The Internet looks for scarlet letters

When people talk about Hawthorne, they talk about him like he’s this dusty, out of touch author. And sometimes I wonder if that’s because people miss the point of one of his most famous works and that’s why we’re where we are at now.

Hester Prynne gets put with a big, bold Scarlett A on her clothing. For a mistake that wasn’t hers alone to make. Marked forever.

And isn’t that what the internet does? It looks for scarlet letters. Sometimes deserved. Sometimes not. And so we’re all Hester Prynne.

Living with mistakes. Sometimes not even ours.

Cinema is a church

I’m not religious. Maybe because I never had any faith I could tie myself to. Maybe because organized religion has hurt too many souls for me to feel anything but apathy towards it. Still, every once and a while when I’m seeking something, I go to the movies.

The cinema. The multiplex. Whatever you want to call it.

I sit in those plush, leather chairs. Or velvet depending on which theater you are in. In total darkness. Sometimes with a friend, mostly by myself these days. And I watch the images dance across the screen. Light and sound moving together, capturing something that never was and never will be again. Introducing me to people and places that have never existed.

Delighting me, thrilling me, saddening me.

I experience the whole spectrum of human emotions in the span of two hours. For two hours, I feel something that I’ve never felt in any kind of church or temple. The feeling of, “Oh, there’s something bigger out there. And someone understands.”

But maybe I’m just sentimental. I am Californian after all. We make movies there. I think it’s in my blood to love them. Anything else would be blasphemy.

Do you think rage tastes like blood?

Do you think rage tastes like blood? If it were a thing that you could consume, would it be coppery, bitter, and metallic? Something you wanted to spit out instantly?

I am so filled with it all of the time. If it were a food, they’d call me a glutton. And I wish I could toss it away, like left-overs gone bad.

But it’s an addiction to this feeling that comes over me like an angry god of ancient times, waiting for some innocent mortal to come down and strike for things that they unknowingly did. While not taking any of the blame myself.

Whatever rage is, I wish I could cut it out of me. It hurts too much to have it. And nothing to do with it.

Two tales of one marriage

When I ask my father about being married to my mother, he talks about it like it’s a faded memory. Like he doesn’t know what was real or what wasn’t. Or maybe he’s hiding something.

And I know he’s hiding something.

Because the memories my mother has told me bleak, desolate nightmares. But if he told me the truth, that would mean ruining the fiction—the love story—he’s invented in his head. And I, meanwhile, am left haunted by the ghosts from the horror story I know it was.

Some Projects I’m working on

Okay so aside from The Vampire Institute series on Kindle Vella, I’ve started some other things. The first is a personal blog where I’m going to write about projects and different things I like called Cambrian Culture. Its

The second is this new way of storytelling I’m trying, through Instagram. This has been done before by Rachel Hulin. She wrote heyharryheymatilda through a series of e-mails using instagram posts to do it.

I’m doing something similar, only I am using aesthetic pictures from pinterest. The series is called The Diaries of Series and I plan on doing some different ones. The first one is The Diary of Lucy Collins and it follows her summer with the Gold family.

Follow the account @thediariesofseries on instagram if you want to follow along. And don’t forget to follow


Kindle Vella Again

So, a while ago I was documenting my experience with Kindle Vella. When it first started no one really knew it was out there. And it was cluttered with things like Role Plays and a bunch of other nonsense that I wasn’t quite happy with.

I’ve tried writing on Wattpad, and have started to understand the type of content that works there by reading as well as writing.

And so I decided to do the same with Kindle Vella. I read one of the serials which was actually Hot Vampire Next Door by Nikki St. Crowe. It’s a steamy adult paranormal romance novel and actually pretty fun.

So, now that I understood the tone and what was popular on there I decided to give it a try. I think with platforms like these it’s really important to write FOR the platform if you want to be successful. I don’t think literary fiction is going to be popular on something like kindle vella, unless maybe you were already an established audience.

I took this week to rework a story I had published on another platform a few years ago and published it on Kindle Vella. This one is called The Vampire Institute and it’s about a girl who signs up to be a blood donor for vampires. Of course, it’s a romance.

The first seven episodes are up now and the first three are completely free! If you were able to read Her Dark Love that is the story I reworked for this. Click the cover to go read or at the very least like to support!

What I’ve Learned writing on wattpad

Wattpad is THE social media platform for writers. Over time, it has even published its own works and offered a paid program for writers. However, the platform itself is tricky to learn especially because there aren’t a lot of people that talk about wattpad.

Wattpad tends to gear towards a younger audience. A lot of the writing on there is fanfiction, even launching the career of Anna Todd, who famously wrote the After series which was about Harry Styles.

One of the things I struggled with in understanding the platform was ranking. One day, I would be number 4 in like deception and then the next number 138 in suspense just as examples. The way Wattpad ranking works is it shows the most impressive ranking out of the tag that has the most stories in it.

So say there are 6,000 stories in comedic romance but you’ve also tagged your story as comedy and there’s only like 2,000 in there it will show where you are ranking higher. Complicated, right? It took me a while to figure out but just something to think about if you start writing on Wattpad.

Also, the more active you are, the higher you’ll rank. So if you’ve only got one book on there, you might not see much activity. But if you’ve got like 5 or more, then you’ll see more activity. Wattpad, like any other social media platform, is all about CONTENT.

Fandom is also a great way to get readers. So if you do write fanfiction, maybe try posting some on there and then post some original work. It’s a great way to actually get an audience especially if you are a beginning writer.

Plus, it’s totally normal now for fanfiction to actually get published by normal publishers. Also, it’s a great way to teach yourself to write novel-length fiction if you haven’t done it before.

Oh—-and don’t be afraid to check out my free, New Adult Contemporary Romance on there, “Finding Serenity”.

Making Print Book Covers

Making a Print Book Cover is a little different than making an EBook Cover. With an EBook cover, all you have to worry about is getting the dimensions right for the platform that you are selling on. With a Print Book Cover you have to make sure that you have the following things:

  1. The Spine
  2. A back cover, complete with space for the author’s summary.
  3. Space for a barcode.
  4. Make sure that the pages are cropped right.

Mostly, I have been making EBook covers. But just recently, I designed my first cover for Print Books and I was actually pretty happy with how it came out.