My Daughter, The Deviant

Okay, this is pretty cool.

My daughter, when she was 16, wrote a novel—then intended as the first work in a trilogy; now, I believe, the first of a projected seven. No publishers have yet picked it up, because they are Wrong. But still she perseveres.

Apparently she has been hanging out of late at a website called deviantART, which appears to be a sort of vortex for illustrating Young People. There she posted her novel, which I discovered has somewhere along the line been renamed Maiden of Woodland Secrets, which sounds sort of literary-erotica. I don’t recall any particular lubriciousness the last time I read it, but who knows? Things change.

In any event, deviant people are there giving her feedback, which is quite nice. One of the deviants even created a drawing of the book’s title character, Violet, which I have stolen and posted here.

If you too would like to read this book, you can access it via my daughter’s deviant gallery here.

My daughter is a Star, and someday by this world that will be Seen.

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31 Responses to “My Daughter, The Deviant”


  1. 1 possum October 23, 2010 at 12:20 pm

    Somehow I always saw your daughter as a star and not much of a deviant. Marches to her own drummer I’d say and good on her for doing that.

    The book begins very well. I look forward to having the time to read all she has posted. Many thanks for sharing.

    • 2 bluenred October 23, 2010 at 12:51 pm

      Well, she’s signed on with those deviants. And a “deviant” is anyway, or so the dictionary says, “deviating especially from an accepted norm.” So that’s not so bad. Probably actually Good. ; )

      Reminds me of when she was a wee child, and in school was asked, for Father’s Day, to complete the sentence “Fathers are—” And she replied: “Fathers are weird.” And was chewed out by her teacher, for being disrespectful. Because the woman didn’t understand that, in my daughter’s world, “weird” was good.

      • 3 possum October 24, 2010 at 2:11 am

        The education story reminds me of what is so very wrong with the way we Americans educate our children in schools today. Of course your daughter was right to take her own course, but our system forces children into the societal mold. “Sit down, be quiet, and regurgitate the pap we feed you” is the way of modern education. Those who manage to escape the system with any measure of deviant still attached to their soul are the lucky ones.

        We today benefit greatly from the wanderings of the minds not restrained by common belief. We need people to test the public wisdom and seek new answers or new ways. Thank goodness there are now communities where those souls can be nurtured. I for one am excited by this find of your daughters and look forward to exploring both her work and the community in general as soon as this election is finished.

  2. 4 Julia Rain (the daughter) October 23, 2010 at 3:26 pm

    Weird most assuredly is good! And yes, they mean deviant as in the definition you’ve provided. I’ve actually known about the site for years, but only recently discovered that they accept literature. The site is still primarily for pictures, which is why I originally started going there, for jaw-dropping pieces such as this one: http://ladyofgaerdon.deviantart.com/favourites/#/dsuur but the literature community is robust. I’m enjoying the critiques people are giving me, though most people seem to think that my first two chapters lack conflict. To which I want to reply “Have you EVER read The Hobbit? NOTHING happens for the first five chapters!” Why, oh why did I have to be born in an era where slow beginnings are viewed as toxic? My plot is so complex that I thought unfolding things slowly would be good, but I’m having my doubts.

    Possum, I would be so honored if you would read my book! Please, if you do, let me know what you think! And thank you for your kind words.

    Yes, it will be seven books. Trilogy about Violet, prequel, then a sister trilogy. I changed it to “Maiden of Woodland Secrets” because someone online suggested it to me and I really liked it. My title is in constant flux, so any ideas are welcome. It sounds erotic? Well, that’s no good. There’s not even a hint of sex until book two, at least (yeah, I know you’re probably shocked 😉
    Do you think I shouldn’t use the title?

    • 5 bluenred October 23, 2010 at 4:07 pm

      I think you should use whatever title you want. And who says that it’s not good that it sounds erotic—haven’t you seen the latest wisdom, in which it was determined that 25% of all internet searches involve the word “sex”? Give the people what they want! ; /

      • 6 bluenred October 23, 2010 at 4:14 pm

        Anyway, maybe it’s only me, to whom the title sounds like literary erotic. Maybe it’s just me who has something involving sex on the brain 25% of the time. : /

        The “weird” incident reminded me that I was a hard father for you to raise. Remember when you got in trouble in kindergarten for bringing a fuse to show-and-tell? Then there was the time you were berated by a teacher for referring to the Secretary of State as “Colon Bowel”—how would you know that wasn’t really his name: that was the only way I ever referred to him. Then of course there was giving your great-grandmother the vapors, when you were 3 or 4 or so, singing in the bathtub such lines as “whiskey river take my mind” and “half of my life/I spent doin’ time/for some other fucker’s crime.”

        • 7 possum October 24, 2010 at 2:15 am

          Now that is a childhood to be treasured. How I wish more of us could find that same path for our children. Now that I have a grandchild I am inspired by your teachings. My wife and I sing old ballads with lines and messages at least as meaningful as “whiskey river” so the child is in for an alternative education at every opportunity we can find.

          • 8 bluenred October 24, 2010 at 11:19 am

            When we went on walks, she and I, we would always pick up rocks and shells and sticks and leaves and stuff. When she got to school, she started stuffing her pockets with little pebbles from the grounds, and for this was denounced by the Authorities as Wrong. Such an act was Forbidden, apparently because these fear-based people believed little pebbles would be used as weapons. By my five-year-old daughter. Riiiiiiggght.

            Then there was the pledge of allegiance . . . .

            • 9 possum October 24, 2010 at 11:28 am

              And the tales go on and on I have no doubt whatsoever. There is so much wrong with our authoritarian educational system. We need to encourage those imaginations not stifle the life out of them.

              • 10 Julia Rain (the daughter) October 25, 2010 at 7:10 pm

                Oh is THAT why they didn’t want me to pick up rocks? They thought I’d use them as a weapon? I always wondered. The reason they gave me was “We need those rocks and you’re stealing them and then we’ll run out”, which made absolutely no sense to me. One day, I remember, I was so fed up at being in trouble all the time when I really did try to be Good (getting in trouble was my biggest fear at age 5) that I just wanted to go home. And I knew that if you had to “move your card” which was the code for basically getting a citation – five times in one day that they would send me home. So I was wearing this yellow jumper with huge pockets on either side and I just started picking up handfuls of gravel and sticking them in my pockets. And when I was told to stop I said “No” and the said “Why Not?”, and then I made my fatal error, by revealing my intention to get in so much trouble I’d be sent home. So that day no matter what I did I wasn’t sent home, but I wasn’t really old enough to understand how to properly abuse such a privilege.

                Yeah, I stopped saving the pledge of allegiance in fourth grade. That was the year I wondered why we had to say something we didn’t understand, so I tried to figure out what it meant, mostly failed, and concluded from what I did understand that it was wrong to pledge anything if you didn’t understand what you were pledging. The teachers always fought me at first but I could hold out longer. Of course, in 9th grade when we all had to do that disgusting “joint flag salute” in which Bush led us all and it was broadcast in schools I refused to participate, I was actually kicked out of that class for the whole day. I’m sure she would have given me detention if it were constitutional to do so.

      • 11 Julia Rain (the daughter) October 28, 2010 at 7:58 pm

        Well as far as my titles go, for the first three books, I’m leaning toward having them all be some title given to Violet. So “Maiden of Woodland Secrets” is one of them , and it certainly applies well to the first book. Either Book 2 or Book 3 will be called “The White Rose of Gaerdon”, and I’m still looking for another one. But I do think I’ll keep “Maiden of Woodland Secrets”. Because I like it.

    • 12 possum October 24, 2010 at 2:19 am

      That is one amazing piece of art. Thanks for sharing.

      The first two chapters of your book have already grabbed my attention. I am not much of a critic but I do know what I like. Slow is good. Lets the mind develop the pictures. That is the best part about reading–finding the images and letting the story line come to life in one’s own mind.

      I have been missing your writing for a while now. Nice to find a new repository. And the genre of your story is one I have been reading since my childhood. Once this election cycle gets finished I will get back to some serious reading and finish what you have posted. Many, many thanks for sharing.

      And thanks, too, for joining the little clan around here. Your dad deserves the support. Your writing did not fall too far from the fine family tree of good work. 🙂

      • 13 Julia Rain (the daughter) October 25, 2010 at 7:14 pm

        Thanks so much, possum. And sorry I didn’t get back to you sooner. I see you even created an account of devaintART. I’ll be sure to send you a llama. 🙂

        I’m very happy to hear that you like the book. And yes, I thought sometimes slow was good, as long as it isn’t boring, and I tried hard to make it interesting. Thanks again for reading it and commenting.

        Yes, he certainly does deserve the support. He is the best writer I have ever read. I only wish I had more time and didn’t read so slow.

        • 14 bluenred October 25, 2010 at 7:36 pm

          What does “send you a llama” mean? Does it have something to do with drugs? : /

          • 15 Julia Rain (the daughter) October 25, 2010 at 9:30 pm

            No, it doesn’t have to do with drugs. Promise. But I knew it would sound odd out of context. Llamas are this strange feature on DeviantART where you can “give a llama” one time to any other member, just kind of as a thank you, and the more llamas people give you, the cooler your llama gets. You start out with a regular llama, then if 50 people give you one it becomes a “Super Llama” and has a cape, then if 100 people give you a llama, it becomes an “Albino Llama”. You can get ninja llamas, kind llamas, wizard llamas – it’s totally bizarre and meaningless but pretty funny all the same.

            • 16 bluenred October 25, 2010 at 9:47 pm

              Okay.

              And in that spirit, here’s a “totally bizarre and meaningless but pretty funny” song by Neil Young called “Ride My Llama.”

            • 17 possum October 26, 2010 at 3:46 am

              Now the llama stuff makes sense. That boggled my meager little mind. I doubt I will ever rise above the first llama but the gift is one for which I am grateful.

              I am happily through the first three chapters. Depending on the weekend I may or may not make another few. I was thinking this morning how quirky the writing style is in comparison to either my own or that of many other authors, yet there remains something that keeps my attention. The characters are good. The story line is interesting. The visuals are good in my mind as there is enough detail to allow me to fill in for myself.

              I will keep reading. Comments may or may not come for each chapter. Depends on if or not there is something new to say.

              • 18 Julia Rain (the daughter) October 28, 2010 at 8:06 pm

                Did he say a “extraterrestrial folk song?” That’s pretty bizarre. I know I’ve heard that song somewhere before, but I didn’t realize he was saying “llama”, because he uses a sharp “A” for it and I do not.

                Oh Possum I’m sure you’ll get more llamas. People were sending them to me before I stated posting and I didn’t know anybody on the site. Llamas are fun.

                And thank you so much for your kind words, and again for reading and commenting when you can.

                …is quirky good?

  3. 19 Elva October 24, 2010 at 11:13 am

    I believe most of the changing of words in songs and names of towns
    comes from Bluered’s Father. He had the knack of making light of
    so many things.

    • 20 bluenred October 24, 2010 at 11:21 am

      Example from the pater:

      Old King Cole was a merry old soul
      With a buckskin belly and a rubber big toe . . . .

      • 21 Plink Piano October 28, 2010 at 8:18 am

        I laughed so hard reading all these comments! Remember:

        (Sung to “Turkey in the Straw” with the last line a variation of “Shave and a haircut, two bits.”)

        Oh I had a little chicky
        And he wouldn’t lay an egg
        So I poured hot water up and down his leg
        Oh the little chicky cried
        And the little chicky begged
        And the little chicky laid a hard-boiled egg.
        Down at the station, free beer!

        • 22 bluenred October 29, 2010 at 9:42 am

          The interesting thing about that particular pater song-mutation is that back in the day you sometimes did get a free beer with your shave and haircut. They used to pour free booze for all sorts of things. For instance, you could get liquor as a reward for voting. Especially in the early to mid-1800s, when people in the US drank more per capita than even the Irish. Men, women, and children, commencing with breakfast, and continuing throughout the day.

          I’m reading currently about the history of voting; even without the booze, it’s always been a mess. You used to have to bring your own ballot to the polling place, and so thugs employed by rival candidates would go out into the streets to chase down and tackle those bearing Wrong ballots. In the south, after the Civil War, the Klan & their fellows would station men outside polling places, and if any black folks or Wrong white people tried to show up, they’d just be shot. Today’s secret ballots, supplied by the government in its own polling places, came originally from Australia, and were adopted here as a means to decrease the participation of black and poor people: previously, you could show up with pre-printed ballots provided by parties, ballots that did not require that you be able to read or write. Robert Altman’s film Kansas City has a subplot about Democratic thugs beating people with bats for failing to vote for Truman.

          And so on.

  4. 23 bluenred November 2, 2010 at 8:50 am

    “The Daughter”: I think possum means “quirky” in a good way. You know, like “weird.” ; )


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