Category Archives: Personal

Hello, lovelies!

How are you guys? I hope the new year is treating you well thus far. Winter has come back with a vengeance in Canada and it’s been cold and bleak for far too long. I can’t wait for spring to return.

Things I’ve been working on:

  • sequel to Follow You Down
  • next chapter of Second Chance. Not sure when the update will be though, because I still haven’t found the right “situation” for a certain scene.

What I’ve been watching:

  • Mary Kills People (rec’d by a friend). It’s about a doctor who helps patients commit suicide, which is illegal in Canada. Two seasons, 6 episodes each, enjoyed the characters and the central romance.
  • The Good Place

What I’m looking forward to:

  • BLACK PANTHER!!! Woohoo. Have my ticket already for this Friday and I’m so psyched. So much black excellence on a big IMAX screen, and I can’t wait!
  • FiCi
  • Elcin’s new show. Now I’ve never watched Kerem in anything but I’ve seen his interviews and he’s hot. Hopefully he’s as magnetic on screen as he is during interviews. I’m excited to watch Elcin and him as a couple.

What are you guys watching? Or excited about? Is it cold where you are or you one of those lucky ones who experience beautiful weather 24/7?

Weekly update, lovelies!

How has the New Year been for you thus far? Unfortunately I’ve been sick this past week but I’m finally feeling better. Yay  🙂

Are you someone who makes New Years resolutions? Do you believe in them? I never used to, or at least I would make them and then promptly forget about them but in the past few years I’ve made a conscious effort to stick to my goals and slowly work towards them. This year my resolutions include:

  • finish the sequel to Follow You Down
  • engage with my readers more (which is why I’m doing more ‘personal’ updates these days)
  • do something that scares me. LOL. I tend to stick to my comfort zone which doesn’t really help with personal growth, so, in an attempt to expand my horizons, I want to do something scary every few months. Now keep in mind, my definition of ‘scary’ might not necessarily align with yours; nonetheless, they’re terrifying to me
  • keep eating healthy. I lost 25 lbs more than a year ago by eating healthier foods and I want to keep maintaining that. I don’t like cooking so for me eating healthy entails packaged salads for dinner.

What are some of your new years resolutions? And do you have some kind of plans to tackle them?

For those reading Second Chance,  the next chapter is 70% done. I’m planning to update in the next few days. I hope Baris Arduc never gets rid of his beard because every time I see him with a heavy beard, I’m inspired to write more. LOL.

Anyway, have a great week. Remember to be kind to yourself and to others 🙂

Things that make you go hmm…

I’ve always been a big proponent of constructive criticism because it’s the only way to improve. How else can you get better at your attempted task if you don’t ask for feedback? Incidentally, my ability to handle feedback is one of the reasons why I was promoted. Guess what I’m saying is, I don’t take it personally if someone wants to offer constructive criticism because, in my experience, it’s always helped me improve.

So when I received a critical review (1 out of 5 stars), I read it eagerly. At first the reviewer offered valid viewpoints (which I’m already planning to take into account), but then they went off on a tangent which still boggles my mind. They complained that I wrote my novel to express my liberal views, that my characters were simply there to check off YA cliches. She had issues with the names, the fact that I have a black gay character, that I have poor people in foster systems… at that point, I started laughing.

I grew up reading romances but I could never relate to the characters. The protagonists were always white, and beautiful, and never really seemed to struggle financially. I read many Black romances as well, but never really any stories about Indian women, or Arab women, or Asian women finding love. So, as a woman of colour, I wanted to write about other WOC and that’s one of the reasons why I wrote Follow You Down.

It’s funny that having a “quirky” name, and friends who are also poor, or gay – maybe even both! – were things this reviewer objected to. Because these are not YA checklist items; they are, simply put, my reality. When you’re a WOC, you probably have friends who are also people of colour. And, believe it or not, some of these people may be gay, or bisexual, or even transgendered. One of my closest friends is a gay Asian male. He’s his own person with his own unique identity who happens to be Asian, and gay and loves playing hockey and transformers (Hi David!).

Many of my friends and I grew up poor or struggling to make ends meet, because we came from immigrant families. A lot of our names are considered “weird” or “quirky” because they reflect our ethnicity, pride in our heritage. Or you could simply have hippy parents who went to a poet and wanted an unusual name for their kid (yes, this is how I ended up with mine, and, yes, brown people can be hippies). Again,  just because characters are not named “Tom” or “Mary” or “insert any North American common name” doesn’t mean it’s being done to fulfill a checklist item – it’s simply reality for many of us.

In a way I’m glad I received this review because it reaffirmed why I’m writing what I’m writing. I want to tell stories about women of colour – romances featuring women of colour – because we exist, we’re here, and we have every right to read about ourselves and the realities we live even if it’s in something menial like love stories. Weird names, gay friends, struggling with money matters may be cliche items to some, but it’s very real for me.

I’ll write about my reality as much as I want and there isn’t a damn thing anyone can do about it – so bitch away!

 

Sunday Funday just turned into self-doubt day.

We all experience insecurity from time to time. It’s second nature for us human beings. I try not to wallow in it too much, instead using self-doubt to hone my skills and improve. Unfortunately, some days it’s not so easy to take the pragmatic approach.

I’m blessed to have wonderful readers like you. You guys are always so good to me and I really appreciate that. Unfortunately, that experience hasn’t carried over to real life. With the exception of two, none of my closest friends have bothered to read the novel. And it’s not a matter of finances as I gave them the manuscript months ago. They just don’t want to. I tried not to let it bother me but it does. Some of my wonderful coworkers and acquaintances have eagerly read the book because they’re so excited for me yet the people closest to me don’t care.

Oh well, such is life. Guess we can’t have it all. I’m lucky that I have amazing people like you and other wonderful readers who are happy to give my work a chance. Some people don’t even have that so I’m just going to shut up and be grateful 🙂

If you guys are ever doubting yourself or don’t feel like you’re good enough at whatever it is you’re trying to do, just remember this quote from the Great One:

It’s gotten me through many a night when I was crippled with insecurity.

Have a great week!

Hello, my lovelies!

I hope you’re all doing well and enjoying the holiday season. It’s been a busy one for me trying to get Follow You Down published. I still get very nervous when I think about my book being out there in the world. Anyway, I wanted to give you guys an update on what I’m currently working on:

  • Sequel to Follow You Down
  • New Defne/Omer fic. It’ll be multi-chapter, but not as long as The Ring.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Hello, beautiful readers!

I hope you’re all doing well! It’s been a busy month for me albeit an exciting one. I’ve been working with my wonderfully talented friends to get my book, Follow You Down, ready for publication. The author proofs should be arriving next week. If everything is okay, the paperback will be available for sale in January!

Thank you to all those who pre-ordered the novel. You have no idea how much that means to me. I will be contacting you for your addresses when the paperbacks are ready.

I also want to extend my gratitude to all those wonderful readers who believed in me throughout the journey and wished me well. I’m lucky to have such supportive readers.

For those who have translated The Ring into different languages, I’m very thankful. I’m sure it was a lot of work since I’m a prolific writer but I hope the readers enjoyed it. Would you do me a favour and let them know about my upcoming book? I’m hoping they enjoyed the writing enough to take a chance on me. I have the same request for those readers who are active on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter. Any help you can offer in promoting my book would be much appreciated. Maybe we can run a contest. Or if any of you have more creative ideas,  please get in touch with me (author @ lazeema – haq . com [minus the spaces]).

On a final note, I’ve been working on the epilogue for The Ring. I’m attached to the characters and it’s a little sad for me to say goodbye to the universe, but every story must come to an end at some point. I hope you guys enjoyed reading The Ring as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Personal update

I’ve started working on the new chapter of The Ring. Hoping to update soon but not sure when that’ll actually happen. This week has been crazy and it’ll be the same next week as well. Plus it’s my birthday on the 16th so I have plans to celebrate both weekends 🙂

People have messaged me about an Alive update. Because it’s already written, I just have to upload it. I will do that this weekend as well assuming I don’t have a hangover. LOL. I’m not a big drinker so when I do drink, it hits me like a ton of bricks.

I have new readers! Welcome to the site and thanks for giving my fics a chance. Tiffany, here are the short KA fics you were looking for.  Hope you enjoy them! Just bear in mind they’re rated r for adult themes and language.

Hope you guys are doing well!

Personal update

Thank you for all of your prayers and good wishes. It looks like the cancer hasn’t metastasized. Next step is surgery which is planned for October. Again, thank you for giving me strength 🙂

As for The Ring, I finished first half of the chapter but the second half is yet to be written. I don’t want to make you guys wait too long so I will post the first half later this week (probably tomorrow).

After seeing the new pics of Baris and Elcin together, I’ve been inspired to write more Omer/Defne. I hope you guys will like the next story I have in mind for them (to be written after The Ring is completed).

And for those reading my original novels, the cover design is just about done. I’m still going back and forth on which one I like the best.  Once that decision is made, I will publish soon thereafter.

As always, thank you for all the support you’ve given me.

Hola!

I’m back from vacation, feeling rejuvenated and excited to write again.

As you can tell, I had a great holiday 🙂

Up next: Alive update (either tonight or tomorrow).

On the weekend: The Ring.

While I was floating in the ocean, I was also inspired by a new Omer/Defne fic idea – but I won’t get to that until I finish The Ring.