Tea and Conversation 21: Italy

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Today I’m sharing a picture of “biscottea” by stephsus I posted on my tea pin board.

Please do not copy this image. Click image to share on Pinterest.

Today in my meditation I’m thinking about Full Moon and I’m writing about: Why Italy?

I have never been to Italy, but I’d love to visit one day. I have friends and family who’ve been, even my husband has been at least twice before we started dating. The main reason, however, that I write about Italy in It’s Like the Full Moon, is because of the movies that helped inspire the story. Two of the three movies that inspired the plot of It’s Like the Full Moon are connected to Italy in some capacity.

There are many places that are known for romance if you go at the right time. Paris, New York, Las Vegas, The British Isles, and more, but it seems the whole country of Italy is connected to romance. Of course, I’m exaggerating and embellishing a bit, but you get the idea. You don’t typically have to mention a specific city or town in Italy for people feel romantic at the mention of a trip there. Some places you go to for adventure, some places are for site seeing, and some places are for good food, but Italy is all that and more all wrapped up in romance…At least it is in my head.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords

Tea and Conversation 20: The Race Thing

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Today I’m sharing a picture of “make tea not war” with a bird that I posted on my tea pin board.

Please do not copy this image. Click image to share on Pinterest.

Today in my meditation I’m thinking about Eternal Curse and Full Moon, and I’m writing about: Why the race thing?

My work isn’t that culturally diverse in comparison to works that aim for cultural diversity, but I do mix races and cultures a tiny bit sometimes. I can still remember one reviewer being shocked to learn that Mira, from Eternal Curse: Giovanni’s Angel, was black. Apparently I revealed her race in a very dramatic kind of way. In actuality, I just think most people have preconceived ideas about how black/ethnic characters should be written.

In my mind, I was simply providing a reveal between characters who’d gotten to know each other online without ever wasting time talking about the color of their skin because so many other matters were much more important. In any case, I’ve made some changes to the chapter structure of that book, which should tone down the “race reveal”, since that’s not the point of that scene.

Now in my first attempt at a contemporary romance, I’ve included one black character who plays a supporting role to my white main character. Some people have asked why am I writing about white people. The truth is that race is never brought up as an issue in this story. I wrote the story based on the way the inspiration came to me. The story is not about race. It’s about all the crazy things that happen in the pursuit of love, but I’m sure someone will be fixated on the one black character for whatever reason because that’s how it always goes.

I’m still fairly new to this whole writing thing and even though I have so many other stories to share and so many other characters to create, some people will complain that I’m not culturally diverse enough, that I’m not black enough, that I’m too edgy, that I’m too PC, that I’m not PC enough, and so on. So, since I know it’s coming, I’m already prepared to simply ignore it all and keep on writing.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords

Happy Birthday Giovanni! – 2015

Giovanni-bkClick to see more.

Giovanni is the protagonist of my Eternal Curse Series, EC: Giovanni’s Angel and Battleground. His tale is long and complex, but ultimately heartfelt and uplifting. In honor of this special character of duality, you may want to check out some of these insightful posts and links…

Timeline: Giovannimay contain spoilers

Tea and Conversation 04: Giovanni

Character Files from the ToiBox 49: Giovanni- Preferences

Eternal Curse Story Guide
Click to see more.

EC: Battleground Story Guide-
may contain spoiler is you haven’t read the first book
Click to see more.

This is an updated and reposted post.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords

Tea and Conversation 19: Love Triangles

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Today I’m sharing a picture a Rose Chintz Cottage tea cup I posted on my tea pin board.

Please do not copy this image. Click image to share on Pinterest.

Today in my meditation I’m thinking about Full Moon and I’m writing about: Why love triangles?

This is a question I often ask myself. Why did I write a love triangle? I hate love triangles. For the most part, they are filled with unnecessary drama and people behaving selfishly. I always figured that the person at the center of the triangle was just a mean person, probably, undeserving of the affections of the other two.

Then I got the idea to put myself in a scenario where I’d ever be caught up in that kind of situation, just to see if I could be compassionate about the predicament. I thought about three movies that I actually like that contain love triangles, to some degree, to use for inspiration. In the end, I decided that the characters of these movies were just as I had originally thought- selfish, but not so undeserving of affection. In truth we are all selfish to some degree.

So after considering all that, I decided to write a love triangle that made sense to me. I came up with characters and situations that seemed plausible to me while also being fairly entertaining. I don’t see many more love triangles in my future. This one has been more of a challenge than I ever imagined, but I’m glad I did it. It forced me to point my judgmental finger at myself and see that not all drama is bad and or superficial. While this is a work of fiction, people really do go through this kind of stuff. Just because it was easy for me to find the love of my life, it doesn’t mean that everyone else has to have the same story.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords

Tea and Conversation 18: Adoption

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Today I’m sharing a picture of a cup from a black & white tea set from my own collection I posted on my tea pin board.

Please do not copy this image. Click image to share on Pinterest.

Today in my meditation I’m thinking about Eternal Curse and I’m writing about: Why adoption?

It starts out very subtle and builds rapidly in the first story, but in the second one it really takes off. What I’m talking about is my adoption theme. Adoption is very important to me for many reasons I’ll share briefly, but first I want to talk about how it appears in my ECS.

In book one, both Giovanni and Mira are orphans to some degree, and by the middle of the book, they along with Abraham have formed a surrogate family. In my second book, there are many more surrogate family dynamics and more adopted children to love and raise. The idea that family is limited to the people you happen to be related to by blood went out the window for me a long time ago, and whether I do it consciously or not, the adoption theme will always have a place in my writing.

For me personally adoption is a big deal. I never knew that there were so many people in the world who truly looked to blood relations as somehow being more important or significant that others until I grew up and saw it for myself. There are so many people who have trouble reconciling the fact that the man I call father isn’t my birth father. I have a younger sister, who was adopted, but now lives with her birth family. The drama regarding this is much too sensitive to write about now, but she’s still my sister. Other people just don’t get it. It blows my mind that there are people in this world who would literally turn their backs on a child just because he or she wasn’t connect to them by blood…I’m going stop here before I start to ramble and rant.

Real family is comprised of people who love you regardless.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords