Knock, knock. Who’s there? LIFE.

I know, I know… where have I been!? It’s been… approximately 161 days since my last post (QUE!?). I swear, I didn’t intend to let myself go like this, but life was calling. I answered, and it sucked me in. Like a crazed vacuum.

This is not to say I don’t normally answer to life’s knocks, but I pride myself in being able to let life in and out as I please so I can write. I’ve only been able to write a little, but to me that’s better than nothing. The point at which I STOP writing, that’s when I know that something’s terribly wrong. But that’s not the case, so I’m fine… more than fine, really.

The good part about being sucked into life is all the new experience you gain whether you like it or not. I recommend everyone to do it… every now and then, at least. 😛 It’s because I let life take me that I discovered what I really want to do in life (next to being an author, of course)… be a counseling psychologist. I can totally be both, hmph. I can’t be everything, however.

Although Biology interests me, it’s not what I want to be doing for the rest of my life. Working in a research lab over the summer made me realize that rather quickly. So I dropped that major like it was hot and switched to a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and now work in a Group Processes Lab. This decision also frees up some time in my schedule (at least my long-term schedule), time to do something I’ve always wanted to do… STUDY ABROAD IN SPAIN FOR FOUR MONTHS.

That’s right, come February (hopefully) I’ll be surrounded by a type of beauty and culture that cannot be found in the United States. Not to mention the Spanish guys. 😉 Shhhhhhh… I don’t talk about my love life over the internet (mostly because it’s nonexistent *cough*).

Anyway, to go with this change of career, I’ve also realized that what I love doing is posting advice over the Internet. So I’ll be doing that from now on, but in shorter, more concise and (dare I say it) less rambly posts (so you guys actually read it all!).

This is the start of a new blog. A new me. 🙂


Enter to Win!

Heads up!CAPTION

On top of putting me through my first online interview ever and making me Featured Author for the week, True Colorz is hosting a giveaway in my honor! Enter to win a free copy of my first (and certainly not last) novel (The Gene Pull)!

What are you waiting for!? 😛

Click my face for more information.

Unexpected Updates


Just wow.

So a lot of time has passed since I last wrote anything. On here, anyway. Away from WordPress, I’ve been writing I’m a storm! I’m about half-way through my sequel and I love how it’s coming out. Anything that comes out, really, is a positive thing. As stated in my previous post, it doesn’t do anyone any good to keep things to yourself. But I digress, like usual.

Anyway, I just wanted to let you guys know that I’m still very much alive. I’ve just been clowning around lately and not in the way you think. I’ve been juggling a million things it feels like despite the fact I just finished my second year of college (yay!), successfully might I add.

Evil never rests, however, nor does good… and neither do I. 😛

Right after I returned home, I went straight to my computer to write my sequel, the title of which I’m hoping will come to me spontaneously like The Gene Pull did. I had only about a week of nothing to worry about except for my sequel before I was forced (willingly) to return back to school to take summer classes (:().

Can I just say that this was not part of the plan. What I had prepared myself to do was study abroad in Spain all summer. I cannot describe to you how excited I was, but when one door closes another opens. I wasn’t able to get financial aid this summer, but it’s a definite for next summer. Perhaps it was for the best, though, considering I would have probably not been able to write my sequel in Spain. I would’ve been way too distracted by all the cute Spanish boys.

I’m obviously still not completely free to write as I have to devote a lot of time to my studies, especially because I’m taking some of the more rigorous classes Lehigh has to offer… Organic Chemistry 1 and 2, with labs included for each. But at least I’ll be getting that pesky Chemistry requirement out of the way so there is more room in my schedule to take more classes that interest me before I graduate.

Double majoring in Biology and Psychology, I’m not given a lot of lee-way… Why I’m putting myself through this when I could just be a writer? No idea. No clear career path in mind still. I just know I have a passion for multiple things, and I refuse to give any one of them up until I’m sure it’s not something I will use later in life.

FORTUNATELY, “Orgo” isn’t too bad. It’s actually kind of fun, much to my surprise, and I owe that entirely to the person who teaches it. For once in my life, I don’t feel like I’m not being lectured when I’m in class. It’s so interactive that I feel like I’m playing a game, an educational one (the best kind) in which I’m naming long-ass carbon chains and rushing to find all the possible isomers of an alkane. It is just the beginning, though…

I’d also like to announce that I’ve gotten a couple of new reviews for The Gene Pull, excitedly. Check them out here!

I will also be FEATURED at True Colorz tomorrow in an author interview (wooo!!). Check it out here!

It’s all very exciting.

If you were to see me in person right now, I would look like this:

Exercise Your Heart

On top of the horrid acne issues I had in the past, I also had body issues.

Damn, you never really realize how many problems you had/have until you write them out! They tend to get swished around in your brain, like a laundry machine being powered by a constant rotational stream of thoughts. It’s never ending and can drive people mad!

This is why people should write more; it’s the only way we can freeze a thought effectively. We can try to focus on one in our head, but how long is that going to last, really? That is unless you are on adderall or something (not that I’m recommending it!).

Before I go on a rant about why drugs are bad, let’s get back on track. What was I talking about again? Right, my body issues. Yes, I still have them (I’d personally like to be less flaco, or skinny, and more muscular). But doesn’t everyone? Even those with “perfect” swimmer bodies (*drool*), because they have to keep working out. Okay, before I continue any further I must find a pic to show you guys what I’m talking about. 😛 NOW do you see what I’m talking about!? Distractions.

This is Aarón Diaz, a.k.a. the sexiest man alive. AYY, TE AMO!

Getting back on track (for real this time!), I will echo what I mentioned in my last post, that one can never be fully satisfied. We just have to work with what we got. The point I’m trying to make is that I didn’t always do this, which left me feeling even less satisfied than I would have been. While we can never can be fully satisfied, we can come pretty close if we want it enough, if put in the extra effort, go the extra mile…

Got a crush on someone? Tell him! Or her. Want to get a good grade? Study! Not happy with the way your body looks? Work out (I’d recommend doing Insanity, which is what I do pretty religiously — you can find all the videos for free on YouTube)! photo faf0ca08-cfdc-4a20-8dba-9f1d4b4df3c1_zpsfb9d1dc0.jpg

It’s pretty simple. We just like to make these simple tasks that we know how to do more difficult than they actually are out of laziness., and that difficult-label causes the goal to be pushed to the backs of our minds by less cognitively draining, less stressful thoughts. It’s not a bad way of living; it’s actually quite defensive, to preserve your own energy.

But there is a downside, a pretty big one: you’re limiting yourself. If no energy is dished out, none can ever come to you because there would be no room for it to enter. “You get what you give!” And if you’re not getting anything, how do you expect to go anywhere, change, improve? Life is full of change, opportunity, but we don’t have to be. I’d highly recommend it, though.

Be who you want to be. Do what you want to do.
Because I guarantee you nothing bad can come out of following your heart, which can be way stronger than adderall!

If you have a heart (and I’m pretty sure all humans do), you can do it.

Hopefully that motivated you. It sure helped me. Time to study now… One more final and then I’m free! Free to write the sequel to The Gene Pull! Super excited. 😀



I could write an entire book on acne. Not that I’m going to, of course. That’d be boring, and gross. Who would want to read about acne? In fact, for those feint of heart I recommend not reading any further because I’m going to try to dedicate this entire post to, you guessed right, acne.


Because it had a surprising amount of impact on me. Too much. I look back and think “wow”… Compared to how great I feel now, I really was miserable! I used topical acne-fighting products constantly (stupid Proactiv), and even resorted to taking a damn pill that I later found out could have removed all the hair from my body! Nothing seemed to work, and so my self-esteem plummeted. And kept on plummeting.

How bad could it get? I thought, before it did.

You look at the statistics and acne seems to be a common problem among people of all ages, especially teens, but I still felt like I was the only one because my acne was just so bad. Seriously, I didn’t just get pimples. I got pimples on top of pimples that merged with neighboring pimples to form hideous, beat red monstrosities. The worst one was on my right cheek, which virtually erased the precious dimple that would form and get me called “cute” all the time whenever I smiled.

My dimple was taken from me, robbed… by acne. Ladrón.

And part of my social life was robbed right along with it. Who would want to be my boyfriend now? I thought. The acne (finally) started to settle down during my sophomore of high school, but the damage had already been done.

To this day, that dimple doesn’t quite form like it used to due to the scarring — although I have too say my face has gotten a lot clearer, to the point where it is not the first thing anyone notices anymore. And now I realize that the only thing that could have fixed the problem was time. Perhaps it would have even went away faster if I hadn’t agitated it so much with countless amounts of chemicals, if I hadn’t picked it so much.

And perhaps my face wouldn’t be so damn sensitive now. To the sun, to the cold, to water. I don’t even soap my face in the shower now because the water dries it right up (ironically), sometimes to the point where it peels if I stay in for too long. Like dandruff, but on your face. Gross, right? Completely uncomfortable, too.

However, I remind myself that any and all bacteria on my face is also suffering, being starved of the greasy resources it needs to thrive, and I take comfort in the fact that I will never have acne problems again. And if I do happen to get a pimple or two, on the days that my sebaceous glands actually do decide to function properly, they will never last longer than a day. All I need is to add some water.

So, in the end, I got what I wished for. But at a price.

Anyway, the moral of the story is that you can never be satisfied. Lol… Because nothing, no one, is perfect. We just have to learn to work with what we got. It’s our best shot at happiness.

Great, now I feel like strutting.

Pitando Una Tonada De Orgullo (Whistling A Tune Of Pride)

Come to think of it, a lot happened my freshman year of college.

Not only did I write the first draft of what was to become The Gene Pull, I grew more socially (oddly enough with all the writing I had been doing) and became ten times, no, one hundred times, more comfortable in my own skin as an openly gay student — which is something I never felt I could do in high school (although, looking back I realize that I had nothing to be afraid about).

Most importantly, it was as a college freshman during  finals week — during a heightened period of emotional stress (X-Men reference!) — that I developed the ability to whistle. Loudly. Constantly.

It’s a big deal because I never could growing up. It sucked, not being able to do what most other kids could do. Especially when mi Mami was a pro whistler. Using her two fingers and tongue (and lungs), she could emit a sound so earsplitting, so powerful, that I’d be able to hear her call from miles away. That was also how she cheered me on during soccer games.Smiley-whistling

I miss that.

At least maybe now that I have my own whistling ability, I too can cheer on my future kids during soccer games or whatever other types of extracurricular they decide to engage in. I’ll be supportive of whatever. That’ll be awhile from now, though. So what do I do with my whistling powers now? I communicate with birds! Or at least try to. Sometimes I’m successful, sometimes I’m not. My powers are “unpredictable,” as they say.

That brings me to the main reason I started writing this post in the first place — to feature a handful of videos I made on my free time shortly after developing the “gift.” Yes, I was that excited. So much so that most, if not all, of my videos came out a little ridiculous. I’m a little reluctant to show them, but what the hell? Secrets are no fun unless you share them with everyone. No more hiding. Words that I live by every single day since coming out, to the point where I’m often “TMIed.” If that can be used as a verb.

But I digress! As I was saying, it’s a series. Kind of. Called “The Bird Whispering Chronicles.” Again, I must stress that I was very excited about suddenly learning how to whistle. Excitement makes people do crazy things. Like love does. Kind of. Why do I keep saying kind of?

I actually made a new video yesterday, the ninth episode of the series (titled The Revival since it has been a whole year!), for a friend who recently watched the previous eight episodes and demanded more! I made sure to mention The Gene Pull at the end. ^^

Check them out here! But at your own risk. The fact I only have one subscriber on YouTube should tell you something… 😛

Presentando Mi Bebe: The Gene Pull

The Gene Pull

I wrote THE GENE PULL during my freshman year of college originally for National Novel Writing Month, and although my Chemistry and Calculus grade suffered I was able to make one of my childhood dreams come true — to be a published author.


For this check (which means more to me than you’ll ever know!), I would like to thank everyone who supported me up until now and those who continue to support me! From my family to my friends to my publisher and now to True Colorz!

True Colorz Banner

Within just days of being published, this well-established LGBT YA novel-promoting website found me and just today put my book on their front page! I’m in line to get interviewed by them. Can’t wait to share that with you!

Now a little bit about my first novel ever…

Written by Benjamin Shepherd Quiñones (that’s me!) and published by G and J Publishing as of April 14, 2013 (the day before my birthday!), “The Gene Pull (as stated in my first review on Goodreads!) is an honest exploration of the pros and cons of coming out, with a sci-fi twist. Geared toward young adults, this short (180 pages) novel follows 16-year-old Noah Fletcher through a small window of his coming of age, including his coming out process. Noah is met with varying levels of acceptance from family, friends, and school peers when they learn that he is gay. LGBT teens will especially appreciate the recognition of the challenges that many face when they come out, especially bullying from peers. On top of handling the stress of coming out, Noah is also plagued with a superhuman power that pits an alien race against him. As Noah learns to handle both situations, the novel expresses an obvious “It Gets Better” theme that all young teens can relate to and gain hope from.” –Gina

For anyone who’s interested in reading my baby, there’s plenty of ways to get your hands on it! In both paperback and e-book form (see here!). Also please try to leave me some feedback if you can (on here, Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes and Noble or what have you). It’s a tad nerve-wrecking for me, as a debut author, to have my book read by the world without knowing what it thinks! I’m sure my fellow authors would agree?

Anyway, I hope you like it!