Posted on February 10, 2016
I wanted to offer you a SAMPLE of what I’m writing… because I’m back to work on a YA transgender story. (Having finished and adult bigender love story, which is being professionally edited.)
This book is as yet, untitled… but I’m thinking about My Crunch Life, as the other narrator is trying his damnedest to be a retro hippy. PLEASE CHECK OUT MY CHAPTER SEVEN!! I would dearly love to know what you think. THANK YOU!!
Thursday 3:00 AM
I often dream about that day… and about the conflict, the anxiety, and the hopelessness that led to the flicker of contemplation about how much easier it would be… if I didn’t have to be anymore. Soon, though, the idea wormed its way into my mind; and even though I pushed it away, it came back. The brilliant and terrifying idea I had for of ending my pain came back and came back until it became a real option.
I’d been rejected by my peers a long time ago. My isolation at school almost didn’t affect me anymore. Alone is my natural state. I told myself over and over that solitary was how I liked it—how I wanted it. And a big part of me believed this.
As of last fall, only a few people still wasted energy on bullying me at school, unless you consider acting with total indifference toward somebody a manner of oppressing. To most kids, I was too insignificant to bully. I was nothing, except to Sydney Harper, and thus to her vicious clones. Sydney knew I was a threat—an academic threat—and she used every means possible to push me over the edge that I was already precariously close to.
But to be real, what I tried to do that day… it was mostly because of my body. Because of what was happening to my body—in terms of a word I’ve grown to fucking hate. Puberty. I was not the person I was starting to turn into. My child’s physique was far preferable to the… the hairy, big-balled, deep-voiced beast with constant erections who was taking over my body. And maybe it sounds like an exaggeration, but this is how it felt.
I put all logic aside—my mother’s future suffering included—and headed into what I saw as the light at the end of a brief and agonizing tunnel.
When I climbed up the rickety ladder into the ancient tree house in the only tree in the neighborhood, I was more truly trying to climb out of the pit of despair I’d fallen into. I saw relief in what I was going to do up there.
It was my only option, because, how can you live in a body that isn’t yours?
I wake up sweating because in my sleep I was back in that damned tree house sucking away at my bottle of Citrus Cooler Gatorade, scared to toss the next handful of pills in my mouth, but more scared not to. And having no words to explain to my mother—who I knew loved me—what was happening to my body and my mind. And every single time I wake from this dream, I’m assailed by an image of Ma, wearing the pain that for so long lived in my heart on her face—and I know I put it there!!!
“Ma!” I’m a coward. I was a coward on the day I tried to take my own life and leave my mother with nothing but five words scribbled on the back of a gum wrapper, and I’m a coward now. “Ma!”
But maybe it’s okay to be a coward, if you admit you’re one.
I’m faster on my feet than she is so instead of waiting for Ma to come to me, I jump out of my bed and run down the short hall, throw open her bedroom door where she is already sitting up, about to push herself from the bed. “Jules… my baby!”
Her arms come around me and I’m safe in a way I didn’t know I could be safe last October. “I dreamed about it again….”
Ma pulls me down so I’m lying on her chest and I know I’m not too heavy because my body is still a child’s thanks to the puberty blockers. “You did the right thing by coming to me, Jules. You’ve got me to turn to…. hear me?”
“Uh-huh.” I want to cry but tears don’t come. I think I cried them all last fall and there are none left. “I hate waking you up—you’ve gotta work in the morning.”
Ma’s grip gets tighter on my shoulders. “I woke up for you when you were a hungry baby and a piss-wet boy, and damn it, I’ll wake up for you now.”
“Can I stay?”
“You think I’d let you outta my sight?”
We both laugh. “I’m a pain in the ass.”
“A pain my ass couldn’t live without. Now lie down beside me and tell your Ma about what happened at school today.”
Incidentally, the note said, I can’t take it anymore. But I never knew I could turn to my mother, and she would change things this way. In this life-saving way.
Thanks for reading!! I’d love to hear what you think!!
Posted on January 14, 2016
Today is a big day!! It is COVER REVEAL DAY for my upcoming February 14th release from CoolDudes Publishing, THE ART OF HERO WORSHIP. And the first novel in my Mia Kerick Adult Collection, which focuses on the storyline without cutting down on passion.
Here’s the blurb:
Trembling on the floor, pressed beneath a row of seats in a dark theater, college freshman Jason Tripp listens to the terrifying sound of gunshots, as an unknown shooter moves methodically through the theater, randomly murdering men, women, and children attending a student performance of Hamlet. Junior Liam Norcross drapes his massive body on top of Jason, sheltering the younger man from the deathly hail of bullets, risking his life willingly, and maybe even eagerly.
As a result of the shared horror, an extraordinary bond forms between the two young men, which causes discomfort for family and friends, as well as for Jason and Liam, themselves. And added to the challenge of two previously “straight” men falling into a same-sex love, are the complications that arise from the abundance of secrets Liam holds with regard to a past family tragedy. The fledgling passion between the men seems bound to fade away into the darkness from which it emerged.
Jason, however, is inexplicably called to rescue his hero in return, by delving into Liam’s shady past and uncovering the mystery that compels the older man to act as the college town’s selfless savior.
The Art of Hero Worship takes the reader on a voyage from the dark and chilling chaos that accompanies a mass shooting to the thrill of an unexpected and sensual romance.
Posted on December 25, 2015
I hope you are all enjoying the Season with those you love!! I appreciate every one of you who reads this message!!
Love from Mia ❤
Posted on December 9, 2015
Here is my Facebook post from this morning:
So happy that “Come To My Window” won a Rainbow Award for Best Lesbian YA Fiction. It released last January during a time of huge turmoil, which I will not go into. I wanted to just forget all about this book, as in my mind it somehow caused my troubles. However thanks to support of good friends, and Raine O’Tierney swooping in to save the day by listing it for me on Amazon, “Come To My Window” came into existence (with meager fanfare). ❤
Little did I know it would make me so happy almost a year later!! 🙂
When you least expect it, expect it!!
Love Spell also did well in the Rainbow Awards, coming in 4th place for Gay YA Fiction.
Here is how it panned out in YA Gay Fiction:
Proud to be in a group so AWESOME!!
Inclination even got in on the act…
A GREAT DAY and THANK YOU to ELISA RAINBOW for your DEDICATION!!
Posted on December 1, 2015
Today is release day for my YA LGBTQ Contemporary Romance, Clean. And while there is romance, I struggle to classify Clean as STRICTLY a romance, because it is a book about social issues. In particular, it is a book about teenage substance abuse.
The two high school seniors who are the main characters in Clean are not using drugs and alcohol to alleviate boredom or to try out adult behavior or because of peer pressure. Trevor and Lanny use substances to medicate themselves—to dull the pain of difficult lives.
So, as the author, what would I like you to know about Clean?
First, I would like you to know Clean is very edgy. VERY EDGY. I went back and forth on whether to list it as a YA or a New Adult, but YA won out because of the two narrators’ youthful voices. This is the story of two teenagers, and although they deal with some tough stuff and experience sexual situations and abuse substances, it does not change the fact that this is a YOUNG ADULT novel. It is a mature YA novel, and edgy one, but still it was written to be read by teens and adults who enjoy books for teens.
Here are a few quotations about edgy YA that ring true to me:
“In terms of YA fiction, I think “edgy” means moving closer to adult genre fiction. Horror beyond R.L Stein, romance with a more adult view of sex, adventure with more realistic violence. It’s also more emotionally intense. There is still a big difference between what is acceptable in YA vs. adult fare, but it’s getting closer.” ~Austin Camacho
“Edgy to me has always been about topics that were once considered taboo. Today, some books cover illegal drug use and alcoholism but I’m seeing more titles about characters who must overcome sexual violence, are struggling with sexual identity, or must find a way to create their place in family groups. There seem to be more stories for YA about abandonment (youths living without parents), responsibility (youths who are the parents), terminal illness, and death.” ~Tony Russo
Secondly, I would like my readers to know that Trevor’s voice is written in the stream of consciousness style. Here are a few definitions of stream of consciousness I found online.
“In literature, stream of consciousness is a method of narration that describes in words the flow of thoughts in the minds of the characters.” Literary Devices
Its “purpose is to emulate the passage of thought through your mind without any inhibitors.” May Huang
Here is an example of how I use stream of consciousness in Clean:
“Laughter bursts up out of me too it just forces its way up from my gut to my throat to my lips and I can’t hold it back and I don’t even try too hard. The sound of my laughter fills up the cold shed where we’ll be drunk soon enough and he’ll forget I stopped being an asshole for a minute or two just long enough to laugh.” ~Trevor, Clean by Mia Kerick
I promise—I do know how to punctuate appropriately; at least, most of the time. But when writing in the stream of consciousness style, punctuation and grammar take a back seat to capturing the genuine movement of thoughts as they move through my character’s brain.
Third, I would also like to admit that I took a break halfway through the writing of Clean because the book was as tough to write as I think it might be, in places, to read. The research was intense—on the topics of head injury, drug abuse, alcoholism, and Alcoholics Anonymous, as well as on the sexual abuse of a minor—and it took an emotional toll on me. And writing the gritty downfall of two boys is not exactly fun. But the jewels I uncovered—the love, the trust, the hope—at the end of the novel made the journey worthwhile for me as a writer, and I hope for you as a reader, as well.
Finally, I suffered over the book’s title and the author’s note. Here’s why:
I do not like the use of the word clean for describing a person who does not have a sexually transmitted disease. I believe that having and STD does not make a person dirty, which is implied by calling people without STDs clean. Trevor, having been sexually abused by his guardian for the past several years, feels that he is dirty in more ways than one. He believes that he is in some ways impure, and thinks that he is also somehow dirtied by his lifestyle of drug and alcohol use. He longs to feel clean, and he considers Lanny perpetually clean. The subtitle, “Only by coming clean do they learn that they were always clean,” was added to clarify that I, in no way, am suggesting that people can be clean or dirty based on their behavior, or the status of their health.
And now, about the author’s note… It was my first time speaking directly to my readers (not through my characters) when not in the confines of an interview. I focused my notes on the way that many teens believe there is an immediate and complete solution to life’s problems, and it comes in the form of a pill or a joint or something you can snort or inhale. I realize that there are prescribed medications that can ease mental turmoil, and I do not intend to say that this is not true, but I believe that these medications work most effectively combined with hard work.
And now, I truly hope you are enlightened and uplifted by my fifteenth novel, Clean.
Posted on November 16, 2015
It is finally NOVEMBER 16, 2015 THE DAY OF MY COVER REVEAL for Clean!! MY YA LGBTQ EDGY ROMANCE
I think this cover might be my favorite so far. The colors, the cover model, the title and the sub-title–ALL OF IT!!
Thank you to my awesomely talented cover designer LOUIS C HARRIS for a brilliant cover and to LOUIS J HARRIS
for this AMAZING cover reveal video trailer!!!
Here is the blurb, in case you want to know who the beautiful guy on the cover is!! (He is Trevor…)
High school senior Lanny Keating has it all. A three-sport athlete at Lauserville High School looking at a college football scholarship, with a supportive family, stellar grades, boy band good looks… until the fateful day when it all falls apart.
Seventeen-year-old Trevor Ladd has always been a publicly declared zero and the high school badboy. Abandoned by his mother and sexually abused by his legal guardian, Trevor sets his sights on mere survival.
Lanny seeks out Trevor’s companionship to avoid his shattered home life. Unwilling to share their personal experiences of pain, the boys explore ways to escape, leading them into sexual experimentation, and the abuse of illegal drugs and alcohol. Their mutual suffering creates a lasting bond of friendship and love.
When the time finally comes to get clean and sober, or flunk out of high school, only one of the boys will graduate, while the other spirals downward into addiction.
Will Lanny and Trevor find the strength to battle their demons of mind-altering substances as well as emotional vulnerability?
Clean takes the reader on a gritty trip into the real and raw world of teenage substance abuse.
Here are a few reviews of Clean….
“Mia Kerick’s young adult coming of age romance, Clean, is stunningly beautiful and perfectly paced as the two young men begin their processes of healing and self-discovery. I love this book. I love just about everything about it. Trevor and Lanny are marvelous characters, and their interactions ring genuine and true even throughout the worst of their problems. Kerick adroitly merges social issues such as sexual and physical abuse, family dysfunction and addiction in a compelling and lovely story that never becomes preachy, sentimental or exploitative, and her writing style is measured and perfectly suited to her story. There are passages in Clean that are lyrical and beg to be read aloud, especially some of Trevor and Lanny’s later conversations. I didn’t want the story to end and felt a bit bereft when it finally did. Clean is most highly recommended.”
Jack Mangus Readers Favorites 5 STARS
“Kerick delivers a gripping and poignant tale in this unforgettable story of redemption, second chances and absolution. The writing will immerse readers in this tale of two young men facing their inner torment and demons. Clean will grip you to the core, strip you naked and make you believe that second chances do exist. Though classified as a young adult title, this is a story that any reader can enjoy.”
Michelle Tan RT SOURCE
“RECOMMENDED by the US Review
“Kerick’s novel is a well-paced, well-written, and thoughtful approach to teen angst and the perils of drug and alcohol addiction. As the novel shifts focus between Lanny and Trevor’s voices, we begin to see the deeper layers hidden beneath hardened exteriors, each of them revealing their true thoughts and feelings, until gradually they soften and their lives and future change for the good. Kerick is non-judgemental and compassionate, dealing with mature themes for young adults, while providing very realistic characters in Lanny and Trevor. A compelling read, Clean adds Kerick to the likes of writers who challenge us to find the hidden humanity in others. It’s a positive novel to help young adults and teenagers often ignored in the journey we all share together through the obstacles of life.”
US Review Dylan Ward
“Sigh, young love! Merely saying that I loved this novel will not be enough. I stayed up all night to read it and find out what happens in the end. I love it when I cannot guess the ending. Mia Kerick gave readers a rich text with amazing characters and beautifully written words. As a reader, you cannot ask for anything more! Ten shining stars for a new rising star!”
Rabia Tanveer Readers’ Favorites 5 STARS
If you feel you just must have this YA LGBTQ Contemporary Romance… here’s the link!!
Posted on November 2, 2015
And here it is!! My heart-pounding book trailer for Clean by Mia Kerick made by CoolDudes Publishing!!
I’d love to know what you think of this wonderful video creation!!!