Opinions | Buttercup of Doom ep 42

BODep42-opinionsAvailable FREE on: Project iRadioiTunesStitcherAndroidTune-In
and now available on Google Play Music

One for me, one for you, hell, let’s live big… opinions for everyone!! From how to deal with reviews to how to ignore the inbred, er, I mean, the uninformed stances which usually comes with a bullhorn. Editorials, politics, comedians, hell, even faith is nothing but opinion. So first we differentiate between fact, assumption and opinion, and then cover the types (tropes) of opinion, and then… Oh there’s just so much chewy goodness. And even a little commentary — because that’s yet another type of option, so I give you a link to “Don’t read the comments” by Just Between Us girls Allison Raskin and Gaby Dunn.

Sponsors: Project iRadio’s Patreon Page | Kelli Owen Patreon Page | Scares That Care: org / weekend | Armcast Podcast

Suggestions/Requests: n/a (to suggest/request use the form or post on FB)

Mentions/Shoutouts and Linky-Links: Live Specimens | Black Bubbles | Six Days | Waiting Out Winter | Anne Rice vs. Amazon Reviewers | @RobertSwartwood |  The Horror Show w/ Brian Keene  | Arm & Toof | Necrocasticon | hashtag of the week: #goreexplode | *ahem* #putbuttercuponthebanner

Hashtag Hell: #thong #jimbelushi (I said Jim, I meant John) #johnbelushi #goreexplode #80sHorror #reviews #stephenking #amazon #goodreads #allisonraskin #gabydunn #justbetweenus #youtube #theview #rushlimbaugh #fox #wb #cw #dailyshow #jonstewart #trevornoah #satire #rightwing #leftwing #politics #faith #butthurtbrigade #IMO #trust #debate #roku #patreon #facebook #twitter #instagram #projectiradio #buttercupofdoom #podcast #kelliowen

Coming up: #moviesVSbooks #graffiti #keene

This Week’s Rating: R (language) buttercup ratings system info here 


Dark first, Faith second…

darkfaith_sm Dark Faith is coming… it’s coming soon. You should click the book cover over there and pre-order it if you haven’t already. Me? I’m going to light a cigarette, fill my coffee cup and spew a little regarding this collection—with Maurice‘s blessings, if not request.

Faith is not god. Faith is not religion. Faith can be a belief. It can be a trust. And among the things that faith can be, you would occasionally find “just a word.” In this collection, that’s what it was originally. Well, more of a concept than a word, but it wasn’t the whole sentence. It wasn’t intended to be the whole collection.

As I said in my Dark Faith Devotions contribution on Apex’s blog—after I had a fit when I saw the last question—the original idea behind this book was to cover the themes of Mo’Con: race, gender & faith. Note that Faith is part of the whole. The collection was supposed to encompass Mo’Con, the heart of the conversations and panels, and point behind the last four gatherings.

During the editing, while checking on Maurice’s sanity, I was occasionally regaled with tales of woe regarding Race and Gender submissions. Apparently, even for atheists, Faith is easier to write about, thus, Faith overrode the other two ideas in the final TOC. I hadn’t actually realized this until I saw a review of Dark Faith the same day I received the Devotions questions and called Maurice to have a tizzy. I knew that mine was the only Gender story and that Moe had a Gender poem to compliment it, but the fact that Race had also been lost was news to me. In response, he sent me the TOC as requested, with a notation next to each story regarding the concept it falls under…

POEM:  “The Story of Belief-Non” by Linda D. Addison – faith
“Ghosts of New York” by Jennifer Pelland (3600 words)  – faith
“I Sing a New Psalm” by Brian Keene (2000 words) – faith
“He Who Would Not Bow” by Wrath James White (6000 words) – faith
“Zen and the Art of Gordon Dratch’s Damnation” by Douglas F. Warrick (6700 words) – faith
“Go Tell It on the Mountain” by Kyle S. Johnson (3500 words) – faith
“Different from Other Nights” by Eliyanna Kaiser (3700 words) – faith
POEM:  “Lilith” by Rain Graves – faith
“The Last Words of Dutch Schultz Jesus Christ” by Nick Mamatas (4100 words) – faith
“To the Jerusalem Crater” by Lavie Tidhar (2900 words) – faith
“Chimeras & Grotesqueries” by Matt Cardin (5300 words) -faith
“You Dream” by Ekaterina Sedia (3900 words) – faith
“Mother Urban’s Booke of Dayes” by Jay Lake (5000 words) – faith
“The Mad Eyes of the Heron King” by Richard Dansky (4400 words) – faith
“Paint Box, Puzzle Box” by DT Friedman (6000 words) – art
“A Loss For Words” by J. C. Hay (5000 words) – art
“Scrawl” by Tom Piccirilli (4000 words) -art/sex
POEM:  “C{her}ry Carvings” by Jennifer Baumgartner – gender
“Good Enough” by Kelli Dunlap (3500 words)] – gender
“First Communions” by Geoffrey Girard (2600 words) – faith
“The God of Last Moments” by Alethea Kontis (5000 words)] – faith
“Ring Road” by Mary Robinette Kowal (5100 words) – faith
“The Unremembered” by Chesya Burke (4800 words) – race/faith
POEM:  “Desperata” by Lon Prater – faith?
“The Choir” by Lucien Soulban (5000 words) – ?
“Days of Flaming Motor Cycles” by Catherynne M. Valente (4000 words) – ?
“Miz Ruthie Pays Her Respects” by Lucy A. Snyder (2900) – faith
POEM:  “Paranoia” by Kurt Dinan – faith
“Hush” by Kelly Barnhill (3500 words) – faith?
“Sandboys” by Richard Wright (3900 words) – faith?
“For My Next Trick, I’ll Need a Volunteer” by Gary A. Braunbeck (8000 words) – faith

You see that? My/Jen’s Gender. One Race, but not race alone, it’s in combination with Faith. And three “Art”—which weren’t even in the original plans. Who knew when Alethea, Wrath and I were given the on-the-spot task in the lawn chairs to name this, that our title would be prophetic? Faith it is… But now the small portion of other things looks like they don’t belong, when really, we were just following guidelines and trying not to inundate the poor guy with too many Faith submissions.

Of course, the irony in all of this is that I hate being called a “female” horror writer. When Moe said he wanted the Gender story I laughed and agreed and looked at it as a challenge. And reminded him of that hatred. No one calls Stephen King a “male” horror writer. No one calls Wrath a “black” horror writer. And I dare someone to call Clive Barker a “gay” horror writer. So why are “women” pointed out in the field? I never understood it. I never agreed with it. And here I was, agreeing to be part of it. Okay, if that was the case it’s going to be one helluva bloody, mean, ugly story from a chick, about a chick. People tend to forget that 8% of serial killers are women and almost 40% of domestic abuse comes from the female side of the relationship. I didn’t forget that. I remembered it and ran with it… and hope you enjoy it.

What was my point? Oh, that’s right, that last question on the Devotion. I suppose I could have just lied and tried to twist some form of Faith into my story, but that’s not how I’m built. Instead, I’ll point you to this collection called Dark Faith. You should get one. But remember, titles can be deceiving (look for my forthcoming Vampire Apocalypse, with nary a fang in it). Faith isn’t always god. Faith isn’t always religion. Sometimes, faith is just a word in a title that encompasses a whole lot of other things that only fall under that concept every third Tuesday, when the moon is full, and you hop up and down on one leg, while reciting nursery rhymes to deaf inmates.

And hey, if you’re not doing anything next weekend, come to Mo’Con. It’s going to be fun, and I’ve completely taken over the panels. There will be great food, amazing conversations, friends, colleagues and panels regarding Atheism (faith), Penises (gender/sex), and Blogging (umm… race? Not so much).


I heart irony. I do. I’m not even being snarky. Though usually I prefer it when it’s in someone else’s chi, not mine. I had a completely different post for this morning—because it’s thursday, because it’s coffee talk—but as I walked outside with the laptop and coffee, and plopped onto my spot on the porch, I noticed a new friend. A dragonfly.

A dying dragonfly.

Now those that know me already see the irony. Those that don’t, well, I’m a big fan of dragonflies. Dragonflies and fireflies, my insect weaknesses… The only tattoo [so far] is two dragonflies with multiple meanings—strength, willpower, connections, colored for my children, and nicknamed “Faith” and “Fire”. [“Hope,” the purple one, is getting inked to look like a toe ring next] I have a journal with a dragonfly given to me by a dear friend [who I really need to call]. Another friend completely covered my world in dragonflies when I moved out last fall and left my ex-husband—dotting the apartment with stickers of my lovely little iridescent friends. Another friend saw one and took an amazing picture, thought of me, and gave me a new wallpaper for my phone. And my best friend gave me a silver dragonfly necklace, which hasn’t come off my neck since I opened the box. Dragonflies have always fascinated me. I’m sure it has something to do with the fact that, growing up, I always saw them around water and I love me my bodies of water. Water = happy times, dragonflies were a part of that. They represent a ton of things in different cultures and beliefs. Their symbolism includes an ancient belief that they are the souls of the dead.

And this one is dying.

A maroon body with golden wings at the base that become translucent at the tips. I was excited to see him, until I noted he wasn’t moving. A gentle prod later and there was some flicker of life, but it was weak. i don’t see anything wrong or broken. There are no obvious injuries. But you can tell. These are death throes. I can only presume he’s a victim of last night’s storms. He didn’t find shelter. He got badly beat up by the winds and heavy downpour.

I debated putting it out of its misery, and then irony hit. What kind of karma comes with killing your totem? Is it killing a part of you? Or is it giving it a dignified death? It’s not like they scream when hurt, so I don’t know if he’s in pain or not. I don’t know if he’ll recover or if he’s too weak and will eventually succumb to the call of kin long gone. I don’t know what to do… Which is ironic, since part of the symbolism of a dragonfly is clarity.

He’s still flicking his foot occasionally. My clarity is no where to be seen. I think I’ll name him and give him some time. And if need be, a small corner of the garden…

Crushing Dreams

My muse has this weird new drug she’s on and it caused my mind to move in strange ways. She’s also infected my dreams and given me some new fodder to chew on, but it’s the waking hours that she’s worming into more and more. On occasion lately, I find it amazing that I can carry on an entire conversation without some fleeting thought or full paragraph just dropping into my head. I like it! I’ve actually debated getting stock in pixie stix, which is Wonka, which is Nestle, which is only $34.50 right now…

The monkeys were gone this weekend and I had a lot of time to think. I played with the muse, talked to friends, read, edited, played scrabble and did nothing for a while… and thought. I thought a lot actually. Various storylines, childhood memories [because of that damn 25 list], and just life in general.  We all have the ability to be glass half-empty when we’re down, some have more of a propensity for it than others, and some of us refuse. No matter which you are, try this on… it’s fun.  Think of where you are right now—in life, in love, in career, in everything—and then think back to when you were young. How many things didn’t you expect?

I knew I’d be a writer. Deep down I always had hope with just a smear of faith. But I never expected to meet my favorite author, let alone become a friend. I never expected to meet a lot of the people I’ve met, or travel in the circles I do, or go the places I’ve gone. I never thought my Christmas card list or address book would include people that I absolutely cherish but only see a few times a year. I never expected to get a degree just to ditch it. I never expected to have children that were taller than me [although I really should have seen that one coming] or who could make me smile with the silliest of things. I never expected to be starting life over at 40. And this weekend I did a little mental inventory of all the things I never expected, but am damn glad to have… the things I cherish.

And then wondered why I didn’t expect them.

Seriously, am I alone? Or do we as humans just not expect to get what we want? Even with a glass half-full, do we expect fate and destiny and the gods of dreams to laugh as they crush us? Why? I think things pile up and wear down at our hope, our faith, our fire. Because of a train, I buried six friends one day in high school. As an adult, I watched my daughter’s friend wither away under the power of an unstoppable cancer. And numerous times over the years, I’ve held friends while they cried over lost babies. None of these would ever grow up, find love, have a family, grow old—let alone achieve career goals or dreams. Their hopes were futile, some before they even had them. I’ve loved and lost… and lost… and lost. It makes a heart grow weary. It crushes the memory of a dream that the little girl used to have: the perfect romance, that silver-screen kiss. But it didn’t crush the dream, the dream had already been worn down by everything else. Because our dreams are all connected somewhere deep in our hearts, and it doesn’t matter if it’s love or career or hobby that is crushed, it tarnishes everything else. It plants seeds of pessimism. It makes you believe that it doesn’t really exist, thus protecting you from disappointment. It removes expectations.

I never expected a lot of things that I have right now. And after a weekend of reflection and looking through photos and recalling memories and treasuring those surprises, I realize that dreams never die. They just sleep. No one can crush them but you. “Dare to dream” isn’t about giving your best, it’s about not losing that faith, that fire. It’s about remembering all those things that little girl with the slingshot wanted and hoped for, but resigned not to expect. It’s about willing life to work in your favor, making lemonade, and being unafraid of the seeds.

What do you have that you didn’t expect? What don’t you have that you never expect to get or find? Cherish the first, reach for the second. It’s there. Hiding behind the tarnish of life, waiting to be remembered, discovered and dreamed of once again.

I made a promise to a gravestone on a cold September day in 1986, it’s time to remember that promise…

Subscribe for Updates

*New Release*

click cover to buy on Amazon

Travel Plans

—· Scares that Care ·—
August 2-4, 2019

—· Killer Con ·—
tba 2019

—· Merrimack Valley Halloween Book Festival ·—
tba 2019