Shannon Stacey
Q for the Magic 8 Ball

Q: Am I going to be able to get this new template to work today?

A: It is certain.

*snort* Suuuuuuuuuuuuuuure.

Back to Top

The family responds…

The husband: Almost speechless. Very proud, and lot of “I knew you’d do it.”

The short kid: “Will it be in French?” **

The tall kid: “So, you finally have a job?” Then, after some thought, “That’s cool mom, because being a published author isn’t something a lot of people get to do, and it’s a lot of hard work.” (Have I mentioned he’s my favorite son? *g*)

The stepmother-slash-best friend: Jumping up and down, screaming. “When can I read it?” Then she stops and considers (so far out of her comfort zone her hair would catch fire if she read it.) “Can I have a picture of the cover to frame?” Stops and considers. “I’ll color over any naughty parts with a Sharpie!” (This is one of the reasons I adore her–She loves and supports me even though she thinks I’m going to hell. *snicker*)

The husband’s business partner even congratulated me on the phone, but that might be because my husband called me a porn bunny. *eye roll*

**(The short kid realized that his Bob the Builder DVD gave him the option to watch it in French, and French is the new cool thing of the day)

I, on the other hand, am still speechless. *g*

Back to Top

I didn't see THAT coming!

While pondering the discussion about bland blogs on Alison’s blog, I went through my email accounts and found…

THE Email. From Ellora’s Cave. The Doubt Monkeys are still standing around scratching their heads, wondering how THAT happened. *g*

I guess I’m going to have get my website/blog sh…tuff together, huh?

I’m sure more profound thoughts will pop into my head at some point, but…

The Pat’s are about to repeat as Superbowl Champions. The Red Sox won the World Series. Shannon sold.

Watch, now Armageddon will strike. :p

Back to Top

Sunday morning…err, afternoon

Got up this morning at 7:30 with the short kid, went back to sleep on the couch and didn’t get up til 10:30. But why is the day gone? *g*

And where’s Kate? I keep getting that stupid Total Search page.

Back to TSTL heroines. The reason I’m so annoyed that it’s thrown around so easily is that it stands out in comments and reviews. If I’m reading a review and they’re carrying on about how they don’t like secret babies or red-headed heroes or whatever, that’s all skimmable. But TSTL is right there, in your face. It’s all caps. TSTL.

We’re trained to absorb everything we need to want to buy a product in 30 seconds or less. When wading through a paragraph of personal opinions, we come out of that with an impression, but not a strong enough one to keep us from buying a book. But something succinct like TSTL will stick in the consumer’s mind.

Nobody likes a true TSTL heroine. The ‘word’ is short, too the point, hard to miss, and stays with us. And when one reader thinks a heroine is TSTL, other readers who are maybe having a hard time articulating why they didn’t sympathize with a particular heroine will jump right on that bandwagon and label her TSTL, too.

I just think it’s the single most damaging thing when it comes to turning an intelligent reader away from a certain book. And I’m tired of seeing it thrown around because it’s an easy shortcut for a lazy typist.

And I’m missing Gone In Sixty Seconds, darnitall.

Back to Top


Of all the acronyms I’ve seen around–POV, GMC, BM, MOC–TSTL is probably the one that bugs me the most. I see it a lot, and my idea of TSTL is apparently different from others’.

TSTL is when you hear a news report that Norman Bates has been spotted in your neighborhood and you jump in the shower without an entire SEAL team in your bathroom, and at least one of the guys in the shower with you to wash…err, watch your back.

TSTL is when you have unprotected sex with your bad-boy cop lover, get pregnant, and then, because he didn’t pause during his orgasm to tell you he loved you, moving away, raising the child in secret, and not telling him for eight years until a psycho decides to try to kill you. And TSTL is also running to the lone bad-boy cop ex-lover with his secret child instead of locking yourself in your local police station and calling in the National Guard.

TSTL is when you don’t escape your kidnapper when you have a great shot at it because there’s a sad look in his eyes that makes you think he’s not guilty of raping and murdering those six women.

Making a bad choice does not make a heroine TSTL. Nor does having bad luck or doing something reminiscent of I Love Lucy. Lucy wasn’t TSTL. As far as bad choices, women make them every day. I, personally, wouldn’t want to read about a Stepford Heroine, thank you very much.

Anyway, I was reading a comment on a book I really enjoyed, and the reader called the heroine TSTL. Ummm…no. She, being female, made a choice based on emotion. While that reader disagreed with the choice, if I was in the heroine’s situation, I may have made the same one. It happens sometimes. And that, to me, is the criteria for TSTL–if a normal woman would make that choice, even if it’s wrong, she’s a realistic character. If 97% of the female reading population would set down the book thinking “WTF is she thinking?”, she’s TSTL.

There are enough TSTL heroines out there without it being the catch-phrase for every heroine who does something the reader doesn’t agree with

Back to Top

  • Get my latest news straight to your inbox!

    I'll only be sending newsletters when I have news to share, and I'll never share your information. You'll receive an email asking you confirm your subscription (so please check your spam box if you don't receive that). You can unsubscribe at anytime.


  • Affiliation

    Shannon Stacey is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of

    If you purchase a book listed on the site from, she’ll earn a small commission. Thank you!