dear author: ‘research’ is not a dirty word

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I recently wrote a post about the wonders of researching and of the miraculous invention known as g00gle.

I was reminded of this when wondering why something in the book I’d just read didn’t gel for me.

Don’t get me wrong; there was nothing particularly crappy about the book.  I liked the writing style, the story line and the characters.  I also thought the issue of mental health was handled reasonably well, especially for m/m where BDSM, the magical healing cock and twu wuv fix all ills.

It was then I realised what it was that was needling me.   It was all to do with one of the characters being described as OCD.

I think ‘OCD’ tends to be a throw-away term to refer to those who are picky, have persnickety ways, etc, etc.  We – and, yes, I’m including myself – tend to use it in a laughing kind of way.  Not nasty per se, but jokingly pointing out the funny-oddness of fussy habits.

As I said, I was one of those people, and I still am in many ways.

OCD was always something I used to describe myself and the things I did.  I was being half-serious about it at the time because deep down I knew it was a very, real issue.  Indeed, my ‘OCD’ became irrevocably embedded in my mental health in the lead up to my ‘episode’ in early 2011 and continues to play a major role in my daily life.

Without a doubt, this, and my mental health as a whole, makes me overly sensitive to the world around me, including characterisations and descriptions trying to portray these kind of a problems.

Regardless, I have to say it…

Dear Authors,  Is it that hard to fucking research?  You seem to be able to use the internet for promo, tweeting about sucky reviews, looking at porn, etc.  Did you not know you could  actually find out other stuff besides certain sexual positions being urban legends or not?  Wankers.  Love, Me.

OCD is not about a way of doing things to a level of  perfectionism a person might have towards their job, their home, their hobby.  OCD is not a quirk or a trait or a habit that comes and goes depending on whether a person is working, cleaning, gardening, building lego, whatever.  And OCD is certainly not something which magically re/disappears.  

Perhaps this is why obsessive and compulsive are used in the actual descriptor of the term, not to mention the behaviours themselves?  Could be.  Maybe there are even different kinds of disorders associated with these behaviours?  I know, right.  What about there being two ‘OC’s’ out there; one relating to Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and the other to Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder, and that they mean different things?!  Wow.

Isn’t it amazing what you can research on the internet by just typing in 3 letters.

Who knew.

If there are any authors out there who still read this blog, why don’t you let loose and look up the definition of ‘compulsion’?  Oh, hell.  Forget about it.  Why don’t I just give you the link.

Are you beginning to get a sense of how not-throw-away that ‘OCD’ thing is?  Want some further insight into compulsive behaviours?  Okay then.

It’s not being able to leave your house without going through your routine of making sure everything is put away, wiped down and tidy in every room of the house and all floors have been swept and cleaned.  It’s making sure all the notes and lists to yourself are updated throughout the day. It’s whoknowshowmanytimes-checking all the windows and doors are locked and closed before you got out.  It’s even turning the car around to go back and check the windows and doors just to make sure. It’s when you and everyone else who knows you realises ‘making sure’ is what you use to refer to your compulsion to do things that may or may not be rational to anyone else but you. It’s when you keep getting up from watching the telly at night to get the dust pan and brush to sweep up the cat fur et al only you can see.  It’s when you put them back in their proper place and soon the cycle starts all over again.  It’s when two years after having the family over for Christmas you still can’t get the coffee table back into it’s proper position.  It’s having a panic attack because you’re running out of time to get somewhere, but you HAVE to clean the floor one last time.  It’s sitting on the floor weeping because you can’t get rid of a dirty spot on the floor even when you’re the only one who sees it.  It’s using turpentine and bleach on your hands to get rid of stains.  It’s when one of your new friends in art class asks what’s going on, but it’s only after she pulls you away from cleaning up after someone else to show you you’ve been going around the room and lining things up that you realise something is wrong. It’s when the only control you have in your life – in what’s going on in your head – is what you can do, what you have to do, to make you feel more safe and secure.  It’s when the thought of leaving your safe space terrifies you to the point of having hysterics and panic attacks. It’s your doctors telling you some of you compulsive traits will probably require hospitalisation and intensive therapy to break.  It’s when – no matter how hard you try – you CAN’T stop.  You just can’t.

Yeah.

Doesn’t sound so fucking easy as ‘OCD’ now, does it.

Posted in authors, dear author, important stuff, me, OCD, probably tmi, serious randomness, serious shit, still crazy, thoughts, words | 9 Comments

things that make you go O.o

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Scene: Phone conversation

Male voice: I did it last night. I don’t see why I have to…

Female voice: *murmur, murmur*

Male: Well, I don’t! *whines*  You never take my side anymore!

Female: *Murmur. Murmur.*

Male: What do you mean I made my bed…

Female: *Murmur. MURMUR.*

Male: But I’m not in the mood! *voice pout* This is so not fair.

Female: *MURMUR. MURMUR!*

Male: No! I don’t want you to call her! *grumbles* She’s such an interfering little…

Female: *MUR!* *MUR!*

Male:  Fine!

Female:  *MUR…*

Male:  I said fine, didn’t I?!  *woe is me* I can’t believe my own mother would turn against me.

Female:  *murrrmurrr*

Male:  Yeah, yeah.  See you tomorrow…

*slams down phone*

*turns around*

Male:  Mum says I have to do it because you said so.  *extra pouty voice*  She also said to tell you she’s making her special cheesycake for you for dinner.

Second male voice:  *satisfied* I told you your mum would agree with me.  *BDSMy voice* Now get your pretty little arse to bed so I can fuck you through the mattress in that way you pretend you don’t like.

End scene: Fade to black

And there you have it, folks.

The Reluctant Gay.

What a wonderful new m/m trope.

It’s almost like a uke.

But is complete fucking crap.

Posted in characters, extra further randomness, m/m, meh, scary, still crazy, still here, things that make you go O_o, tropes, weird, WTF, yaoi | 3 Comments

thoughts on ‘falls chance ranch’ series

Falls Chance Ranch series by Rolf & Ranger

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Are you worried about your executive? 

Is he burned out? 
Frazzled? 
Less than stellar? 

Is he an excellent employee that you don’t want to lose? 

If the answer to those questions is an unqualified yes!, 
then you need to think about sending him to 
Falls Chance Ranch. 

In a matter of weeks or months, we’ll turn around your executive and return him to you fit and ready to pick up the reins again. 

Falls Chance is a working sheep ranch deep in the heartland of Wyoming. Your executives will be put to work on the ranch 
while we retrain bad habits into good ones. 

Executives will remain on the ranch 
until we’re assured that they’re safe to return to their jobs. 
The average stay is eight weeks 
but can run shorter or longer depending upon the person. 

Our program is completely confidential 
and has a highly proven track record. 

Our graduates are in many of the top companies around the globe.

My thoughts (not a review, may contain spoilers, has TMI and is way too fucking long):

Last year – weird – I wrote about two very personal and very intense reactions I’d had to two very different books.  Something about which I was vividly reminded whilst reading the Falls Chance Ranch series recommended to me by Orannia.

I had, and am still having, an entire gamut of emotions to these stories, particularly with regard to the first two books, Falls Chance Ranch and Three Traders.  As a result, I’m not entirely sure this will be anything more than a convoluted ramble so apologies beforehand.

Actually, I’ve no bloody idea where to even start.  At Falls Chance Ranch, I guess…

The first book left me with mixed feelings.  On the one hand, I was totally intrigued by the D/s domestic life of the characters as well as the dynamics involved in the introduction of another to the lifestyle and to an already existing polygamous relationship.  I found it convincing and fascinating.

On the other hand, there was something about it I didn’t like and I couldn’t quite figure out why.  In hindsight, it was probably an intense feeling of discomfort, but at the time I had no idea what it was and, considering my interest in how the relationship progressed and developed with Dale now firmly in it, I decided to read the second book, Three Traders.  It was this that pretty much kicked my arse, or, more to the point, it was Dale.

Dale; the main character about whom the story essentially revolves as it’s his journey – from highly stressed, powerful and intelligent corporate troubleshooter to cowboy, ‘brat’ and the fifth partner in a polygamous relationship – which is at the heart of the Falls Chance Ranch series.  Dale.  I’m not sure if I love him or hate him and it’s all for the very simple reason I recognise him.  I am him.

I may not have his extraordinary intelligence or background nor do I have/get the high level of compulsive behaviours he does; however, I have the same issues of orderliness  perfectionism, control, suppression of emotions, avoidance and disassociation, absolute sense of right and wrong, personal failure, depression, anxiety and obsessive behaviours.  In a nutshell, and although I’ve frequently described myself as having OCD, what I’ve actually been diagnosed with is Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder.  If you mix this with Bipolar 2, it makes for an… interesting… life… apparently.

Reading the second book of the series, set off all my buttons.

After a stint in New York to wrap up his former life and make arrangements for his new one, Dale returns to the ranch with an expectation everything will be as it was before he left; that is, he’ll be ‘fixed’.  Trigger.  He can’t understand why he can’t stop ‘it’ even when he gets ‘it’.  Trigger.  If he thinks he’s fucked up, he sees himself as a failure, worthless, useless.  Trigger.  If he acts ‘normal’, everything will be fine and no one will get hurt.  Trigger.  If he pretends it’s okay, it will be and it’s go back to being normal.  Trigger.  If he explodes, gets help and then works through it, he’s all better, fixed and then, of course, something will happen to set him off and the cycle begins.  Trigger.

By now you’ve probably got the picture I was triggered.  Pretty majorly too.

At some point, I put the book aside and fell into my morning routine of ‘getting ready’ for the day.  I don’t know how many hours I spent tidying, straightening and cleaning.  It was only when I found myself in tears washing the floor over and over again because I couldn’t get it clean that I realised what was happening.  My stomach was hurting so very badly.  I was crying and shaking and I couldn’t stop cleaning.  I don’t know how to explain it.  When you’re so deep into the compulsion, you can’t stop.  It’s absolutely impossible.  It’s like a vice around your brain, your body is stuck on auto-pilot and the thought swirling around your head is it’ll all be okay if you just finish this one task.  It never is, though.

I won’t go into how I got out of yesterday’s episode nor why I was so vulnerable to begin with.  Just know I did, I know the reasons why, and that I’ll definitely be talking about it with my doctors.

Three Traders, I think, delved even deeper into the psychology of Dale’s behaviour and the way in which his relationships with his tops helped balance and settle him.  This is something I completely understand as I often come away with a sense of peace and well-being after I’ve visited my psychologist or psychiatrist.

Let me make very clear this series is absolutely in no way shape or form teh-BDSM-insta-cray-cray-fix you may find in other books in this genre. Rather, it’s meaningful and powerful.  In addition to this, it portrays different perspectives of a domestic D/s life by providing insight into the other partners of the polygamy and how they interact, especially with Dale.

Despite my intense response to Three Traders, I was compelled to finish it and then to go on to read Mustang Hill and the Silver Bullet WIP.

I must admit I didn’t have the same reaction to the latter books as I did to the others, which could simply have been because of the breakdown/breakthrough (?) I’d had.  Still, I definitely enjoyed the character, relationship and storyline development/s and the way in which the authors have progressed the series in different directions so as to continue to engage the reader.

I remain intrigued.  :)

My recommendation:

I’m not sure if I’m entirely capable of giving a rating or a recommendation about this series because of the significant effect it had on me, the first books in particular.

Two things I can say:

* if you want a BDSM story totally different from anything else you’ve ever read in the m/m genre than the Falls Chance Ranch series are an absolute must and that’s that; and,

* if you have similar mental health issues to mine, please, please be aware of the potential triggers and keep your management techniques close at hand.  Hell, maybe you, we, might learn some new methods to help us in the process, even if there is a small part of us wishing we could have an amazing, insightful top of our own. :)

Posted in bdsm, book series, important stuff, m/m, me, not a review, OCD, orannia, probably tmi, serious shit, thoughts | 9 Comments

end-of-year bandwagon wrap-up: 2012

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Well, hello there.

Yes, it’s me.  I’m still here.

Sometimes.

Maybe.

Anyhoody, I’ve had some recent requests to access this site and, in a move completely disparate to my usual apathetic-can’t-be-bothered-with-this-stuff-anymore-and-who-cares-if-people-think-I-hate-them-cos-it’s-more-than-likely-true, decided I should reopen the place and grace you all with the awesomeness of my presence.

You’re welcome.

The truth is that 2012 has been pretty crazy *Har.  Har.* for me and shutting up shop was just one of the many ways I’ve pulled back from things.  Some of you – if there are any people reading this, that is – might know what’s been going on with me, others won’t have a clue and a few won’t give a toss.  I’d be among the latter.  Obviously.  Regardless, if any of you feel the intense need to be nosy and waste a few minutes, you can go read about my shit here.

Yes, I can’t be fucked rehashing it all.

Yes, I’m still lazy.

Really, as if that would change.

Having said that, I know I need to try to reconnect with, well, everything; particularly with the stuff I enjoy, which, once upon a time in the dim recesses of my drug-addled memory, included blogging.  So here I am.  Back.  Again.  And, yes, it’s me.  I haven’t been diagnosed with that.  Yet.

Anyways, I thought I’d begin by doing my usual end-of-year bandwagon wrap-up…

Get it??  Begin.  End.

HA!  *wipes tear from eye*  I’m too funny.

Without further ado…

Kris’ 2012 Top 5 Bookity Things *that pretty much don’t have anything at all to do with reading* 

#1 The year 2012 shall henceforth be chronicled as that time of times when an epidemic, later known as douchebagery, swept through the book blogging community leaving havoc, destruction and a general feeling of WTFery in its path.  Many a friend was lost to the disillusionment and disgust brought on by the symptoms of plagiarism, the recurrence of responses to ‘bad’ reviews and the rash of online bullying.

Not to mention the deliberate avoidance of words like irony and hypocrisy.

Heh.

#2 zOMG!  The copyright scandal was soooooooo skerry.  Luckily practically everyone went racing around in a tizzy, spent hours and hours taking down all those images from their sites and added gazillions of links.

Shockingly, there were also a few who decided to deal with it by taking all of 2 seconds to put up a Scarlet Letter on their blog.

*yawn*

#3 I’m sure there was something to do with goodreads being a bitch. I have a vague recollection of it. No doubt this is why I, in a fit of moral high groundedness, stopped adding books and providing other readers with the benefit of my hugely literary reviews.

Or it was my lazy thing.

Whatever it was I’m sure the *insert appropriate gossip description here* about goodreads made a huge impact on everyone and nothing and no one has been the same since.

#4 Have you heard about… *shudders* Blog Tours *shudders*?

*whispers*  They hunt in packs and ambush you in your reader.  They’re like a plague of locusts.  They gorge on one site and then move randomly on to the another.  You think they’ve gone, but they’re still there… in the publishing shadows… waiting with stalkerly patiently.  You can feel them watching.  You know it’s just a matter of time before they’ll attack you when your traffic is slow defenses are low.  No one is safe from them.

NO.  ONE.

*ahem*

#5  *singing*  “Any day now, any day now.  I shall be re-released…”

The first rule of Re-release Club is: You don’t talk about Re-release Club. The second to seventh rules of Re-Release Club are variations of: Only members of Re-release Club can re-release and only a very, happy few will be given the opportunity to capture the Golden Snitch, thus gaining the ultimate superpower to edit, add, change a book cover or whatever the hell else they want to do as part of teh re-release.  And the eighth and final rule: If this is your first night at Re-release Club then you’re fucked cos you really should have waited for The Engraved Invitation.

Concluding Kris’ 2012 Top 5 Bookity Things…

Apparently, I’m not the only one who went crazy this year.

Posted in 2012, best of 2012, best ofs, book debates, books, goodreads, lazyarse but still awesome, me, randomness, serious randomness, serious shit, still crazy, still here, wankfestery | 25 Comments

maybe it’s me, but…

I read fuck all at the moment.

Well, when I say that, it’s in fits more than starts.  And there are very few fits.

Of the reading kind, that is. *HAR* *HAR*

*sigh*

So when I do get the urge to pick up a book it usually has a theme or excerpt or something which really appeals and, quite frankly, it’s short.  Since my ‘mental health episodes’ all began, I just don’t have the focus anymore.  It sucks, but what can you do.

Anyways, back to my rant…

Like you didn’t know it wasn’t going to be one.

I had an awake period during the night and powered up the ol’ eyepad for some bookity.

Me:  *reading, reading, reading*  Yeah, not badly handled.  *reading, reading, reading*  *last few pages*  Sure this didn’t wow me or anything, but for 2am…

What.

The.

HELL.

As soon as I read those couple of paragraphs in the final pages of the story, I knew it.

An m/m?  Friends to lovers?  Gay?  Bi.  Twu Wuv.  zOMG!  Remember that girl from high school?  A reunion?

Me: Well, Gollee Gee. One wonders if doth there be-est a sequel to this-eth.

Look, I don’t give a toss whether it’s PC to hate m/m/f, hate m/f in m/m or whatever at the moment.  Couldn’t give a shit.  It’s a debate that will always be rehashed.

But the ambush menage?  This is another thing entirely.  And, yep, I’m using this word deliberately given the context.  I mean the last couple of pages?  Seriously??

I fucking hate that.

Posted in books, m/m, maybe it's me but, menage, pet peeve/fave rant, reading | 9 Comments

random awesomeness: library series

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Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

random awesomeness: library series

Posted in awesomeness, extra further randomness, libraries, serious randomness, serious shit | 1 Comment