Sorrow and Joy

I was trying to figure out what to blog about this week, when I opened up my emails and found out that All You Can Eat has been named a finalist for a Lambda Literary Award in the Best Lesbian Erotica category.AllYouCanEat-197x300

I’m a little stunned. The odds of making the finalist list are small, as they get so many entries. This is not only my first Lambda shortlist, but my first any major award shortlist (although, we did get an honorable mention for a Rainbow Award—that was cool). I mean, I’ve been in anthologies that have been shortlisted or won, but this is the first one that I really consider “mine.”

I also want to extend congratulations to all the Lammy finalists. It’s quite an achievement.

I’m very proud of the work that Andi and I did, as well as the great stories that all the authors submitted. Ylva was great to work with and was willing to let Andi and I see our vision through. I’ve said this many times—putting together an anthology is a lot of work. But when you end up with such a great product, it will all have been worth it. And it was.

I got this great news in the midst of some sorrow—one of my kitties has cancer and will be crossing the Rainbow Bridge in a few days—and I’m not sure if it’s a good thing or a bad thing.

On the one hand, the good news lifted me out of my funk a little and it was a bright spot in my otherwise depressing day. On the other hand, I feel like I can’t enjoy this great news fully because I have this awful thing going on. I’m trying to hold on to the joy while not forgetting that I’m about to lose my sweet little guy.

I want to make sure that I process the bad things and duly allow myself to feel the full range of emotions that I have inside. But I don’t want the sorrows of life to diminish the joys.

Was this a coincidence, or did the Universe arrange for these things to coincide? (There’s that question again!). I’ll never know, but maybe—just maybe—I can extract some message from this.

In the meantime, I want to congratulate all the writers in AYCE, and Ylva Publishing.Lambda-Medal-150x150

For a full list of finalists, go HERE.

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16 thoughts on “Sorrow and Joy

  1. Congratulations, R.G. and Andi, on the Lambda shortlist! Good work rewarded and recognized is a wonderful thing!
    R.G., I am so sorry about your kitty … as a long time “crazy cat lady” I can only say that the way I have gotten through the passing of my precious little ones is to focus focus focus on how fortunate I was to have them in my life for the time that I did. Every kitten and cat that I have ever had has taught me more about life (and enjoying the sunbeams!) than anything or anyone else!
    In sympathy,
    Lynn

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  2. R.G., I am so sorry to hear about your Kitty’s cancer. The only thing I can offer is a quote I often mangle by Kahlil Gibran about our souls being able to feel joy as deeply as sorrow has carved them out. I don’t offer this as an offhand, “but you should feel” response, but as a genuine reminder to myself that as I sit typing and crying about the distant loss of my favorite cat, I also remember the great joy he brought to my life. It was truly for me both/and. I wish that, in time, for you.

    I also wish great joy for you and Andi, for the awesome job you have done on AYCE and for the well deserved recognition! There are a smillion nominee’s and you did earn your place on the short list. Congratulations and you will enjoy it as you can. Peace, sister. Ona.

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  3. Congrats and condolences both! It is amazing how life seems to trip us up but extends a hand to catch our fall at the same time! Once all the whirl in your life settles down, I wonder if you would be kind enough to message me? I need a little guidance on compiling an anthology for a cause close to my heart. Whenever convenient to you…if you are willing 🙂 Kassie dot aka dot Mom at gmail dot com
    Thanks! And enjoy your triumph, while celebrating the life of your lovely kitty ❤

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  4. R.G., I will first say I am very sorry about your cat. I know animals are family. I now have my third cat, Oz, who you met briefly, and each one has been such a different delight. Second, the news on being a Lambda Literary Finalist is marvelous, and I am so happy for you, Andi, and all of the writers. Kudos to all!

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  5. I am so happy for you about the Lammy shortlist, but so sad about your cat. Life just seems to work that way. I guess both are rewards for caring deeply–you and Andi put out a fine book I’m sure (haven’t read it, but I’ve had the honor of being in an anthology by you two), and you have loved your cat enough to feel devastated at the loss. Wishing you the best, in everything…

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  6. Congratulations to you and Andi for making the Lammy shortlist. I have had AYCE on my Kindle for ages. I will move it up my TBR list so I can enjoy it along with the wise judges of this competition.
    I am so sorry you have to deal with losing your favourite little guy. I know how devastating the loss of a beloved pet can be. I have not owned a pet since I lost my sweet german shepherd suddenly when she was only ten. I do think this is one of those moments where life has decided it has piled enough on your shoulders already, let’s lighten RG’s load a bit and reward youfor a job well done.

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  7. Life is that in a nutshell — sorrow and joy together. And sometimes, the first helps us achieve the second, in some way we can never imagine before it actually happens. I wish that for you…and wish a calm and peaceful parting for you and your beloved cat.

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  8. See? If I could see you, I could give you a giant hug – for both news. It’s hard to lose a furry family member. I recently read somewhere about the possibility that the same pet “spirit” reincarnates to back to you. Wouldn’t that be awesome?
    Thank you for inviting me to be a part of All You Can Eat – I was (and AM) extremely honored to be included.
    ((((((HUGS)))))

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  9. Let your sweet little guy feel your joy, so that he can bring it with him across the bridge ? 🙂
    And when he’s gone, let yourself feel his relief, so that it soothes your sorrow. 🙂
    Lilaine,
    whose sweet Sylvestre crossed the same bridge last year in May.

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  10. Enjoy the honor of recognition for your work and for being the person to share the journey with your little friend.All things at there appointed time….I think that is the secret of joy and sorrow.Sending you comfort

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  11. Thanks, everyone, for your thoughts and good wishes on both issues. I guess this is what life is about, and everything that happens to us becomes part of what shapes us.

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  12. I am so happy for your good news, but would like to empathize with your sorrow. To lose a pet, especially one who has shared your life for many years, is like having your heart cut out. Tears don’t ease the pain, and the loss is as difficult to handle as that of a family member or a close friend. The agony is the same. My thoughts are with you and yours.

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  13. I’m sprry about your cat. 😦 It’s awful when good and bad things collide, because, as you say, you feel like you can’t enjoy the good because of the bad.

    Congratulations on your award though. 🙂

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