate his tales of activism and protesting back in the sixties and seventies. (He was right.)

And quite possibly my favourite exchange I have ever had with a customer went roughly as follows:

Jacey: [has hair in two very very long braids and is wearing a daisy-printed shirt as she attempts to ring a customer up]
Customer: “[stares at Jacey, and then suddenly, Storytime commences without warning!] In 1972, I was hit by a car…”
Jacey: “…oh my!”
Customer: “[insert something about non-disciplining parents and being sent down the street to buy a hamburger and finally carsmack here] …and then these flower children formed a circle around me and I forget what song they sang but–”
Jacey: … [is trying very hard not to laugh, as she already knows full well where this is going]
Customer: “One of them looked like you!”
Jacey: “Yeah I hear things like that a lot. :)”

I really don’t think that is ever going to make me stop giggling, to be honest. There’s at least a short story in there somewhere, I’m sure, and one day I will find it.

I just naturally seem to give off Hippie Vibes — but it does help that I do have the Long Hair (long enough to be deserving of capital letters, by this point).

Having Long Hair is actually a bit of a fascinating thing, I’ve discovered. When you have as much hair as I do (mine is approaching classic length, if you were wondering, which means to the tops of one’s thighs), you tend to be automatically seen as one of two things:

A hippie, or the ultra-conversative religious sort.

Let’s consider the dichotomy of this for a moment.

A hippie, or the ultra-conservative religious sort.

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t love how confusing this is.

(I don’t, however, love society in general’s viewpoint of “If you have long hair, you automatically aren’t an independant, opinionated woman!” but that is a discussion all its own.)

It amuses me even more when you consider that, while I certainly am a hippie, this fact actually had absolutely nothing to do with why I grew my hair out. I grew my hair out, and continue to do so, because I like having long hair. It’s not any sort of statement beyond “I feel more like myself when I have my hair this way”.

(The summer before I turned seventeen, I had long hair — not Long like it is now, but still long. My long hair, however, was very damaged due to different factors, and began to fall out until I essentially had no choice but to go from waist-length locks to a chin-length bob. I am not ashamed to admit I cried, despite how infrequently I do so otherwise; and for all that everyone told me how well I wore the short hair, it did not suit me at all. Growing it out again was like a silent sigh of relief, as the longer it got the more I felt like myself, and so I just…didn’t stop. It’s that simple.)

Although I suppose it probably does say something about me that I feel most like myself when I apparently resemble a flower child, whose reaction to seeing a small boy being hit by a car is just to surround him and sing.

But the real point of this post is what an amazing opportunity for research there is, in the social ramifications of having long hair in today’s world, where it’s now having long hair that tends to attract stares and copious amounts of confusion.

And I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions on the issue, my dears!