Sunday, January 14, 2018

Sign-Up to Beta-Read My Novel - Faithless

  I'm pretty excited about this, guys. I've been working on the second draft of this originally very messy, very convoluted, very rushed, very all-over-the-place story since the fall and now I'm finally ready to share it with more people! Are you excited?? Get excited cause it's gonna be awesome! It's been ages since I had beta readers on The Sorceress and the Squid and it's just so so fun to have people reading through your book and getting to see firsthand how they feel about it. It's also a tiny bit terrifying, especially with a book that's still as much of a mess as Faithless is, but I'm really looking forward to it a lot. If you are a somebody who is potentially interested in being part of the beta-reading team for this story, read on for the synopsis and more info regarding the process.



Katarian refugee and dignitary, Sagaar Remus, is reunited after seven years with her husband, Damien Sparr, a convicted war criminal in the Outer Reach whose coupe destroyed her country, city, home and family. After years of separation she meets him in his prison cell, aghast by the atrocities he has committed in the name of his people. With her husband facing the executioner's block and conspiracy swimming around her, Saagar must learn what it means to love someone that you cannot trust.  

  I have a hard time placing this book in terms of genre. I call it something like a dystipian AU but it's not really dystopian or a typical alternate universe setting so I have no idea. Maybe you can help me figure something out? It's running about 50,000 words right now with the potential to probably be longer rather than shorter and it's VERY different than my previous novel, The Sorceress and the Squid, or any book I've done before really. It's much darker, much more serious and adult in tone, much more gritty. It's definitely a more mature book than TSatS. Tbh, it's more along the lines of what I usually write. TSatS was a deviation into the realm of middle-grade fantasy that I don't often work in, but I like writing multiple varieties of things, and hopefully you like reading them too and won't be too turned off by how different it is than my previous book. 

  Below I have posted the sign-up sheet, which will be circulating to the end of January. I will be sending out the manuscript through Google Drive on February 1st and closing up the sign-up at that time. I am looking to give people from February 1st to May 1st to read and let me know what they think, but if more or less time is needed, please feel free to take that time as I will not be getting into editing again until the fall most likely. However, I would really appreciate if the novel could be read by May 1st, if you feel like this won't be enough time for you but you'd still like to read it, just let me know and that shouldn't be a problem. 

  Thank you so much for your participation! Hope to see you on the beta-reading team February 1st! :DD


Sunday, January 7, 2018

My Best Reads of 2017 (and Books I'm Looking Forward To In 2018)

  I read about 30 books in 2017, which was above and beyond my goal of 25 (about 2 per month). I was super stoked to make that number despite the total crazy that was my entire 2017, BUT I did it and I'm quite proud that I made 10 more reads than 2016. :DD

  Since some of the books I read last year were really cool, I thought I'd make a list and share them* with you guys who may be on the lookout for some new 2018 reads and if you have any great books you read in 2017 that you'd recommend, please tell me about them below!!

  *aka slap you in the face with them cause that's how I promote



(in no particular order because HOW WOULD YOU ORDER THIS AWESOMENESS??)
((also, every title links to the corresponding Goodreads page so you can learn a bit more about any books you find intriguing))


  • The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente: I was taken prisoner by the elegantly huge title of this book and after that fell in love with the story itself. It's whimsical, original, and has Alice in Wonderland vibes while being entirely unique. The writing, the characters, and the world are all phenomenally done and I am super keen to read further into this series. The book does work just fine as a standalone though. 
  • 1984 by George Orwell: Because I love old dystopias and totalitarian dictatorships (in fiction that is) I really enjoyed this novel. It really brought you along with the mental track of the main character and had me on the edge of my seat the whole time, really thinking about my own society in relation to that of the world George Orwell creates. 
  • Coraline by Neil Gaiman: Very creepy is the biggest thing about it, I could feel everything in this book - if that even makes any sense. It's a quick, afternoon read but one that stays with you.
  • That Hideous Strength by CS Lewis: I finally finished The Space Trilogy this past year and the final book (though not my favorite) did not disappoint. CS Lewis had a lot of good things to say here and he mixed together some pretty incredible elements.  
  • Lilith by George MacDonald: If I was having to pick a favorite for 2017 books, this one is definitely a contender. Very similar to CS Lewis in style, very complex, very thought-provoking, very...just, no words. I know the Goodreads cover thumbnail looks stupid but this book is awesome. I highly recommend it. 
  • Martin Hospitality by Abigayle Claire: In the fall I got around to reading my friend Abi's first novel and I thought it was amazing! She did a fantastic job and it was a wonderful honeymoon roadtrip read. I particularly loved how she handled her characters and their development. 
  • Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman: Basically any Neil Gaiman book I read will make it on my lists of books. But this one was really good and really interesting. My favorite Gaiman is still The Ocean at the End of the Lane but this one is up there. It was unique, engaging, and had a ton of twists. I loved it.
  • Fevre Dream by George RR Martin: An actually GOOD book about vampires, not the Twilight garbage train! Huzzah! I'm not huge into the vampire genre but I thought this one was really well done, George Martin is a fantastic world-builder and crafts very powerful scenes that you can totally see playing out in your head. Really good if you like creepyness and vampires. 
  • The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood: Another older dystopia that really grabbed my attention and got me thinking and sympathizing with the character. It raised a lot of interesting points about freedoms in society and how they can be taken away so slowly that no one realizes until it's too late. Well worth the read.
  • The Girl Who Swallowed the Moon by Kelly Barnhill: A children's middle-grade fantasy that a lot of people felt was too slow but I adored. The world, the magic, the characters, ugh, just everything was great. Very reminiscent in tone of my own novel, The Sorceress and the Squid. ;)
  • The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman: Another Neil Gaiman cause he is awesome and his books are the best. I believe this is also meant as a book for younger audiences but I found it very interesting and very unique. Neil Gaiman is an author of children's books who writes things with meaning and purpose, unlike many, and I applaud him and this book for that.
  • Batman: The Court of Owls by Scott Snyder: Technically a graphic novel but I have been getting into this series of Batman lately and am a fan. The Court of Owls I read while waiting for midnight on New Year's Eve and I super enjoyed it. It was trippy and edgy and very cool. I am very excited to read more. 

  Do any of those appeal to you? Honestly, I was blessed with some great reads this year and I really want to share and spread them around to you guys so if anything tickles your fancy at all, do look into it, I promise these were all really good. 

  Also, here is a "condensed" list of all the books I want to tackle in 2018...I will definitely not get to all of them but one can dream wildly, can't one?
  • A Wiseman's Fear and The Slow Regard of Silent Things by Patrick Rothfuss
  • At the Back of the North Wind
  • Something CS Lewis on my shelf that I haven't read yet (Mere Christianity, The Abolition of Man)
  • Or reread Narnia
  • And maybe LOTR too
  • Haha, I'm cute. 
  • Sabriel, Abhorsen, and Lirael by Garth Nix
  • The Shadow Throne by Jennifer A. Nielsen
  • The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan
  • Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth
  • Leia: Princess of Alderaan  
  • The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
  • Library of Souls and Hollow City
  • The City of Ember
  • Black Widow: Forever Red
  • Paper Towns and Looking for Alaska by John Green
  • All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
  • The entire Series of Unfortunate Events and All The Wrong Questions by Lemony Snickett
  • A Darker Shade of Magic by VE Schwab
  • American Gods and M is for Magic by Neil Gaiman
  • The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
  • Son of a Trickster by Eden Robinson
  • The War of the Worlds by HG Wells
  • To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  • Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
  • Les Miserables or The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo
  • and like, 2,000 more...
  • but you know, whatevs
  Maybe you can help me out by recommending any on this list that you really liked? I should probably put aside wild fantasies of actually rereading any books this year (maniacal laughter) so we'll rule out Narnia and LOTR unless I get stupendously bored and read A LOT. 

  Did anything I read last year stand out to you? Let me know of any books on this list that caught your attention, and if you have any recommendations for my next 12 months of reading time! I'm sure it will all blow by with me reading a measly 20 books or something...le sigh. 

Sunday, December 31, 2017

7 Reasons Why 2017 Was An Awesome Year

  Feel free to join me in the existential crisis that is December 31st, 2017 as we together wonder WHERE IN THE HECK HAS THE WHOLE YEAR JUST GONE????

  People all over social media are convinced that 2016/17 were like, the worst two years in the history of ever, which may be true on some fronts (I feel like they aren't really, but I haven't experienced every year of ever), but for me they both rocked - particularly this year. And though some of the big changes and events that have taken place in the last 12 months are more than a little hard in many ways, I wouldn't trade this year for anything. It has been truly awesome and full of truly awesome things. What things you ask?? Well, I'm sure you can guess at a few, but if you are interested in seeing just what big things have happened for me in 2017, read on, my friend!


1. I GOT MARRIED


  Tbh, this one is still a little weird for me to think about. I've mostly come to terms with sharing a home with a boy, but thinking about the fact that we're like, married, and had a wedding, and all that good stuff is still a tad strange. However, we did have the most awesome wedding on the planet so there's that. ;) Yes, I may be a little biased, but it was a fabulous time and a beautiful day and I loved being surrounded by family and friends for such an important milestone. We just got our wedding photos back a couple weeks ago as well, so I've been enjoying going through them and re-living the day - also, they are absolutely gorgeous. Joanna (who I featured here a couple months back) did an amazing amazing job.
Jonathan and I also celebrated our third year together this October, that was pretty crazy.

Photo by Joanna Vandervalk, Lifesong Photography


2. I PUBLISHED MY FIRST BOOK


  This one is also pretty trippy, occasionally I forget that it actually happened because it's been something I've been dreaming of so long! In case you didn't hear earlier this year, I self-published my first novel "The Sorceress and the Squid" through Amazon in June. The experience, though convoluted in many ways and a tad stressful, was really cool and I got to interact with readers and share and have people both that I know and don't know reading my work on a wide scale. Some people have even read it multiple times and that's insane to me. Like, people actually enjoy something I created THAT much?? Wow...
I did not finish any other first drafts this year due to the volume of editing, but I am looking to publish again in the New Year if possible, so stay tuned for news of that!


3. I WENT ON COOL TRIPS


  Three cool trips to be exact. First, an in-law family roadtrip to Quadra Island off the coast of Vancouver Island in May, then our honeymoon roadtrip (spanning Waterton AB, Idaho, Washington, Vancouver, Vancouver Island, and Kelowna), and finally our holiday to Mexico just this month. All three were really cool, I took hundreds of photos, saw new things, met great new people, had a couple revelations on future things I wanted to do with my life, and overall just had a really enjoyable time. Though I am ultimately a homebody I love to travel and see new things as well, a good balance of both is what I like, and this year certainly delivered.

L-R: Quadra Island, Coeur d'Alene, Puerto Vallarta

4. I GOT MY CREATIVE WRITING CERTIFICATE


  Along with getting published, I completed my U of C Creative Writing certificate and had it delivered in the mail to me. It was an intense 2 years of courses but I really learned a lot and am so thankful for the opportunity to take the courses.

5. I GOT BAPTIZED


  I took a step this year to get baptized during my summer camp's staff training week, which was pretty cool. Sharing my testimony with so many and being able to share about the things that I've struggled with and having that open doors to connect with other girls with similar struggles was really wonderful. Also, it was the right time for me to commit to God before committing to marriage. It was really great to get baptized in the river by our camp director and have family and friends there to witness.


6. I DID MY 6TH SUMMER AT CAMP


  Yep, this was the 6th summer I spent working at Camp Little Red as a counselor/wrangler. I love this camp, the people I've met, the things I've learned, the person I've become. So much of my life is tied up in this place, especially my teenage years. Why, we even opted to get married out there! So yeah, even though it was very busy with a wedding to plan and moving out to be done and I couldn't quite do the entire summer (I missed about 4 days of 33), I was very thankful to be able to be there, sharing and growing and learning again.


7. I STARTED A PHOTOGRAPHY COURSE AND AN INTERNSHIP AT BOLD EQUINE


  When fall came around this year and I started to settle into my new, weird, city, married life, I started up an online photography course which I am planning to continue into the new year. Though it was challenging I'm hoping it will really help me to take my photos to the next level and learn a lot more about quality photography - something I'm very interested in. I also began an internship at my riding barn with my trainer, which has proved to be a really excellent learning experience with lots of horsey opportunities. I've gotten on dozens of horses this year, some that I hated and some I adored, worked with stallions, ponies, ex-wildies, horses with traumatic pasts, kids in lessons, and more! I got to do more jumping this year, getting more comfortable with higher fences and learning better how to put a horse together for a fence. I got to work more with my mare, addressing her wiggling issue, helping her to relax at a canter and develop a nicer transition, and even rode her bareback and bridleless which was new to me. All in all, it's been a very horsey year.


  As we come to the end of yet another year, I'm slightly blown away by everything that has transpired in what seems to be such a short time. The last three years especially have been so full of change I can hardly wrap my mind around all that has taken place. 2015-17 have been transitioning years, a period of newness, opportunity, and challenge. In a way, I consider them almost a prologue or first chapter of my adult life, and the epilogue of my childhood/teenage years. There is bittersweetness in that observation, but also excitement as I open on Chapter One of my 20's and see just what kind of road I am headed down. I'm sure it will be crazy and wonderful and terrible and beautiful like every piece of my life so far.

  So this New Year's Eve finds me a little nostalgic, looking back on a large piece of my life that I have left behind and wondering what on earth could possibly be better? I am very keen to find out.

  Happy New Year to you! I hope 2017 was completely awesome in your corner of the universe. What were some of the year's highlights for you? Let me know in the comments below and see you next year! :DD

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Merry Christmas + Hiatus Announcement

  Hello everybody! It's December (CHRISTMAS TIME) and everything is super busy around here and I'm sure around your home as well. I honestly love this season, the nostalgia and spirit of Christmas and the hope it gives, the time spent with family and friends, the looking forward to a new year and looking back on the old, it truly is the most wonderful time of the year.

  That being said, it is also terrifically full, for some with shopping and preparations, with get-togethers, trips, and parties. For me this year, I am going on a holiday to Mexico next week, followed by tons and tons of Christmas celebration with friends and family which I am greatly looking forward to. As such I won't be around on the blog much throughout December, but I will be back in full force in the New Year, and maybe a little before, so I look forward to catching up then!

  As a side note, can you believe that it's already the end of 2017?? What a crazy, whirlwind of a year, it will definitely go down as one of the best ever for me. How about you? How was your 2017? And what kind of awesome Christmassy plans do you have coming up? Do you have any weird or cool family holiday traditions? Let me know about them in the comments below and I'll see you all in 2018!!

  Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from me to you!


  "The Son of God became a man to enable men to become sons of God." - CS Lewis

 

Thursday, November 30, 2017

October/November Highlights '17

  I had to skip last month due to my Indie Authors Week posts, but now that the end of November is upon us allow me to curl up in a corner and cry over my existential crisis at how quickly time is passing these days.

....

....

  Okay, and now that I've had that, let's move into the happenings of the past two jam-packed months, shall we?


LIFE EVENTS



  • NEW JOB//I got work in October as a nanny for 3 kids and though it's challenging, it's not a bad line of work overall. I'm mostly excited to finally be employed by someone who's not my dad. :P
  • NEW CAR//Jonathan and I had to get a new vehicle after his was smashed and so we got a "new" silver Volkswagen that's pretty cool but the seat is stuck in a far back position so I haven't been able to drive it for a few weeks because the universe has conspired to keep me driving my crap car all the time no matter what forever.
  • INTERNSHIP//I'm interning at my barn and so go out 2-3 times a week and work lesson horses, my mare, and some of the horses in training. It's been really cool and I've learned lots of new stuff and been on the backs of lots of horses even in the last couple months.
  • IMAGINE DRAGONS//Jonathan and I went to Imagine Dragons in Calgary and it was SO SO GOOD. Even better than last time, I absolutely love Imagine Dragons concerts, guys. 
  • CANADIAN THANKSGIVING//Being married/dating means that you get to have 2 Thanksgiving dinners, so that's always a bonus.
  • CAMP//There have been a few rentals and camps these last couple months, including Boys Rocket Camp and MORE camp. Both of which were pretty fun, a lot of cleaning has been happening for sure.
  • 3 YEAR ANNIVERSARY//Jonathan and I celebrated being together for 3 years and honestly I don't understand where the time has gone at all. We took a walk and went to Value Village cause that's how extra we are.
  • ATLA MARATHON PARTY//Having your own house lends all sorts of perks, like hosting a day-long marathon of Avatar: The Last Airbender season 1. :DD
  • STRANGER THINGS 2//Was finally back and I was not disappointed! AHHH!
  • YOUTH GROUP HANDBALL TOURNEY//My old youth group vs. the one at my current church, I played for my old team and despite the fact that the majority of us were 13 year old girls, we really and truly slaughtered.
  • MY SISTER'S 16th BIRTHDAY//I surprised her with some of our friends by going to West Edmonton Mall for the weekend, we stayed up late watching Buzzfeed Unsolved Mysteries and I got a new outfit and some new books. 'Twas pretty fun.
  • PHOTOGRAPHY CLASS + PHOTOSHOOTS//My photography class is nearly done this term and though it has been hard it has also been really stretching and I'm really enjoying some of my new skills and abilities - as well as my new photos.

WRITING LIFE


  I've been working mainly on two different projects: rewriting draft 2 of Faithless and trying to finish up The Wandering: Part One by the end of the year/for NaNo. So far I've made quite a few improvements in Faithless that I think will work out really nicely, I'm beginning to be slightly proud of the travesty that it was when I first penned it. The Wandering is a slow process, despite me trying to move along for NaNo. I definitely won't be making my goal by today (the end of the month), but I got about six chapters done and that's quite a bit when it comes down to it. I'm currently at 19,600 words and hoping to write a couple thousand more today. I'm not convinced I can finish up by the time Jonathan and I leave on our trip and Christmas comes, but at least I've made a sizable dent.


READING LIFE


Fevre Dream by George RR Martin 5/5
I found this book while Jonathan and I were in Seattle on our honeymoon and when I sat down to read it, I found it super enjoyable, chilling, and full of thrills. George RR Martin is a very good writer, no matter what people may say about his subject matter at times, he really knows how to pull you into a story with fantastic world-building and totally believable characters.







Throne of Glass by Sarah J Mass 3.5/5
Tbh, I was really drawn in by the cover of this book and its series. It is really popular and I feel like I would have quite enjoyed it when I was younger, but it wasn't a big sell for me. It was good, but not great. The best part was the sarcasm for sure.








The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill 5/5
My last read of the month, which I picked up at the aforementioned West Ed. I've read Kelly Barnhill before but I think that I like this one even better, the characters were quirky and cool and the story felt very whimsical and classic but still had serious, mature tones that made you really think. It reminded me of the tone of my novel! ;)






BLOGGING LIFE


  I was on top of all my posts these past two months, had a few that I quite liked, and got to go through my Indie Artists Week feature, which was super fun. I really enjoyed showcasing some awesome independent artist friends - I really hope you guys enjoyed reading about them!

  Also, I've gained a couple new followers, which is super exciting! :DD


GOALS


  Goals for October/November


  • Finish Faithless rewrites // I technically finished a first (short) round of edits but I'm working through again and nearly done, but I'm much more satisfied this time around.
  • Read 2 books // Look at me, surpassing this one with a measly 3 books. XD But hey, at least I met and surpassed my Goodreads Challenge!
  • Promote Indie Artists Week // I did do this, probably not as well as I should have, but I did!


  Goals for December


  • Attempt to finish The Wandering: Part One // Hopefully by the New Year so I can put it aside again and work on something else. 
  • Read 2 books // I've been attempting to do this every month and since I've got a long couple of plane rides next month, I feel like I have a good opportunity to get more reading done.
  • Attempt to finish Faithless rewrites // Hopefully I can do this, but I may set it aside til January so I can give it the proper attention and not be distracted by The Wandering. However, I will be on the lookout for betas soon! I know I keep saying that, lol.

  And that about wraps up these crazy past two months. It's been pretty good overall, though I'm still attempting to adjust to city life and married life. It's interesting, some bad, lots of good, but it's a learning process. 

  Also, who's excited for Christmas??? I know I am, although I'm stunned that this year flew by as fast as it did, it feels like we just had Christmas 2015 a couple months ago! Time is weird, especially when you become a boring busy adult with life responsibilities that make days and weeks fly by much quicker. 

  How has your October/November been? Do you have any special Christmas plans? Let me know below!

Sunday, November 26, 2017

7 Ways To Organize Your Bookshelf (That Totally Aren't Biased)

  As an avid bookworm with more books than sense who happens to be married to a fellow bookworm with slightly more sense, the act of organizing the now mutual collection of books has become an issue of epic proportions. When we moved into our house and set up the shelves (that I supplied, I must put in) and began to fill them up it became, well...interesting.

  All I will say is that if your relationship can survive the emotional distress of fusing together individual book collections it can probably survive anything.

  This is all to bring me to the point that different bookworms have different methods of organization. Perhaps you are on the look-out for a fresh new way to show-off your children? Allow me to present a few different types of book organization.

*most* of my shelves, couldn't fit it all in the pic


  1. Color-Coordination


  This is for the truly aesthetic types who have bookstagrams and take photos of their shelves and have the skills of an interior decorator from HGTV. I don't understand them, I admire them, but I am not them. The act of separating my books from their fellow series is one that causes me physical pain. It's simply not something I can do. However, looking at other people's rainbow shelves is very pleasing to my eye, I just can't look too close or I'll see the messed up order and all hell will break loose.

  2. Alphabetically (by title)


  This is pretty basic, simple, straightforward, but still takes some thought and sense of organization. This is a much more logical, practical method of organizing, appealing to less creative bookworms (my mother for instance). Do I use it? No. There is NOT ENOUGH OF THE ORGANIZE HERE!


  3. By Genre 


  THIS is how you organize books, people. Honestly, I can't imagine setting up my shelves any other way.


  From the beginning of time my books have been placed in order of their genre: Fantasy*, sci-fi, YA, contemporary, classics, historical fiction, Christian fiction, graphic novels, horses (yes, this is a genre for me), and non-fiction. This will not change. Not until I have shriveled up like a raisin and died clutching an armful of my closest books against my chest. But if you change my shelf arrangement when I am gone I will haunt you, I swear.*

*The two top rows of my shelves are actually just Tolkien and Lewis fantasy which I think is a totally legitimate sub-genre

*One of my "friends" once came into my room once and rearranged a few of my books and I don't know who it was or how long I went without noticing but to this day I mistrust ALL of the friends and do not let them near the books

  4. Alphabetically (by author)


  This is how the bookstores do it so obviously it's a legitimate way to host your own collection, but it's very basic and boring and kind of meh. And I mean, do you really want your bookshelf to be the same as the bookstore's? It's kind of like moving into your own house and making the kitchen look exactly like your mom's because you don't know how to do your own thing. Honestly, just a bit sad. INDEPENDENCE, HUZZAH!

  5. In Piles


  Some people start on the shelves and then subsequently run out of shelves and run out of room for more shelves and the floor becomes a "temporary" option that's actually permanent and you just lying to yourself.*



  Piles have a slightly messy look but can still have a sense of organization, sending the message that "yes, I recognize my collection is literally flowing off the shelves" but with a slightly smug expression on one's face because you know what it's about, son.

*Haha me

  6. Chronologically


  You'd have to be super weird or have super weird books to do this for your WHOLE shelf but chronological order is actually kind of nice - especially for your historical sections. Or for authors like Tolkien who only really wrote about one universe but you have to organize those books by chronology either in order of him writing or in order of how they happened in the universe. This is also a DIFFICULT DECISION I must add.


  6. The Combo


  When you take two or more of these organizing principles and apply them to your shelves. For instance, I go with Genre and Chronology in a lot of cases. I'm too lazy for alphabetical, especially since they have to fit and the more specific you get the harder it is. You can make a combo with basically anything, except color-coordinating, because that's a very limiting method for very aesthetically pleasing results.

when your 2 things work together

  7. What Even


  This is me @ my husband's ideas of "organizing". Though he is the bookwormiest boy I've ever met, he is very stereotypical in the organizational categories, read: teenage boy typical. I have had to fight him in some very truly awful things, such as...


  • having his series lined up from end to beginning rather than beginning to end
  • no genre organizing at all
  • no color-coordination
  • no real bookshelves
  • really absolutely no organizing to speak of
  • except having the series together. backwards.
  During our bookshelf decorating I did nearly come to tears on several occasions because this lack of concern and effort was A LOT TO HANDLE and the emotional distress I mentioned previously was large.


  And there you have it! 7 Ways to Organize Your Bookshelf that were - let's face it - quite biased. :P Tell me, how do you organize your shelves? Or are you a monster like my husband who doesn't organize ANYTHING? Let me know in the comments below!

Sunday, November 19, 2017

How Is NaNo Going? *cries*

  This is a brief post to check-in on my fellow writers participating in whatever way in the month of NaNo craziness. Of course, checking into Twitter kinda shows me what's happening on that front.

  A lot of caffeine, crying, screaming, and words. A LOT of words.

  A lot more than me. Le sigh.

  BUT...and this is hard for me to believe and to accept. This is OKAY. This is ACCEPTABLE. Not everyone can write a whole novel in 2 days of NaNo (coughcoughPaperFurycough). And not everyone can write a whole novel in 2 weeks. I have always been a slower writer, and I can't even finish half of half of my novel in 2 days or 2 weeks. But again, that is okay.

  And if you're in that same place, know that it's okay too. Take encouragement from me and my slow writing and know that it's okay to not speed through your writing process. It's okay to not get carpal tunnel and it's okay that you're busy or stressed or struggling. It's really, truly okay.

  I've got 9 more chapters left to write this month - long, complex ones. And yeah, I probably won't make it. But I'm content with that. My ultimate goal is to be finished by the New Year, which I'm confident I can do. At the time of writing this I just finished one whole chapter in a day - which is pretty good for me.

  I'm a busy person. I have a lot of things to do and get done, a couple of jobs to work, horses to work and ride, a husband to hang out with, friends and family who I want to spend time with, other hobbies to pursue, a house to kind of keep in somewhat of an order, homework, Christmas to prepare for, 2 other projects, and a whole host of other things going on any given day. I need to learn to give myself a break.

  And if you're like me, take a moment to breathe and do the same. It's okay. Really.

  So, where are you at in NaNo? I hope you're still enjoying the process? Tell me about your WIP! I love, love, love hearing about new novels in the works!