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 Susan X Meagher is here to share a story. Also, Susan is giving away 1 ecopy of Mosaic. Below the guest post, you’ll find more details about the giveaway.
Take it away, Susan.
Take the Risk to be Generous
One of the first lesbian fanfic stories I ever read contained a secret chapter. The writer required interested parties to send her a note asking for it. She said this was to make sure readers knew they were requesting explicit content, but my guess is that she wanted to know that people had actually read the story, and holding on to the more salacious part insured they would follow through. Kind of genius!
I’d never met a writer, had never corresponded with one, and I was very hesitant to ask for that chapter. It wasn’t that I thought she’d refuse; I was just too shy to ask. It took me a week to get up the nerve, and she responded the same afternoon with a personal note thanking me for my interest and saying she hoped I enjoyed it. I was truly thrilled! I know it sounds like I was some sort of rube who didn’t get out much, but back in the day this new, much more democratic way of publishing was in its infancy, and I saw no difference between this writer and Barbara Kingsolver, or any of the other women published by a major house. (BTW, there isn’t necessarily a difference!)
Once I realized that writers wanted to hear from readers, I started contacting anyone who wrote something that touched me. I was still shy about doing it, since I didn’t think I had anything earth-shattering to say. But a good percentage of writers thanked me for taking the time, and that boosted my confidence.
After just a few months, I started to think I might be able to craft my own story, and I eventually gave it a whirl.
It took me over a year to share my work with anyone, and my wife finally tired of my hesitancy and sent the first “book” of my series to the Academy of Bards and Mary D’s AUSXIP without telling me. I was stunned when they both posted it, and in a matter of hours people started sending me notes about my story.
That was heady stuff for a very shy person, and I’m confident those early experiences both as a reader and writer let me break through some of my social anxiety. Of course, I wrote back to everyone who contacted me, and I’ve continued to do that to this day. There are few things I enjoy more than interacting with readers, nearly every one of them adding some small bit of positivity to my life.
The act of kindness the writer showed to me was small, but very meaningful. That’s the thing about doing something kind. No matter how small the act might seem to you, it can have a very large impact on the recipient. When in doubt, take the risk to be generous.
by Susan X Meagher
When you’re a single lesbian who’d prefer to be partnered, it pays to keep your eyes peeled—even at work.
Kelsey Maliar blew into Summer Hayes’ shop on a frosty cold morning, and within a few minutes things had warmed up significantly. By the end of the week they were having a great first date, followed by another, and still another.
Everything seemed perfect, something neither of them had a lot of experience with. But they were both ready to put in the work this time, having learned that the end result was well worth the effort.
Nearly every couple reaches a few forks in the road when they’re starting out, but things sailed along very smoothly—until they didn’t.
What do you do when a woman who’s remarkably close to perfect struggles with an issue that wouldn’t bother the vast majority of people—but is a hot-button for you? Is it a positive grown experience to work through an emotional challenge together? Or is self-protection the wise choice?
They’ve both tried to understand the path to love, but the manual’s really hard to comprehend. If they can stick to their resolve, they should be able to hurdle this roadblock. But can they?
MEET THE AUTHOR
Susan lives in the Hudson Valley with her wife, Carrie. Born in East St. Louis, Illinois, she has lived in both Chicago and Los Angeles for significant periods, but New York fits her very well. She loves to discuss her work and fiction in general. She is the author of over 40 novels, including the I Found My Heart in San Francisco series.
CONNECT WITH SUSAN X MEAGHER
Thanks so much for stopping by today.
Loved the insight into how you started writing, and the reminder that a tiny, kind moment for us might mean the world to someone else!
I enjoyed this little tidbit about you! Glad you got into the game. The world is richer with your stories in it!
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Thank you for stepping out of your comfort zone and to your wife for risking a lot to help you to the next level. We, the readers, have definitely gained from both of you. Keep writing!