At I Heart Lesfic, we believe the world could use a bit more kindness after one of the hardest and longest of years. Many authors have signed up to help IHL spread kindness in the world.
Today, the wonderful Annette Mori is here to share a story. Also, Annette is giving away 1 ecopy of Sculpting her Heart. Below the guest post, you’ll find more details about the giveaway.
Take it away, Annette.
What We Permit We Promote
It would be so easy to focus on the political climate—a topic I often write about because some let the cruelty genie out of the bottle. Lately, not only is cruelty not challenged, but it is worn as a badge of honor. When those holding political office role-model bullying and cry about cancel culture when called out on their destructive behavior, millions of people follow suit. Being locked inside our homes has not helped. Many have always hidden behind their computers to perpetuate cruel rhetoric, but not it is spilling out in the open in alarming frequency. I could write a year’s worth of blogs on this, but one last thing I’d like to say before moving on. What we permit, we promote. Let’s all try to put the cruelty genie back in the bottle and uncork the kindness genie.
Now onto the other kindness topic I’d like to discuss today. Lately I’ve been wondering whatever happened to the lessons I learned from my mother about kindness? Things like if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all? My mother was a wonderful gracious woman, who like every other human being wasn’t perfect. She perfected the art of the “little white lie.” I suppose this was a product of her upbringing, and in her mind being honest might mean being unkind.
I have a passion for writing about characters with various disabilities, which is why the appalling lack of accountability to those who make fun of persons with disabilities has affected me so much. My latest book, Sculpting her Heart, features a young woman on the neurodiverse spectrum. Zari has autism, and her brutal honesty is so opposite of what my mother taught. However, bluntness is not the same as being unkind. Zari has had to learn some hard lessons about honesty. I’d like to share a passage to give everyone a little taste of her struggles.
“Do you think it’s unkind to be blunt? Jillian says that sometimes a person has to lie because being honest would hurt too much. Do you think she’s right?”
“That’s a tough one. There is the rule that if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all. I suppose I adhere to that rule most of the time.”
“I don’t always know when I’m hurting someone with my honesty. I have learned some rules about being too blunt. Jillian says I should never tell a woman she doesn’t look good in an outfit, or that I don’t like her new haircut. Women are also particularly sensitive about weight. It’s mostly about being out of proportion, except for their breasts. But even if you comment on how large their breasts are, and you like them, you still have to be careful about how you say it and to whom you say it. Giving compliments is a subtlety I’m still working on.”
“Aren’t we all?”
Of all the character’s I’ve written, I believe Zari is one of my favorite because she is the epitome of kind and loving, she just shows that kindness in her own unique way. If we are to broaden our definition of kindness, intent and action are important to consider. Not only should we pay attention to our words, but we must also consider our actions.
Fighting for more kindness in this world is a noble cause—one that I hope many will take up. Rather than sitting on our asses, shaking our heads, muttering at the TV, let’s all stand up and fight. Action speaks louder than words. Never forget what we permit we promote. It will take everyone to put that cruelty genie back in his bottle.
by Annette Mori
Zari Woods has achieved almost everything she set out to accomplish, despite overwhelming challenges. Except for one crucial goal—a girlfriend. On the surface, it appears as if she has everything, fame, money, a supportive best friend, and loving parents; but, to a person on the neurodiverse spectrum, a loving woman is an elusive and magical creature. When Frankie moves into her neighborhood, Zari starts a quest to climb that final mountain. Frankie is beautiful, kind, patient, and seems to genuinely enjoy spending time with Zari despite her quirks. Unfortunately, Frankie already has a girlfriend. Sort of. It’s complicated.
Frankie can’t believe she agreed to an open relationship with her girlfriend, Sam. That was the last thing she wanted. Her morals do not align with Sam’s. At all. Her growing attraction to Zari challenges Frankie’s perspective on her current relationship and her last-gasp effort to repair the ever-increasing divide. Will Frankie make the hard decision to let go of something clearly not working for a chance at real love and choose to bring Zari her heart’s desire?
MEET THE AUTHOR
Annette is an award-winning author, published by Affinity Rainbow Publications, who lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her wife and their five furry kids. With twenty published novels, three Lesfic Bard Awards, and one Goldie Award for her fourth novel, Locked Inside, she finally feels like a real author. Annette is as much a reader as a writer and always looking for the next lesfic novel to cue up. She came up with the One Fan at a Time tagline because it rolled off the tongue much better than One Reader at a Time. After pondering who she was at her core, it was all about connecting to each reader on a personal level. She would be the first to admit she doesn’t do well with the masses. If someone picks up her book and it touches them she believes she has achieved what she wants with her writing by reaching each reader. It is who she is at her core.
CONNECT WITH ANNETTE MORI
Thanks so much for stopping by today.