Monday, August 14, 2017

Introducing . . . The After Glimpse



Corrine Boulder, Landon Young, and Aria Glynn share something inexplicable in common. They’ve all lost loved ones two years ago to the day. To the second, in fact. But that’s not the only thing connecting these three.

Their loved ones are resurfacing in photographs taken within the past twenty-four months.

A toddler, a murdered sister, and a beloved dog suddenly begin appearing in photos captured after their last day on earth. Desperate for an explanation, Corrine, Landon, and Aria seek out possible reasons as to why this phenomenon might be occurring. Little manages to put their minds at ease as they wrestle with the implausible potential that maybe their loved ones are still alive.


Bereft of answers, the trio begins to understand that perhaps it’s not why this is happening, but to what end that matters most. 

THE AFTER GLIMPSE ~ available this October!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Window to my Soul


I thought it might be fun to show you my office in our new home. I’m really doing this as an excuse, so I could open up and share a few things you may not guess about me—to let you in a little more. 


Here it is . . . where the magic happens. Or the drivel. Or nothing at all. Here’s one of the rooms where I give my creativity permission to come most alive. I thought I’d share a little about what you’re seeing in this picture.


The fat Shakespeare book. A dear friend I met in Seattle gave this to me. I remember thinking how cool it was she earned her PhD in writing. I look at it as a reminder to keep learning. I also keep it as a visual to remind myself of a college break when I couldn’t make it home, and I sat curled up in my papasan, falling for Shakespeare, the words strumming some untouched territory in my brain. I also happen to think it looks uber-cool in a writer’s office.


The angel girl hanging from the doorknob. A friend from Connecticut gave this to me after I released THE FLOWER GIRLS. This nature-loving angel is my muse. She knows it. I know it, and I still love her even though my dog ate the big blossoming flower off her head.


The keys. I went a little nutty buying anything key-related after the release of my first novella, THE DISAPPEARING KEY. These remind me of the start to my first brave foray out into the world as a published author.


The computer. Hard to say how many times I’ve cried in front of that thing. Over characters. Rejections. Offers. Doubt. Even over my stubborn refusal to quit. Pretty sure I’ve begged that screen to release me. Try as I have, it never works. I’m always seduced back. With more characters and more stories to be told.


The refurbished chair with a stack of books. I love working with furniture and painting anything I can get my hands on and I’m a little addicted to the library.



The picture of my girls walking away in Ogunquit, Maine. I’m in love with this picture. Truly. Because it serves as a reminder of my role in their lives—to teach them how to take their own brave steps in this world, hoping that they’ll always know I’ll be behind them cheering them on every step of the way.

Next week I’m revealing the cover of THE AFTER GLIMPSE!

Monday, July 31, 2017

For the Love of…Feathers

I feel it stronger than I have in quite some time—the creative connection between painting and writing. So, I’m entertaining it. I’m witnessing the cranial Pop Rocks sensation that happens whenever I pick up a paintbrush. For the sake of my writing. And, well, because I love how I feel when I paint. I love how it magically disintegrates stress, while simultaneously opens my mind to new possibilities.

In the past week I’ve gravitated toward feathers. Here are some that floated from my head to the brush.



 
Writers write, yes. (I’m still hard at it on the editing and writing side of things.) But we also get intentional about following the creative. And my creative seems to be released with every glide, small stroke, and wisp of a feather lately.

In the coming weeks I’ll be sharing more about the novel I’m releasing this fall, 
THE AFTER GLIMPSE. 
I can’t wait!!! 

Monday, July 24, 2017

Full Life



I saw this while walking around one of my favorite local shopping centers. 



  
It embodies so much of how I aim to live.

Know that I realize I’ve been somewhat quieter lately. It’s funny in a way because as I’m getting ready to release a new novel this fall I’m finding I have to gear up, I have to ready myself to reenter the noise.

It’s not like I haven’t been busy this summer. In the past week alone I’ve given feedback on two novels for critique partners, as well as a non-fiction health book my friend is publishing soon. I’ve signed kids up for dance and soccer and am still in shock I’m preparing them for school in one week (big change from going back the first week in September). I said goodbye after my mom visited, met up with a family from Connecticut, attended a dynamic dinner party, gone on six mile walks with my husband, painted more drywall (because I really can’t stay away), and worked with the cover designer on my new novel. I wrote 5,000-words of one novel, while editing major sections of another. Oh, and I signed up for a writer’s conference in November. So, yes, I’m keeping active. Behind the scenes for now.

Much like an athlete, I’m feeling myself stretch and prepare to get back out there. It’s been years since I’ve released a book. Even with all of the preparation, it’s easy to forget how daunting it is.

So, when the world rattles or my confidence wavers, I try to remember one thing.


I’m exactly where I’m meant to be. And my life is full.


Monday, July 17, 2017

Can Travel Spark Creativity?


I’m going with a resounding yes. We’ve bounced around our share this summer and every time I find myself in a new city I’m met with surges of fresh ideas. Some of these thoughts involve characters, some plot twists, some career moves, and some promotion, but I’m not sure any would have come to me had I not physically moved to a different location.

I could write a year’s worth of blog post reactions about the book I’m reading. IMAGINE by Jonah Lehrer is my kind of book. It stretches the way I think about how I learn, and how I interpret the world.

I was particularly amused by the section about travel and how it influences our ability to create. Why so fascinated by this? Because in addition to our big move, we’ve also done a load of traveling over the past few months. And I’ve found every time I leave our house I open the door to new material. It’s wild. It’s wonderful.

Lehrer writes, “We need to leave behind everything. One of the most surprising (and pleasurable) ways of
cultivating an outside perspective is through travel, getting away from the places we spend most of our time.” He goes on to say that when we travel ideas that were previously suppressed have an opportunity to surface. New surroundings inspire new thoughts. Travel also encourages us to become more open-minded, or as Lehrer suggests “alive to ambiguity, more willing to realize there are different ways of interpreting the world.” Yes. Yes. And yes.

I still think part of the reason I write stems from my time growing up in Germany. My mom loves to share how as a young kid I’d look at people in an elevator and excitedly speak my own interpretation of German (I was a special child). As an adult, I love learning about other cultures and other ways of living. I no longer go up to people who speak a different language and spout Gibberish, trying to engage in conversation with them. My husband stops me before I try.

I buy into this concept entirely. And I’m not convinced we have to fly to Paris or Rome to thrum the creative juices. Simply stepping out can do wonders. This is why walks can be so instrumental when I’m brain-blocked.

Every time we leave our comfortable nests we’re forced to view the world through a fresh lens.


Traveled anywhere lately? Have you experienced a heightened sense of creativity when you’ve stepped out?

Monday, July 3, 2017

New Digs + A Marvelous & Stirring Summer Read

I moseyed over here the other day to check on a few things only to experience instant shock. The place had been ransacked. Well, not exactly. Spammed is more like it. The second I saw what was going on I knew I needed to swing into action. Which is exactly what I did. And this—what you see around you—is the result of a little rearranging. Now it feels like home. Much like me, it’s a work in progress. Hope you’ll grow comfortable will the new surroundings soon enough.

Now it’s time to tell you about a book I met. Met? Yes, that’s exactly what I meant. Years ago I had the honor of befriending a like-minded author who shares my passion for the craft. I cheered on Emily Bain Murphy from the moment I heard about her story. I encouraged her, and she encouraged me in turn, as we both navigated this grueling industry. I read chapters. We brainstormed plot twists and character motivations. I celebrated when she signed with her agent, then a publishing house. And then came the cover . . . what a stunning work of art! It perfectly suits this marvelously stirring tale. 


Excuse me as I feel a bit like a proud aunt, watching my niece step out for her first dance. She’s going to wow the crowd, this much I know. And here’s the real kicker—it’s because I’m aware of exactly what’s inside. I’ve been incredibly moved to see just how much her mom has poured into her so she’ll turn out this way. With such integrity, finesse, and grace.

If you’ve visited here long enough, you know two things. 1. The place has an entirely new look today. 2. I don’t gush about a book unless I really mean it.

This book will change you. THE DISAPPEARANCES accomplished a magical and rare thing so few books are able to. I entered a world I didn’t want to leave.

Here’s my Goodreads review ~

Seldom do I encounter such a remarkable and stirring book. I can’t decide which aspect of THE DISAPPEARANCES I’m most in love with—the gifted storytelling, the lovable characters, the unique concept, or the way I felt moved along as I read, as though carried upon water.

I can imagine so many things regarding the future of this book…required reading in schools, a movie, babies being named Aila all over the world, or even simply the smiles on people’s faces as they delight in a truly magical and transcending read.

Emily Bain Murphy has created a masterful work of fiction. This mesmeric novel will engage you in a way that will stay with you forever.

Emily, you did it!!!



*see you back here July 17th. Go buy THE DISAPPEARANCES.


Monday, June 26, 2017

The Art of Entertaining Distractions


I’ve gone through seasons of life when I’ve remained laser-focused. I’ve written a novel in a month and turned moving into a job, filling journals with To-Do Lists. In time I’ve discovered I have tenacity of steel.

However, I think it’s also important to share that I’ve wallowed in seasons of distraction (excuse me as I just took the dog out). Whether it’s getting hooked on Breaking Bad on Netflix (a few years late . . . never been one to follow trends) or intimately swept up in all of the details it takes to make a house a home, I’m most vulnerable to get sidetracked when I stop asking myself what matters most.

When it comes to health and family I’ve made a commitment to allot for distractions. Within reason. Someone begging me to inside-out (10 year old code for turn inside out) their socks for soccer doesn’t always constitute an immediate response from me. I’m learning the art of filtering legitimate right here, right now needs from I kinda want it so would you do it for me wants. If I didn’t do this I’m afraid an essential part of me would slowly slip away.

The best way for me to filter—for me to decide if something actually needs my focus is to always come back to that one question—what matters most?

Often cleaning will get pushed off a day. Some conversations will be delayed. Tasks on my To-Do List will not get crossed off.

All of this is okay.

Because I’m intentionally pouring into what matters most.


Some days that’ll be inside outing socks. Some days it’ll be crying during another episode of Breaking Bad because the characters feel strangely familiar and the show provides a great outlet for me to release decade-old hurt nesting inside. Some days it’ll be to listen to my daughter’s latest struggles. And other days it’ll be to write up a storm. 

Introducing . . . The After Glimpse

Corrine Boulder, Landon Young, and Aria Glynn share something inexplicable in common. They’ve all lost loved ones two years ago to the ...