Tuesday, December 27, 2016

DUSTY Officially Published

Dusty is officially published!! Whew, that took longer than expected. It always does. I should stop being surprised by this.

here's the links where you can find my latest novel! :) I'll put the links under Dusty on my books page too. Dusty at CreateSpace  Dusty on Amazon

This book has been to hell and back, if you'll pardon the expression. With most of my works I have one single draft of the story and as I go through edits and rewrites a few things change of course but the story remains relatively the same and I never accumulate more than that one single version. But not Dusty. I have three separate Dusty books because it took me three tries to figure out Dusty's voice and that was just the beginning of the struggle. Dusty's book is the longest one I've written in a while (it's the longest one I currently have published, but I do have one unpublished novel that's just as long). It's a long book for me, and it took basically FOREVER to write. That might be an exaggeration. Honestly though, I wrote Lucy's Legend, the first book in this series, in one single month. And then Dusty decided she needed a couple years to bake. Part of the problem was that I kept ploughing through with the first idea and then the second one, determined to make it work because I knew I needed to tell Dusty's story. When I finally stopped being stubborn and let God show me what He wanted with this book it went much smoother. Then came the major critical comments from beta readers and family members and then my personal identity crisis....Dusty has been through a lot.

It's finally finished though, which I am grateful for. Usually I am crazy with excitement when publishing a book. With Dusty, however, I am just sighing with relief.

Part of that feeling has to do with the struggle it was to get Dusty to the end, and part of it is because my emotional energy is already focused elsewhere. I've been writing steadily in Courageous Heart for several weeks and that is the book that currently has me bouncing off walls in excitement. :)

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Christmas Traditions//Moving

I'm currently drinking hot cider and writing by a lovely Christmas tree. I love this time of year! Honestly, Christmas is one of my favorite holiday seasons. I love snow. I love how cheerful and pleasant everyone gets. I love giving presents. I love seeing my family. There is very little about this time of year that I don't enjoy.

It has been a bit different watching the season roll in now that I am in a new house and new city. But I will be back home again for Christmas, so I don't have to face the holidays in a completely new environment. (although that may not be true next year as the rest of my family is moving too now).

I am very excited but also in a way halfway dreading Christmas. The last Christmas at the house I lived in for 20 of my 21 years...I hate change. Have I ever mentioned that before? Probably. Change is not my friend.

On the bright side, I am super stoked for my family to be moving closer to where I am at right now. I have been finding it hard to cope without seeing my mother or having my sidekick (my little sister...also known as my other half...) nearby.

So, as this Christmas will presumably be the last one back in the "old house" as I'm now calling it...I thought I'd share a bit of how we do Christmas in said old house.

We always decorate right after Thanksgiving, which is honestly probably my favorite part about the Thanksgiving holiday...

"decorating" also included making Christmas goodies this year

We do advent every night (well...when we remember...we're not always regular). This year advent has been an adventure since I'm no longer at home and my Dad often isn't either because he's already moved to where his new job is (that's why my family is moving...). So we do advent via Skype these days.

not sure if you can see them, but the faces of my three siblings in this picture make me smile

Christmas Eve we always go to the service at our church (...I'm going to miss that church too. But I've been at a new church for 5 months so I'm getting used to it. Still miss the people back home though...)

I don't have pictures of the actual service, but this is right after the service one year. (don't remember which year...)
Several of my siblings are missing from this pic because not everyone is able to make it home each year.

We do a similar picture to this one, "under" the tree, every single year. :) My mom has a little scrapbook that has every tree picture and it's fun flipping through the pic and watching us all get bigger each year. (that's going to stop soon, the getting bigger that is, because we're basically all adults now, except for my 16 year old sister)

After the service we drive around the city and look at all the lovely Christmas lights. :D That's one of my favorite traditions.

Once we're home we drink eggnog and eat some cookies and have a little Christmas-y fellowship. :)

 Dad reading How the Grinch Stole Christmas, a family favorite. 

Christmas morning starts with stockings that Mom stuffed the night before. We read the story of Jesus' birth together. At some point during the day we do presents, which is always a production. There are nine of us, (more, now that people are getting married) so there's always a mountain of presents to pass out. It's always fun. I love that part of the day. I love watching people's faces light up when they open their gifts. :)

So...that's what Christmas usually looks like at our house. It will probably be a tiny bit different next year. A different house, anyway. It'll be fun to see what happens (even if I am slightly dreading it...)

My niece exploring her very first Christmas tree

Happy Christmas, everyone! :)

Saturday, December 3, 2016

The Effects of Writing

It's December! I still haven't seen any snow...

I am deep in the writing world these days. I'm actually currently sitting in bed with my laptop and a million notebooks and flashcards as I try to finish Courageous Heart. So what am I doing blogging? Get back to work!

Everyone needs a break now and then, though, so that's what I'm doing right now. Taking a break. Courageous Heart can be a bit of an intense write. I love this story to pieces, but a few hours of writing this book makes me want to drink hot chocolate and then take a nap because my head is exploding and my emotions are frazzled.

Writing my stories tends to have one of two effects on me.

1. I will get so invested in the story that every argument will leave me pacing my room in anger, every time a character cries I will too, so that by the time I've finished a chapter or two I am so emotionally drained that I need a long nap and good cry of my own that is in no way related to the story itself.


2. I will get so excited about the story that I feel like dancing around the house. The sad scenes, the happy scenes, the fight scenes...doesn't matter. It all makes me want to sing and dance.

One of those two scenarios will play out no matter what story I am writing. And today, it's leaning more toward number 1. So intense. I need a good nap and maybe a movie so I can relax and release all this pent up emotion. That's another big problem with writing for me. I tend to take on my character's attributes for a short while. I become them. (I get it, they're extensions of me to begin with...but that's not the way it feels. Go ahead and tell me I'm crazy. I certainly have a lot of people living in my head that I will absolutely tell you are not me) So right now, after writing Cassy for a couple hours--Cassy, who won't let anyone see the real her and hides her vulnerability and emotions at almost any cost--I am so exhausted.

This is a rather random post, but it's what I've got for you today.

Happy writing, everybody! :)

(Dusty is still in editing...but you'll see it published this month, no worries!)

Tuesday, November 29, 2016


Hello, everyone!

I feel like I haven't blogged in ages! Probably because it has, in fact, been a while...

Dusty is still deep in editing...oh, editing...can't live with it, can't live without it...

Anyway, that's entirely beside the point. What was the point of this post again? Oh yeah, I remember...

I started a new endeavor! I have been considering, for a while now, starting a vlog on YouTube. I was making video letters for my sister since I moved across the state and was beginning to enjoy that. Also, I have been researching new ways to market my books. YouTube kept coming up as a viable and beneficial option. So...I gave it a go...

If you care to watch said new vlog, here's a link...

First Vlog

I am not 100% comfortable on camera (as you can probably tell...) and also editing is not my best friend...(oh editing...) so yeah...this first video is a bit rough. Hopefully it gets better. I am actually getting more comfortable on camera because of the video letters that I send to my sister, so that's helpful. Honestly, I do think this is going to be a fun adventure whether or not it helps promote my books. I enjoyed making this first video, even it it didn't turn out the best. I do think the most important part at this point is whether I have fun or not. And I did have fun with this vlog, so I'm happy. :)

So there you go...that's all I have to say on that subject for now. :)

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Kaelyn//My Story

Okay. I promised I'd tell the story behind Kaelyn. So here goes nothing....

Fair warning, this is going to be a difficult post and has adult content. You've been warned. Read at your own discretion.

This story starts quite a few years ago, when I was twelve years old. It started at the end of a middle-school lock-in. I had only recently hit puberty and was starting to develop into a woman's body. That night of the lock-in was the first night that I was sexually abused by a boy that I knew very well. It was only the beginning.

The boy continued to find ways to be alone with me and handle my body. I hated it. I felt disgusting. And I decided I was a terrible person because I let it happen again and again. I am of the opinion the only reason it never turned into a full on rape is because we were both too young to understand how sex worked.

I never told anyone what was going on. I was too ashamed.

After that time period, or really while it was still happening, I became addicted to porn. Again, I was very young. I was unaware that there were actually porn sites on the web. My porn watching consisted mostly of watching movie sex scenes on YouTube. I still count that as porn. And to be honest, there's a lot of other weird stuff on YouTube as well. My head was full of lustful thoughts most days and every night.

The porn watching continued up until I was sixteen years old. At that point I contracted an illness and was extremely sick and unable to function (I couldn't read a book or even finish a sentence properly half the time). Because of that, porn rather disappeared from my life. And when I came out of that illness (it was a very slow process that took years) my relationship with Jesus was much stronger.

It took a long time, and a lot of Jesus, for me to fully put porn behind me.

I still have days where I so easily fall back into that lustful thought pattern.

It's a constant struggle.

I also struggled for a long time with telling anyone about my experiences. About the porn, about the sexual abuse, any of it. My best friend--also known as my younger sister--was the only person who knew. She had had her own similarly unpleasant experiences and so we were able to talk to one another about it. But otherwise, I never spoke up. I never told my parents. Never told anyone.

Because of that, it continued to fester inside of me.

Recently, very recently....as in, two weeks ago...God and I had a long discussion and I was given the instruction to share. I needed to tell someone. So I started telling people. I told some of the people in my life group (Bible Study) at church, I told my close friends, I finally--after all these years--told my parents what had happened. And as I began to bring that sin to light, it shriveled up and died.

Sin loves the darkness. It can fester there in the shadows. It feeds on darkness. Shine a light in all the dark corners and it will die.

For years it was a huge dark shadow hanging over my head.

And now it's gone. It no longer holds power over me. God helped me bring the darkness to light and I am free of it now.

So that's the story behind Kaelyn. Those are the struggles that Kaelyn is going to deal with in her book. I am so excited about this book! I hope it will be able to minister and encourage girls (and boys too) who have had similar experiences.

Not to spoil the ending or anything, but Kaelyn is going to defeat her demons by the end of the book through the power Jesus Christ.

It wasn't until I had started shining the light into those dark corners of my heart that God planted Kaelyn's story firmly in my mind. I won't lie, it is hard to write her book. I hardly go a chapter without bursting into tears. I feel her pain. I understand what she's struggling with (yes I know I'm talking about a character as though she's real...don't judge me). But as hard as it can be to write this story, I love it. I have never been so enamored with telling a story of mine. I get excited about all of my stories. But this one...this one owns my heart. I am desperately hoping this story will be an encouragement. I cannot wait to get it finished and to the public.

I love Kaelyn like I've never loved any of my characters before. And that's probably because she's 99% me. I get her. I totally understand. And my heart breaks for her.

I don't really have anything else to say on this subject.....


we're going to end like that.

I love Kaelyn.

I hope God uses this story for His glory.

I hope I didn't freak you all out with my story....

Friday, November 11, 2016


New story ideas are coming in spades


I have never understood that expression. Where does it come from? I understand the implied meaning, I can use it appropriately (well at least I think so...maybe not though...). But I don't get it. Is it a card game reference? Could someone explain this to me?

Well....I got distracted very early on this post.

Anyway. New story ideas. Overwhelming.

Dusty is still buried deep in the editing process. (Ugh. Editing.) I'm putting a tentative (emphasis on tentative) publish date at December 20th. Don't hold me to that. Courageous Heart is about half way done and I'm still working through it.

But now I'm also working on something else as well (because I guess I can't be satisfied unless I'm multitasking).

My new story is nameless as of yet (I only started it yesterday, after all). The plot is going to follow a girl who struggles with very deep seeded issues that I struggle with myself. Kaelyn (the main character) is going to tell the story of my life through fiction. From what I've written so far, I absolutely love this story. I'm learning to grow and change at the same time that Kaelyn is and it's a beautiful process. It's bringing healing to a part of my life I thought would stay darkened forever. But God has His own plans, and I'm loving it!

Don't worry, I'll tell you all about the plot and how it is intertwined with my life, I promise. Just not today. It's the darkest portion of my life and the deepest rooted sin and it's difficult for me to talk about it. As God is healing me, however, it is becoming increasingly easier to open up and share my story. So yes, I will share it with you. But you're going to have to wait.

At any rate, Kaelyn's story has now become my personal favorite (if authors are allowed to have favorites of their own creations). I'm super excited to see where this story goes. And I hope my readers will enjoy it too. :)

Monday, October 31, 2016

The Blogger Recognition Award//TAG

Hello, all! I'm going to be doing something today that I have not done since the dark ages....

Okay, it hasn't been that long. But honestly, I can't remember the last time that I did a tag. Let's see if I remember how this works. :)

I want to thank the beautiful and talented Paige from Sunday Best and All the Rest  for nominating me. (If you don't read her blog, you should! It's a lovely little corner of the Web.)

How Did I Start Blogging?
I started blogging about two and half years ago. At that time I had just recently become a published author and I was looking for new ways to express my writing creativity as well as build an author brand and market my books. One of my brothers told me to try a blog, so I did. And I absolutely loved it! At first, my blog had absolutely no direction. I just wrote about random stuff (which is kind of still the case, honestly). But over the years I have steered most of my posts toward writing and my books. I still blog about other random happenings in my life. But literature is the main focus.

What Are Two Pieces of Advice that I have for New Bloggers?

1. Give your blog a theme. Do you want to blog about fashion? Review books? Talk about your personal struggles and victories? Now, to be fair, my blog is not the most focused blog out there. I jump around toward all sorts of topics some days. But I try to keep most of my posts within the realm of either a personal tidbit about my life or writing. I chose a fairly broad theme in the form of writing since I blog about books I've read, books I'm selling, books I'm writing, as well as new techniques I'm learning in the writing business and all sorts of other stuff. I find blogs with themes much more enjoyable to read (and read regularly). Your theme can be whatever interests you. Why are starting a blog in the first place? That should probably be your theme. And you can make it as narrow or broad as you like, but having a theme will give a focus to your blog so it isn't completely random. It's easier to build a following if your posts have similar content. People who like that sort of content will continue to come back to your blog.

2. Don't worry if it's not focused. Now, I know I just said to give your blog a theme. But my second piece of advice is definitely, "don't sweat it." If your blog is random and has no theme at all, that's okay. Just keep writing. Keep working at it. Don't give up because you don't have a theme or because no one is following your blog or for whatever reason. (Now, if blogging becomes tiresome and NOT enjoyable, then definitely give it up or find ways to make it fun again). But don't quit. And don't worry. You'll figure out how this world of blogging works before too long if you stick at it! :) (I'm definitely still learning as I go!). 

Now, to nominate other bloggers for this lovely award!

I don't have that many blogging connections yet (I'm not that great at connecting since I don't take the time to follow other blogs very often. So there's a third piece of advice for you...follow other blogs. Comment on other blogs. Build some connections and friendships.)

Candace of the blog Radiant


That is one sad list right there. Like I said, make connections. That is something I'll certainly try to work on myself.

It was fun to do another tag after such a long break from them, so thanks, Paige, for nominating me. It was enjoyable to look back at my journey as a blogger and consider what advice I might have for newer bloggers. It was also very illuminating in the sense that I realized I don't have many blogging connections. It's always nice to have something to work on though, a goal to accomplish. :)

The rules of the tag are as follows:

Thank the blogger who nominated you.
Tell a little bit about how you started blogging.
Give two pieces of advice for new bloggers.
Nominate other bloggers. (15 being the specified number, but obviously you can do less....like I did...seriously, I need to work on that...)

Tag aside, there is someone else I also want to highlight, but as she is a brand-new blogger this tag/award hardly seemed appropriate for her specifically. At any rate, I'd love it if you all went over to Own It and checked out my sister's new blog! :)

Have a lovely day, everybody! :)

Friday, October 28, 2016

DUSTY//cover reveal

Hello, world!!

My newest novel is set to be released mid-December. My proof copy just arrived in the mail and in my excitement I decided to do what I always do. Share the new book cover with the world! :D


Look for Dusty-RH #3 on Amazon and Createspace in December. (I'll have links up on my books page once it's published). The whole series would make for a great Christmas gift too, if you're looking that far ahead. (I rarely have Christmas gifts this early. I'm too much of a procrastinator).


Okay, so the spine of Dusty is a tad boring sitting next to the other two colorful pops. But I do love the front cover! :) I also love how the size of each book is a bit bigger. By the time I finish this series I'll be writing epics!! Hopefully not, actually. I don't need that kind of work load, even if it is something that I love doing.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The Bane of my Creativity: Outlines

Do you know what used to terrify me? Give me nightmares and keep me up at night? Had me jumping at shadows?



Okay, but seriously. I used to hate the very idea of outlines. The way that I write seemed too perfect to mar with an outline. I discover my stories as I write them. I don't have a clue what is going on until it hits the paper. I love this! I have a blast journeying with my characters in this manner. I feel just as engaged, or even more so really, as when I read a novel. It's a beautiful experience.

And I was thoroughly convinced that outlines would stifle that creativity and kill the wonder of it all. If I made an outline, I'd already know what was coming and what would be the fun in that? There wouldn't be any fun, obviously. At least that is what I thought.

Recently, however, I have changed my mind.

I heard a fellow writer talking about the way that they do outlines and it sounded doable, and even fun. So I gave it a whirl. And you know what happened? I fell in love with outlines! And to my astonishment, it didn't kill creativity or ruin the wonderful experience that writing is.

What it did do, however, was give my stories more direction and make them less distractible. So, so many less bunny trails. So that was a good thing. And on top of that, it's fun to do outlines. At least, I'm finding it so. And far from stifling my creativity, it opened up my imagination even further....if that's possible.

You see, despite outlines, I still don't have a clue what is happening until it hits the page. The outlines give me a direction, and because of that direction the stories that I am currently writing are much more focused and I find them more enjoyable. But what the outlines did not do was lay out the story word for word, or even scene for scene. So I can still discover the journey along with my characters and it is still a beautiful thing.

So here is the only outlining method that ever appealed to me (and the one that I currently use):

First, I write out all of my ideas for the story I want to write on 3 by 5 cards. Although, currently, I'm just using lined paper that I've cut into smaller pieces because I don't have any 3 by 5 cards and am too lazy to go buy some. Anyway, I write down my ideas on these cards. For the book I am currently writing, Courageous Heart, a few of my idea cards say things like, "Discover the third" "find hope" "Inciting rebellion" "War against Single State" and so on.

Once I have a stack of these idea cards, I start to lay them out (on the floor, since that's a large enough space for me to work with. A table might be more preferable to other people, but not me). I arrange my idea cards in some sort of order. For example, from my cards listed above, I would have "find hope" near the beginning of the list and "War against Single State" near the end.  Really, I just put them in whatever order I think the story is going to go.

This is when I get a little more specific. I make more cards based off the ones I already have laid out. These news cards are a little more detailed. (i.e. Where Cindy and Cassy find hope, specific battles to take place in the War against Single State, where do Cindy and Cassy discover the third, etc.). I repeat this process several times until I have the basic outline of a story.

At this point, I have one long line of cards. So I start the next process. Breaking up the cards into groups, which will later become chapters. I slowly work my way down the line of cards, removing one or two or seven or however many I think go together, and I start to create columns. When I'm done, I've got a whole book outlined chapter by chapter. This is confusing for me to read, and I know what it is that I'm trying to say, so I'll give you a picture to hopefully clarify any confusion.

And then I begin to write. And things go crazy. The outline is just a framework, it's not hard and fast rules that must be obeyed. If things change from the original outline, that's fantastic. If things stay relatively the same, still fantastic. So far, for me, it has depended entirely on the story I'm writing whether the outline changes or not. And also how much I outline to begin with. I have one story that has a massively detailed outline and then I have Courageous Heart which is much more limited. (There are many, many more cards that the few I listed here as examples though. It's not THAT small of an outline).

I can't explain why, specifically, I enjoy this method of outlining. But I do know that I have a ton of fun doing it! :) If you're an author and, like me, have always run for the hills when outlines appeared...I would suggest giving it a try. Research different methods to outline stories and then try one out. You might be surprised by how much you actually enjoy doing outlines. And I am 100% sure that your stories will be more focused and more enjoyable to read because of that.

Happy Writing, everyone!

Monday, October 10, 2016

Gifts from China

My little sister recently returned from a trip to China and she brought me all sorts of goodies :) I thought today I would just share some of the cool presents she brought home for me.

This is a gorgeous hair piece she gave to me:

 A beautiful silk scarf! 

Calligraphy pen! I am so stoked about this one! I love all the things she brought me but this is 100% my favorite!! :)

Pretty journal. Too pretty. I don't think I could ever write on the pages of this journal.

My first attempt using the calligraphy pen. I ran out of ink. I think I did alright for a first go though.

I am super excited about learning to use the calligraphy pen. The silk scarf and the hair piece will likely also see a lot of use. I still can't decide if I'll actually write in that journal though. Every page is so beautiful! Almost too beautiful to mar with writing. We'll see. I don't know. At any rate, I love all the little things my sister got for me. I am very blessed. :)

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Identity Crisis

It's October! Hurrah!

I love October. But then, I love every month. But October is the month of my birth, so it's extra special.

Dusty is deep in the editing process...

This is a process that tests my patience with every novel. But this particular book also brought about a little bit of an identity crisis.

I recently did a post about my identity being in Christ and not being defined by my stories or what people think of said stories. The last few weeks have been instrumental in teaching me to believe that with my heart, not just know it in my head and post it to a blog.

In general, with my writing, I get positive feedback. Almost always. I don't have a lot of experience with criticism. So when one of my beta readers told me that my book was basically too boring to read, I broke. There was an hour of tears and coming to the conclusion that my story was worthless. And then there was a whole day of "Why do I write anyway? This is stupid. I'm pathetic. I'm a failure."

And then there God, whispering to my heart.

"You are not your stories. You are more than that. You are my daughter. You are a princess, the child of the Most High God. You are not worthless. I created you in my own image, I clothed you with my righteousness."

Knowing something and believing are not the same thing. And I had a bit of a struggle with that for about a week. What is my real identity? What does truly define me?

I am a child of the Most High. His definition of who I am is what matters. Nothing else. Whether I write another story or not, doesn't matter. It doesn't change who I am.

And after finally accepting that truth, I sat down to do some revisions to my story. And it has gone beautifully. I'm loving my story all the more, I feel that I have grown in my writing as I apply the feedback I received. But more than anything, this experience has deepened my relationship with my Abba. Daddy. Constructive criticism is great for writing. Who knew it was also great for my walk with Jesus?

Monday, September 26, 2016

The Creative Way

Dusty is finished and has hit the editing stage! Honestly, my least favorite stage. But very necessary, so I won't complain. I am very excited to share this story with the world. :) You might get a glimpse of the cover some day soon :)

As a writer, it is always my goal to be growing and learning in my craft so I can write better stories so as to better glorify my God. I approach my life in the same manner, always desiring to grow closer to the Lord.

Today I started class on writing, what Ted Dekker calls a course in transformational fiction. I am so excited! I've only done the first session, this being my first day. But it is positively amazing! It is both a powerful tool to enhance the way that I write and a powerful way to approach living with Christ. Ted Dekker covers it all. Again, I've only done one day. But this course has already inspired and challenged me and I am so excited and so grateful that I have the opportunity to learn in this way.

So that is what I will be up to in the following months. Taking my class, The Creative Way, and editing Dusty.

Friday, September 16, 2016

A Rare Breed


More specifically, AUTHORS.

What are these strange creatures that never socialize and only come out at night? Well they certainly aren't vampires, I can tell you that. We're a beautiful, weird, quirky bunch of people who spend way more time inside imaginary worlds and talking to made-up characters in our heads than we do in the real world with real people.

I don't know how it is for most other writers, but these are the things that I have come to recognize as my writer habits and quirks. These are the things that say...yep. Amanda is a writer. (To my mind at least)

1) Socializing...what is this foreign concept? You mean I actually have to spend time with people? What? No. Not gonna happen.

Now don't get me wrong. I love people. I really do. I love my family. I love my friends. I love all sorts of wonderful people that I meet on the street. And I do socialize. I had a recent coffee date with a friend that ended up lasting over eight hours. So yes, I socialize. But I can't deny that as soon as that awesome and super long coffee date was over, I locked myself up in my room to avoid any and all human interaction. Humans. I can't handle too much of them. Partially because, well, I'm an introvert. Leave me alone, folks. It's not that I don't like you. I just need space.

2) Coffee. Hot Chocolate. Tea. Cider. The staples of my diet.

3) Starvation. This is perfectly normal, I promise. No really. It is.

See...when writers get writing...we lose track of reality. That includes time. Time passes much, much faster when you're a writer. And food...well, we writers tend to forget we actually need sustenance. It isn't that we think we're too good for food. "I can survive fasting for months." yeah...no. It's just that we actually forget. We lose track of time and then go..."Wow. It's 7pm and I haven't eaten anything today. How did that happen?"

4) Hygiene....

Well...it isn't that I advocate not being clean. But when I get into a writing phase several....days....might go by between showers. And again, it isn't because I don't want to shower or that I think I'm above showering. I just forget. Writing is very distracting from the real world. You have no idea. (Or maybe you do, if you're a writer)

5) Nocturnal. 100%. I swear I am a cat.

My best writing tends to happen somewhere between midnight and 6am. Why? I have no idea. But I'm pretty sure this is the case for a lot of other writers, so I don't think I'm too weird.

6) Leaving the house is like being thrown into the Roman Colosseum. Please don't make me go. PLEASE!!! Now, once I actually get out of the house, it suddenly turns into a pleasant experience and I am fine. But before I actually get out the door....torture.

That's a few things that, to me, tell me I am a writer. Do any of you writers have your own quirks and habits to add to the list?

We are an interesting group of people to be sure, us writers. We inhabit a world of our own and I've never met anyone else quite like writers. I don't even know how to describe us. We're something different and unique, and we have a very different perspective on the world than anyone else I've talked to in my short years. I am proud to be a member of this quirky bunch of crazies who live life in made up worlds in the middle of the night.

Here's to all your writers out there! We might be different, but that doesn't mean we aren't awesome. In fact, I'm pretty sure it is our very different-ness that makes us awesome.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

How Do I Do What I Do?

I am still deep in Sherwood, finishing up my third Robin Hood book. Dusty is coming together nicely :) I spent a beautiful four hours writing last night and I am utterly convinced that I slept better because of that.

We're taking a step back from Dusty, however. Today I thought I would simply share my approach to writing. How do I do what I do?

Usually I type on my computer because it saves me time later, but occasionally I'll write in a notebook or on my lovely typewriter. My typewriter is actually my favorite place to write, but it can be a pain getting my manuscripts from the typewriter to the computer to publish them so I don't do that as often as I might otherwise.

When I sit down to write I always have a few things handy nearby. First of all, I have a timeline (handwritten by myself usually). For Dusty, this timeline is immensely long and spans a good thirty pieces of paper or more, which I keep in a simple three-ring binder. I also make sure I have fresh lined paper handy for any notes I might make while writing, or any research I might need to jot down. Research tends to happen spontaneously with my stories. I'll reach a certain part of my story and I realize I don't know enough that I need to to write a particular scene authentically so I pause writing and open up my browser and read and take notes for several hours before heading back to my manuscript to finish the scene I was working on.

Other necessary items I tend to keep by my side when I write would be cider or hot chocolate. Sometimes you just need that helpful burst of inspiration that a wonderful drink can give you. For a lot of writers, it's coffee. For me, it's usually apple cider but sometimes hot chocolate or even tea.

Once I have all my supplies gathered and am ready, the business of writing begins.

First step: Praying. I always sit down and pray before I begin writing, every time that I sit down to write. I usually pray for God to work through me, to help me write the stories he wants me to, and for Him to be glorified through my stories. If there's a particular thing I've been struggling with in one story or another I'll pray for that too.

After praying, I sit back and watch the magic happen. Generally, when I am writing, I don't know where the story is going or what is happening. I do have some idea, obviously, being the author. But I don't know a lot of what is going on so I get to "read" the story just like anyone else. It is a lot of fun! Writing is one of the most enjoyable things I have ever encountered in this life. :)

I tend to write for several hours at a time. I used to write all day long, if I didn't have anything going on. But now that I am a nanny writing is reserved for the evenings only. It's a beautiful thing to look forward to every day and it is the perfect ending to my days.

So that is my method of writing novels. I hope you enjoyed this little insight into my little world.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016


I love all of my stories.

Not everyone who reads them is going to love them, or even like them for that matter.

That is a hard thing to accept sometimes. As an author, I thrive on feedback, and I desire for people to enjoy the stories that I write. They are very much a part of my heart and soul. I put myself into every story that I write. It so often feels like an attack against my stories is an attack against me. But as an author, I need to learn to have a thicker skin. Yes, my stories are a part of me. But that does not mean that when people dislike a story of mine they dislike me.

I am learning to have the confidence to accept criticism without taking it personally.

On one hand, criticism can, in fact, be useful. I can learn and grow from it. On the other hand, criticism of my stories does not equal criticism of me. And even when there are those people who don't like me any more than they like my stories, they don't define me.

I am not defined by criticism.

I am not defined by those who dislike me.

I am not defined by my stories.

I am defined by my Creator. And I am learning to have confidence because of that and let everything else fall like so much water off of a duck's back.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

The Fruits I am Learning

As a nanny, I am learning anew the Fruits of the Spirit, and learning to experience them in a different way than perhaps I have in the past.


The overwhelming and powerful love you feel for the child in your care. The sacrifices that you make for her.


The bubbling, never-ending emotion that wells up inside you when you see the little one that you love. An emotion that transcends all the crying fits and dirty diapers.


Complete and perfect peace that envelopes you as you realize God is watching over your little one.


Patience to endure the seemingly never-ending cries, the stubborn refusals to take naps, and waiting for her to just roll over already (you're so close! You can do it!)


Watching out for her, any chance you can find to bless her sweet life (in however small a way).


Striving to be the best example you can be, pursuing the Lord all the more, even though she's yet to young to understand. 


Learning to quiet your voice, and slow your movements so you don't scare her; rocking her to sleep, making her laugh, holding her close.


Those moments when she's been crying for an hour and it takes everything inside you to just continue to comfort her and not curl up into a ball with your hands over your ears and have a good cry yourself.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Video Letters/Vlogging?

I have started a new project! Don't worry, writing is still my #1 priority (well...#2. #1 is my niece).

But as to this new project...

My best friend is my younger sister. We have always done everything together and she is my go-to when I need a good laugh or a good cry. So, moving 5 hours away from her has not been easy for either of us. One way we've been working around this is by sending each other video letters. That's my new project. Honestly, the videos aren't that great yet (well mine certainly are not). But it has been fun to send letters via this medium. And it's also been a lot of fun learning how to make proper youtube videos. And it's gotten me thinking.

I'm considering creating a vlog.

Note the word considering. I am not sure that I can juggle novel writing, blogging, nannyhood, and doing a vlog. So it's just a thought right now. But these video letters to my sister have been lots of fun, and I do think a vlog could be a great way to grow my audience and create a further reach for my books.

So, that's what I've been up to.

In the writing corner of my life I've been deep in Sherwood, finishing Dusty. It isn't complete yet, but it is definitely getting there. :)

Friday, July 29, 2016

Nanny = Motherhood

I have survived the first official week of nannyhood. (Well...I've still got the second half of today, but I don't expect anything too crazy to happen in one afternoon....)

Was it easy? Well, up until today I would have said yes. However, today the Lord decided I needed to learn patience. It has been an interesting day, full of a fussy niece and never getting a moment's rest. Do I still love nannyhood? Yes! Do I still want to do this job? Absolutely! :) Is it easy? No.

There are good days and bad days. Days full of smiles and bright blue eyes. And days full of shrieking and tears. But I wouldn't miss this for the world. All of these moments, the smiles, the tears, the dirty diapers, the giggles...this is Addison's life. A life that will happen in the blink of an eye. So yes, I want to be here on the bad days. Because she's only going to get this bad day once. I don't want to miss a single moment of her precious life.

So here I am, endeavoring to live every second in the moment and not a miss any part of everything that is Addison. Learning patience, holding on to my sanity when my sweet girl can't stop crying, finding joy in every smile, laugh, and cry. Relishing the happy snuggles and the sad snuggles. Cherishing every minute.

I feel like I am learning motherhood right now.

Obviously, having never been a mother, I can't say this is exactly the same. But I definitely feel like that new mother on her first child loving every minute and not having a clue what to do. We're just taking it one day at a time. :)

To be honest, I'm not completely clueless. Today was on the rougher side, so I'm feeling a bit harried. But I've been watching children for years, this is nothing new. The only difference now is that it is all the time, and not just a few hours at a time. That's the hard part, I think. I do love it though! As I said, I wouldn't trade this time for anything! :D

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Libraries, Books, and Authors, oh my!

I visited a library today!! :)

"Wait!" I can hear you saying, "You're an author and addicted to books and it took you more than a week to visit the local library?!"

I know, I know. But I was moving into my new room and shopping all last week. I was busy. But today I finally made it to the local library. Did I get any books? No. But it was fantastic just to be in there. I love the atmosphere of libraries. It's peaceful. And it smells good. And there are books!! That's the best part, of course. :) I also visited a local bookstore. That place is fantastic! It is a very sweet little shop, and they have everything from Divergent to David Copperfield to 50 year old encyclopedias! So many beautiful books! And yes, I unashamedly buried my nose in a few of them and inhaled deeply. I just love the smell of books. :)

Now that I'm finally settling in to my new home and getting into a daily routine, I have time, not only to visit libraries and bookstores, but to get back into my writing! This past week has been somewhat devoid of writing. Not that I haven't written, because I have. I wrote maybe 3000 words in one story this week. But I am finally ready to sit back down and immerse myself in my writing world again. I am very excited! I have two books right now that I am focusing on, and I am eager to get them finished and to the public!

Dusty, my third Robin Hood book, is my focus right now. I'm about a third of the way done (if you can really measure that. Who really knows how long a book will end up being...??). We're still on the Crusades and haven't even begun the adventure in Sherwood yet. I'm excited to see it all unfold again through Dusty's eyes. :)

The other book I am currently putting an emphasis on is Courageous Heart, the sequel to my latest novel Isolated. This story captured my heart from page one and I am loving writing it! Following Cassy and Cindy's stories has been very exciting for me. I never really know where my stories are going or what my characters are up to. I have rarely ever used an outline or plotted out the story beforehand. None of my published works followed outlines. I just sit back and "read" the story like anyone else, except that I get to read it first, and more than that I get to live in that world first. :)

So, suffice it to say I am very happy to be diving back into the world of Robin Hood and super excited to find out what is going to happen to Cassy and Cindy a few hundred years in the future! :) I am so ready to share these stories with the world, but unfortunately I actually have to finish them before I can publish them. So I will get on that! Dusty, as I have mentioned before, should be a 2016 release. I would love for Courageous Heart  to be one as well, but that is unlikely to happen. So 2017 it is...unless a miracle happens (which is always a possibility!). :D

Sunday, July 17, 2016

JOY :)


It comes in a variety of ways, from many things. The true source of real joy being Jesus. Yet I do feel that He allows joy to enter our lives through many different mediums because of Him. When you have Jesus, you can find the light in all situations.

I'm not going to be talking about anything dark and depressing today, although His joy can overshadow that in amazing ways. Today, I'm just talking about hilarity. Finding the laughter in moments that could be frustrating or annoying.

The joys of moving.

The hassle of unpacking, finding places for everything...sleeping on the floor because your bed hasn't arrived. Sleeping on an air mattress because your frame arrived without a mattress.

And then getting this in the mail when you were told it was your mattress:

Um....does this look like a mattress to you? Seriously, Amazon? Do you actually think I can sleep on that?

I'm finding moving to be a most hilarious adventure. I am really enjoying it. I wasn't expecting this insanity to be a part of my moving experience, but I am glad that it is. Laughter is a good thing. I don't want to even imagine what my life would be like if I didn't have laughter, if I couldn't enjoy the silly happenings of life.

Even so, I am going to be so very happy when I finally have a bed!

In the meantime...I'll keep watching for those moments that I can find joy. They're everywhere, so long as you keep your eyes open. :D 

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Here We Go!!

I successfully traveled across the state and unpacked my car...now to unpack all my boxes....this might take a while...

My nanny duties have begun! And I can already say she is definitely worth the discomfort of my first move, leaving my childhood home and all that jazz.

Longer posts will have to come another day. I'm exhausted from my drive and carrying all those boxes upstairs and I'm going to leave off blogging in favor of cuddles with Addison. :D

Friday, July 8, 2016

The Beauty of Comments


Comments are a beautiful thing.

Feedback is the lifeline of this author. I don't know how it is for most other authors, but I know what keeps me going and motivates me to continue. Feedback. Comments. Communication. "I liked this part," "I disliked this part," "that part did not make any sense," "this part made me cry." I love to hear from readers. If that's readers of my books, it helps me to understand what works and what doesn't. What people like to read and what they don't. I can adjust, learn, grow in my art. If that's readers of my blog, it encourages me to continue this little piece of my world (which admittedly I sometimes have no inspiration to continue).


If that's encouragement, criticism (hopefully constructive) or everything in between it is a very useful tool in many areas of life. But I'm talking about communication today because it's what keeps me going. I write for people, so when I don't hear from people I find it difficult to continue sometimes. Not always, of course. Sometimes the simple joy of writing is enough to carry me through. Sometimes it's not. But every comment, whether in person, via email, or even here on this blog, gives me a little more gas in my tank so I can start up my engine and get writing again. :)

So thank you, readers. All of you who have ever said anything to me, via any medium. I write for you, and perhaps because of you. Because feedback is my lifeline.

For the record, this is not a plea for more comments, in case you were wondering. This is just what I've been thinking about lately. Sometimes I'll find myself having a less than pleasant day and left with no inclination or motivation to write and then I'll receive some sort of communication about one or another of my various writings and (even when it has negative vibe) I suddenly have the oomph to sit down and write again. So this post is just me musing on that fact, and also thanking those of you who are in some small way responsible for keeping me writing. :)

Like I said, comments are a beautiful thing.

Monday, July 4, 2016

God's Gift of Life

It's the Fourth of July, and there are so many things I could say about the blessed gift of freedom that we have here in America....

But this week, I've been less focused on Independence, and more focused on life. Just marveling at the beautiful gift of life that the Lord has given us. :)

Meet Addison, my precious new niece. :D

I am super stoked to move in with this sweet girl (eleven days!!). I am very grateful for the opportunity to take care of my darling niece. And every moment I am with her I marvel at God's gift of life. He just blows me away with His Majesty. His handiwork is so evident whenever I look at Addison. My heart is full with love for my sweet niece and for my amazing God!! :)

So that's where my thoughts are this weekend. :) 

Happy Fourth of July, folks! 

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Character Studies

Working hard in the writing department today!

I have spent a few hours this fine Tuesday afternoon doing in depth character studies for my Finding Hope series. I found a wonderful questionnaire online to help with this tedious work (questionnaire) and have actually enjoyed myself immensely. But there is no denying that it is hard work. The questions cover a wide variety of topics, ranging from anything like hair color to clothing to style of speech and how a character expresses anger and what their core beliefs are. It's been a lot of work and a lot of time (and I've only done two characters so far) but I am learning a lot about these people who have taken up residence in my head and on paper and that is always fun for me.

Also, knowing your characters so well adds a deepness and richness to the stories you write, even when all of that information doesn't make it onto the page. Pieces of it seep in here and there and add something beautiful to the story. It is more complete and whole when you know your characters well. The readers may never know everything about your characters, but when you do, you write a better story. So that is why I have been hurting my brain all afternoon trying to understand who my characters are and what makes them tick.

My work space is closer to normal today. Messy :)

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Simple Update

I have spent the last couple of days immersed in Sherwood once more! Dusty is taking shape nicely. :) I'm very excited about this book (as I tend to be about all of my books). Dusty tends to be a bit more serious in nature than my previous books, but it is still fun to write. :) As of right now it definitely looks like I'll have it finished in time for a late 2016 release. No promises though. 

This is what my work space looked like today. Not quite as messy as it sometimes gets. :)

In other news, I'm home from house-sitting and I have three more weeks before my move to Manhattan! Which I am super excited about! :) 

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

House-Sitting // Writing

It's a new month, everyone! June....

The weather is turning warm (almost hot, in fact) and I am counting down the last of the days in my hometown! A month and a quarter or so and I am moving!

I promised updates of the house-sitting adventure, so here you go!

So far I am enjoying my time here. I'm alone, but I've never minded solitude. In fact, I relish it. :) But I am still taking part in activities in social settings so I am not completely isolated. I'm not a hermit! (yet) The pets are wonderful. The cats and I have finally established relationships. Well, with one of the cats it took a matter of hours. The other one was more standoffish and took about a week or so. But we're all on speaking terms now :)

Those are the lovely animals I have the privilege of sharing a home with right now. :)

The constant near-silence that I am blessed with here at this house definitely lends itself to both reading and writing, and I have been doing a fair bit of both. :) My focus in the writing realm is Dusty right now, as I have every intention of publishing that book this year. We shall see if I can indeed accomplish that or if it will have to be a 2017 release.

I am curious to know, from any fellow writers out there, if I am not alone in listening to instrumental music to keep my creative juices flowing? I nearly always have music playing when I sit down to write and I find that it really does help.

Monday, May 23, 2016

New Adventures

Well I am starting something new, people!

I know, I know, truly shocking isn't it?

I am not moving for another month and a half or more, so that's not what this post is about. No, I'm starting something else brand new and exciting (well I find it exciting, you may have your opinions).

I am house sitting, which is something I have never done before. It's different, and new, and fun. I am somewhat overwhelmed with the level of trust my employer places in me to go so far as let me live in her house for three weeks, alone. Add to that how generous she is, which shows in so many ways, not the least of which is the chocolate stash by my bed. :)

To begin with, the house is truly lovely. I love it! :) And then there are her three pets, the very sweet dog, and two cats. Obviously, being cats, we have yet to actually start a friendship. But as I am completely in love with all cats in the universe, I'm sure we'll get along just fine. She's also very into plants. Very. She has beautiful gardens of flowers, in both the front and back of her house, (which I will no doubt be photographing for your viewing pleasure in the next three weeks) and also lots of herbs and some fruits too. It is crazy and amazing. It is a sweet home with enchanting gardens. :) Well, I find it so anyway.

So there it is. I'm house sitting. You'll probably be getting updates about this adventure as the next three weeks elapse. I'm curious how the Lord will use this venture to grow me. As of yet, I don't see where this is going spiritually. But I'm excited as always to see what He has in store for me :D

Monday, May 16, 2016

Dedicated to Learning Violence

Not that I actually want to learn how to be violent....

One of the biggest challenges I face as an author is never to stay in one place. I need to be growing, changing, to continue learning new things.

In the spirit of learning new skills, I spent a good portion of today focusing on violence. That sounds rather terrible, but it is what I did. I write a lot of action packed sequences and adventure stories. However, violence is one of my least favorite things in this world. Because of that, I tend to simply gloss over the fighting and do my best to ignore it in favor of emotional level character development. I have come to the realization, though, that if I am going to write the kind of stories that I write, then I need to know how to effectively write violence.

So, to that end, I spent several hours this afternoon doing research. I read about how to write fight scenes. I read about how to actually fight, not simply write about it. How to use a knife, a bow, a fist. It was violent. Some of it was pretty gruesome. But I learned a lot. About weapons, about techniques, about all sorts of things. I then put some of that new knowledge into practice and wrote some fight scenes. Not spectacular by any means, but I think it's better than it has been.

Obviously, I'd be able to write combat better if I participated in that sort of thing, but as that isn't likely to happen any time soon, doing extensive research seems like the next best option. And so far, I think it really is helping.

I won't stop with today though. I'll continue to research effective fighting techniques as well as reading up on how to write realistic and powerful scenes that involve violence. I want to better my skills as an author, and that is going to take time. But it is time that I am willing to dedicate to the cause, because the better I write, the better I can use my gifts to glorify the Lord :)

Thursday, May 12, 2016

The First Steps

Graduation took place almost a week ago now. Yesterday was my very last final. Today, I woke up and suddenly realized that I had no homework to do, no pressing deadlines, no class to get to.

I am done.

For now, at least. College may very well find its way back into my life at some future date. But for now, I am finished. It's a strange feeling. Not exactly accomplishment, or excitement, or joy. It just is. I am finished. And now I am moving on to the next phase of my life.

That phase which is coming rather more quickly than anticipated. However, I am very excited about it and am eager to start this new adventure so I don't mind that its barreling towards me at top speed :D

Today, I started packing.

Not a ton, because I'm not moving for another two months. But I did start the packing process. I will be going to Manhattan this weekend to celebrate my brother and sister in their respective graduations from higher education and since that is where I will be moving over the summer I decided to get a little head start. I didn't pack a lot today. Just a few things that I won't be needing for the next two months. But the fact that I did start packing has me all jittery with excitement. This is actually happening. I really am moving. I feel as though I have taken the first steps on the journey of this new adventure! :)

I am super excited to see where this adventure will take me and how the Lord will choose to grow me in the days to come :)

Monday, May 2, 2016

Forever Obsession

A new month is upon us! These next two weeks are going to be super busy as finals approach and graduation looms on the horizon.

I have a new book idea in the works. For those of you who know me or have been reading this blog for any length of time, you will realize that this is nothing out of the ordinary. I always have a book in the works. However, this story is different. I've been thinking about it for a long time. I can't remember if I've ever shared it on the blog, although it is possible that I have.

The story that I want to share is my own. The highs and lows of my own spiritual journey.

I am the kind of person that very easily becomes absolutely engrossed in things to the point of obsession/addiction. This has happened with books, musics, movies, you name it. If I am not careful, they consume my life. Consequently, I end up doing a lot of "fasting" from certain things for any given length of time so I can refocus my life on God. My life is one never ending battle of obsession. In the end, however, I want God to be my only obsession, or as Steven Curtis Chapman would put it, my "magnificent obsession." This has been a struggle, and will be continue to be a struggle, because I have a mind and heart that very, very easily become obsessed. With anything. With everything. That's what I want to write about. The struggle of keeping God as my forever obsession. And maybe, in the course of writing and sharing my own story, I'll encourage someone else in their own walk with the Lord.

I believe that my obsessive nature is God-given. I was created to be obsessed. I was simply created to be obsessed with Jesus. :)

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Big News

My graduation is swiftly approaching. With every day that passes I realize anew how much I am going to miss my college life. I love being on campus and just the atmosphere there. I love learning. I love my instructors. This has been an amazing adventure and I am definitely going to miss it. Right now I'm trying to stay in the moment and enjoy every second that I have.

But I'm not going to stay in the past. I do have a bright future ahead of me, so even though one chapter is ending I will focus on the fact that another is beginning.

And this new beginning is incredibly exciting to me!!

I am moving. That may not sound like much. But let me explain. I have lived in the same house for twenty years. I hate change. I am not flexible. I don't try new things...ever. So let me repeat: I am moving!

This is crazy, people!

But I am super excited. I am moving across the state to live with my sister and brother-in-law to look after their daughter (once she's born) while they work. I am going to be a nanny to my own niece. I love children so, so much so being a nanny is a dream come true in itself...and then add to that that she's my niece and I am freaking out with joy over here. :D I cannot wait to begin this new adventure! So that's my big news. I'm moving so I can nanny my niece. And I am so, so very excited about it! :)

Saturday, April 16, 2016

The End of an Era

Well, my last year of college is winding to a close...

This isn't a guarantee that I won't be doing more college education in the future, but for now...this is the end.

Today was my very last tournament for AEC. One part of my college life has now finished. I am sad for various reasons. I loved AEC! I also love being on campus and going to class and just the whole atmosphere of our community college. I am also happy, for various reasons. I'm happy to be done with homework (very happy). I am excited for the next adventure (you'll be hearing about that soon...). I'm happy I'll have more free time to write!

I'm a little saddened by this chapter of my life ending, but mostly excited for what's next. I'm not nearly as nostalgic as I was leaving high school. Is that because I'm older? Or because I don't care for college as much as I did my high school life? Probably a bit of both.

I still have 3 weeks of class....but for now (a little early) here's goodbye to college and hello to my beautiful future! :D

Friday, April 8, 2016


It is April 8th and I haven't blogged yet this month! Eek!

What has been happening in my life lately?

In the world of writing, aside from Isolated finally being published (yay!), I have been working very hard on finishing Dusty. This book is stealing my heart. Dusty is a hard character to write because she's supposed to be this wise, spiritual woman....and that's not me at all. But with lots of prayer and lots of scripture reading I am able to get through it. :) I have also been doing a lot of fanfiction writing. You can find that HERE

School is nearly finished! One more month and I will have my associates. I have greatly enjoyed my time at the community college here. I do vividly remember freaking out and being terrified of going to college. However, it turned out to be an amazing experience and I wouldn't trade it for anything. It has been fun, I've learned a lot, and I am going to miss it when it is over.

That's basically where I am at right now; finishing school and writing my books. :)

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Isolated: Kindle Edition

I don't have a lot to say tonight, but I do have a little bit of exciting news!

Isolated is now available as an ebook...that's right, you can purchase Isolated for your Kindle. :D

This is my very first ebook, and I am very excited about it. Every new adventure I undertake as a self-published author is incredibly exhilarating, and this is no exception! When my books are selling, it is like celebrating the birthday of your own child. Now that I am doing something new, with Kindle, it is like I've given birth to a second child and I am overjoyed. :)

Here is a link to the Kindle edition on Amazon: Isolated Kindle Edition

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Isolated Officially Published!

Guess what is now available for purchase?? That's right: Isolated!!!

I am so very excited to announce that Isolated is officially published. You can purchase it on Amazon or the online CreateSpace store. I will have links to both of those on my books page under the description of Isolated.

Go. Read. Enjoy. :D

Also, Isolated is soon going to be available as an ebook. It will be my very first ebook, so I am super excited about that as well! :)

Monday, March 21, 2016


Spring Break was amazing...and I was NOT ready to head back to school today! But having no choice in the matter, I went to school anyway. It actually wasn't too bad. I was expecting it to be harder to adjust back to my routine, but it really hasn't been bad.

I had a project due today, that I spent a fair portion of Spring Break stressing over and almost getting sick over. It was terrible. The project/presentation actually went fairly well this morning. When I told my mom about it, she told me I needed to work on 'taking every thought captive' when I want to stress over things so that I don't work myself 'into a tizzy.' I listened to her, but it was somewhat half-heartedly.

Then, I had my Scripture time later, and one of the verses I read was Psalm 37:8 "Do not fret, it leads only to evildoing." I felt this was my personal little reprimand from God for my fretting, as well as a reminder not to fret in general. On top of that, I also felt this was God affirming/confirming what my mother had said to me and Him reminding me that I need to listen to her more and trust her advice and wisdom. It isn't that I don't listen to my mom, but sometimes I tend to blow off her advice. I'm going to be working on that in future.

Thanks, God, for the reminder. :)

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

My New Best Friend: Fanfiction

We are in the final stages of editing to Isolated! Yay! I'm super excited. This book has been finished for so long....I feel like this is probably the longest I have had to wait from finishing a book to publishing it. I am not a very patient person, so this has been a serious struggle, people.

However, the wait is almost over! Isolated should be in available before the month of March is over. :D

That aside, I have gotten into something new recently. When I say recently....it has been a year...or two...but that is beside the point.

I discovered this wonderful and beautiful world called fanfiction. Now, I have always, for as long as I can remember, changed and/or added to stories. Every book that I read, every movie I watched, my imagination would go crazy with ways the story might have happened differently, the things that very well could have happened without actually changing the story presented...

I have now found a home for my wild imagination.


I LOVE it! Where has it been all my life? Why didn't I know about this before? All of the craziness inside of my head is now free to come out and be a story that can be read.

One of my favorite parts of fanfiction is the immediate feedback. People buy my books, which I am so happy about, but I never get feedback (except from family and that hardly counts). But with fanfiction, I have complete strangers commenting on my work all the time. It is wonderful. It is also very helpful. I get to know what my readers are thinking, what they like and what they don't like. It really is amazing.

Fanfiction, for me, has become a place to practice. I absolutely love taking known stories and putting my own spin on them. Now, however, it is also a place for me to hone my writing skills, get constructive criticism, and try new things. There are many aspects of writing that I am not good at, or that I have simply never tried, and fanfiction has become the perfect place to do that!

To put it simply, fanfiction is the new love of my life. :D

Monday, February 22, 2016

Favorites {2}

It has been over a week and no writing inspiration has come zapping into this brain of mine. Hence....you get another filler. Hurrah. (There has been plenty of book writing...just no random inspirational thoughts to share with the internet at large)

Today, I'm going to share just a few (a very few) of my favorite movies. The fact is, I watch a ton of movies and love almost all of them, so this list is going to be very limited and in no way reflect the entire realm of movies (and miniseries) that I love.

  • BBC 1995 Pride and Prejudice (I've watched all the versions I can find and do find different things to enjoy in each. But this one is the best!)
  • The Letter Writer
  • How To Train Your Dragon 1 & 2 (and the cartoons too....I am slightly addicted to Dragons)
  • Star Wars saga (Any and all...yes, even the prequels. You may begin your freak out session now: but I won't be dissuaded from finding the positives.)
  • The Young Victoria
  • BBC North and South (AMAZING!!)
  • Miss Potter (Fantastic film! I related to that woman in so many ways! At least the film portrayal of her. She understands writing and interactions with character that the author writes (and may or may not have conversations with) in a way I have never seen. But it describes my own self perfectly)
  • Inside Out (I love this movie so much!)
  • Wall-E
  • Mansfield Park (2007)

I'm going to add, that I like to cry. Not that I enjoy the physical act of crying, mind you. But when it comes to movies to watch I prefer the heart-wrenching ones. Make me cry. Move me in some fashion. I want to feel great highs and great lows when I watch a movie. Granted, it does not actually take very much to make me cry. I am a very sensitive human being. I could probably count on one hand the number of movies I've watched that I haven't cried watching them.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Favorites {1}

I am sick, so lying in bed is basically all I feel up to today....but I am also bored. And there's not much I can do to relieve said boredom while lying in bed doing nothing.

So why not blog?

Today I am going to share just a few of my favorite books.

  • I am a lover of all things Jane Austen, but if I had to choose a favorite book I would have to say Persuasion.
  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte is high on my list of favorites as well.
  • The Chronicles of Narnia are among my obviously-loved-due-to-how-worn-out-the-books-are collection. If I had to choose a specific favorite I'd say either The Magician's Nephew or The Last Battle
  • Janette Oke has always been a preferred author. I love her When Calls the Heart series best. That, or her collaboration with T. Davis Bunn, The Song of Acadia series.
  • Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
  • The Princess by Lori Wick
  • The Elsie Dinsmore series by Martha Finley
  • North and South by Elizabeth Gaskill
  • A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

Just to name a few. :P

These are all great reads and everyone should definitely put all of these titles on their bucket list. :D