Saturday, March 3, 2018

February Wrap-Up

Well, there goes February and the first two months of the year. . . It's kinda hard to believe that we're this far into 2018 already. Not to mention, this is my first wrap-up since. . . August. *coughs* But here I am, wrapping up February. :)


I actually haven't been doing any writing recently. I took a much-needed break, and I'm currently working on a new outline for Lowlife (because the first one wasn't that great :P). And, just the other day, I got a potential novel idea. :D Although I don't know much about it yet, I'm interested as to where it'll go.

Also, I'm sure all of you (or at least most of you) know that Camp NaNoWriMo is next month! I know it's crazy!! And yes, I am going to be participating. ;D I decided awhile ago that I will be working on the second draft of Strangers. So this month, I'll be getting that ready. :)


I haven't done a whole lot of reading recently. Well, I kinda have, but it's been over several books at once. :P Since I missed last months wrap-up, I'm going to list all the books I've read so far this year. :)

Stealing the Preacher by Karen Witemeyer  Scarlet by Marissa Meyer  White Wolf and the Ash Princess by Tammy Lash  Dare by Tricia Mingerink  The Dark Prophecy by Rick Riordan

So yeah, I've only read five books. My favorite (not including Dare because that was a reread ;) was definitely Scarlet by Marissa Meyer! <3 I loved that book so much, I could hardly put it down. :D
My least favorite was The Dark Prophecy by Rick Riordan. It was actually a DNF (my first). I was really disappointed with it. I may try and read the whole thing in the future though, we'll see.

Along with those, I also read nine books of the Bible! :D

1 Thessalonians by Anonymous  2 Thessalonians by Anonymous  2 Timothy by Anonymous  Habakkuk by Anonymous  Zephaniah by Anonymous

Lamentations by Anonymous  Mark by Anonymous  Ezra by Anonymous  Micah by Anonymous                                             

Other News

I went on a trip! :D I flew out to visit my older brother, his wife, and two kids. We had a blast, and it was definitely a trip of "firsts". ;D If you follow me on Instagram, you probably know that I flew in an airplane for the first time ever, and it was so. much. fun!

I also went to Starbucks and Barnes and Noble for the first time! I know, some of you are probably wondering how I've lived this long without going to those but I live in a small town okay? The nearest Starbucks is like an hour and a half away. And the nearest Barnes and Noble? I don't even know. I got six books there though, and they were:

The Kingkiller Chronicle: The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
Star Wars: Dark Force Rising by Timothy Zahn
Ranger's Apprentice: The Burning Bridge by John Flanagan
Brotherband: The Outcasts by John Flanagan
Scythe by Neal Shusterman
The Lunar Chronicles: Winter by Marissa Meyer

I went to this coffee shop call Scooter's and, dare I say that I think their coffee was better than Starbucks? But then, I did only go to each of them once, so I haven't had enough of their coffee to confirm that. Although I did like the coffee I got at Scooter's a little more. After we went to Scooter's, we went to this ice cream place called Cold Stone. Absolutely. loved. their. ice. cream. <3 Guys, I love ice cream and that was probably the best I have ever had. 

The last first was that was the farthest from home I have ever been. :)

What about you? How was your February? :)

Sunday, February 4, 2018

White Wolf and the Ash Princess Blog Tour

Hey guys! Welcome to the White Wolf and the Ash Princess blog tour!! :D

About the Book

Eighteen-year-old Izzy's limited world begins to feel cramped after she completes her self-appointed book dare. After reading two hundred and fifty books, a thought that had been once tucked away as tightly as the books on her library shelves becomes too irresistible to ignore. . . "Who am I?"

Memory loss prohibits Izzy from remembering her life before age seven when she was injured in a fire. Jonathan Gudwyne and his head housekeeper rescued her and took Izzy in as their own, but who did she belong to before they took her in?

Crippling panic keeps Izzy from wandering beyond the stables but Tubs, the Gudwyne's young stable boy, encourages Izzy to go beyond the property's rock wall to a world that promises possible answers, but also great danger. A scorched castle in the woods and a mysterious cellar filled with secrets sets Izzy on a path to the New World, where she will not only have to face her own terror but face the people responsible for her scars.

It is here, in the untamed wilds of the seventeenth century that she finds love and a home in the most unexpected of places.

My Review

It took me a little bit to get into this book. For a few reasons. It's a little slow in the beginning, at least for me, and there were a few times when I wasn't quite sure what was going on. Also, the writing style is different from what I'm used to, but eventually, I came to really like it. :) The descriptions, guys. Oh, my word. Let me start by saying that I typically don't like a ton of descriptions and the like, but Tammy's just made it more real. I don't know how she did it, but they just helped pull me into the story and made it that much more real for me.

The plot was great. Like I said, it was a bit slow in the beginning, but as you go it picks up. For the most part, I think it was well paced. There were actually quite a few things that I totally didn't see coming. The twists and turns were unexpected, and it was great. :D Everything was woven together and executed really well.

And the characters! <3

Izzy- Such a spunky girl with a very intriguing story and background.
Jonathan- Gentleman with a lot of secrets, yet has good intentions. ;)
Tubs- Oh Tubs! He's so adorable! <3
Miss Margaret- She might be my favorite character? I love her, she's so funny. :)

There are so many more characters, and they're all amazing and perfect! Perfect meaning that they are so flawed. I absolutely love flawed characters. Give me all the flaws!

You all need to read this book! Read it!

About the Author

Tammy lives in lower Michigan with her husband and her three children. Izzy's home in Michigan's Upper Peninsula (Munising) is where she and her family enjoy exploring. Tammy enjoys hiking, kayaking, beach wandering, "hunting" for birch bark and hopes to someday find a porcupine quill. White Wolf and the Ash Princess is her first novel. She is published in Keys for Kids and has been in children's ministry for over twenty years.

And, guys, there's even a giveaway! :D

First Prize: One autographed paperback copy of White Wolf and the Ash Princess

Second Prize: One Birch necklace inspired by the book and handmade by Tammy

Third Prize: One Birch Bookmark inspired by the book and handmade by Tammy

If you want to enter the giveaway, and you do, follow this link HERE to do so. :)

And that's a wrap! But before you go, you should really go buy Tammy's book. You know you want to. *whispers* Do it. ;)

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

The Literary Dinner Party Tag

And just as I promised, I am here today with a tag! :D A little later than I had planned, but sometimes things don't go as planned. :P

I was tagged by Ivie over at Ivie Writes to do this tag. Thanks, Ivie! :)

In this tag, you get to host a party and choose eleven characters from different books that you would invite. Doesn't it sound like so much fun? :D I've been watching this tag go around to different blogs, and finally, I was tagged! Woohoo!

A character who can/likes to cook

The Reluctant Godfather (The Tales of Ambia, #1)
BURNDEE!! <3 Actually, if I remember correctly, he's a baker, but he's going to be my cook for this party. :)

A character who has the money to fund this party

Umm. . . I literally can't think of one. :P

A character who might cause a scene

Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles, #2)

I think Scarlet would. I mean, if you've read this book, you probably remember the scene she caused in the beginning, haha.

A character who is amusing

Deliver (The Blades of Acktar, #4)

Martyn for sure. He is so snarky. ;)

A character who is super popular

The Son of Neptune (The Heroes of Olympus, #2)

Percy Jackson is really popular. And the reason I put The Son of Neptune is because not only is he really popular at Camp Half-Blood, he also becomes pretty popular in New Rome.

One villain

A Question of Honor (Questions of War #1)

Of all the villains I can think of/remember, I would want Erich the most. Even though he's a villain, I really like his character. *whispers* I also have hope for him. ;)

One couple- doesn't have to be romantic

Dare (The Blades of Acktar #1)

Leith and Renna, of course. :) They're one of my favorite couples. <3 *sighs contentedly*

One hero

Prince Caspian (Chronicles of Narnia, #2)

Haha, I totally didn't know what to do for this one. I was going to go with one of the Pevensie children, but I couldn't pick one, so I decided to go with Prince Caspian.

One underappreciated character

The House of Hades (The Heroes of Olympus, #4)

I think Frank Zhang is an underappreciated character. Everyone is all about Percy and Jason. And even Leo gets more attention. I really like Frank, he's like a big sweetheart. :)

One character of your own choosing

Resistance (Ilyon Chronicles, #1)

And my last guest is Jace! I love Jace so much, he's an amazing character. <3

And those are my literary dinner party guests! This is going to be a pretty cool, and interesting, party. :D

Apparently, I'm supposed to tag people now, but I'm not going to. Instead, I'm going to leave this open for anyone who wants to do it! So if you would really like to do this tag, consider yourself tagged by yours truly. :)

Saturday, January 20, 2018

2018 Goals

Hey, guys! Yeah, I know. Two weeks ago I said I was back, but then I didn't post last week. . . I meant to, but things got a little crazy. But I'm here today! :D And with a goals post. ;) 

Apparently, I set some pretty lofty goals for 2017. . . Let's go over those, and you'll know why I say that. *is really bad with intros* :P

~ 2017 Goals ~

// Write the rough draft of 1 book //

I did that! I wrote the rough draft of Strangers. :D Well, I had some parts written before but I had to edit those a little bit. I still consider it a rough draft because it's so bad. I also wrote the first 20k of Roping the Overcomer for Camp NaNo in April. (If you're new to the blog, or just want to know more about those WIP, you can go to My Writings page)

// Edit 2 books //

Yeah, no, that didn't happen. I don't think I did any editing last year except the parts for Strangers. So I can only give myself like a third of a book for this goal. :P

// Read 70 books //

I totally thought this was an achievable goal because I read 63 books in 2016. But I guess not because I only read 48 books in 2017. Although, I don't think that's too bad considering I read next to nothing from June until December. Yeah, that was kind of a weird reading slump. :P

// Beta read 1 book //

Okay, guys, I honestly think I crushed this goal. ;) I beta read three books last year.

Found by Audrey Caylin
Dandelion Dust by Faith Potts
Andora's Folly by Abigayle Claire

And not only that, I'm also alpha reading two other books! :D

R+B by Madison Guy
Quantum Gears by Marrok MacIntyre

At the beginning of 2017, I didn't really know what alpha or beta reading was. But I signed up to read quite a few books, and I've learned a lot. I actually feel like I kinda know what I'm doing now. ;P

// Journal more //

Yeah, no. That didn't happen. I think I journaled less last year than I did in 2016. :P

// Take 2 English classes //

I didn't do this one either. I have sets of Great Courses on writing topics. I started them last year, but haven't made it all the way through yet. But I'm learning a lot!

// Study the Bible more and strengthen my relationship with God //

YES!! I did this, and it was amazing! I feel so much closer to God now than I did before. :) I feel like I passed a huge milestone last year, and it makes me so happy. To be honest, even though I didn't meet many of my goals for last year, I'm glad I met this one. :)

 You may remember that back in September I decided that I was going to make a Bible TBR. Here is the list of books that I shared with you:

And I read all of them! :D Along with those though, I also read 1, 2, 3 John, Colossians, Galatians, Song of Solomon, and 1 Timothy. :)

~ 2018 Goals ~

 // Write the second draft of Strangers //

I'm excited about this. :D Some of you know that I sent out Strangers to my alpha readers this past November. They aren't finished yet, but right now my plan is to work on the second draft in the next two or three months. That may change though, it all depends.

// Write at least 1 rough draft //

I have two novels that I've been working on outlines for, so I know I'll write at least one of them this year, if not both. (I'm trying to create achievable goals here. I've learned my lesson from last year :P)

// Read 50 books //

Okay, hopefully, I have an achievable reading goal for this year. I lowered it last year to 70, thinking that was reasonable. That proved to not be the case, so 50 it is.

// Finish reading the Bible //

I'm going, to be honest with all of you. I haven't read the whole Bible. But I'm really close, so this year I'm going to finish it. :D

// Finish lectures //

Like I said earlier, I started the lectures last year. I have three sets, and I want to finish them all this year. I may also be taking a writing course through an actual college this year too, but I'm not making any promises. :P

// Journal //

Yes, I know, this was kind of a fail last year, but I'm going to try harder this year. And one of the reasons is, I think 2018 is going to be a year that I'll want to look back on. :)

And there are my goals for 2018! :)

I was tagged to do three tags in the past two-ish months so I will be doing those in the next few weeks. Don't worry guys, I haven't forgotten them. I waited forever to get tagged, I'm not going to just not do them. ;P And, just so you know, I will be doing one of them this Wednesday so you can come back to see that.

What about you? What are some of your goals for 2018? :)

Saturday, January 6, 2018

The Allegiance Blog Tour

I'm back! :D From an. . . unintentional hiatus. . . :P It wasn't on purpose, I promise! I've just had a lot on my mind in the past month, and never really thought about blogging. But I'm trying to get back into it. Anywho. . .

Welcome to the Allegiance Blog Tour!! :D

About the Book

Two countries, two choices, one life.

When Kyraenean slave Celeste risks her life to reach the free nation of Etraea, a country filled with technology and wealth, she unknowingly sets off a chain of events that will change her life forever.

After escaping her new owner, Celeste awakens in the home of an Etraean soldier, sworn to protect the fragile peace.

For Corporal Mick Haynes, life is simple. Follow the rules, do your job and work your way up the ranks. Getting shot and finding a wanted slave at his family's farm wasn't part of the plan.

When a Kyraenean bounty hunter locates Celeste, Mick's loyalty will be stretched to the limit.

With war on the horizon, Celeste faces two impossible choices. Both securing her freedom, but both at a cost she could never have imagined.

Will Etraea provide the freedom she's longed for or shackle her to an entirely new master?

About the Author

Sarah Addison-Fox is a New Zealand-born home-schooling mother of two who loves action-packed, clean fantasy with strong heroines. She has an astonishing amount of nail polish, has all her creative writing credentials shoved in a draw somewhere, and has a husband who, after 27 years, can still make her blush. When she's not working on both her Christian YA fantasy series, Allegiance or Renegades, she can be found fangirling on Goodreads or sending GIFs on Twitter.

And I have the privilege of interviewing this beautiful woman! :D

Welcome, Sarah, and thank you so much for being with us today! I'm so excited to have you on the blog. :D My first question for you is, why do you write?

That's a great question. One I love to answer because it shows just how awesome and in control God really is.
I'd always dabbled with writing, but it wasn't until I had a bad MS flare up and lost the ability to control my right arm that my priorities shifted. I realised that time was short and that if I didn't start writing, I might never get the chance. I believe wholeheartedly that were it not for the diagnosis of MS a year and a half ago, I would never have completed my first book, let alone written two complete series.
I'm a huge fan of Michael Jnr, and I credit him a lot for motivating me after hearing him speaking about understanding your 'why'.
I'd always known writing was my passion, but until this year, I never understood 'why' I should be writing. As soon as I understood that it was in God's plan for my life, I found that my entire focus changed. Instead of thinking and dwelling on what might happen, I got lost in my character's worlds, and began to think about how I could help other people through the gift of words.

Wow, what an inspiring and powerful testimony!! <33 And what inspired you to write the Allegiance series?

The inspiration came from my desire to make people aware of why slavery still exists today. I wanted to show what Freedom really means.

What is your favorite part of the whole writing and publishing process?

I love the creative process of writing a first draft, but what really lights me up is hearing from readers who understand what I'm trying to achieve. Writing is a lonely process, and quite often authors have no idea if readers like their work.
I try to make a point of telling authors I admire how much their stories touch me. The reason I do this, is because I never got the opportunity to tell an author how much her work meant to me before she and her son died in a car crash. I think that was another reason I knew I had to get the words out as quickly as possible. Life is so fleeting.

Why did you choose to self-publish?

I'm of the generation of writers who never had the opportunity to self-publish until recently. I never really attempted to publish traditionally before now and I honestly don't think I could have survived the constant rejection most authors face. I remember being at a writing conference where a published author read out seven of her rejection letters. She said she had hundreds of them!
Now that I have gone the Indie route, I wouldn't have it any other way. I want to have control, and I don't want the added pressure of contracts, deadlines and feeling obligated to write a certain way.

What is your favorite genre to write in?

Fantasy. Definitely. I can write contemporary, but I get bored, and find I start to want to create new worlds. Fantasy gives me the scope to create, with no boundaries, no rules and no one to correct me if I get something wrong.

What do you do in your spare time?

I don't have a huge amount of spare time these days. When my husband is home, we watch lots of action adventure movies, or we binge watching comedy programs. I'm happiest spending time with my family, just being silly. Because I want to support the Indie community, I spend a lot of my free time reading and reviewing other authors works.

And my last question is, do you have any advice for aspiring indie authors?

Don't compare yourself to other authors, and learn to separate opinion from fact. Just because someone doesn't like your work, doesn't mean it's bad. There will always be naysayers, and you will never please everyone. Your unique voice is a gift, so write to the best of your abilities, recognise you have strengths and make the most of them.

And there you have it! Thanks for stopping by, guys! Now go and buy Sarah's book and follow her on her social media! :)