Seó Bóthair is Gaelic for “Uncontrolled situation,” “circus,” and “roadshow,” as well as being the title of my watercolor/ink/dry pastel series. Hopefully you’ll find a mini-gallery at the end of this schpiel, assuming I did this WordPress thing right. As a Gen-X gal, blogging isn’t my forte. At some point, I’ll figure out how to put up a “gif” and all hell will break loose. It’s likely that I’ll be editing this post over the next few days. Like, a lot.
I’m offering limited edition, embellished, matted, framed prints for $100 a piece on Friday, November 24, with free shipping. Whatta bargain….and how original a holiday gift would that be? Plus, you have the joy of not only giving a one-of-a-kind gift, but supporting outsider arts.
After November 24, paintings will go back up to their usual price of $125.
So how about some other questions about this funky collection? Following is an interview between Vivacia K. Ahwen and Rachel Robbins:
VKA: What is this whimsy?
RR: So glad you asked! Seó Bóthair started as a freestyle watercolor series which I painted over a course of thirty days, when I was experiencing that “Stuck in a rut” feeling that so many of us deal with periodically. Somehow I stumbled across Barbara Diane Barry’s Painting Yourself Out of A Corner: The Art of Getting Unstuck. For 30 days I painted what were more or less liquid scribbles, trying to keep my time limited to short bursts. As with most self-help books I read, I deviated from The Rulez, but used it as a starting point and springboard to rebuild my engine.
VKA: You said watercolor, but I’m seeing a bunch of black ink here, as well. And the embellished prints have pastel dust on them.
RR: Right. I set aside the journal of paintings for a year, found it stashed on my writing porch, and when I was bored one night decided to trace the pictures I could find within the splashes/smears/streaks of color. The ink gave the pictures a stained glass quality which appealed to me, and I kept going with it. Part of the pleasure in looking back at that month was how quickly my mind worked to find the order in colorful confusion.
VKA: “In all chaos, there is cosmos.” That’s Jungian theory, right?
RR: Yep. Gold star, Vivacia. That psychology minor comes in handy sometimes, doesn’t it?
VKA: No snarkiness, please, Rachel. (Snark is my department.) Some of these paintings are freaking me out, TBH. Angels, demons, monsters, fantasy creatures, some Syd and Marty Kroftiness…But I like all the naked humanoids, gotta say. Can you speak to that?
RR: Thanks, I guess? People seem to enjoy them, and find the fun despite the occasional creepy moment. Playful is what I’m really going for. As you look closer, and spin the pictures around, you’ll find all kinds of critters. Hang them upside or down, there’s magic all around.
VKA: Hm. Okay, so how can I get one?
RR: I’ve got a PayPal set up. You’ll be using my “real” email, as opposed to Ms. VKA’s account. I’m firstname.lastname@example.org. Paintings will arrive within two weeks after I receive payment.
VKA: $100, you say?
RR: Yep. Obviously, if you live outside the U.S., it’ll be more…as it costs an arm and a leg to mail overseas.
VKA: Fair enough. Any closing comments?
RR: Yes. I’ve been asked to do book illustrations/cover design before, and that’s something I’m totally up for. However, indie companies seem to offer royalty-based only, and I need an ACTUAL payment to cover my materials, time, craftsmanship, et al. Seó Bóthair is different from my usual styles, I tend to do a lot of mixed media, sculpture, fabric art, and acrylic on canvas. That said, I’m flexible, and can adjust styles to what your needs are. I’m also interested in designing album covers and skateboard decks, so spread the word. Again, my email is email@example.com. Please write “ARTWORK” in the subject line, so I don’t mistake you for spam.
VKA: Perfect. Thanks for sharing your time, Rachel. I mean, it’s not every day you get to hang out with your alter-ego, right?
RR: Right, Vivacia. And happy Turkey (or Furkey) Day, one and all….Wishing you your very own seó bóthair. Adieu!
~~ RR and vka
P.S. Find me on Twitter: @SheRaPrincess is my handle. Mostly I just troll Donald Trump, but occasionally post something semi-noteworthy. Still sticking to that 140-character formula, though. Who needs over 250 [named] characters, besides Marcel Proust? Don’t answer that.
P.P.S. Also, I do the Book of Face: https://www.facebook.com/love.vivacia.k.ahwen/
Good evening, Angels…
[“GOOD EVENING, CHARLIE!”]
I hope you took advantage of the freebie Angels’ Prey flight of fancy. As I mentioned before, I’ve put erotica on the back shelf for awhile, but may return to it with enough encouragement. A handful of folks have asked me to get back to the Dark Alchemy chronicles, and I was thinking of writing a series of novelettes (7,500-17,500 words), keeping the price of each at 99 cents. Since I’m interested in switching point-of-views, I’d be moving from the first person narrative of Angels’ Prey to the third person. This goes against current erotica trends, but I’ve never been one to follow trends, so….
…if you did read/enjoy Angels’ Prey, please leave a review on Amazon or Goodreads. If you read/did NOT enjoy Angels’ Prey, please leave a review, as well. I’m interested in what you have to say. (Unless you’re a troll. Then I don’t give a rat’s ass.) If it looks like there’s an audience, I’ll bring you more naughty fun with Clarice, Jabazael, and Maelfar. Not to mention a host of other angels, daemons, and extraordinary humans who are ready to get tangled up in the wars of the spirit and physical worlds. Plus have XXX-rated romps. I aim to please.
P.S. If you didn’t get a chance to grab Angels’ Prey, here’s the handy link to Amazon:
How was THAT for clickbait? So, my book giveaway has reached it’s finale until next season. But you can still get get that naughty MMF angel action burning up your Kindle for FREE, today! Here’s your handy-dandy link:
A great way to carry yourself over until our Wayward Sons return this Thursday. WOOT!
Okay, now that we got This Guy out of the way….
Look, it was on “stock photos” on Google Images for “trashy angels.” Since the gettyimages tag is still on it makes me think there’s a copyright involved which I’m violating. In which case, may the owner of this photo please contact me so that I can remove it at once. Apparently, there are tons of Trashy Angels available, but this fella fit the bill. He’s buyin’ what I’m sellin’!
It’s Getcher-Freak-On-Friday! On a whim, I decided to revive this ol’ chestnut, previously published by Noble Romance (that now-defunct indie company wrought with scandal and corruption) under my own “publishing company.” [I call said press “Ahwenterprises, LLC…” which is a self-pleasuring way of saying KDP.] Here’s the original blurbie:
ONE WAS NEVER ENOUGH
Clarice Larrabee’s scandalous dalliances as a maid in the Oakesdale estate have her expelled to the Holy Order of St Anne for a life of celibacy and repentance. Lord Frothingham’s calculated seduction and Clarice’s romance with his handsome son George led to her social and spiritual ruin, leaving her heartbroken, scorned, and bereft. There is no place in Victorian English society for a love so passionate, nor a will so bold, nor a mind so bright as Clarice Larrabee, who now dedicates herself to the convent, praying with all her might for redemption. Yet how long can she run from her true nature?
HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF
An amorous visitation from an Angel named Jabazael reawakens the sensual side of Clarice, from which there is no turning back. After a night of wanton lust in the arms of this powerful being, she realizes her destiny is not within the confines of a manse, nor the walls of a cathedral, but in another realm altogether. After her surrender to Angel Jabazael, she encounters Daemon Maelfar, who reveals Clarice’s unique destiny as a receptacle of angelic light and diabolical darkness. But her role in the universal balance between good and evil can only begin after a ritual of erotic pleasure when both holy creatures share her body, where she submits to becoming eternally…
It’s weird, it’s wicked dirty, and it was fun as heck to write. Think of a triple-X (try MMF) comedic tribute to Victorian Gothic romance novels (of the “Dear Reader” variety), and a total parody of V.C. Andrews. But –spoiler alert– no one has sex with any siblings, cousins, or uncles. I did have fun breaking all the “Never use passive voice, adverbs, exclamation points, purple prose, em-dashes, run-on sentences, hyperbole, etc. rules.” The title and description are a bit misleading, since the majority of Clarice’ sordid tale takes place at the Oakesdale estate, and the angels are only in the first and last couple of chapters. I had every intention of turning it into a series, so it’s primarily sexy backstory.
But, as I’ve mentioned here before, I am on an erotica hiatus, until it gets to be fun, again. In my last post, I mentioned clearing the desk drawers of old work, in order to keep making room for new fiction, poetry, and art.
As with all KDP books, Angels’ Prey is available for FREEEEEEEEE with Kindle Unlimited! Periodically I’ll be doing promotional price drops, but can’t seem to figure out how that whole thing works. That may not happen for awhile, but, still…. $2.99 is way cheaper than a small pumpkin spice latte, and Angels’ Prey Porny-Purple-Prose is way more stimulating than caffeine. Not to mention way spicier than flavoured corn syrup.
In a few days, AP will also be available as a paperback, for people like me who get headaches reading e-books. Plus, it’s just aesthetically pleasing to hold a solid book in your hands, and you retain more from turning physical pages than scrolling on a screen. True story! I’ll update this with the link in the near future.
Have a lovely weekend.
“She’d been subterranean for little more than an hour, and already was forgetting life on the outside….”
The Land of Nod is a psychedelic Roman a clef, a journey of magical realism, a dark children’s tale for adults. Recovered methadone baby Kassandra Bullet is on a quest for family, faith, and Self. Along her journey she meets a lively set of players: 78-year-old potato farmer Adelaide Wentworth, Bufo Alvarius rancher Toad Licker, former Illitch Chief Deputy John Losa, her doomed lover Raven Black, and even a mime who just might be Jesus Christ. Will this strange girl in a strange land stumble upon salvation, or descend into destruction?
THE LAND OF NOD
Nothing Is Real.
Surprise! I’m putting out a new book this week.
Pirates, be ye warned.
As the title of my post indicates, this here is a Preemptive Strike. Hi, Twitter! Lots of content warning and some ’splainin’ is in order for Vivacia K. Ahwen and Rachel Robbins’ new release, The Land of Nod. I’ll try to hit all points I can think of. Though I’ll surely be reminded if I forget something 😉
Let’s start with authors and genre, shall we? Vivacia K. Ahwen writes erotica, but has grown quite weary of it. Rachel Robbins writes some hot stuff, but it’s not the primary focus of the story. More magical realism, less wank. Since I (Rachel) haven’t published anything under my own name, I decided a good way to cross over into my lit fiction and still have some brand recognition was co-authoring with Vivacia. Also, let me be clear: The Land of Nod is a New Adult book, not a Young Adult. Rather than list all the potential “triggers” in the book, let me just say there’s a bunch of them. If you are easily offended by exploring upsetting issues, please read something else. The MC is only eighteen by the end of the book, which would scream YA, but there’s some seriously creeptastic stuff in Nod. It might be considered appropriate for the teen set back before we started infantilizing readers, but nowadays it’s not. There is physical, emotional, and sexual abuse. The underground toad ranch is not a safe space. Also….
I started writing LON in 1992, and it was an on/off labor of love that kept me semi-sane through some dark years. The Land of Nod was my playground. Unfortunately, by the time I’d finished (2004), the novel was already irrelevant and outdated. For example, people are going to think of actress Sandra Bullock when they read “Kassandra Bullet.” I’d never heard of her until long after Miss Congeniality had come out, and since Kaybee’s name is integral to character, plot, setting, theme, etc. I can’t change it.
Twilight’s Jacob Black wouldn’t ride his motorcycle onto the pop-culture horizon for at least another year. Once he did, I was crushed, having not found a publisher for Land of Nod. You see, “Raven Black” (also from a fictional Indian Nation) is Kassandra’s love interest, and –once again—his name is part of the story. Oh, and THEN the Raven Cycle series came out. I read the first of them this year, and it seems there’s a similar magical realism thing going on with that. Raven Black is all connected with birds, ya see.
Which leads me to my next woe/worry: I’m so going to get nailed for cultural appropriation and stereotypes. Even though I was attempting to address problematic stereotypes and do some lit deconstruction with the Illitch tribe, that likely will be an issue for some readers. I can see people taking excerpts out of context, kicking up some internet outrage, and start a campaign of 1-starring without reading the book. Because of what I’m going for, that’s a risk I’ll have to take. Tina Fey got a major smackdown for doing something similar in “The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” and she did it far better than I. So, there it is.
Mexico and France chapters may be considered “problematic,” due to my renegade use of Spanglish and Franglish, which was intended. Also, the characters they meet will be called out as stereotypical. Fair enough, but they were based on the old-school locals I met while I was staying in the area. Old school is what I wanted, and that’s how I wrote them.
While we’re talking race/nationality, Kassandra Bullet’s is never clearly stated, which was also deliberate. Also-also, there are people with disabilities in the book, and some LGBTQ community, too. Even though I may be pressured to reveal my ability or lack thereof, or speak to strangers about my sexuality, it ain’t going to happen. I’ll write whatever I damn well please, and have watched one too many authors bend under pressure, feeling the need to share personal information so that they can prove themselves “qualified” to write marginalized characters. I’m not doing it.
Oh, and there’s no table of contents.
Think I covered my bases. Since I’m not doing a lotta promo, am negging the book in a public forum, and the fact that it’s around 600 pages, I don’t expect many people to read The Land of Nod. This post is primarily just to save me some time deflecting down the road. If you’ve read this far and still want to check it out, here is the Kindle Link, but the paperback –which will be available next week– is way cooler. Not only because the cover art looks even trippier, but it’s meant to be read as a page-turner, turn, rather than a scroll and slide. It just is.
FREE with Kindle Unlimited! $9.99 *cough* without:
Maybe you’ll love it.
Though I haven’t read LON in well over a decade, I do remember having a blast working on it. For the most part. Okay, I cried a few times, too. I hope you have a blast reading it and cry a few times as well. Embrace the weirdness. Listen To The Warm.
Above all, I just needed to get The Land of Nod out of the drawer so that I can close that chapter of my life, and focus on writing something new. There’s a ton of stuff in the works, and I’m cool with saying a final goodbye to Toad Licker.
RR + vka