Julia Nelson Blog Tour Launch! Thing! Interview! *thumbs up*

Whatever day this is, hopefully you’re enjoying. Because if not, then.. Uhh, I’m sorry.

There goes my attempt at a catchy intro.

Today I get to help out with a blog launch for a growing teen writer and blogger: Julia Nelson! 😀 So without further ado, Julia Nelson everyone!

cropped-b9ef66fa-b504-491b-a2bd-b0e1a3ecde3b

Hi Julia! 🙂 Thanks for letting me interview you! So to start this off, when did you start writing, and when did you start writing seriously?

Hi, Jo! Thank you so much for doing this! 🙂

I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. I started writing seriously when I joined the Young Writers Workshop in January 2018. It’s been a terrific and life-changing experience!

*nods* That sounds wonderful! So since last year. Now, how did you decide, “alright, I’m ready to do this, let’s start a blog”?

I remember wanting a place where I could share my writing with the world. After joining the Young Writers Workshop, I realized that starting a blog is important to start growing my platform as a writer. So a few months later, I started my first blog, Willowcreek Pines.

Julia NelsonNow, as I’ve continued to improve in my writing and blogging, I’ve realized that my current blog needs an update. So I’m launching my new blog, Julia Nelson! I believe I will be able to better serve my readers with this new blog.

That’s really cool! 😀 What are you looking forward to through writing and blogging?

I’m looking forward to serving, helping, and encouraging fellow writers, bloggers, and Christians. I love posting every week and using words to tell a story or a message that God has laid on my heart.

DSC_0181

Stories are beautiful. And so are words. XD It’s a funny thing with writers- if you had to choose between reading or writing, which would it be and why?

This is a tricky question, Jo! I know that you can learn a ton from books, but to be honest, I don’t make reading a priority (like I probably should). So I’d probably choose writing because I love making stories and characters come alive. It’s just something inside of me that I can’t get rid of. Even if I couldn’t read and didn’t know how to make a great story, I would still be able to write my own stories–even if I was the only person who liked them.

 Oooh, I so get that! Writing your own stories is something pretty special. Uh. Anyway. What’s your opinion on YA books- and do you hope to write one in the near future? 😀

I don’t think I’ve read many YA books, so I’m sorry that I can’t give an opinion. And no, I don’t plan to write YA in the future. I enjoy writing books like Lynn Austin (one of my favorite authors)–Christian, historical fiction novels.

Those are lovely genres too! I always like reading (or writing) these with food, since for some reason I work better with sugar. XD All that to say, what’s your favorite writing snack? 😉

I like to eat all sorts of things. Here are a few of my favorites: chocolate, dates, apples, peanut butter + honey, and sparkling water + juice. The latter two are delicious combinations, and if you haven’t tried them yet, you should!

DSC_0022

Ooh, I think I will! That sounds really good and now I’m hungry. XD. Anyway, back to topic. Are you a fan of writing to music, and if you are, what’s your favorite songs?

I love music, and I can’t concentrate on my writing when there’s music in the background. It’s distracting, so I end up paying attention to the music instead of writing when I should be XD

XD I do that too! I think it’s a thing- but it’s a ton of fun nonetheless. Music helps me with ideas. Oh, speaking of, where do you go to for inspiration?

Great question! I actually wrote a guest post on this very thing, which you can find here. In this post, I tell you of three things that keep me writing when my “inspiration well is dry.”

Neat! And even neater you wrote it as a guest post! 😀 So you have some pretty good experience with writing. For the newbies (and for all writers, to be honest), if you could pass down a piece of advice about writing that’s helped you in huge ways, what would it be?

Never give up. Three small words with a huge meaning. Whenever I’m in a slump, I need to remember that every writer has gone through this. Every published author has had fears and struggles, so it’s completely normal–and completely okay–if I also have writing struggles.

So again, never give up on your writing dream. Just because you aren’t a “perfect” writer, doesn’t mean you can never get published.

*sniffs happy tear* That was.. beautiful. 🙂 And I’m bookmarking that and looking at it whenever I’m tired of writing next month. XD To end, lastly, if you could go to any fictional world, but had to stay there for the rest of your life, where would you go?

I would go to Narnia. 😀

DSC_0091

A very wonderful answer. 🙂

*applauds* I had a great time Julia, and I can’t wait to read more of your writing and your blog! 😀 Thank you so much for letting me interview you!

Follow Julia here: JULIANELSONAUTHOR.COM

And catch the rest of the blog tour here! I’m happy to be a part of it.

life is a highway, Jo

 

Advertisements

March Is Tomorrow *panics, flails, and ultimately dies*

DSC_0152

Okay, I swear, I only looked at Pinterest for all of two hours!

Per week.

heh.

Where has the time gone? I have zero clue. Swoosh, bye, gone it went and February 2019 has gone to the ages.

It’s been a good month, it really has.

School has successfully managed to kill me, so there’s that. At least I get to do something fun and write a character profile. >:) Also finished Ben Hur- never, ever, ever hang out with your little sister on a precariously built balcony watching a fancy guy with a houseplant on his head go by. *nods seriously*

We had 3 snow days. It was wonderful.

I got a bunch of books to read and only knocked out like a quarter (which reminds me I should probably get to beta-ing this book *rushes*)

DSC_0153

The Lens & The Hard Drive turned one, along with a bunch of other blogs. O_O AH. How have I been doing this for a full year? I have no clue.

A bunch of writing happened, and secret projects and tons of laughing over Google Docs and videochats and just laughing.

I FIGURED OUT HOW INSTALL DESIGNER FONTS ONTO MY LAPTOP AHHHH

Also robbed the freebie section of every font/graphics website I could find, because I’m in the designing bloggies and whatnot mood. Speaking of, if you check out Tess at Silver Sky Dolls, you can see for yourself 😉 Also, please, please lemme know if you want something designed. It’s fun and I may as well put my addiction to Canva to good use, right? 😀

Audiosmiths released a drama- and we’re working on one of the hardest and deepest ones we’ve done yet. Can’t wait to see how that goes. 🙂

DSC_0090

I’ve learned a ton about writing, and the inspiration is slowly coming back. Slowly. We’re only a couple weeks to NaNoWriMo everyone! *squeaks* Can’t wait for this craziness to come at me full force. It’s funny, my first NaNo, I didn’t think anything could be more stressful. Ha I was wrong. XD

Learned a few new songs on all 3 instruments I’m slightly adept at because my mom volunteered me and some other poor unfortunates to play background music at a church dinner. *sighs* Not to mention I’m shooting that too. Actually kinda looking forward to the shooting part- I miss holding a camera. 😛 However, learning the new songs means I get to be distracted with YouTube and wake up ridiculously early for practice. It is not easy to sing alto at 9 am, just sayin’. Also choked back something close to a tear watching clips from Little Women 2018 and Gifted. Onions were chopped a lot this month.

DSC_0154

Got to cheer a friend on because they got accepted to Nationals, to sit by someone who was kinda feeling down, to be goofy and make a rather stressed sibling grin, to laugh evilly with a cousin over our work in progress at 12 am to boot, to enjoy the little blessings of life, to enjoy each day that comes. There’s been a few horrible days, yes. There’s been days I wish I could redo all over again because right now I just wanna crumple them up and toss into a dumpster- but every day has blessings of its own.

And I guess I’m finding them the more I take time to recognize they’re there. 🙂

DSC_0155

Oh, and Ducky kindly agreed to model for me because he’s an adorable sassy stuffie. He is shown above portraying the typical reaction to chemistry homework.

DSC_0156

Here is he, contemplating the reasons for existence as he leans demurely on the railing. That’s one thing I didn’t expect to appreciate: stuffies, and stuffie bloggers. Was not seeing that coming, but it came anyway. I think I’m the better for it.

DSC_0157

I guess he wasn’t that impressed with the whole ordeal. XD

DSC_0160

So I picked him up and got him to fly around!

Ducky: YOU ALMOST MADE ME DIE JO THAT’S WHAT YOU DID THAT WAS SO HIGH UP I COULD DIED OR FALLEN I AM A SENSITIVE PIECE OF STUFFY I SHOULD BE HANDLED WITH CARE, JO, WITH CAREEE DO THAT AGAIN AND I WILL KARATE CHOP YOU

Yeesh, picky old duck.

DSC_0162

*passively-aggressively shows fight stance*

DSC_0164

And this is what happened when he tried attacking me.

Ducky: Medic!

DSC_0165

However, he recovered in time to venture forth into the dark darkness, which definitely had light the little liar.

DSC_0166

Got stuck halfway though.

Ducky: NOT. NICE. JO.

What, I’m just saying!

Anyway.

Favorite from this month.. Hm…

DSC_0169

Favorite Book

I really want to say this Black Widow comic that I’ve been reading, but that’s not my most most favorite, surprisingly.

DSC_0124It would probably be As Brave As You, which is this great story about two boys and their summer with their grandparents. Either it’s really long, or I’m really slow, but I haven’t finished it yet. 😛 I really loved Genie and Ernie’s sibling duo, and the theme. Ah. it’s great.

 

DSC_0161

Favorite Song

This one is almost pretty obvious.

 

I’m Not Here has been on repeat for the longest of times, partly because it’s so good and partly because it reminds me of a charrie down to the intricates of it, so yes, that’s my favorite. It’s also up there with True North by Rend Collective, Learning to Fly (How To Train Your Dragon 3 came out. I’m not okay. My childhood has ended. Ah. Help.) And Two, by Sleeping At Last. But ahhhh this song gets me. All the time. I dunno why. *sobs*

DSC_0163

Favorite Quote

And maybe one day I'll get around to fixing myself too

I think it speaks for itself. It really does.

So that’s been February for me in a nutshell. How ’bout you? Ready for March, or you wanna march in the other direction? Which, if you do, I’d join you, because I pretty much feel like this 110% of the time:

DSC_0167

Yeah, Ducky didn’t really like that.

*muffles his nonliving beak*

Have a good Thursday. And a great new month. 🙂

life is a highway, Jo

January’s Over And I Dunno How

DSC_0088

Yup, I’m still trying to figure how that happened too. But 31 days have passed with the blink of an eye and we’re fully stuck in 2019.

It’s been an interesting month, that’s for sure.

DSC_0090

We welcomed the New Year the proper way: getting two big bags of popcorn and watching Lord Of The Rings.

I got to go on a retreat- and that was pretty relaxing. Fun. Peaceful. Plus I got to photograph the stars. 😀

dsc_0091

School started and we all collectively died.

Started working on secret project that’s pretty fun/death inducing.

The Long End aired and I DIED. BUCK- JULES- THE MELTSNERS- SKINT- WOW. Like wow. Mindblown. Mom wondered why I was screaming after the first part aired.

Started reading through the New Testament- and I’m in 1 Corinthians now! I think. Ish. Wait, maybe that was another translation.. huh..

Speaking of the New Testament, really enjoyed having Bible studies over videochat. 😉

A couple times I was sitting down to write posts but ending up watching something with my family instead. The posts can wait. But not my family, Incredibles 2, The Last Jedi, Antman & The Wasp, or Black Panther. Incredibles 2 was AWESOME. Also, if you haven’t checked out the short Bao DO IT. *dies* It’s so good. I’m watching that whenever I can, it’s just really really nice to have some non-stereotypical representation you know? 😀

There were 2 gigantic snowstorms and thus, two snow days. Which means freezing cold and beautiful pictures.

It also means getting to go sledding… even though.. uh… technically..

DSC_0103

I’m pretty sure that sign’s décor. Right? I mean, you can’t be a Canadian and not sled. Sorry. No can do. It’s like taking away Tim Hortons. As a citizen of this fine country, I was exercising my right-

Okay. Okay. Still, it was fun though. Hanging on for dear life as the elements attack you? *thumbs up*

DSC_0095

Had a bunch of people ask me why I was wandering around the premises in the dead of winter, wind blowing, camera out, in a skirt (as if that’s a bad thing) no less, taking random pictures. I guess I did look kinda weird- but honestly, I’m past caring. XD besides, I got good pictures. B)

Interviewed a bunch of kids and failed dramatically.

Released a new audio drama! 😀 Which you can check out on the Audiosmiths page here.

I guess this month has been about finding a balance. Some stability. I’ve had a hard time figuring out school, and as you know, blogging has been random, and there’s just been so much to process and sometimes, taking that one step is tricky. Y’know?

DSC_0111

But I think I’m getting there. Over time. 🙂

Anyway, it’s February now. Also the month I started blogging. *hollers and shrieks* how has it been one year since I started into this vast and crazy and wonderful and strange thing called blogging? I don’t know.

So I’m looking forward to that. As well as secret project 1 and secret project 2. And yes I have two. And no, I’m not telling you what they are. Yet. 😛

I think this post is done.

Oh wait, I still have to pick faves. Right. XD

Favorite Book

See the source image

I borrowed this way back in December and only now got around to reading it. smh I wish I read it sooner- it’s an sweet story about a girl who has OCD, and honestly, I really connected with her, even though we couldn’t be anymore different. I’d love to write this kind of book one day. 😀

 

 

Favorite Song

Do I honestly have to pick? You know as well as I do that I caaaaan’t XD- I actually have three.

Rend Collective’s Life Is Beautiful is beautiful. I think after like, the 20th time listening to it, I got my brother to use it for praise & worship- it’s that good.

And uh…. this is mushy, but I really liked Falling Slowly from Once the musical..

and  38 Planes/Somewhere In The Middle Of Nowhere from another musical, Come From Away. But I’m not linking that, too much mush for the day. XD (Actually, you probably shouldn’t check out anything from either of these musicals except The North Strand from Once. That one’s catchy. XD)

Favorite Quote

I think I like musicals more than I care to admit. XD

Text placeholder.png

Now this post is done. XD Seeya on the next one!

Life is a highway,

Jo

Once and Then Book Review (More like Once I cried, Then I cried some more)

Finally, I get around to reviewing the books I borrowed and read on a dare. Yay!

The problem is that this specific book is so good, I can’t just review it. Or rather, these specific books.

Once is its own book, and Then is a book by itself. They’re just smushed into one cover. Funny, ain’t it? There’s a whole series by Gleitzman, Once, Then, Now, After, Soon, Maybe- I really need to read the rest. I mean, these two alone shredded me.

*************************

If you’ve ever read The Boy In The Striped Pajamas, then you already get the setting for these books. Sorta. They travel a bunch of places. But war-you can’t avoid it. It’s everywhere. Through a child’s eyes, however, it’s a whole other story.

Felix. Good ole young, hopeful, naïve Felix. Just a kid in an orphanage whose parents are sure to pick him up after they find a safe place to store their books, right? Well, add in Kristallnacht, the night of broken glass and the fact he’s Jewish and the fact there’s soldiers everywhere, and it gets a little trickier.

But see, Felix doesn’t know why there’s a war or why everything’s happening the way it is. To Felix, it’ll all be okay in the end. So until that end comes, he’ll content himself with his stories and wait.

Ayyy, if only he did. If only he didn’t see the soldiers take those books away and burn ’em up. Then maybe he wouldn’t have done what he did and none of the heartbreak happened.

But then again, sometimes the hero needs to make choices he can’t ever take back. More on that in another post. Anyway, Felix ends up doing just that.

Morris Gleitzman Quote: “Everybody deserves to have something good in their life. At least once.”

I’ve always loved studying WWII, and reading fiction from that genre. I don’t know why. This period, this time, it’s special for me. I don’t really have any reason. I’m just one of the many lives forever affected by that war ending. I’m more especially interested in the people whose lives were directly affected by the war. Real or fictional. Especially since fictional often is heavily based on the real.

Especially because fiction opens our eyes to how bad the real thing was.

Anyway, thoughts specifically on the book:

I loved the style of writing this was written in. As you can guess, every chapter in the book starts with the word “once”. Except Then. Then every word in Then starts with “then.” Okay, that’s confusing, but read the book and you’ll get what I’m saying. XD

The characters oh my word they were so well written I can’t even. Felix, Zelda, personwhosenameIcan’tsaybecausespoilers, otherpersonwhosenameIcan’tsayforsamereason, they all had depth, they all had arcs, and just- ahhh it seemed so.. real. They carried the story so well.

I loved the perspective this was written in. POV. Whatever. Like The Boy In the Striped Pajamas, this is through the eyes of a boy who has to grow up too fast. A boy who’s naïve, and hopeful, and dreaming, and basically every kid ever. Seeing everything he does through his eyes opened my eyes.

See the source image

Zelda ahhh this kid is a well written 6 year old and she’s just really adorable and great and.. so sad.

Once and Then shows an amount of slightly violent stuff, like kids all being dead and guns and knives and -okay, erase slightly. It is violent, because the war was violent, and none of what happened should ever be whitewashed. Ever.

And yet, despite everything, there’s hope. Felix, as young and naïve and childish (oh come on, he IS a child) is so.. hopeful. And that hope is seen in trace amounts throughout the book. And that’s something I really, really loved in this bittersweet, hard hitting novel about a kid who was forever changed by WWII. Maybe he wasn’t in real life, but somebody was.

We shouldn’t forget that.

Life is a highway,

Jo

 

I Got Lost On A Retreat (But I survived! :D) And I Have Pictures To Tell The Tale

dsc_0190

Well, this is gonna be a random typical post with a random typical person and random typical pictures, glad you could stop by! 😀 Heya everyone! Happy Monday and the start of a long painful slow death.

I don’t know if you guys like travel posts, but I sure do! So, here goes before my brother finds our DVDs and I have to start school. XD

Anyway, last weekend was a pretty amazing weekend, one being that it was the weekend and two being that I got to go on my church’s youth winter retreat, which is a big deal considering there’s only like 10 of us and the last retreat was way back in 2008. And I fell hard for the whole thing.

dsc_0031

The world was quiet there. Still. Cold. Welcoming. The roads just stretched on and on and if I had the wheel, I wouldn’t have stopped driving. I also woulda crashed. 😛 But thankfully, neither happened. What did happen was a staying up late Bible study wherein we talked about the Rapture (still trying to figure out why), pizza, worship, and goofing around. Oh, and playing cards past 2. And than sharing our testimonies til 3.

I dunno, it was weird, but it was nice, too. 🙂

But forget that- that’s not the best part. XD

I’ve been trying for weeks now to practice shooting in manual- which is so stinkin’ hard at night- and when we came there I immediately let everyone know I wasn’t gonna follow lights out because the stars were there and who needs sleep when you have the stars?

dsc_0079

So while everyone was playing cards, I walked around the place. Quiet. Still. Semi-creepy. I like to think I got better at night photography.

dsc_0093

As for the stars themselves… I TRIED KAY. I tried.

Also, it’s humanly impossible to rewrite the stars friends. They’re too far up.

dsc_0095

That was… pathetic.

dsc_0096

Also pathetic. I can’t believe I took this at a shutter speed of 30 seconds, and this was all I got. *facesmacks* Someone give me tips or something please.

dsc_0091

Slightly better.

I was so excited when I took these photos though- I actually laid on the ground and raised my camera up- remind me to bring a tripod next time. XD I’m pretty sure I left tons of room for improvement- but hey, I walked around in the cold air by myself and had my lens fogged up. It was worth it. 🙂

And then I did the same thing again after like.. 4 hours of sleep because I was busy muttering Galatians at 3 and insomnia wasn’t a friendly, but it was morning, the sun was coming up, and there’s a part where Gale convinces her mom to let her stay up early to shoot the sunrise.

I wasn’t gonna let the opportunity slip by my window!

I even got two very groggy friends to come with me at 7:14 AM. And we set out in jammies.

No sun.

Nothing. Nada.

Rats!

Again, though, it was worth it- no regrets here. 😀

dsc_0145

There’s a lot of good memories.

Jogging to the lodge for breakfast and covertly sneaking bacon.

Feeling silly because we had to sing  really upbeat version of Jesus Loves Me.

Spending the morning reading the Word.

Scrambling to the gym and playing volleyball. Losing. I can’t serve- my dumb fist can take a punch, but not a spike. -_-

Playing ball hockey with a friend (also dude, thanks for not rubbing it in my face that I’m bad at it)

Trying to reach a ridiculously high curl up bar.

Giving up and heading outside where it was quiet and still and peaceful.

dsc_0116

Laughing at the poor unfortunates who trapped themselves in the cycle of fear that was the see-saw, and vowing to post their reactions online. I didn’t because I’m nice.

dsc_0128

Walking to the tiny lake and skipping rocks over the frozen surface. It made a satisfying thud sound.

dsc_0134

Scaling a tree and staying there while everyone was busy trying to throw a rock to the other side. And failing. I have a lot of blackmail to use now.

dsc_0143.jpg

Walking around, laughing with friends, forgetting that I’m not 10 and school starts day after tomorrow and so much is depending on me not messing up. Enjoying fresh air and being goofy. (Well, I’m always goofy but you know what I mean)

dsc_0148

Eating lunch and not caring about the lack of internet or that I didn’t bring my laptop, because who needs a screen when there a people around you and you’re here, aren’t you? 🙂

dsc_0157

Getting lost and just taking picture after picture because finally, manual works, hooray! I also really like these pictures. I got something really close to a sunflare. 😀

dsc_0164
dsc_0166

Just enjoying being alone and happy because I could walk wherever I wanted and not worry about my parents being worried I’d be kidnapped and taken to Budapest to work for the FBI. XD When you’re close to the city, everything’s gotta be worried about.

dsc_0171

Hammering out tunes on the old piano in the corner.

dsc_0185

Driving away and just staring at all the farms and barns and horses and honestly, the scene reminds me of Just Come Home and now I really wanna finish that book XD Who knew two hours of fields was the push I needed? Not me.

I think I’ve rambled on long enough- but I’ll finish with saying that I’m grateful I got to go. I was planning to grumble about it to myself, but I guess God changed my heart because I have so much to be grateful for about that. For bacon, duh. For wandering. For the woods. For that guy who believed I could jump a fence if I tried hard enough. For friends. For family. For being challenged to love the Bible more.

What did I just say about rambling XD

Alright. Get to work guys- have a great Monday!

dsc_0052

Reveries Co! (An amazing company that needs all the attention it can get + interview with one of the head brainstormers and co-managers)

 

First, don’t you love that header? 😀 If you don’t go back and look at it again. If you still don’t, I am concerned. XD

Today is the day I hop on the blog tour for Reveries Co, a new company for writers, by writers! And boy, what a lovely day it is too!

But how did Reveries Co. even start?

SP Spotlights - Kellyn Roth

 

As you know, Kellyn Roth is an amazing author of several historical fiction books (one of which I’m reviewing and dying because it’s so good) and her book covers are l o v e l y. Kellyn makes many of her book covers herself and for other people too.

Now, see, when Kellyn was making a website for her cover design business.

It needed a tagline, see.

And thinking about the tagline made Kellyn think about design, and editing, and marketing, and all that important stuff an indie writer and all writers in general have to think about. But Kellyn can’t do everything herself.

So what if there was a team of people with different skills, who got together to offer their services?

One thing led to another, and now we have this.

And that team is now, after months of hard work and careful planning, this:

It’s amazing how many skilled people are in this, many of whom are just teenagers. Which is awesome, because we need more Christian teen writers in the world!

But now to the important part of this post, the interview with Angela R. Watts, manager, head brainstormer, and author!

SP Spotlights - Angela R. Watts

  1. What inspires you to write, and what was the very first thing you wrote?

I have been a storyteller since I was very young, so the gift of writing is just in me. It is something that comes from my heart and I really can’t stop doing it when God moves me to. The first thing I ever wrote, besides some little short stories in a notebook, was a story about picking blueberries. I illustrated that story and binded it, as well!

  1. What’s your absatootely-ootly-wunderbaar-ootly favorite thing about the whole writing process?

As strange as it sounds, everything. I love the brainstorming after the initial ‘I HAVE AN IDEA’ stage. I love the writing the first draft without caring what anything looks like. I love the rewriting, too, and the editing. I enjoy working with beta readers and an editor. I love the publishing process, even if it is (to me) the most frustrating part because of technical details that are often tricky. So, yes, as weird as it is, I do love the whole writing process, just for different reasons!

  1. How did you know you wanted to join forces with Kellyn with this company for writers?

Kellyn came to me with the initial idea and we spent plenty of time brainstorming. I immediately knew Reveries Co. was what I wanted to do, because I’d asked the Lord to show me how to go about offering my own editorial services. Discussing the plans for Reveries Co. with Kellyn was the open door from God.

  1. As a writer, what’s something you wished was around to make selling books easier?

Whether you market online the most, or have the ability to do book conventions and author signings, selling books is often hard to do. If I could have a magical little tool that helped me sell books, it would be a teleporter, I think. That way I can go to people, chat with them, and give them a copy of my book. And, hey. I have a teleporter. That’s bound to get attention… Thus, probably more attention on my books, yeah?

  1. Where do you gain inspiration for writing?

Inspiration for stories come from God, and the motivation to keep on writing through it all comes from God, too! I do find motivation from talking to family and friends, listening to music, focusing on other things, and noticing the world. As a writer, it’s fun finding bursts of inspiration from random things.

  1. Are you planning on releasing any new books, and if so where can I read them?   Aw, thank you! I do plan on publishing in 2019. Prayerfully, at least two novels: JUMP, a YA supernatural novel, and the first book of The Infidel Books, AWAKE. They will be published through Amazon. If you follow my blog or subscribe to my newsletter (newsletter pals get BONUS content/news!), you won’t miss any updates for when these babies release!

 

  1. What exactly is your part in this awesome new venture?

Kellyn and I are both managers at Reveries Co., so my job is to keep up with emails, advertise, plan things with Kellyn, and make sure our customers are given the best service we can provide. I also offer my own services, such as developmental edits, manuscript critiques, line editing, as well as consulting!

  1. How do you hope Reveries Co can help Christian authors succeed?

I understand how difficult it can be to enter the self-publishing world, whether you struggle with a budget or don’t know how to find readers. I pray Reveries Co. is a way for authors to not only strengthen their story’s interior and exterior quality, but also find support from other Christian authors.

  1. What are some of your favorite aspects of Reveries Co…?

I adore the fact so many services can be reached on one responsive website, so not only can a person find what service they need, but there are more than one service providers at hand! I also like how supportive the service providers are, so even if you do not have a story completed for and editor, you can contact a consulter and gain publishing insight. Reveries Co. is for authors to gain confidence, strengthen their skills, and support other authors. I’m glad to be a part of that!

10. Does Reveries Co. work for both independent and traditional authors?

Reveries Co. offers quality services that both independent and traditional authors can benefit from. If you have intentions of self-publishing or plan on submitting your manuscript to an agent or publisher, we can help you prepare your book.

11. If I wanted to contact Reveries Co. but wasn’t quite sure if I needed help with editing or proofreading or blog tours or alpha reading, what should I do first?

If you are unsure what stage of editing your manuscript needs, I advise contacting Reveries Co. so we can get and idea of what service will fit. It can be hard deciding if you need a manuscript critique or developmental edit, or a line edit or proofread. However, we can help you decide, and look forward to helping!

For things like deciding on which blog tour package would best fit you and your book, contact us with your thoughts and wants! We’ll get you fixed up with what you need.

If you need consulting on other things, like wanting to know the pros and cons of alpha readers, you can contact one of our consulters. We’re friendly and love brainstorming with you!

Thank you so much for letting me interview you, Angela! 😀 I can’t wait to see where this is gonna go!

Now, like with all the best blog tours, this one has the works: giveaway,

ENTER THE GIVEAWAY NOW!

Facebook party,

The official Facebook launch party will be at the end of this week (Saturday the 5th) from 12 PM to 3 PM PST.

Kellyn will be hosting a live video and taking your questions, among other things.

CLICK TO JOIN!

Discounts,

Book Them Now!

And blog tour schedule:

Schedule

Tuesday, January 1st

Interview with Founder // Kendra E. Ardnek @ Knitted by God’s Plan

Spotlight // Abigail Harder @ Books, Life, and Christ

Announcement from Founder // Lila Diller @ Creating Romance

Wednesday, January 2nd

Announcement // Kellyn Roth @ Reveries

Spotlight // Mukta A @ Born Free

Interview with the Co-Manager // Jo A @ The Lens & the Hard Drive

Announcement from Founder // A. Kaylee @ Kaylee’s Kind of Writes

Guest Post from Founder // Emily Yager

Interview with Founder // Dawn Dagger

Announcement from Founder // Eva-Joy @ Coffee, Classics, and Craziness

Thursday, January 3rd

Interview with Co-Manager // Michaela Bush @ Tangled Up In Writing

Spotlight // Jessica Greyson

Interview with Founder // Parker Hankins @ Pencils and Pianos

Guest Post by Founder // Merie Shen @ Imperial Scribis

Announcement from Founder // Jana T. @ Reviews From the Stacks

Announcement from Founder // Hanne T. @ Losing The Busyness

Friday, January 4th

Announcement from Founder // Deborah @ Reading on the Edge

Announcement from Founder // Katherine Brown Books

Guest Post from Founder // Julia Witmer

Announcement from Founder // Jessie Bingham

Spotlight // Loretta @ Just Writing

Interview with Co-Manager // Isabel Olivetti @ Chasing Fantasia

Saturday, January 5th

Spotlight // Abigayle Claire @ The Left-Handed Typist

Spotlight // Gracelyn Buckner @ Literatura

Announcement from Founder // Faith Blum @ Writings, Ramblings, and Reflections

Guest Post from Founder // R.M. Archer @ Scribes & Archers

Wrapup // Kellyn Roth @ Reveries

*wipes brow* Phew! You should totally check out those other posts, they’re way better than this one, lemme tell ya. XD Have a great Wednesday!

OH OH OH AND THE LINKS TO THEIR COMPANY ONE SEC

Website // Instagram // Facebook // Twitter

There ya go. Bye!

Hopes, Dreams, and Unrealistic Aspirations

DSC_0146

WARNING LONG POST AHEAD PROCEED AT OWN CAUTION

Hi again, lovely people of the internet!

By the time you read this (since I was waay too verbose last time) it’ll be January. 1. 2019.

*screams*

“I wasn’t prepared for this. We can’t let them know anything.”- Kira

Truer words have never been spoken, Kira. But I *am* letting you know some things… not quite sure why.

Ohhh, right! Because I thought it would be a good idea! *facesmacks* It doesn’t seem too bad right now, so… uh…here goes. 🙂

2019 Goals

Life Goals

DSC_0005

  • Get a job. Somehow, someway, I’d really really like to work and save money for even more future stuff- if that’s what God wants. But even not, doing some thing that’s a little more serious than a fandom. 😛
  • Wake up early and get stuff DONE. For Christmas break, my gift to myself was slacking off on everything. Including important, essential things like devotions. And I don’t want to admit that, but I have to. Because starting now, I want to change that, and start being productive.
DSC_0023
With my feet propped up, a’course!
  • Read the whole New Testament and get into Bible Bee’s Summer Study. Last year (which feels like yesterday, probably because it was) I was so blessed by digging deeper into God’s word, and I don’t think I can explain that. It’s so awesome to study the Bible not because anyone says you have to, but because you want to. So I’m looking forward to this!
  • School. Crush it. Defeat the boss villain, move to next level. ‘Nuff said. Oh, and start seriously learning French. And look at ops around.
  • Train.  And by train I mean exercise. Because I’d love to get stronger in that area.
  • Learn as many life skills as I can at this age. They’re life skills. I’ll need them. Some of em are fun!
  • Go to a buskerfest. And get a buskering permit. I doubt I’ll crush this goal, but it won’t be for lack of trying. *grabs hammer*
  • Get offscreen for more than I am on. As much as I love Pinterest, I won’t let it take away time I could use to use other worthy things. Besides, I don’t want to be that kid that never sticks her head out to see the sky.
  • Develop my photography. Compared to my first picture here, I’d glad to say that I’ve grown a tad in the mastery of the lens. But I have a long way to go. So I’d really like to learn to use manual. XD
  • MORE ANDREW PETERSON MUSIC YES BOIII

B9EF66FA-B504-491B-A2BD-B0E1A3ECDE3B

Wordy Goals

  • read 100 books. I’m really, really looking forward to this! And I’m counting books of the Bible so technically, I’ve already read four of the hundred I have to read! 😀 But yup, 100 books. Some of which may include War and Peace (HA!) some YA, and alphas. I really love the alpha part XD
  • finish, edit and rewrite Just Come Home. Ahhh, my wittle baby WIP is a year old already! *sighs* It’s gonna take some work, but I’m so doing this. You can’t stop me. It’s not your funeral, after all.
  • look into publishing. O_O WHAT WHAT WHAT WHAT DID I SAY WHAT. I hve no clue where to start, I mean, it’s almost 100% sure I’m self-publishing, because honestly, who would take that? But again, if this doesn’t happen, it won’t be because I didn’t try!
  • write at least 500 words a day. I wish I could be meta and go for 1k1day, but I need to LIVE XD so I’m gonna set a reasonable amount for myself. I don’t know what I’ll write, but I’m looking forward to it! (fanfic, short stories, and poems, most likely *cough cough*) (maybe a novel or two) (I haven’t forgotten you Mirages)
  • actually respond to pen pals. 
  • join NaNo. Crush NaNo. Die in NaNo. 
  • Fill up my old notebooks. I have a bunch of old, good notebooks that wouldn’t be used. But I’m gonna take them. And write. Probably drek like on this blog. But it’ll be better than mindlessly scrolling through the web, right?
  • write in this lovely!

DSC_0020

The cover the cover da coverrrrr yay!

I can’t wait to write in it!

B9EF66FA-B504-491B-A2BD-B0E1A3ECDE3B

Blogging Goals

DSC_0019

“Awwww yay!” you cry. “The actually fun stuff!”

Ha. Well, what do we have here…

  • have a blogsiversary.  >:) *laughs evilly* I’ve been blogging for practically a whole year, how?? But I know what I’m doing to “celebrate”. And it will be fun. 😉
  • start writing quality posts. I’m the lord of the random, and everything on this blog and this blog itself, is a result of that. So I wanna up the ante and make it a tad more purposeful.
  • enter a few contests and challenges. Like BIBPC. Ohhh and speaking of, Megan, I GET TEN EXTRA POINTS BWAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAH Because this is my picture for Category 4!

Jo-Team Bear- Category 4

I couldn’t change the file name.. but THAT IS A DONKEY. And I’ve saved that just for you since March! 😛 HA! HA! HA! *is so happy right now*

Ahem. Moving on.

  • Design some blogs. If you’re interested, I put up a Services page, so if you want to redesign your blog or need a new button, header, signoff, widgets, or whatever, I’d love to work with ya! And Rebekah’s helping me out too, so I won’t mess anything up! 🙂
  • Keep things running at Welcome To Odyssey. As you know, AIO is my fandom and my fandom is AIO, so I love ranting about everything under the sun that even remotely has something to do with AIO, so I’m looking forward to this!
  • figure out my YT channel. It’s pathetic.

 

B9EF66FA-B504-491B-A2BD-B0E1A3ECDE3BRandom Fun Goals (we’re almost over, hang in there :P)

DSC_0022

  • record more songs and make more audio dramas as part of the Audiosmiths. As bad as my voice is, I love singing.. and I love acting, so win-win! XD
  • beat someone, ANYONE, at checkers! My good friend Denise gave me this awesome set for my birthday, and then proceeded to beat me at checkers.

DSC_0021

WAH.  But ahem. Learning, and playing more offscreen games in general is a plus I’m looking forward to. 🙂

  • go outside more. 
  • dream. 
  • try to keep a thankfulness journal. 
  • eat bacon.
  • make someone smile. 

DSC_0018

 

Yesterday, I got this framed from a friend.

And I think that’s gonna be my… quote of the year, or whatever.

Call to Me and I will answer you. And show you great and mighty things which you do not know. -Jeremiah 33:3

From the looks of everything, I have it all under control (HA!) But the truth is, I don’t know just what’s going to happen. But God does.

I’m looking forward to the great and might things He has for me, and until then, I’m gonna trust Him and keep driving this hard drive. It has some awesome views along the way.

May the roads be as bumpy as you can handle, that you’ll find rest, and you’ll be fueled up for a hard- but joyful drive. 🙂

 

B9EF66FA-B504-491B-A2BD-B0E1A3ECDE3B

If I Knew Then What I Know Now (Plus pic for BIBPC, carol, and linky to more of the blog tour yikes this title is long)

DSC_0065

You’re not the only one, kid.

Not by a long shot.

There is only one you you of course, the dorky quirky awkward weird laughing kid who’s just not the same from everyone else, but there are other people with your dreams. Your quirks. And your alarming obsession of Adventures in Odyssey, good gracious.

You’re an annoying little midge of energy, so yes, the haters were right.

But you’re lovable. Sorta. So the haters were wrong.

Also, the haters’ opinions don’t really matter, so keep that in mind.

I don’t know how to tell you, kid. I don’t know how to tell you that people will break your heart and what you thought was right is wrong and that things will change with the snap of a finger and you’re gonna have a lot of curve balls whizzing your way, so please learn to catch, kay?

Your “friends” are shallow, but be nice. Don’t collar the big kids even though you know they’re being jerks. If you do, don’t lie about it. Lying is evil. And don’t think you’re all that smart, why don’t ya? But do learn more. You’ll need it.

DSC_0070

Remember how you said you had nothing to live for? Ohhh boy, you be wishing you could take that back. Look around you. Look at the little miracle baby of the C’s, that little tiny thing that everyone thought was a dangerous tumor. Her? She’s gonna grow up to be a sweet little terror, and you’ll be chasing her around a hall more times then you can count. Good on ya for not wearing high heels.

Books are portals to another world. I’m glad you spend your head off in them. Also, pick up a pencil soon- you’ll be writing your own before you know it.

Love your family. Love love love them. They’re broken and not perfect, but still good. Also you’re a part of it.

Bacon crumbles exist. You’ll love them.

Good gracious, stop assuming things are gonna be carved out for you, like an easy puzzle. You gotta start doing things yourself and get it done. People are gonna depend on you whether you like it or not. And if not now, definitely in the future. So get used to it.

DSC_0071

You’re gonna meet people in ways you didn’t expect and you’re gonna pour your heart and soul into projects you would never have dreamed of doing. So attack that homework while you still have energy.

It does get worse.

It will. It will hurt so bad you can’t breathe.

But it will get better. I can promise you that. Don’t take my word for it. Take God’s.

Also, never ever ever skimp on the Bible. Ever. You’re gonna need that weapon. You’re gonna need to be armed and dangerous.

Uh, no, no, I didn’t mean to practice knife throwing, especially because that’s our last good knife. Thank you.

Things are gonna change. Not all of it will be good, but there will be good changes. You’re gonna meet people you can’t imagine life without and yet don’t like.

Okay admit it, you like that person.

DSC_0072

Write, my friend. You’ll love it. You’ll love making up stories and charries and daydreaming and plotting terrible deaths. Surprising, I know. And it’ll help you. So much.

No, no, screaming because of jogging pants and not jeans isn’t normal, no matter how much everyone thinks it is. Don’t be emotional when you respond. Calm down. count to ten. Punch that meanie in the nose. Don’t do the latter one because it won’t make you feel better. Instead… uh… I haven’t come up with how to handle that guy, but as Jesus says, treat them like you would a tax collector.

Run for your life!

Sorry, wrong context, friend. Speaking of, you do need to understand contest very, very well. But you pick your battles, and you stand up to that guy. To your fears. To that goal. To that line. You got this. Life won’t give you a bowl of opportunities and tell you to pick, so keep your eyes peeled for anything you find, and take it.

DSC_0073

Connie and Mitch break up. Tom Riley dies. Old Yeller gets shot. Iron Man gets hurt. The Baudelaires are confusing. The stories and life are similar in a way: they don’t go the way you expect.

Unlike the stories, your life story is being written by the Perfect Author, so never fear.

There is always a reason to laugh. I know there will be days when you’ll feel like drek, but trust me, you can find something to smile about. Care for something other than yourself, and do it a lot. Pray constantly. Pray continually. Don’t get out of touch with God.

Get stronger. Practice your high kick, especially on your right foot. It’s terrible. Push yourself to excellence, but stop for water. take care of yourself, and learn how to braid so nobody objects to your ponytail for the hundredth time in a row.

Observe people. Note their reactions, their fears, their movements, how they think.

Don’t be creepy about it though.

Man, there’s too much I wanna tell ya. Too much. Too much about loving and hurting and living and dying and reading and writing and fighting and resting and the time of day and how the year’s gonna fly by before you know it and Aragorn is brave and courageous but he is broken too and broken pieces can be fixed and people like Blackgaard will be defeated and-

…and you’ll find your way.

DSC_0076

Love,

Jo

 *************************

Jo-Team-Bear-Category-3

Well, another sign of my past is the above picture, friends, ^, which is also my picture for BIBPC. This category was so much easier, thank you Megan, tradition. And here’s mine. See, every Christmas Eve, we go on a marathon of AIO’s Back To Bethlehem, and it’s something I hope to be doing til I’m old and gray (and with those same cassettes XD)

4 days until Christmas Chances, people! Ahhh. You can catch more of Audiosmiths with Hannah and Enni’s lovely posts. Well maybe not Enni’s because she messed up my name. 😛 For now, though, I’ve taken a break from editing the audio drama and worked on a carol. I hope ya enjoy, bad though it may be. 😉

https://www.dropbox.com/s/anjxh0voag0qvid/Oh%20Holy%20Night.m4a?dl=0

(And if the linky doesn’t work, then uh.. lemme know)

 

Scribble Scrabble: Come Behold The Wonderous Mystery And Comftyness

I have no excuses for this.

Zero.

Nothing to defend how horrible, utterly horrible this whole thing is.  And just when I thought I was doing pretty good at the whole YouTube thing, the background is a horrible mess. Remind me next time to use a recorder. Anyhoo. Hopefully the audio will be less terrible than the cover for it? 🙂

Come Behold The Wondrous Mystery is one of my favorite songs, not just because it’s not necessarily a Christmas song, and not just because Matt Papa is awesome (he is), but the message is.. well, of hope. And we could use some of that. Hope you enjoy the cover and aren’t too disgusted with me at the completely aesthetic-less background.

Come Behold The Wondrous Mystery...

🙂

Now the fun, semi better part! BIBPC! 😀 This is for the first category, cozy!

Jo Team Bear Category 1

Don’t that look cozy? No? If this looks off, that’s because it is. XD I’m trying to master the art of manual photography. It’s harder than I thought it would be. But it’s fun too, so that makes up for it! 😛 Go Team Bear! (Seriously, though, I loved setting this up! I just wish I got the Christmas lights I spent a goo ten minutes preparing in the shot. Humph!)

Let’s see, what else is there that may be considered newsworthy?

A Wrinkle In Time was a confusing, interesting, mind-boggling book, and I’m glad I read it. Like, really glad. But also really confused. XD Next to tackle is Neil Flambe And the Marco Polo Murders. This should be interesting.

Currently enjoying The Winter Soldier because why not and plus it’s story research (I’m serious, y’all!) Sending emails and eating croutons. Planning for the next epic failure of a carol cover.

And writing this wee story for Write Christmas. Looking forward to that.

This post has been so not original. But I hope you enjoyed it anyway. 🙂

On The First Day Of Christmas

Happy, happy Saturday people!

So I did something crazy.

Ahem. So last time I mentioned playing a carol on my violin/fiddle every day til Christmas? And maybe posting it?

Um.

Well.

Here.

Aright, aright, I know it’s terrible, and I know it sounds horrible, and I know that I am 99.9% + 1% crazy! I am well aware.

But that being said, I hope you enjoy my feeble attempt at covering a beautiful song anyway!

One of the things that really really really ticks me off this time of year is the annoying commercialism. Not even a day after Halloween (another holiday ranging in the strange category) and stores are already saying to get the dratted Christmas magic!

There’s nothing magical about Christmas.

In fact, Christmas isn’t ever mentioned in the Bible to celebrate. Get that in your heads.

So why do we?

I’m not preaching. I don’t want to. But for me, Christmas is celebrating the hope of Jesus’ birth. Because if Jesus wasn’t born, we could never have been saved.

For those who don’t believe that, for those who do believe but don’t celebrate, and for those who do, I hope I didn’t get y’all mad, but I do hope you enjoy the instrumentals, bad as they are. 🙂

In other news, I got the biggest book haul I’ve had in a while. Thank God for public libraries.

DSC_0016.JPG

December has started on a good boot clad foot.