For my heterochromatic friend ;) xx

The forecast called for a sunny day, it felt like forever since you’ve seen one. So you packed up a blanket, some lunch a book and made sure you had some music to listen to. So you took off, sunglasses on and walked to the park.
The place was filled with people enjoying the weather, you chose a spot by the pond. An elderly couple sat on a bench feeding ducks nearby. You watched them, amazed that two people could love each other so much they’d spend forever together. The old man got up and helped his wife off the bench, they walked off hand in hand.
Then you saw something else in the corner of your eye, a boy was running backwards toward you. He was attempting to catch a ball one of his friends threw, before you could move he tripped over the bag you packed for the afternoon and fell beside your blanket. His sunglasses fell off of his face and he laid there on his back. You needed to see if he was okay “Uh hey, you alright?” you gave him a small wave “I’m so sorry, this is why I hate sports. It’s just not for me.” The way the sunlight shone on him gave him a mesmerizing glow. The sun lit up his eyes and you could see every freckle on his nose.
He sat up, his shirt was stained with grass from falling. “I’m Van, I didn’t ruin any of your stuff did I?” He looked around to make sure nothing was wrecked “No, all my things are fine, are you gonna be okay?” His arm started to bleed through his shirt, you crawled toward him “You don’t look okay, come with me.” You grabbed his hand helped him up, took a cloth napkin from your bag and walked to the water fountain nearby. He rolled up his sleeve and you placed the cloth on the open wound. You put your sunglasses on the top of your head, because they were sliding off your face anyway. He let out a small laugh “I’m fine, I think my friends are waiting for me..” he glanced back, you looked past him to see a small group of guys staring at the both of you. “Oh. Yeah, you should go.” He grabbed the hand that held the napkin on his wound, you held on to it as he gently moved it off. “Thank you.” He caught glimpse of your eyes “Are you wearing contacts?” He was still holding your hand “No, these are my eyes. I have heterochromia, just a fancy way of saying my eyes are different colours.” He let go of your hand, “is it okay if I look?” It was a common question, some people couldn’t believe you weren’t wearing contacts “yeah go for it.” He held your face, and his piercing blue eyes lit up with amazement and wonder. “That’s so cool. Sorry this must be weird, I didn’t even catch your name.” He smiled taking a step back to give you space, “Thank you. My name is y/n.” “No. thank you” he looked at his arm “Can I have your number? In case I need help again..” He ran his fingers through his hair and lit a cigarette. You held up the blood stained cloth “I think this is yours now…and yes you can have my number.” He took it from your hand “sorry again.” You both exchanged numbers “okay well, I’ll see you around, I gotta get back.” He jogged back to his friends.
You walked off back to your stuff, and decided to pack up. You looked around to make sure you didn’t forget anything and found Van’s sunglasses. You turned to look for him, but he was already gone. You put the glasses in your bag and went home.
You sat on the sofa and put on the tv, flipping through the channels looking for something to watch. You stopped clicking and left the tv on a local talk show. Whatever the woman was talking about wasn’t interesting so you started cleaning, but she said something about a band and you enjoyed finding new music to listen to. So you sat back down, when she called her guests out you froze. Van was on tv “Holy shit.”
Catfish and the bottlemen. You’ve heard their songs on the radio, but never cared enough to check them out. The lady asked them a few questions, “So how are you liking the place?” Van answered “I like it. We were actually checking out the park today, I tripped over this girls stuff and scraped my arm up. She didn’t really care about any of her stuff and was more focused on helping me. So the hospitality here is great.”
You pulled the glasses out of your bag, and set them on the coffee table. The host said they were going on a break and that they’d be playing at the end of the show. You immediately texted Van “You’re on tv.. I have your glasses.” And attached a photo of them on your coffee table. You didn’t really have much to say, and you weren’t expecting him to text back. But he did “I am on tv. Thanks for finding my glasses, you’re awesome. I’ll text you again when I’m done and take you out ;) .. as a thank you.”

My news! My illustrated collection of original fairy tales set in the Grisha world will be coming out this fall. (Today, I got to see some of the illustrations for the stories, and talk to the design team working on the book, and I think the art for this book is going to be really special.) 

Link to the LA Times interview (I say many things!) 

Link the Fierce Reads fb page where you can submit questions for tomorrow’s Facebook live event at 3:30pm est TOMORROW (1/31) (who knows what things I may say!) 

And… more Grishaverse news coming later this year :) 

The saddest yet most beautiful story,
is when the sun created oceans from his tears,
so that the moon could see
how much he misses her,
when he died every night
to let her shine.
—  Does it take an ocean for you to see how much I miss you? // (Jana, @writtenbyjana on Instagram)

Argentina can be beguiling, but its grand European architecture and lively coffee culture obscure a dark past: In the 1970s and early ‘80s, thousands of people were tortured and killed under the country’s military dictatorship. In many cases, the children of the disappeared were kidnapped, and some of those children were raised by their parents’ murderers.

That troubled past serves as a backdrop for Things We Lost in the Fire, an unsettling new collection by Argentine writer Mariana Enriquez.

In ‘Things We Lost,’ Argentina’s Haunted History Gets A Supernatural Twist

Photo: Marian Carrasquero

What if I can’t love you the way you deserve to be loved? Maybe that’s why we should go our separate ways and that this is a good thing, maybe that’s the silver lining.

You deserve someone who can give you more than you could ever know, more than this world could ever offer. You carry a very beautiful soul that should be cherished with every inch of love that exists, even if you don’t believe that.

And maybe I can’t do any of that.

Maybe it’s just not me.

—  c.f. // “I guess this time it was me”
This Story Does Not Have a Twist

This story does not have a twist. You won’t find out that I’m really the killer at the end.

Because I’m telling you so from the beginning. I am the killer.

I was the one who killed him.

I was the one who scouted out the old man hobbling along while out walking with my son.

I was the one who wanted to follow him down the street that day.

I was the one who had brought a pair of scissors along to do the killing.

I was the one who followed him into the alleyway, leading my six year old boy in hand.

I was the one who stabbed him thirty-six times.

I was the one who consoled my crying child.

I was the one who made him promise to lie to protect me.

Just please believe me. This story does not have a twist. I am the killer.

Image: Amy Adams stars as a linguistics professor in Arrival. (Jan Thijs/Paramount Pictures)

The new film Arrival is based on a 1998 short story by Ted Chiang, a soft-spoken, 49-year-old technical writer based in Seattle. Every few years, Chiang comes out with a new short story that sweeps science fiction awards, including the Hugo and Nebula. But he’s only published 15 short stories since 1990.

“Fiction writing is very hard for me and I’m a very slow writer,” Chiang admits. “I don’t get that many ideas for stories. … And I like to take my time when I do get an idea for a story.”

‘Arrival’ Author’s Approach To Science Fiction? Slow, Steady And Successful

I really tried baby, don’t ever think I didn’t. While you were out I was thinking about your stunning smile and your perfectly curved lips. When we got in arguments I would always make sure we were both over it before we went to bed, when you didn’t give me attention all I did was think about how I could get you happy again. When you were sad I held you until you felt better and then talked about it. What did you do for me?

I think we could learn a lot from the robots we’re building. Imagine talking to a machine fitted with an artificial intelligence that can communicate with us. We’d ask so many questions, just because we hope for something new so badly.

So we’d go to the robot and ask, “What’s your purpose?”

The robot would make a little beep or whatever noise it chooses to signify processing of data. “My purpose is whatever you programmed into me,” it would say.

And we’d be disappointed. Because that’s not new. “Oh.” Already thinking about ways to change the robot, we mutter to ourselves: “Aren’t you lucky, knowing exactly what you’re meant to do.”

The robot hears that, of course. Maybe it would laugh, maybe not, but it would certainly reach for us in its own way of soothing. And if we’d listen closely, I’m sure we’d hear pain in its emotional voice.

“Aren’t you lucky, choosing exactly what you want to do?”

The thing is, I know that you don’t love me, and I know you only want me for my body, and yet with all these things painfully obvious I still choose to put myself through the pain just to intertwine my body with yours at 11pm on a lonely night.
—  You’re the pain I crave
8 Techniques To Build Drama In Your Short Stories
When it comes to drama and intensity, are your short stories falling…short? Are readers reacting with “ho-hum” instead of “oh my!”? The…
By Writer’s Relief

When it comes to drama and intensity, are your short stories falling…short? Are readers reacting with “ho-hum” instead of “oh my!”? The good news is that it’s easy to give your short stories a boost of excitement — if you know the right techniques.

Dear parents

You gave birth to me but you’ve took
away my will to live, you have no right
to abuse me physically or mentally but
you did it anyway. You have no right to
make me feel worthless but you’ve won
and now looking in the mirror has become
painful. You use me as if I’m a toy without
feelings, you’ve managed to take away any
hope I had left. Any tear I shed is because
of you, you’re the reason behind all my pain.
“It’s for your own good” They say. Little do
they know by doing so they’ve crushed my
very soul. There’s a million things I could say
but nothing will make it okay. They’ve broke me.

—  Excerpt from a book I will never write #26
Jenseternity / instagram