“Do the thing and you will have the power.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson
I have wanted to start writing a blog about my writing escapades and explorations for the longest time, but I kept putting it off and off and off... and off and off... and - can you guess? - off. Despite knowing that it was something that could only help, not hinder, my writing process (as well as help further develop any potential connections and networking opportunities that I want to make), I think I was nervous.
Would anyone even care about what I have to say?
What if people find me annoying?
What if I'm the only one who ever reads my own blog?
These things, these doubts, all stem from my deep-rooted anxieties regarding people and their perceptions of me. I'm a bore. I'm irritating. I'm a waste of valuable internet space (my anxiety doesn't understand the internet's potential for infinity, fool that it is). Wouldn't it be pretty damn cool, though, I thought to myself, if people actually... enjoyed my words? What a concept!
And, even if they don't, what am I losing by doing 'the thing'? A narrow slice of pride if it doesn't work out? The small amount of money I parted with for a domain name?
What do I lose by not doing 'the thing', though? Opportunities. Endless opportunities. Opportunities to learn, to connect, to advance, to share, to ramble, to focus, to hone, to experiment.
Why wouldn't I do 'the thing'?
I've learned a lesson in creating this blog today.
Always do the thing. If it doesn't work out, you tried and then you can try something else. Trying things is fun! Failing at things is a learning experience.
Do the damn thing.
Nature is inspiring! I took this photo in my garden.
Anyway, moving on from my self-indulgent ramble (hey, blogging is a form of self-indulgence; LEAN INTO IT, MY DUDES).
Let's talk a little about who I am, what I do, what I want to do, what I want to achieve.
As you may know from the name at the top of this site, I'm Stéph. I'm 29-years old; I live in Scotland; I've been with my partner, Nattie, for almost seven years; I currently 'parent' two rescue hamsters, one adorably and rambunctiously attention-seeking girl and one shy and nervous boy who can be affectionate when he chooses to be; I am a 'hobby hobbyist', as a pen-pal of mine once said, which is somebody who collects hobbies as a hobby; I'm a creator, crafter and artist; I'm a green-thumbed plant-hoarder; I'm a swear-and-blasphemy-powered gamer; I'm a godless heathen; I'm an avid absorber of books (a literary Abzorbaloff?); I'm a long-time acquaintance of mental and physical illness; I'm an eager and budding atheist pagan; following from the previous statement, I'm also a walking dichotomy.
Most importantly, though, I'm queer.
My queerness doesn't define me, but it defines and shapes my writing. Growing up in the 90s, I had very little representation of my 'sort' in books. If there ever was anything, it was merely a hint of queer. As a result, I make a point of bringing queerness into every fantasy, speculative and horror story I write. I do my best to push representation past intersectional lines too and try to include characters and facets from other minorities in as respectful a manner as I possibly can.
My queerness, my feminism, my mental health advocacy... these are all things that feature in my work.
At the moment, I'm working on a web serial that brings all of these aspects into one. A horror concept set in the city I currently inhabit, Stirling (or a version of it, at least), this serial is something that has become so close to my heart.
Apart from that, there are two other projects that I currently have on the back-burner, but this serial (until I'm ready to share the title, shall we call it... The Queer Feminist Death Serial? The QFDS for short?) is what I am most itching to write for now.
With regards to the QFDS (it's catchy already... I like it!), I'll be:
All that aside, this will be your regular ol' writer's blog! I'll post book reviews, brain dumps, ramblings about my day-to-day life and the occasional bit of book-related activism, bits about my two work-in-progress novels. Also, hamster photos. Is everyone down for hamster photos?
If you got this far, thank you so much for reading! I hope you enjoy this blog as much as I am excited to write it.
It's my new baby.
My ghostly, witchy, literary baby.
Stay spooky, friends.