5 Days To Go! Let’s Fund Crows on Heartstrings!

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WE’RE 85% FUNDED AND NEED ONE MORE PUSH TO GET FUNDED IN THE NEXT FIVE DAYS!

CLICK HERE TO PLEDGE!

We only have FIVE DAYS! We can do this with your help!

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Crows on Heartstrings is a fully illustrated anthology of short stories. We have a little something for everyone, no matter what your gender, sexuality, or color, we have something for you. We are proud to say that we are mostly created by, for and about lgbtqa+ folks. It’s nothing like you’ve ever seen before. We are also comprised of 23 women, and 3 men, so READ WOMEN!

The project is in its last FIVE DAYS on kickstarter and we need all of your support to bring our dream to life! please pledge if you can, and spread the word. thank you for everything, guys. we would not have made it this far without you!

 

Here are some of our contributors:

@aegisdea @aubreymeeksart @pannan-art @sonialiao @maxwickstrom @weatherfox @alisabishop @heavenlyeros @dodtt @spectre-draws @thevioletknight @shutterbones @artofpan

@theconstantvoice

What Crows on Heartstrings NEEDS:

We need FUNDING. We need your pledges to make this a reality. If you can pledge even just five dollars if you can, and tell five friends personally to pledge as well, we can do this! We want to give you the characters you want to read. Please help us make this inclusive book written and illustrated by 23 women, and 3 men, some or most of us LGBT+ writers and artists.  Come on! We can do it!

CLICK HERE TO PLEDGE!

We only have FIVE DAYS! We can do this with your help!

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Crows on Heartstrings: Only 9 Days Left on Kickstarter!

Check out Sneak Peeks of all the story illustrations from Crows on Heartstrings!

Please click here to back us on Kickstarter!

Doomed Love + CrazyGood International Artists = Bombass Short Story Anthology

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Hey Bloggers! I need to get real with you for a second.

We need more women writing stories.

We need more women being published.

We need more women making art.

We need to see more LGBT and POC characters carrying their own stories and NOT being killed off to further a cisthet white male character’s arc.

We need LGBTQIA+ Stories that are more than reducing characters to their sexualities.

We need to be able to read the characters whenever we want

We need to make all of these demands mainstream and we can do it. I promise you, we can do it. 

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WE NEED YOUR HELP

I curated a book of short stories called Crows on Heartstrings. It’s a book of doomed love stories. The stories aren’t all solely romance though, we include stories from Fantasy, Sci-fi, Period, and Contemporary genres.

We need your help on Kickstarter, so read on and decide if you would like to back us!

We have artists and writers from all over the world, sure, we have some heterosexual romance here, but we focused on being inclusive of ALL types of love.

With Crows on Heartstrings, you can read about:

Love between Asexual witches

A Faery Prince and an Elven Prince whose reason they can’t be together ISN’T that they’re gay and bisexual, respectively

Two ladies who break curses and together and fall deeply and wonderfully in love.

And SO MUCH MORE  ..The stories just keep going on!  We have 13 stories and 2 comics.

Our artists and writers include people you know form tumblr like @pannan-art @maxwickstrom @aegisdea @dodtt @heavenlyeros @artofpan @weatherfox @aubreymeeksart @shadowhimsy @gloriousmonsters @glitzandshadows @alzuna and so many more!

The only thing that we were super stringent about was that all the stories had to be doomed. So your favorite characters are going to suffer. I promise you they will. But the point here is that they will not suffer to be a plot device. Each character is his/her/their own person and we do not sacrifice them for the sake of a heteronormative person. Never. I promise you. The villains in these stories are who they are supposed to be and I am really confident you will love our book.

We need your help. We are a self published book and we need your support

Please check out our kickstarter:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1439936295/crows-on-heartstrings-an-antholgy-of-doomed-love-s

If you pledge to get this book seen, you are telling the mainstream publishers that books like this shouldn’t have to be self published in order to be seen! Please support us, share this, our kickstarter, even if you can’t pledge! We need to share this book with you!

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart!

 

Crows on Heartstrings Sneak Peek #2 “Witch Child” by Lane Hansen, illustrated by Drei San Juan

 

Myrna is one of the witch children, said to be cursed by the sky demons with horrific powers. She’s capable of walking in the lightning storms that ravage her desert home and can speak with the mythic sand lions, but otherwise she has none of the powers witch children are said to have. She is hated and cursed by her village and blamed for any wrong that happens.

Her only friend is a strange boy named Jem, born during the same storm season as Myrna but not cursed with her powers to walk in the lightning.

When they are fourteen raiders come to their village and Jem is fatally wounded in the attack. Desperate, Myrna takes him to the sand lions for help.

Myrna did not remember the first time she stepped out into a lightning storm.

She did not remember how she got her scars; one at the base of her throat and the other on the bottom of her left foot. Sometimes it upset her to not remember feeling the lightning coursing through her body for the first time. Then again, the lightning was so much a part of her life that it was strange to imagine she had ever not known it.

She had been born during the season of sun, when normally the lightning storms were few and far between. Her parents thought they were safe. But the night her mother went into labor a storm tore across the bleeding land. She had tried to ignore the pain, as though that would stop the contractions, and begged Myrna to stay put a little while longer.

By morning the lightning was still razing the earth and Myrna was desperate to see.

Myrna never asked why her parents didn’t murder her, as the midwife had tried, as her grandmother had begged. She only knew that it was not love that had stayed their hand.

-Excerpt from “Witch Child” by Lane Hansen, illustrated by Drei San Juan

Like what you just read? Back us on Kickstarter by clicking here!

LGBT and Female Characters — How Crows on Heartstrings Wants Self Publishing To Change Everything

What is the difference between a female character and a male character in mainstream publishing? Well — that’s easy. The answer should be nothing.

It should be that male and female characters are both treated equally, but it doesn’t happen that way. Male characters are flawed but likeable. They struggle and are strong. Male characters are people. So what about female characters? It seems that today female characters are talked about in one of two ways, they are either the strong female lead or are a Mary Sue. 

The trend now in female characters is that they need to be strong in all aspects, fierce, undeniably unbeatable. Why can’t we see female characters the way we see male characters? Flawed and strong? Why are female characters so extreme? What happened to real women? Are we not interesting enough to make real characters?

But, tip the scale in either direction, and critics will tell you your female lead is obviously inspired by the author and therefore a Mary Sue, OR has no flaws to be seen and is too good at everything, and therefore, a Mary Sue.

What about characters of racial minority? Or LGBT Characters? What happens then?

Well, we simply do not have enough of those.

Why is it so hard to get good female characters, POC characters, and LGBT characters in stories? Does mainstream publishing not think they will sell? If that’s so, then we need to look to self publishers such as Natalia Jaster and J.C. Lillis for help.

Self publishing isn’t the same as it used to be. Sure, you can get some pretty sketchy e-books. A lot of them seem to be just first drafts of novels. But what we need to start doing, is to use self publishing, and fund self publishers, so that main stream publishers know what we want.

Diversity.

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If you agree with me up until this point, I have to share something with you. Crows on Heartstrings is a book of illustrated short stories, all centered around doomed love.

Our writers craft harrowing tales of families torn apart by entities unknown, lovers cursed by fairies, siblings fighting monsters, and more. No type of love is safe from our tragedies. Gay, straight, romantic, familial, friendly, no matter what your shape or color, we have something for you and we are coming for you. We also take our anti-discriminatory viewpoint and stretch it across genres. We have fantasy, sci-fi, supernatural, period, and contemporary pieces.

These aren’t just romances, they’re epic tales of doom. I can’t wait to steal your heart and shatter it a little!

And as if that isn’t enough, we have haunting imagery from only the most talented artists, just to twist the knife. Did you think we were done? Because we even have comics and poems, all doomed.

But it’s better to love and to have lost, isn’t it?

Crows on Heartstrings aims to treat it’s characters as the real, flawed, gritty characters we want.

Our gay characters do more than come out and suffer for it. Our women save the day in the real and complex ways that men do, and our POC characters do not die to enhance the arc of white male leads.

Crows on Heartstrings wants to show the world that stories can be marketable AND diverse.

We need to take what we want.

We need to create a demand for diversity in our books.

We need to write and appreciate characters who thrive or struggle in their own stories without depending on a cisgendered white male lead.

LGBT, Female, and POC characters are NOT plot devices. If you want to see all these things and more in your books and media, you must support small, self publishers where they offer it.

To learn more about Crows on Heartstrings and how you can help, pledge to our Kickstarter !

(article originally published on medium.com)

Crows on Heartstrings TEASER! Roses Grow for Mammet Men by Aubrey Meeks

What is it about?!

Elves and Faeries walk among humans in this urban fantasy set in New York City. The young, Elven clan leader, Daði Manfredsson, and Fae Prince, Mercurie Nightray have bigger things to worry about than integrating into human society.

But politics and love don’t mix, and soon, the two boys are slinging curses to sacrifice their love for control of the Hudson river trade routes.

Do the boys know love at all?

Can they work through true love and balance duty and desire? Or is it really as doomed as Crows on Heartstrings promises?

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“So, on this clear summer day, the tourists caught tall Dathi the elf in their pictures of the New York City Skyline and the Statue. It was like they’d never seen an elf before. Then again, Dath reminded himself, most people on this side of the ferry, the wrong side of the ferry, came from places like, the midwest, or the south, where Elves were still a bit of a myth.

He took the photo anyway. He put on a nice face for her to show her friends at book club. He smoothed his cornsilk plaits and his Rolling Stones t-shirt so whoever saw the image on her Facebook page thought something like, hey, that guy looks alright. Instead of whatever prejudiced bullshit they might say otherwise.

If Mercurie were here now. Dath chuckled to himself. If his boyfriend, my man, were there, the tourists might’ve gone home with slightly pornographic pictures of my Fairy boy and an Elf boy making out–And then they’d both be arrested for being a public nuisance. New Yorkers are liberal, but they’re not that liberal. Elves and Fae were still sort of taboo.”

-Excerpt from Roses Grow for Mammet Men by Aubrey Meeks

If you’re interested in Crows on Heartstrings, check out our kickstarter by clicking here!

(art by Ashley Feemster)

The Archer Illustration Project

If you’ve been following me, you know I’ve been collecting illustrations of my characters for the novel I’m working on, Archer and the Lust Boys.

I just acquired a new one from Max Wickstrom. I encourage you to go check out his work. If you like what you see, stay tuned for his contribution to my curatorial project, Crows on Heartstrings!

Here it is, Max Wickstrom’s rendition of my Original Characters, Archer and the Lust Boys:

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Crows on Heartstrings – Anti Valentine’s

Here’s another one by Ashley Feemster for our Artist, Writer, and Curator, my story, Roses Grow for Mammet Men.

This is the perfect time for me to talk to you about my short story!

Roses Grow for Mammet Men is an Urban Fantasy set in New York City. Elves and Fairies are living among humans and they have more important things to worry about than hatred from humans.

Roses Grow for Mammet Men has everything you could want, romance, magic, treachery, and heartache. Dathi and Mercurie struggle with identity, war, and keeping the love alive in this twisty tale.

Follow us for more on this story and all our others! 

Anti Valentine’s Day Cards

Crowsonheartstrings.com is releasing an ‘Anti’ Valentine’s Day card a day to promote the doomed love stories in the collection

I’ll keep posting them ad they are announced! Here are the first two, by artists heavenlyeros and Aïcha Wijland, respectively