At sixteen, Liz had already trudged through hell and back. Having bounced from one foster home to another most of her life, she finally finds herself in a stable home.
Welcome to the April 11th stop on the blog tour for The Secrets that Kill Us by Phoenix Blackwood with Goddess Fish Promotions. Be sure to follow the rest of the tour for spotlights, reviews, author guest posts, and a giveaway! More on that at the end of this post.
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Author Guest Post
How to Create a Great Work Area for Inspiration
I don’t think anything is as important to a writer as their writing space. That being said, everyone’s tastes are different. Some people prefer clean, orderly spaces, some prefer to be surrounded by chaos in the form of their favorite things. Here’s a few things I’ve found that make my writing space a place I look forward to visiting while working on my writing.
Make it comfortable. You’ll never be able to focus on your writing if you’re constantly squirming to try and get comfy. What’s more, you won’t want to be in the space, and therefore will put off writing even more than you might already. Spring for that giant egg chair you can make into a fort, move that soft armchair into your writing space, or dogpile bean bags and pillows to your heart’s content. It doesn’t matter what it looks like or if it fits the idea of a “professional” space – your comfort is key to getting the creative juices flowing.
Make it pretty. Surround yourself with visuals that you both enjoy and that help bring you into your world of writing. If you prefer clean walls with just one or two pictures, select them carefully. If you’re like me and will plaster walls with imagery, make some moodboards for your current project (hell, use the 10 you’ve already made) and print them out to put up on your walls. That way, when you look up from whatever you’re writing on, you’re still in the world of your story and it’s easier to look back down and keep writing.
Have accessible fidgets. Sometimes, the words aren’t coming as you’d like them to, and you need to sit back for a minute and think. Then you wander on to all the other things you could be doing and get completely distracted from your original train of thought. I find it handy to have some type of fidget toy (I’m a sucker for squishies with orbeez inside) to give your hands something to do. It helps me focus on what to write next and not get distracted with all the other tasks that need to be done around the house.
Make a writing playlist. I don’t like sitting in complete silence, for some reason it makes it difficult to focus, and I know I’m not alone in this. At the same time, I can’t listen to music with words or I’ll start singing along and can’t focus on the words I’m trying to write. Enter, my instrumental playlist. There’s tons of great instrumental music out there, from video game soundtracks to Vitamin String Quartet to orchestra. There’s something for everyone, and eventually you’ll associate your playlist with writing and be ready to go as soon as the music starts.
Above all, make it your own. Whether it’s a small bean bag in a corner with some pictures taped to the wall or an elaborate office filled with books and art prints, make the space yours. This is your place to create, and be proud of it no matter how humble it may seem.
About the Book
The Secrets that Kill Us
by Phoenix Blackwood
Published 5 April 2022
Cinnabar Moth Publishing LLC
Genre: LGBTQIA+ Contemporary
Page Count: 240
Add it to your Goodreads TBR!
At sixteen, Liz had already trudged through hell and back. Having bounced from one foster home to another most of her life, she finally finds herself in a stable home. But stability poses its own challenges after a life of unsteady fooling, and Liz grapples to find a way to be still. Her past still plagues her in this new world. Everything feels wrong, she is at odds with her own body and mind, and struggling to survive.
Liz finds an unlikely friend in Alex, a girl who may not share Liz’s troubled past but strives to understand, even though it means becoming a pariah at school. With Alex’s help, Liz searches for the strength to confront her demons, and the two see each other through addictions, transitions, and the dangerous consequences of coping.
Unable to let herself trust and love, even in this new space with new support, Liz’s trauma begins to drag her under. Some secrets kill, and some truths fight to stay hidden. Unearthing them all will require Liz to trust others despite a lifetime of learning just how dangerous that is.
High school wasn’t much different than middle school, other than things being less sticky and more dingy. I’d made it through freshman year by the skin of my teeth, and now the daunting task of sophomore year stood before me, halfway accomplished. The guys were a lot more obnoxious, graduating from senseless teasing to aggression in order to fulfill their newfound need for overbearing toxic masculinity. I rolled my eyes as I walked past a group of guys pushing each other around, proving my point. At least I wasn’t the new kid this time. I’d somehow managed to keep up with the class and graduate. I’d made it through a year and a half of high school without being held back. It was still a constant struggle. When I got to my locker I squinted at the paper I’d been given for the code, bringing it closer to my face. Contacts weren’t cutting it, I really needed to wear my glasses. But damn, did I hate them. After a few different attempts I managed to get the right numbers and threw the books I didn’t need in. They made a loud slam as they hit the back of the locker.
About the Author
Born and raised in New England, Phoenix has always been a creative – whether it’s painting or writing. From a very young age, Phoenix has envisioned and created characters, writing them into existence and exploring them through visual arts. Having graduated to first-time short story author, Phoenix is embarking on a journey towards novel writing as they finally bring characters they’ve known for years into the world. Phoenix is neurodiverse and intersex and hopes to bring more representation to both topics with their writing. They believe in creating relatable characters that people can find themselves in and empathize with.
Phoenix Blackwood will be awarding a $10 Amazon or B&N gift card to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.a Rafflecopter giveaway
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