Friday, January 26, 2018

Writing and Publishing Updates (i.e. Oh, the torture!)

This update has been a long time coming. (Wow, that sounds ominous. But don't freak, I'm not quitting writing or anything.) It's really just an update. You see, I've been getting an increasing number of messages lately asking about the status of Bitter Winter and how writing is going. In one word, it's basically . . . not. Yeah, this whole last year has been awful for writing and editing. Just terrible. Basically, torture. Yeah.

You see, when I moved out on my own, I suddenly had all of the pressures of adulthood suddenly dropped on me. Groceries, bills, insurance, vehicle issues. Everything. And then lots of family stuff. Nothing really bad or anything. Just life. You know, that thing that likes to take all of your best-laid plans and, with a puff of smoke, turn them into ashes? Yeah, life. I feel like mine has been a chaotic, disorganized mess that I haven't been able to completely sort out yet even though I've been on my own for a whole year. I'm hoping 2018 will be where I finally hit my stride. *feels LIFE lurking over my shoulder ready to strike*

I suppose I'm being somewhat dramatic, but that's how 2017 felt. I did almost no writing besides finishing up the surprise NaNoWriMo contemporary romance that leaped into my life late 2016. The fact that I've hardly written in a year is absolute torture itself. Writers can't not be writing. It leads to feelings of hopelessness and self-loathing. I'm not even kidding. This gif is basically what it has felt like to try to write for the past year.

Editing has been no better. I'm still working on the first chapter of Bitter Winter.

The. First. Chapter.

Ugh. More torture. More self-loathing. Here is actual footage of me trying to edit.

Again, I'm being dramatic, but it's actually the truth. And I constantly beat myself up over it. With every month that passes, I feel the pressure of needing to get the next book out. And, of course, that just makes it all that much worse. I don't do well under pressure. Is it any wonder I've had a horrible case of writer's block?

So, that's all the bad news. Here's the good news. I started writing today. Some of it was easy, some of it was hard. I've implemented a plan that I hope will help me stay on track and finish writing book six of Ilyon Chronicles this spring. That has been the biggest thing weighing on me. I need to get that book done.

As for Bitter Winter, I also did some editing today. I think once I get going on it, it will become easier. I have no idea when it will be published, but unless something catastrophic comes up, I will publish it this year. To answer the question I keep getting: Sorry, I don't have an actual publishing date yet. It's way too soon for that. But I will announce it the moment I know. :)

In the meantime, prayers are very much appreciated. Adulthood is hard. (Can I get an 'amen'?) Writing it not nearly as easy as it was when I would sit in my bedroom for hours on end at my parents' house and not have all the adult responsibilities I do now. It was more fun then, sadly. But, regardless of how long it may take, I'm going to keep on pushing forward. I will get these last two Ilyon books done. And I can't tell you how much all of your loyal support means to me, especially when the going gets tough. Thanks for sticking it out with me!

P.S. I nabbed the gifs from this awesome blog post that perfectly sums up being a writer. (Disclaimer: I have no idea who this author is, what she writes, or what else is on her blog/website. It just came up when I was searching through gifs.)

Monday, January 22, 2018

Ilyon Chronicles Etsy Shop

Ilyon Chronicles now has its own Etsy shop! You can find many new items there, including kids' clothing, stationery, throw pillows, and more! You can also buy the books from the shop so you only have to make one order.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Character Spotlight - Talas

Appearance: Long dark brown hair, spring green eyes, slim but athletic, 5’7” tall.

Age: 24

Race: Crete

History: Talas is a young crete from the Fox Clan, one of the crete peoples’ twelve different clans. He comes from a large family with two brothers and four sisters. While most cretes are rather aloof when it comes to outsiders, Talas is unusually friendly and outgoing. He’s a very skilled dragon rider and warrior among his people.

Author’s Notes: Talas is one of those characters I really didn’t know when I started writing him, but he completely came to life on the page and took over. By the end of his introduction chapter, I was totally in love with his character. He’s such a fun character. He’s got this infectious grin and air of mischief about him. You can’t help but love him. In a sense, he’s the go-between for the cretes and the rest of the characters who begin working together. As he puts it, he’s there to “smooth any ruffled feathers.”

Another thing I loved to write was the contrast between him and his cousin, Leetra. She’s like his exact opposite, so it’s fun to play with the differences between them. Talas is basically the charming, fun guy everyone would love to have in their group of friends. And he may be fun-loving and perhaps even a bit reckless (which is typical among the cretes), but he’s a very compassionate and caring individual and would be quick to have your back in a sticky situation.