Zoe Taylor

What a Long Strange Trip it's Been

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So as I'm staring at my stories page, I noticed that Becoming Robin is 4 hits away from 10,000. The next closest is chapters 2 and 3 at around 6.5k so of course hits don't mean much :-) But since Robin is technically one year old at this point (Though her 1 year anniversary is in a couple of weeks) I thought I'd post something appropriate.

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 14

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* Chinks in the Armor *~

“I’m sorry,” I whimpered. “I just needed to sit down. I didn’t want Margie seeing me like this. Nikki what I’m about to tell you, you have to promise you won’t tell Allison or Jen, or Mom or Margie alright?”

Nicole nodded without hesitation. “Robin, you know you can trust me. I’ve told you things I never told anyone until Spring Break.” She gave my hand a reassuring squeeze.

Quick question on cogiati

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A stranger is happy at meeting you. He wants to give you a hug. How do you honestly feel about this?

It's kind of nice.

I would feel a little put off by it, frankly.

I like to hug. It's a warm feeling.

It might be OK.

That would be a little weird for me.

What exactly is this question supposed to prove anyway? For me it's utterly biased against me because I LIKE to hug people, but I have serious personal boundary issues because of a couple of incidents in my past, especially with men. Probably the best one was the computer repair guy...

Looking for a fashion/color expert :-)

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Alright, so I'm not going to just post a picture of myself for anyone who clicks on TopShelf to have access to, but is there anyone out there with experience in color flow charts that would mind taking a look and telling me if my assessment (Deep Winter, though I used to be more of an Autumn) is far off?

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 13

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* Motherhood *~

“I love you both,” he whispered back. “And God willing, you might have a baby brother or sister to share your love with.”

I looked slowly up at him. Was he saying what I thought he was? Mom giggled.

“Ash, hush. It’s too soon to tell her!” she teased. She had a bright, beautiful smile as I looked back at her.

“Mom? Are you saying what I think you’re saying?”

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 12

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* Spirit Speaks *~

“Hey you two. I hope you don’t mind that I’m giving you a ride home.” She had a certain somberness in her tone. Jennifer picked up on it immediately, too.

“Is everything okay?”

Kelly gave a slow nod. “One of the girls I work with has a problem. I’m trying to rally support for her. Robin, you met her when you had your EKG done.”

“Oh, the quiet one with the clipboard?” She seemed nice, but there was something about her eyes that stuck with me. She reminded me of Crystal, and that scared me a little.

Becoming Robert

Becoming Robert
 © 2011 Zoe Taylor

“But… aren’t you, weren’t you dating Arnold?”

She laughed. “Arnold? That meathead? Baby did you hit your head getting out of bed this morning?”

“I dunno,” I answered softly. “I had this really weird dream that I was a girl.”

“Were you a pretty girl?” she teased.

Stupid Social Stigmas

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I'm not just talking about things like "Men hunt, women clean and have babies" here, either.

Growing up in the South, in a very small, backwater community, I was exposed to a lot of what look in retrospect, to be downright stupid social stigmas.

What got me thinking about this was reading a popular story on LGTales about a boy who starts practicing ballet. If I had had that open to me - i.e. if I had been born a girl here, or just plain born anywhere else, I would be in a lot better physical shape today.

Becoming Robin Book One is Getting a Facelift :-D

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Don't worry; I'm not rewriting it! At least, not yet anyway, but when I saw the beautiful cover art Piper's created for it, it did make me want to go back and do some rewriting, to bring it up to par with the new image.

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 11

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* Model Behavior *~

“Well, normally I would, but I’m having second thoughts for two reasons. One, the fact the characters are based, physically, on real teenagers — except for Psychic Strike. The fact that your friend Maria was able to pose for her meant I had to make some character revisions, but the fans understood, for the most part, once they saw the posters.”

“And the other problem?”

“Aria Blade is transgendered. I’m worried about how the world at-large will accept that, but more importantly, I’m scared it might come back to hurt you.”

Writing Solos and Short Stories - My Thoughts and Ramblings

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I can distinctly remember a time not so very long ago, when I had myself utterly convinced that I was absolutely incapable of writing short, one-shot stories. I guess, in a way, I was incapable at the time, but not for lack of ability.

In retrospect, I think it was more a combination of facts. One of those was that I was just so laser-focused on writing my novel/serial. In the past, writing has been my therapy. I wrote for the exclusive purpose of writing what I needed to write, what I needed to get out of my system.

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 10

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* Healing Hearts *~

“We’ll head back to civilization tomorrow morning.”

She smiled meekly back at me at that. “It’s not that.” She slowly stood, walking around the fire to sit on the ground beside me, though she continued to stare into the leaping, dancing flames. “There’s something I wanted to ask you for a long time now, but I’m scared.”

“Of what?”

“Of how you’ll react,” she answered.

So now that the euphoria's worn off... Transition. Oh !#@%.

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Sitting here wide awake this morning, thinking about what I decided over the past couple of days. I've started taking my voice lessons very seriously for one, but something else has wormed its way into my thoughts, now that the initial euphoria of the final puzzle piece falling into place has started to wear off.

How the hell can I actually do this? I literally have no idea what's involved in actually making this work.

Repressed Memory - I just had my 'Ah Hah!' moment

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I can't begin to describe what I'm feeling right now. Relief? Understanding? I don't know. I like it. It's like a weight's been lifted off my shoulders. I finally know the exact moment when I realized I was a girl, and why I fought it for so long.

Backsliding, Depression and stuff

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WARNING: This is going to be long, and perhaps a little nonsensical/cyclical. I'm pouring it all out into text to get it out of my system, but I promise it has a happy ending.

Depression sucks. I know that's stating an obvious fact, but I ended up giving myself a swift kick in the rear today, so I needed to write about it because that's why I started blogging in the first place, over two years ago. I want to be able to look back at this and laugh someday. Call me conceited, but I also want to stand as another reminder to others that no one suffers alone.

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 9

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* Spring Break *~

Nicole smiled fondly as she leaned closer. We exchanged a brief, soft kiss before I rested my head on her shoulder, letting her hold me in serene silence.

“I felt the same way. I’ve always been shy about relationships. I don’t even know how I ended up staying with Jason for so long, but the entire time I was at my rock camp, I couldn’t stop thinking about you. Everyone thinks we’re too young to have these kinds of feelings.” She hesitated, as though she wanted to say more.

“What is it?” I asked as I raised my head again.

“I don’t know about you, but I stopped being a child a long time ago,” she answered softly.

A Spirit Within (The Closet)

A Spirit Within (The Closet)
 © 2011 Zoe Taylor

College life is hard at the best of times; books, pop quizzes, ghosts? Can Trisha's already complicated life get any worse?

Side Project Based on a Gettysburg Ghost Story

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There are several ghost stories surrounding both Gettysburg battlefield and Gettysburg college. Most notably, the girls' sorority house, Stevens Hall, has some bone-chilling stories like The Blue Boy.

The story that grabbed my attention years ago though, and has stuck with me all this time, was about a female ghost that supposedly is completely taken with modern fashion.

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 8

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* What Dreams May Come *~

“I was starting to wonder if I should come back later,” Katelyn offered as the three of us cleaned up the kitchen, mostly disposing of fast food wrappers and bags.

“Sorry,” I started, but she shook her head.

“It’s fine. I’m kind of surprised you didn’t tell your parents about me though.”

“No, I told them. Back when I was dealing with Jason, Mom told me about his mom’s condition. She said that not everything is black and white, and she really encouraged me to give him another chance.”

“Your Mom’s an amazing woman,” she answered quietly. “I didn’t know you almost lost her last summer.”

“I’ve been through a lot just to get to be who I am. I guess that’s why I try so hard to get along with others. I know, I remember, what it’s like to be everyone’s target.”

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 7

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* Heedless of Consequence *~

“Katelyn, hold on a minute.” She stopped, turning back to me with a neutral expression. “There’s a cheer retreat coming up soon. If you want to go, just talk to Victoria for a release form.”

Her gaze softened as she stared back at me. “You’re serious?”

“Yes I’m serious. Not everyone on the squad’s even going to be able to go because it’s the first weekend of Spring Break.” She continued to stare at me, untrusting. I shook my head. “If you want to go, talk to Victoria or Coach Greer for that matter.”

“If you’re lying, and I did ask Coach Greer, you’d get thrown off the squad.” A calculating smile crossed her lips. I smiled right back at her. I wouldn’t give her the satisfaction of thinking she had me cornered. I turned to continue out to the parking lot.

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 6

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* Ups and Downs *~

Liz appeared in the doorway, cordless phone in hand. “Chelsea, Victoria? Coach Greer’s on the phone.”

“I’ll grab the extension,” Victoria answered, rushing upstairs even as Liz handed the cordless phone to Chelsea.

“I wonder what’s up?” Chelsea asked as she waited for Victoria. “Wait a minute, what do you mean not permitted? They never said anything about––” she paused, a grimace forming on her features. We waited with bated breath for the one-sided conversation to end.

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 5

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* Heart's Desire *~

“Oh, Nicole,” the secretary called, grabbing a pair of flower bouquets, including the roses and balloon I had arranged for her. Nicole smiled warmly as she accepted them.

“Aww, Robin you didn’t have to do this.” Now it was her turn to cry as she wrapped me in a hug. I kissed her cheek, whispering in her ear.

“I wanted to.”

“This is the first time anybody’s ever given me flowers for V-day. Even my parents wouldn’t have before because I threatened to have a rose petal bonfire if they’d tried,” she giggled.

I sort of purged today, but in a good way :-)

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While on a fruitless search to figure out what I've done with my digital audio recorder, I started to run across stuff I've been holding onto for absolutely no reason. Most of it was just useless junk not even worth mentioning, but it eventually turned into spring cleaning. And then I noticed my old "I'm just a crossdresser, really!" stash.

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 4

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* Love Is... *~

“Ah, speaking of musicians,” Jane spoke up hesitantly. Moira, there’s something I need to tell you.” Moira turned to face Jane, who had a positively guilty look on her face.

“Moira, I’m so sorry. When you said there was no way you’d be able to make it to the wedding, I started to plan a surprise for both Linda, and for you.”

Moira’s expression shifted from confusion to concern. “Jane, what’s going on?”

She exhaled slowly. “This was supposed to happen in private. I’m so, so sorry.” Before she could continue though, an older female voice, with a distinct, strong Irish brogue called out hesitantly from the lobby door.

“Moira?”

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 3

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* The Calm Before *~

“I’ll give you two some privacy. See you both tomorrow!” She patted my shoulder lightly as she passed, humming the theme song of the movie we had just finished watching. Nicole rolled her eyes, dipping her thumbs into the pockets of her black jeans as she pressed her backside against the car.

“What are we gonna do with her?” she joked. She looked back up at me again with a nervous smile. “I know what you’re going to ask. Please don’t. I might chicken out.”

Rather than say anything, I stepped closer and wrapped her in a tight hug. She tilted her head to the side, resting her cheek against my shoulder facing me with her eyes closed. I couldn’t resist stealing a kiss, which caused her to smile even more.

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 2

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* Cheers! *~

“What was that about?” she asked.

“Amy’s moving away so they’re going to be down a girl for-” I started, but before I could continue, she suddenly, and angrily, cut me off.

“So that’s it? They’re not even going to hold a tryout; they’re just going to give it to you? There’s a big surprise.”

Becoming Robin Book Three: Chapter 1

Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
Bk3C2011ZoeTaylor.png~* When it Rains, it Pours *~

“Hello?”

Kristen, Heedless Despair’s lead guitarist, responded in an uneasy tone. “Robin? Thank God, Nicole wasn’t answering.”

“It’s six A.M.” I whined, rubbing my eyes with my free hand.

“I’m sorry,” she offered. “I didn’t know what else to do. There’s been an accident, and I was wondering if Moira ever gave you her girlfriend’s number.”

Becoming Robin Book 3: Cheer's the Thing!

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Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
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Cheerleading? Piano? Basketball? How does a girl fit so much into so few hours in a day? Will Robin's over-achieving and perfectionism come back to bite her, or will she learn when enough is enough?

Will Heedless Despair's first U.S. tour go off without a hitch? And what of Linda and Ash's wedding? Read on and follow in the continuing adventures of young Robin Smith, now fully immersed in her new life. Will her secret remain a secret forever?

Book Three Preface

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Becoming Robin Book 3 Cover/Image
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A Letter From the Author:

Hi everyone,

I'm going to start by saying that Book Three is by no means finished. I have the first six chapters pretty much 'ready' after two months of hard work. As I move forward, I'm going to be taking greater care in my writing than I have in the past.

Transgender Lives / Our America with Lisa Ling

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Referenced here. Ordinarily I avoid these things because, in the past they've all been the same awful depictions (I'm not kidding when I say one featured a TG prostitute/possible drug addict in Vegas), but this one is different.

I wouldn't be ashamed to be one of the people on this show

Interesting Development

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So, something's come up in my life as potentially very, VERY positive. I just don't know if it's a step in the right direction or not.

I found out through, of all people, the mother of someone I went to school with and haven't seen in years, that there are special services for the blind for adults now, who can teach me a trade and help me get a job with the US Government. It would apparently all be paid for too.

The caveat is that I'd have to live in Little Rock. ;-)

Virginia

IMG_0248.jpg

Last night, I had a dream which was so realistic, and so compelling, that I woke nearly in tears. I jotted it down as best I could remember so that I could share it here. I call it,

Virginia

Character Names - Whoops!

Sometimes a character's name is important. Sometimes it defines their personality. Sometimes you just want a convenient background character, with no intention of ever using them again, and then they start to grow on you, and you wish you'd put more thought into that character's name.

I now find myself such a situation with one of my characters. Well, two, technically. This was an absent-minded moment on my part.

So, I'm Planning a Fictional Wedding...

... And I'm just wondering, how appropriate is something like a string quartet to play the reception? Robin's "Aunt" Jane is up to something, and I'm trying to figure out how to make it work believably. This is the best I could come up with so far. ^_^

I've already spent 3-4 hours the last couple of days researching the ins-and-outs of cheerleading (with a LOT to go :-P), so I've been putting off tackling this scene to the point my muse wishes to box my ears lest I start working on it ;-)

Book Three Teaser :-)

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In case anyone's been wondering what I've been up to lately, I've finally moved from the pre-planning stages to the actual writing on Book Three of Becoming Robin.

I already have the first chapter down, and the first page of chapter two to give myself a jumping-off point when I sit down to start writing again. It's still pretty rough at this stage, but I'd rather be writing and going back to change things later than spending anymore time planning.

Ice Storm is not Cool!

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... It's freaking cold! :-P

Our pipes are trying to freeze, and we're doing all that we can to keep that from happening, but if no one hears from me for a couple of days, don't worry! We have gas heating, so we'll be just fine even if we should lose power :-) Hopefully the worst is over for us, but just in case, you know?

Those of you like me who are being hit by this 30-state strong storm (the figure provided by Headline News' Robin Meade), or worse, please be safe, don't take unnecessary risks in traveling, and stay warm!

~Zoe

Shower Time is Me Time, or I've Been Thinking Again

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Shower Time is Me Time
~or~
I've Been Thinking Again...

I had a nice, hot shower earlier tonight. I’m trying out a new deep conditioner that takes five minutes to set, in addition to my usual washing routine, so I had a lot of time to stand there in the steam and let my mind wander.

Shadowcraft: Aria Blade (Revised) - Issue 7

Issue 7: The Last Dance

Raven Wing and I stared blankly at each other. When we returned our gaze to her, her grin had broadened. Her little dimpled cheeks almost seemed to glow with childlike joy. Knowing an ancient deity of charm and pranks lie in wait behind those innocent eyes made the whole surreal experience all the more unsettling.

“So do you want to ask us something in return?” I asked. She grinned.

“You just used up your question, but yes. I do.” Raven Wing elbowed me lightly, causing me to flinch. I settled on the ground beside her, waiting for the spirit’s response.

“What is love?”

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