Life is Full of Crazy

Good morning everyone!

It’s been a couple weeks since my last blog post, but life got a little crazy. I’ve moved, which was pure chaos in itself. It consisted of dump runs, donations, lots of rain, and of course two small children running circles around everyone as we load heavy furniture onto an open-air trailer and make run after run after run. After the first day, I was in so much pain I could barely walk. Actually, I was like that for about a week as hubby and I coordinated move runs between the two houses, work schedules, and trying to keep the kids need for some normalcy in mind.

I speak of normal as if it’s a real thing in my family. I digress…

But the move is done, and our lives are slowly returning to its regular chaos. The kids love it because they’ve never lived in a house with stairs, and my three-year-old has discovered the art of throwing cereal onto the steps one flake at a time. The dogs are in love. They have a huge backyard now with tons of trees and hedges, and a lot of squirrels to chase. And hubby’s excited that he’s only ten minutes from work and can ride his motorcycle year round now without the heavy rains or highway congestion.

As for me, I wake at 5am every morning to a quiet house, birds chirping, and a view of the trees that’s to die for. We’re still in the city, but the neighborhood is crafted to make each home feel like its own private mountain cabin oasis. There’s still a lot of unpacking, client work, and the yard is overgrown in all the garden beds. Yesterday I spent hours digging out blackberry starter shoots that already were as tall as my head, but my tomatoes, lettuce and chives are all doing well after transplanting to their new home. Next week I’ll go get pumpkin seedlings and maybe some squash and have some nice big vegetables for fall.

This month I’m working on a new novel. Well, it’s not new to me. I wrote it years ago as a trial to see if I could write romance and put it in a contemporary setting. * insert laughter * Yeah, I can’t write contemporary…. seriously. If there isn’t a monster or a sword or something that crosses deep into fantasy land it’s never going to get finished. Which is exactly what happened. But I love the two main characters so much that I’ve flipped it into a futuristic science fiction romance (probably bordering on thriller) inside the same universe as my dragon fantasy books. This story will be a far-future history of another novel I wrote and the two are probably going to get mashed together. But the point is, I’m finishing the story this time.

So, over the next month I’ll get back into regular posting for the blog, then this fall I’ll start ramping up the new season of Winterviews. If you have anything you particularly enjoy reading on this site, or something you’d like for me to write about, don’t hesitate to shoot me an email.

Cheers and Happy 4th! 🙂


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The Ready Room – Aesthetics Don’t Distract Writers, They Refine

Welcome to The Ready Room, where I explore random topics to help you kick off your week.

A few months ago, I wrote a Ready Room post on resources to create a book aesthetic. At the bottom of the page I dropped a note for readers to send me their aesthetics so I could share them on this blog.

I received some fantastic responses to my shout out and made a few new writer friends. Today I want to share their magic.

Kickass Aesthetics


ELEMENTS by C. M. Fick

When Ember wakes after a millennium, she’s missing the elemental power that not only created her, but defines her whole identity. With her nemesis plotting genocide, Ember must mend her broken connection & sense of self, or watch 2 worlds fall to ruin.


IT’S PROBABLY FINE by Jessica Lewis

Artwork by C. M. Fick

“Boy with anxiety meets magical girl from another world. Hijinks (including attempted murder) ensue.”


WITCHES PROTECTION PROGRAM by Melody Haaf

Harmony’s a witch whose memories were stolen to protect her. With a coven of evil mages hot on her trail, she must trust her fake boyfriend and a ninja princess to elude the coven and find her memories before they destroy them all.


ASHARA, DEATHBRINGER by Megan Van Dyke

Ashara’s healing magic is considered a curse by her people. Zuriel is a half-blooded accidental bastard known for granting death. Falling in love would be simpler if his brother didn’t want her dead and a rebellion wasn’t threatening to pit them on opposite sides of a looming civil war.


A BARGAIN OF FEAR AND DESIRE by Megan Van Dyke

Lia will do anything to save her missing sister, even travel to Faery and strike a bargain with the powerful Fae Lord who haunts her dreams. He’ll find her sister in exchange for what he wants: Lia as his consort. But when she’s given cause to question her faith in the Fae she’s falling for, deciding who to trust could cost her heart, but the wrong choice may demand her life—and her sister’s.


TWO TIDES by Jen Davenport

12 yo Kit planned on spending her summer drawing, but when a self-portrait as a mermaid becomes reality she’s caught in a war btwn the 1-tails & 2-tails. Trapped, Kit must choose life on land or in the sea, bc having the best of both worlds isn’t an option.

Aesthetics Don’t Distract

When I first got involved with the writing community, I saw a lot of Twitter posts about writer distractions, namely when it came to aesthetics. They were making pretty collages, but they weren’t writing.

Oh yes, they are.

Words may not flow during those Google searches, but something else happens. Writers find character faces similar to what they imagine in their heads. They find landscapes and animals and wild things they can see in tangible form. Then they pull those elements together side-by-side in aesthetics, on pinterest boards, or if they’re graphic nerds like me they’ll combine them all into a blended single image defining their fantastical world.

With those elements together in a single view, writers can look deeper to the refined edges of a face, the way the single tresses of hair lift on a breeze, or how blue fire burns within a dragon’s bones. It helps writers refine those tiny world-building details to flesh out the feel and tone of their novels. So for fun, here’s a few extra aesthetic images from the wonderful authors above and you can see how each one sets a unique tone for their world. Enjoy!


TWO TIDES by Jen Davenport

A BARGAIN OF FEAR AND DESIRE by Megan Van Dyke

TWO TIDES by Jen Davenport

ASHARA, DEATHBRINGER by Megan Van Dyke

A BARGAIN OF FEAR AND DESIRE by Megan Van Dyke

* * *Want to see more aesthetics? Be sure to check out the #ThursdayAesthetic hashtag on Twitter every Thursday. 🙂


If you like this article, be sure to check out The Ready Room for more tips and tricks. You can also subscribe to my main blog and be the first to know when new content is delivered.