All posts by Elizabeth Bent

Cloak, and more about Trump

Hello, readers!

I’ve already plotted my novel Cloak, but I am watching events unfold surrounding the Trump Administration with interest- some of the settings and details of what happens in the book toward the end will be informed by what actually happens on the world stage. I think the end result will be more entertaining, and make a lot of people wonder- what if?

In other news, I have had more dreams about Donald Trump- these keep recurring. The one that recurs the most is where he is talking to me as “Donny” on my phone in my office at the University of Guelph, wanting to get some advice on how to overthrow what he depicted as an “election, like for high school president” and how he settled on a two-pronged approach: disinformation, where he spread lies and rumors about his opponents, and actually stuffing ballot boxes. Not all of them- just the strategic ones he needed to win.

Now, I don’t actually know if there is evidence of vote hacking, but it certainly is possible if states that went for Trump used electronic voting machines. Even before 2016, hacker and cybersecurity conventions hosted contests for how long it would take to alter results in an electronic voting machine, and the result was that machines could be hacked and vote tallies altered within minutes. I believe someone named Mike Farb was looking into this possibility at, though there are questions about the validity of his research (and since he was not very forthcoming with sharing details, the questions could not really be answered).

I believe even wanting to throw an election and actually taking steps to do this would be a crime, especially if foreign agents were involved. I would suggest that if the phone call to me was real, that if Donald Trump were using an alias and trying to get opinions on how to overthrow a legitimate election to win it by cheating, and he were asking ME about this (I am Canadian), well, that would make him guilty of espionage with a foreign agent, even though I’m not an anti-American spy. And Trump certainly does seem to be very pro-Putin these days, is he not? It’s pretty clear Russians were involved in a disinformation campaign against Hillary Clinton to support Trump. I’m not clear on whether they or others were involved in “stuffing ballot boxes”, or how you’d prove it without paper ballots to go back to.

I hope that more states in America start using paper ballots. And I hope that if Trump did hack the election, if he knowingly took steps to alter the results, that he’s caught and impeached, then jailed. My husband thinks he should be shot for high treason if they can prove it sufficiently- wouldn’t that be a strong deterrent to politicians cheating and lying?


Life imitates art

My project Cloak is practically writing itself! I’m so pleased. In plotting it, recent events mesh perfectly with the existing plot and I can see where it all will go. This also meshes with dreams I’ve had of speaking to members of the Trump administration on the phone, which was the initial inspiration for Cloak. If I’m right, the next couple of weeks will be very interesting.

I have a work project that will take up a lot of my time this week, but I hope to get back to writing as soon as I can.

Have a great day!

Two new projects on the go

I’m happy to report that I spent the day with my character Madison Knight and all sorts of notes about all the chaos and scandals coming out of the White House since the inauguration of the current president. I’ve come up with what I think is a great outline for what has happened, and what will happen, in the timeline of events I’ve created for Cloak. Because I don’t want to ruin suspension of disbelief, I am planning to work on Cloak while I wait for additional events leading up to the 2018 midterms to unfold- and some of the things I’ve thought of are pretty fun indeed! I think you will enjoy riding along with Madison.

Because there will necessarily be some waiting until mid-November, I’m also going to plot out an additional project which I’m calling Wings. This book is a lot more lighthearted than most of what I’ve written to date, and while Cloak will be enjoyable, Wings will be as or more fun, I suspect. I don’t want to give away too much, but Wings deals a lot with different kinds of angels.

Switching gears

Hello, readers! After some mulling over (I had time, as I was working on other projects, then ill for a while), I’ve decided I probably can’t sell my manuscript-in-progress Diamond as easily as I can some of my other novel ideas. So while I fully intend to finish it, I probably won’t focus on it right now.

The project I’ve picked to focus on is one involving an unusual spy and a corrupt White House administration. I fully admit that events since mid 2016 have led to the novel concept for Cloak. My next step is to draw up an outline (this is going to be helped by my extensive notes and screenshots of relevant news articles, but I admit, I could use some assistance with this, as there are probably a lot of funny details I have forgotten), and then go visit New York City, as this is where the majority of events happen. I might also need to go and visit Washington, DC again. I’ve registered my concept for Cloak with WGA West, so I feel confident that I can share as much as I have with you.

I’m excited about Cloak– the main character and her love interest are both truly fascinating to me, and I’ve even thought of a sequel which involves a third, truly lovable character. I hope that people are not so overwhelmed with Trump and his activities that they can’t enjoy a little bit of fiction involving someone like him.

Have a wonderful day.


Here, piggy piggy

Hello, readers!

I had an unpleasant experience today (April 6th). Some guy on Twitter spouted anti-choice gibberish at me in a stream of tweets I did not bother to read, and seemed to think not only should I read them but I should be impressed with his mental acuity and cleverness. Nope. I stated my case again and muted him and moved on. I’m not a philosophy teacher and I don’t have the patience to sit with random strangers on the internet, dissect their arguments for them, and point out every flaw while being subjected to endless innuendo and abuse.

This annoyed me so much I wasn’t really able to focus on my novel-in-progress, and so instead I did some thinking about various other projects, including a Star Wars spinoff film I’d love to help write. In the course of this, I remembered a couple of recurring dreams of mine and thought I’d share.

Did you know there’s an entire website devoted to dreams about Trump?

Here is another, which I’m leaving here on my own fiction site. Interpret it as you will.

It’s actually a series of dreams, a series of vaguely remembered phone conversations. In the first, I am speaking to “Donny” who asks how he can rig his election for high school president. Because it is obviously an older man talking, I assume he’s mentally challenged, and I am kind to him. In the next, I am speaking to someone named “Don” who essentially admits to using an underage prostitute and implies I will be next, and then implies that he worked with “really smart people” who were in charge of “filling boxes”. In the third, I get really tired of “Don”, who called to ask how he can get out of his ostensibly wholly unmerited legal troubles without actually paying anyone any money or going to the police, and I play a joke on him- I pretend to be a psychic and tell him the only way out is to fuck a pig in front of his wife. In the fourth and final dream, someone calls me up and plays what I can only hope is a recording of a pig snorting and squealing, and an older man moaning and saying stuff like “That’s right… come on now… just like that…”

What does this mean? I have no idea, but since I started having these dreams right around January 2017 (all four of them, out of sequence, again and again), I’ll let you decide. I’m publishing this article on April 26th because it will be the first full day of my vacation- and that seems just superstitiously to make it a lucky day, so why not?

Hope you have a good day.

Slow progress

Hello readers!

I’ve been slowly making progress on my current work Diamond and I really like how it’s turning out. I can’t wait to share it with you. I’ve also decided to add Hindu goddesss Kali to the group of goddesses that inhabit the space between waking and sleep.

I’ve also come up with ideas for three different stories that I need to write up a little and submit to WGA West.

I loved writing today so much that I think I need to make a point of prioritizing writing over other stuff I have to do- I tend to take a “rabbit and hare” approach, since I can only be very productive when I’m not depressed, and so during those times I write as much as possible. But I want to accelerate the pace at which I turn ideas into written works.

Wish me luck!


Hello readers!

Confusingly, I have had a number of ideas surrounding two different projects, both of which I want to give the same name. This is impossible, of course. So I am in the process of weighing the pros and cons of renaming my former project (currently Diamond) to its original name (Hypnagogia) and figuring out the details for what I think will become a screenplay that I want to call DIAMOND- a different story, with different characters.

I’m trying to think of new names for the screenplay (for some reason, I like to come up with a name for a project early in its genesis) so I don’t have to rename projects and possibly get the two of them confused. I already have the concept and rough outline of my older project registered with WGA-West as “Diamond”.

I might have to do some Googling for inspiration.

I’ve also come across a short story competition that you might find interesting, if you write yourself: Stories of the Nature of Cities.

UPDATE: I’ve thought it through and I have to keep the name of my current work the same. I’ve thought of another for the new project, and I’ll unveil that when the time comes.

Writer’s block

Hello, readers!

I have a bit of writer’s block, which comes in the form of difficulty concentrating, so right now it is hard for me to focus on writing or reading fiction. My mind keeps wandering and I find I need to walk or do busywork to keep myself from pacing up and down.

This restlessness is kind of puzzling. I might be subconsciously thinking that Donald Trump’s White House “reality show” might be coming to a climax, with all the news that is circulating around these days about him and his administration. It certainly feels that way to me.

I’ve dusted off a story concept and brief outline that I plan to work on if I find I really can’t continue my current novel-in-progress. I also have ideas for short stories that I think will help divert my attention from whatever it is that is bothering me so much, and more than once it has occurred to me that I might be borderline hypomanic. I have had some trouble sleeping last week and this week I have to take naps during the day in order to get enough hours of sleep.

Exercise, of course, helps, and I am trying to make sure I get enough.

The joys of being bipolar and trying to be consistently productive! It’s hard to differentiate my problems with sheer laziness, and sometimes I wonder if I don’t push myself hard enough. I’ve been very busy writing in my diary, so I do write- just nothing I can publish, not yet.

Someday, if I ever become famous, I may publish excerpts of my diary (it is far, far too long and difficult to parse for anyone but me to publish in its entirety- I use it mostly to untangle my thoughts and bipolar delusions, and figure out links between fragments of memory). Maybe. It’s more likely I will simply write poems or poetic passages and have someone illustrate them, because that will help convey what it’s like to experience on a daily basis what I feel and think about. Something like Jung’s Red Book but a lot easier to digest, I think. I figure that a paper book with illustrations combined with recordings (not necessarily of me, but of music that I think also is evocative) might work best. It occurs to me that lots of people like or need audiobooks, so maybe one is inevitable, if this idea succeeds and people are indeed curious about a bipolar mind.

Rereading my diary would certainly be interesting for me, though it would take probably months- I have thousands of pages of writing so far.

Have a wonderful day!


Odd dreams

I’ve been catching up on some needed paperwork (including downloading TurboTax- now all I need are the slips from work) instead of writing this week.

One of the issues bipolar 2 people deal with is depression, and I have been struggling with mild depression that makes me want to sleep and sleep and sleep. It’s so hard to force myself to get on the treadmill (walking outside is easier but the weather has been abysmal), and so hard to force myself to cook healthy meals instead of just reach for something prepackaged. To stave off problems I made a large batch of soup and a quiche. I also have been more conscientious than usual in taking my supplements. I have found that two have really helped me: sublingual vitamin B12 (I found I was deficient about 18 months ago, per blood tests ordered by my doctor) and 5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan, which is a serotonin precursor and in my case, helped me avoid crushing major depression, though I do still get depressed).

I am going to try a bit of an experiment with myself: tomorrow, in addition to the usual supplements and my 60 minutes of walking, I will try taking some St. John’s Wort.

Along with depression and sleeping a lot come, of course, odd dreams, and my recent dreams consist mostly of dreaming Stephen Colbert was in my office a few years ago and we managed to gain incriminating information on Donald Trump, including kompromat. Trump was threatening me and telling me he would bomb Toronto, since where I live is close to there.  Some of the kompromat was pretty bad. Because I can’t tell whether the dream was real or not (though I suspect it was not- why would Stephen Colbert be in my office, and why would Trump be calling us?) I find myself wondering if I might wind up in Robert Mueller’s investigation. I’d be no help at all, though, I don’t clearly remember anything Trump said. I’ll have to ask Stephen what he heard.

Starting again

Hello, readers! This has been mostly a fiction blog, but I decided to wipe it and start again. I plan to talk a bit more in future about mental illness (I am bipolar), specifically about coping strategies. I use a lot of my weird dreams in my writing, but I feel more people need to find out about how to cope with the often overwhelming pressures of psychological distress. Even hypomania, which I admit is enjoyable, comes with a lot of stress. Stay tuned.

Today’s weird dream: Trump has been anonymously asking me for advice and I have been giving him the worst advice possible because, even though I did not recognize his voice on the phone, he came across as stupid, vulgar, and self-absorbed. Apologies to America.