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In memory of…

Corey Alexander, better known to some people as @TGStoneButch, passed away recently and I…I am so angry at why right now.

Corey was a lovely soul, a wonderful person, and have you ever known someone where you could ask “what would X do” and know it to be probably the best reaction under the circumstances?

Corey was that person.

And the pain reverberates and circles back, because I didn’t know Corey except in passing on Twitter.

Just as I didn’t know Akhil except in the most superficial of ways.

And for the same reasons, really – they were the sort of people where I felt intimidated by how wonderful they were. How inspirational.

Where I worried about getting closer because I was convinced I wasn’t worthy. Convinced they wouldn’t like me if they knew me better, so it was easier to admire them from afar.

Even though, knowing Corey, they would’ve been upset if I ever said that.

And they both left this world far too soon. Even a hundred years would’ve been too few, but they were here for far, far less than that.

What would Corey do?

I don’t know for sure, but the loss of their light reminds me I should stop being afraid of reaching out in love and friendship.

Speaking of reaching out – it’s bittersweet, mostly the bitter-salt of tears, but… it’s some comfort to announce that the Love All Year anthology will be available later this year.
Corey was an integral part of this, and it likely wouldn’t exist without them.

Beyond that, it is simply very Corey, to me.
The cover is meant to be inclusive, to be sweet without hurting anyone, and it’s so warm and soft it made me cry over my laptop this morning.

I just wish they were here to see this. I hope they saw enough of the project to have found joy in it. I hope they knew how much they were loved, admired, and treasured.

Image

I wrote a Qīxì story for this anthology, starring Verity, Lucien, and Yùlán.
It’s a story of an enby, an ace, and the girl who loves them and whom they love.

Those who know me know that the stories come to me as they are. I have some control over how things unspool, but I don’t always care to exert that control.
With A Bridge Of, I debated keeping it straight, because it was supposed to be a short story in an anthology and I wasn’t sure if I could convince my readers that these three were perfect for each other in 15k words and it would simply be easier to play things straight.

I didn’t, obviously.

And knowing Love All Year will be dedicated to Corey, I am so glad I didn’t. I find some comfort in knowing that I gave the story everything I had, didn’t leave anyone behind, and did my very best to give them a HEA.

In short, I feel like I did my utmost to write a story worthy of dedicating to Corey, and that has to be enough.

Dear reader, I hope this finds you and yours healthy and happy. I hope you do not have any regrets about not reaching for the stars.

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