Monday, December 28, 2015

My 2015

Here we are, on the last days of the year. Were we not just waving hello to 2015? Scribbling down new goals and anticipating a fresh canvas, full of unknown adventures? Now we’re saying goodbye, laughing at all the goals we failed to keep past the first week of the year, and hoping for better this coming year.

Perhaps I didn’t quite do everything I had hoped to this year, but it’s been an amazing (if not a little wild) ride anyway. I think this year was something like riding in the back of a pickup truck. Where you hope each bump doesn’t send you flying out onto the rocky road, but the exhilaration of the ride and wind makes the uncomfortable bits worth it all the same.

JANUARY: Opened up the new year with some lazy days enjoying the last days of Christmas break, then went into a whirl of a weekend trip out of town immediately followed by another trip to my bestie’s house for a week. Then it was back to life and catching up on the normal things that got forgotten in the midst of the Christmas season and trips. At this point I was planning on rewriting Fallen Matter for my big writing project of the year but. . .plans changed.

FEBRUARY: The first day of February brought on some disappointment but also a strange sense of peace and new, exciting plans. Rooglewood Press announced the winners for their Five Enchanted Roses novella contest and my entry, Burning Thorns, was not amidst the winners. Oddly, I was okay with that. I realized I didn’t want BT to be a little novella. It could be so much more. So Fallen Matter got forgotten when it was clear BT wanted to be a novel. It just felt right. I got to work almost immediately planning out the novel. February was the month of plotting.

MARCH: In the midst of some busyness and fun, I officially started writing the Burning Thorns novel. Due to quite a few events though, not much got written.

APRIL: On the first of April I did something a little crazy. . . I, um, got braces on my teeth. Yeah, I’m in my 20s and am a brace face. And no, it was not an April Fool’s joke. They’re for real and look rather ridiculous. But it was something I’ve wanted to do for a long time and the orthodontist said I could really use them, so I thought, “Hey, two years of braces for a lifetime of healthy teeth? I could do that.” (I hate them, but I’m gritting my teeth and dealing with it. See what I did there?)
April brought in Easter which I always love! We still dye Easter eggs even though we’re basically a houseful of adults.
I did some more writing on Burning Thorns throughout the month, but not nearly as much as I should have. I couldn’t seem to quite get back into that writing groove.
Near the end of the month, we had a huge scare when one of my dearest friends was unexpectedly hospitalized with some serious health issues. She has always been one of the healthiest people I know, so it was a shock. Thankfully, she pulled through and is fine now. I cannot be more grateful to God for taking care of her.

MAY: The warm days of May spurred on a good deal of watching ABCs Once Upon a Time, reading, and general laziness. I was writing, but still just bits here and there. It was progress, but not much.
Avengers 2: Age of Ultron came out and a good friend and I went to see it. Obviously squealing ensued.
Much of the last bit of the month was spent getting my grandmother moved and settled from one apartment to another.
By the month’s end, I realized I wasn’t going to get much written unless I had something pushing me to it. So I had a plan. . .

JUNE: On June 1st I started a 30k goal for the month, my own little Camp NaNoWriMo. A few others I knew were also doing a Camp NaNo during June so it was the perfect time to really get those words in. Needless to say, much writing was spent in the month of June. (And there may also have been more Once Upon a Time marathoning between writing.)
Halfway through the month, I learned one of my friends was pregnant with her and her husband’s second child. Such joyful news!
Some family I had only ever met once before visited during the month and we had too much fun seeing them.
By the end of the month, I had a whole new 30k words on Burning Thorns and well on my way to the ending.

JULY: July exploded into a whirlwind of busyness. My main goal was to finish BT and catch up on the many, many things I had abandoned for writing in June. Instead my grandmother had surgery and came to our house to recover while I spent much time at her apartment dogsitting and keeping things in order there. Things quieted by the last half of the month and, on July 31st, I wrote “The End” to the first draft of the Burning Thorns novel.

AUGUST: With BT finished, I finally had more time for other things. I pored myself into catching up on emails and things the first couple weeks of August. By the second half of August, I was blissfully free and spent much time reading and watching Doctor Who, as one does. By the end of the month, I realized I rather missed writing and tried my hand at my first piece of flash fiction. I’ve been meaning to try more, it seems rather addicting.

SEPTEMBER: Since I had finished BT, I had no intentions of doing anything writerly until October when NaNoWriMo plotting began. As a result, September was spent with the family, fun romps through town, meeting with friends a time or two, and just general living. Then, on September 30th, I got a call from the owner of my favorite secondhand bookstore. Next thing I knew, I was going to my first job interview.

OCTOBER: On October 5th, I got another call and officially had my first job. (Let’s just say there was much squealing and jumping up and down.) My excitement dampened a little when I had my first car accident. Nothing major, just a blown out tire. Still, it was a little unnerving, especially since I started my new job the very next day. Not exactly what I wanted to happen before beginning a new job. But God took care of me and I made it to my first day of work on October 9th and had the best time. From there I was whisked into work and plotting More Black than Night for NaNoWriMo. I discovered working in your favorite bookstore is the best thing in the world (and getting a paycheck ain’t bad either). NaNo planning was rather slow and being stubborn, but by the end of the month I had a full outline and was ready for the insanity that is NaNo. I just. . .didn’t know how much insanity.

NOVEMBER: The first week of NaNo started out great and I was feeling optimistic. Then life exploded and, honestly, I think I’m still recovering from that second week of NaNo. Between work, sleeping away from home, health problems in the family, and trying to keep up with my wordcount, I was kind of ready to collapse. Things got 100x better in the third week and I fell back in love with my NaNo. On November 23rd, I shockingly fully finished More Black than Night at 76,700 words, my shortest novel to date.
The rest of the month was spent rejuvenating, nearly exploding from too much food on Thanksgiving, etc. etc. Went to see The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 and cried my eyes out. Ya know, things.

DECEMBER: Suddenly it was December! Which meant CHRISTMAS and fun December things! The month started out great when on the 1st my new laptop I had ordered came in. Yep, Larry, my first and only laptop I’ve had for over 8 years, was ready to retire. Now I have Lois, a small laptop that has a touchscreen and whose screen flips over and is shiiiiny. I loveth her! (What? You don’t name and love your laptops? Well, why not?)
The rest of the months was spent decorating for Christmas, falling in love with my job at the bookstore more and more, and general busyness. My plan for December was to watch movies and read for most of the month, instead I’ve spent it barely home. But that’s okay. I enjoy busy days, too. (Lets just not talk about how little I’ve read this year, okay? It’s embarrassing.) There has been a Christmas family gathering, much Christmas shopping, having a fantastic Christmas, all the Christmas things. And now. . .now saying goodbye to 2015.

Whew! It’s been an interesting year for sure. Getting braces, having car trouble, spontaneously landing my first job, the craziest NaNo of my life, writing two full novels—it’s been something! There were definitely things I wanted to do that didn’t get done (and things I didn’t that did. . .), but, overall, I’d say 2015 has been a wonderful year.

If you read all that nonsense, you deserve a cookie (or 12)! This probably bored you to tears. This post was more for me, a log if you will, to remember this year by. Of course, this only scratched the surface. Life really isn’t about the highlights, but those in between moments that can’t be put into words, but are so important. Some have been good, some have been pretty awful, but it’s my life and I’m so grateful to God for blessing me with it.

What’s in store for 2016? Well, that’s yet to be seen. But for now, I’ll be enjoying these last days of 2015.

What about you? What was some of your biggest 2015 highlights? Do tell! How was your year in general? I hope you had a beautiful one and the next will be even better. I’ll see you all in 2016!!

Monday, December 21, 2015

The Christmas Tag - Where I Flail Excitedly About Christmas

GUYS. It is Christmas week! Are you excited? Because I am excited! Also a little in shock because IT’S ALREADY ALMOST CHRISTMAS AND THE YEAR IS NEARLY OVER HOW DID THAT EVEN HAPPEN?

Ahem. But I digress.

In celebration for this Christmas week I’m participating in a delightful Christmas tag, full of Christmas-y things (which I guess is why it’s called The Christmas Tag, who knew?). A huge thanks to my dearest buddy Deborah @ The Road of a Writer for passing this my way. She’s basically the bestest person in the world and if you’re not following her then your life has a huge missing chunk of awesome in it.


-Post the picture on your blog (The funny thing about this is this tag is old and the original pic got lost somewhere along the way, so we’re all having to ignore this rule now.)

-Answer the questions

-Tag up to 12 blogger.

-Make up 10 questions for the other bloggers (There are also 20 questions now. This thing has changed and expanded quite a lot. XD)


1. What is your favorite Christmas treat?
I love me some Christmas cookies! Sometimes we make these spritz cookies which are small so you can have like a dozen and not feel guilty about it. *cough, cough* But I like pretty much all the cookies we make. It’s not Christmas without some cookies. Nomnomnom.

2. Are there any special traditions that your family has to celebrate Christmas?
Hm. . . Not exactly. We have a few specific things we tend to do each year, but really not much in the way of set traditions.

3, How do you normally celebrate Christmas?
It starts out after Thanksgiving or the first week of December where we decorate the house, put the tree up, all that fun stuff. And of course the Christmas music emerges and is played as much as possible. Then on Christmas Eve (though this year we did it earlier) we have a big family gathering over at our house for dinner and gift exchanging. On the actual Christmas day, we spend it just us and my mom’s mom. We’re not early risers, so the morning is usually slow as we get dressed and all, maybe eat lunch, then get into the gift opening. Which proceeds for. . .a long time. We like to take turns and get lots of pictures and videos and just be leisurely about it. But I think that’s more fun then just ripping everything open all at once. Once gifts are open, we just hang out and mess around with our new items and enjoy time together. We may watch a movie in the evening. It’s always such a pleasant day.

4. Do you enjoy getting presents for your friends and family? Do you buy your gifts or go the homemade route?
Giving gifts is always so fun! Buuut I’m the worst at finding gifts for people, and it takes me an age and a half to do it. I’m just not good at thinking up things to get people. It’s horrid. It’s always so satisfying once I do find that gift though, and way too much fun to give away.

I definitely buy my gifts. I am so not a crafty person. I wish I was but. . .no. I can make words (or try) but that’s the best I can do in the creativity department. My list of skills is a very, very short list.

5. Is it cold where you live? Have you ever had a white Christmas?

This Christmas the high will be almost 80 degrees (Fahrenheit) and rainy.

Snow around here is an extreme rarity. So no, no white Christmases for me. I do love the cold weather. Usually it’s at least a little colder than this in December. Our weather seemed to have forgotten it’s Christmastime. *sigh*

6. What’s on your Christmas list this year?
There is only one answer to this question: BOOKS. All the books all the time! I mean, I’m supposed to ask for other things? o.O

7. What’s your favorite Christmas song?
Gimme all the Christmas music! I’m listening to Pandora’s “Jazz Holidays Radio” station right now. It’s great.

The Charlie Brown Christmas CD is my favoritest Christmas CD of all time and I listen to it about 29384 times every Christmas season. This one is my favorite on the CD. It’s the BEST for cruising in the car to on a cool December day. (Not that we’ve had many cool days. . .)

But in general Carol of the Bells is probably my top favorite Christmas song. I’ve never once heard a version of it I don’t like. It’s so gorgeous and almost haunting and. . .I don’t know. I just love it. What Child is This is a great one. I absolutely adore Sleigh Ride, and Let It Snow always gets a smile on my face. Um. . .I’m probably forgetting dozens of them. Basically if it’s a Christmas song, I love it. I’m not picky.

8. What is your favorite Christmas memory?
Oh goodness. I don’t even know. I’ve loved ALL of our Christmases. I don’t think I can choose a specific moment.

9. What does your Christmas Tree look like?
We have two. (And sometimes we have more than two. We. . .like decorating for Christmas.) There’s a big one in the main living room decorated with specific, matching decorations.

Then a smaller one is another room with all our many special decorations we’ve gotten through the years. Even some from when Mom was a kid. It’s a big hodgepodge of. . .everything. We call it our memory tree.

10. What are you reading in December? (Anything festive?)
Honestly, A Christmas Carol may be the only festive book I’ve ever read. I guess there’s not many Christmas speculative fiction YA books. Heh.

Right now I’m reading Winnie-the-Pooh because, ya know, Winnie-the-Pooh. Though it’s not festive I think it’s a fun little book to read during Christmas.

11. Are you an organized little elf or are you still shopping/preparing on Christmas Eve?
Hahaha! I still have a gift or two to buy, and Christmas is less than a week away. Often Christmas Eve is spent wrapping gifts. We, um, aren’t always on top of things. We do like to decorate early, but that’s pretty much it. XD

12. How early do you start to get into the Christmas spirit?
*griiiins* Sometimes I’m in the Christmas spirit by OCTOBER. Literally in the first week of October I was telling Mom I was looking forward to Christmastime. I have a problem, I know. Really though, it doesn’t seriously kick in until mid to late November. By December I’m bellowing out the Christmas songs and basically on a Christmas high alllll month.

13. Do you make any Christmas crafts? Decorations? Send physical Christmas cards?
As I said in #4, crafting is not my specialty. So sadly, no. No Christmas crafting for me. I will write a Christmas card or two though. I should probably do more. . .

14. What’s the menu for Christmas Day?!
I don’t know what we’re making this year. Usually we have the big, big Christmas dinner with the family when they come over before Christmas. That’s when we make either a ham or turkey and then things like sweet potatoes, butter beans, cream corn, green beans, rolls, etc. And of course a pie or cake or something annnnd COOKIES! Always so tasty.

15. What makes it FEEL like Christmas for you? (Weather, specific tradition, food, smell, person, etc.?)
Oh, I don’t know. I think just knowing it’s the Christmas season is enough for me. Thankfully not the weather since it’s deciding to be so warm this year. >.> Christmas music and putting up the decorations definitely gets me in the spirit.

16. Do you have relatives coming? Excited? Nervous?
Like I said, we usually have a family Christmas gathering on Christmas Eve at our house, but schedules weren’t aligning this year, so we had our gathering yesterday. It went really well! Most of the family lives nearby, so I actually get to see them pretty often.

17. What famous Christmas character do you most identify with? (Scrooge, Elf, Tiny Tim, the Grinch, Santa, etc.)
Lol! I love this. XD

Though maybe not quite as perky, I definitely relate with Buddy from Elf often.

And when I was little Mom liked to call me Cindy Lou Who.

18. If you were to start a new Christmas tradition, what would it be?
I think having a war of the epic fantasy elves against the silly little Christmas elfs each year would be great. *nods, nods* I mean, we all know who would win, but ya know.

I don’t even know, guys.

19. What Christmas movies do you like to watch this time of year or what’s your favorite?
We looooove The Santa Clause with Tim Allen. We used to watch it every single year. We haven’t in a while, but it’s still a family favorite. We’ve all got it completely memorized by now.

The past couple of years we’ve also taken to leaving the Hallmark channel on pretty much all day as they show their many Christmas movies 24/7. We don’t necessarily sit down and watch them all the time, but they’re great things to have on as background sounds throughout the day. (Are we the only ones that leave the TV on for background noise? I don’t know, we’re strange. . .)

20. What’s your favorite Christmasy book or book with a favorite Christmasy part?
Does The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe count? Hee. Like I said earlier, I never really read Christmas books. Shameful! I did really enjoy A Christmas Carol when I first read it a couple years ago. There were some good Christmas scenes in the Betsy-Tacy series by Maud Hart Lovelace. But I love all the scenes from that series, so.


Well, I think a lot of people I know have already been tagged for this. So I’m doing a free-for-all. If you’d like to do this tag, consider yourself TAGGED. Seriously, I would love for everyone or anyone to do this, so snag these questions and have at it. Or just take a few of the questions to do, or answer some in the comments. Whatever you want to do. Have fun with it! (And yes I’m being lazy and using the same questions. But hey, they were good questions!)

Here you are:

  • What is your favorite Christmas treat?
  • Are there any special traditions that your family has to celebrate Christmas?
  • How do you normally celebrate Christmas?
  • Do you enjoy getting presents for your friends and family? Do you buy your gifts or go the homemade route?
  • Is it cold where you live? Have you ever had a white Christmas?
  • What’s on your Christmas list this year?
  • What’s your favorite Christmas song?
  • What is your favorite Christmas memory?
  • What does your Christmas Tree look like?
  • What are you reading in December? (Anything festive?)
  • Are you an organized little elf or are you still shopping/preparing on Christmas Eve?
  • How early do you start to get into the Christmas spirit?
  • Do you make any Christmas crafts? Decorations? Send physical Christmas cards?
  • What’s the menu for Christmas Day?!
  • What makes it FEEL like Christmas for you? (Weather, specific tradition, food, smell, person, etc.?)
  • Do you have relatives coming? Excited? Nervous?
  • What famous Christmas character do you most identify with? (Scrooge, Elf, Tiny Tim, the Grinch, Santa, etc.)
  • If you were to start a new Christmas tradition, what would it be?
  • What Christmas movies do you like to watch this time of year or what’s your favorite?
  • What’s your favorite Christmasy book or book with a favorite Christmasy part?

I will ask again: Who’s excited for Christmas??? Any special plans? What’s YOUR favorite Christmas song? (See, I’m going to force you to answer at least one of the questions. *cackles*) I hope all of you have the absolute merriest Christmas!!! <333

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Beautiful Books #3 - Where Editing Hopefully Occurs

The third and final round of Beautiful Books is here! During the NaNoWriMo season, our dear hosts Sky and Cait take a slight break from their Beautiful People linkup to focus on our novels instead of characters. This month, with NaNo over and so many fresh new first drafts all written and ready for their time to shine, they’re focusing on that ever elusive thing called. . . *shifty eyes* editing. Who else but Sky and Cait can get us pumped over editing, am I right?

You can link on up over at Sky's post or Cait. And, don’t forget, these linkups are for anyone, not just those who participated in NaNo. You know you want toooo! *poke, poke* *wink, wink*

I’m sort of cheating this year (like I did last year *cough, cough*). But come on, rules. Psssh. Who follows them? Here’s the problem: I’m not going to be editing my NaNo until I finish the series and then edit the first five books that came before it. I could be in my 40s by the time I’m ready to edit More Black than Night! (Okay, that may be extreme, but you never know.) The good news is, I will be editing a book soon. Just not in the Colors of a Dragon Scale series. BUT come January, I shall be diving straight into deep edits of my Beauty and the Beast retelling Burning Thorns annnd I’m quite excited. I’m very, very much looking forward to returning to my fairytale world and Beast and Rose’s story. Ecstatic really. Also a little nervous because, ya know, editing, but let’s try to stay positive here.

So shall we?

1. On a scale of 1 (worst) to 10 (best), how did the book turn out? Did anything defy your expectations?
Hmm. . . This question is hard to answer for your own book. 7? Maybe even an 8? I haven’t read back through it since finishing, so that number may go way down once it’s had a read over. But I’m kind of in love with this story. I also tried to take my time on it and not just hurl as many words on the page as possible and call it a novel like I usually do with first drafts. . . Ahem. Beauty and the Beast is my favorite fairytale and I’ve wanted to write a retelling of it since I was a small thing, so this story is very dear to my heart. And, though I think it could use quite a bit of expanding, I really enjoyed the world. Then there’s the cast. Ah, the cast. They’re all so precious to me. So yeah, I love this story.

Defy my expectations? Huh. Well, one character arc turned out way deeper than I thought it would, which was a happy surprise. I also rather like the style of the writing. I tried something a smidge different and (I think) it turned out better than I expected.

Again though, once I read back through it I may disregard all of this and return saying it’s a total pigpen of a book. These things happen.

2. Comparative title time: what published books, movies, or TV shows are like your book? (Ex: Inkheart meets X-Men.)
The story world was deeply inspired by the Maleficent movie. I had just seen the movie when the first inklings of this story were coming together, and being as how Maleficent is one of my favorite movies and has my favorite feel of a fairytale story, it definitely leaked into Burning Thorns. So I guess you could say the Beauty and Beast story meets the Maleficent movie? I don’t even know. I’m the worst at comparing my stories with things.

3. Do you enjoy working with deadlines and pressure (aka NaNoWriMo)? Or do you prefer to write-as-you’re-inspired?
DEADLINES. Give me allll the deadlines. I would never write, ever, if I didn’t have things like NaNoWriMo or give myself personal goals. I feed off goals. The only reason BT is finished is because I set a 30k goal during June to get a huge boost on it, then promised myself I’d have it done by the end of July. Otherwise it’d probably just be a sad, unfinished story sitting in the dark places of my laptop. If you give me a goal, I’ll get things done, almost to an OCD level. But left on my own I’ll. . .have Netflix marathons and scroll on Pinterest all day. >.>

4. How do you go about editing? Give us an insight into your editing process.
I’ll let you in on a secret. I. . .haven’t edited much at all in my life. I’m terrible about getting distracted by shiny new ideas and not taking the time to polish up all those first drafts waiting around. It’s a horrible habit, I know. But I WILL edit BT. I WILL. You guys have to keep my accountable, okay?

My plan for editing is to first just read through the whole thing and take notes as I go. Then go back and fix any major things. Once that is done, I’m going to open a fresh document, put the manuscript next to it, and rewrite the whole thing. Yep, word for word. From beginning to end. I feel like it might help instead of just looking through the mass of text and fixing it that way. If I’m actually retyping each and every word, I might catch more problems that otherwise I’d miss. Then, once the whooole thing is retyped out and fixed up, I’ll probably go back again and tweak things.

It may be long and tedious and not work at all, but right now I’m feeling optimistic. (I’m sure by around February or so I’ll be crawling back here moaning and sleep deprived and questioning my life choices. As one does while editing.)

5. What aspect of your story needs the most work?
Like I said earlier, I feel as though the world could use. . .more. I like the world, a lot, but it needs some expanding. I want to make the creatures more unique, put more history to things. Just make it in general more interesting. I tend to be limited and cliché when it comes to worldbuilding, it’s a pretty bad weakness of mine. I hope to remedy that with this story. Hope being the keyword here.

6. What aspect of your story did you love the most?
Gracious, I loved so many things while writing it. But my answer to this question, with any story, is always the same: The characters. I don’t care what I’m writing, my favorite part is always the characters. They are the heart and soul of a story after all. And they come from my heart and soul. I will never tire of writing solely because of the characters. This story I really felt like I dove deep within my characters because this was probably the smallest cast I’ve ever had. Usually I have pretty big casts, but, to my surprise, this story showed me I may enjoy smaller casts better. First of all, it’s not nearly as overwhelming; but second, I’m able to more deeply pour myself into each one. These characters was without a doubt my favorite aspect of BT.

7. Give us a brief run down on your main characters and how you think they turned out. Do you think they’ll need changes in edits?
Funny how my last answer perfectly brought us to the next question. XD

My main main character, Rose, is naïve and still clings to a childlike wonder that keeps her from falling too deep into the darkness that has become her world. Sometimes this is a very good thing, but sometimes. . . not. She’s gullible and trusts people far too easily which gets her in quite a lot of trouble. Usually I want to hug her and tell her everything is okay. Instead I ruin her life. As writers do.

The Beast is one of my favorite types of characters. The seemingly callous, dark guy who ends up having a big heart, even if you have to dig pretty deep to find it.

Lystraea  (some of you may know her as Selia, she’s had a name change) was one of my favorite surprises. At first she was a little too perfect and it kind of distressed me, but eventually I discovered some serious backstory that really brought some interesting messages in the story and showed she’s quite human (even though she’s technically a fae and not human at all, but details).

Anya is mostly an antagonist and malicious and hateful. And yet I found her way of thinking completely fascinating. I don’t even know why. She felt different than any character I’ve ever attempted to write. Her POVs were always interesting.

Marigold was the most surprising of all. As Anya’s lapdog basically, and a spoiled brat at that, I expected to be completely annoyed by her. Instead she stole my heart. She’s still a brat, but her spoiled ways were more amusing than annoying. And I discovered a lot more to her than I originally knew. Her childish, fiery spirit provided a lot of fun adventures.

And if you’ve read my blog since the beginning of this year you probably know my feelings on Larke, the sarcastic, mischievous fae that decided to steal the show and cause all sorts of fun trouble.

Right now I don’t feel like they’ll need much changing, but I really need to read through it before I can properly answer these questions.

8. What are your plans for this novel once you finish editing? More edits? Finding beta readers? Querying? Self-publishing? Hiding it in a dark hole forever?
Edits, edits, and more edits. I’ll be sending out a chapter at a time to my beta readers as I deem each chapter readable enough for mortal eyes. Once that is done. . .well, querying shall be considered. *hides under blanket*

9. Share a favorite snippet!

Rose picked her way along the Forest floor, clinging to her fading candle. Yet no dark fae stirred in the shadows, no thorny vines reached out and caught the skirt of her dress, no thick branches barred her way. Instead the cold mist pushed at her ankles until the castle's entrance loomed over her. The Forest wanted her here, craved vengeance.

10. What are your writing goals and plans for 2016?
Drinking too much caffeine and crying. Ahem. I mean, editing. I plan on pouring myself into BT to the best of my ability. Then, once October hits, I’ll start planning the final book of the Colors of a Dragon Scale series for NaNoWriMo. Buuut let’s not get ahead. Of course, plans hate me and love to dump out like a box of crayons and splay all over in a jumbled mess, but for now we’ll pretend this is my plan.

Wow. Now I’m even more excited about returning to this story. I’ve left it completely alone for months. I’m rather thrilled to go back. Hurray for Sky and Cait and their awesomely helpful linkups!

So, I need to know, am I the only one still in shock that NaNo is over? Do you have any big editing projects in the horizon? And what are YOUR 2016 writing plans? Do tell me of all the beautiful writerly things that shall spawn with the new year!

Monday, December 7, 2015

These December Days

Christmas Tree Ornaments

One morning just a week ago I opened my eyes and realized: It’s December. December. Where the world seems a little cheerier, the days a little cozier, and life a little brighter.

These are the days frost covers the ground in the early morning and the sky is soft in the afternoon. Where boots and scarves and gloves are donned for outings of Christmas shopping to find that perfect gift to make a certain someone smile. To bundle up in the car with the family and gaze at the colorful lights illuminating neighborhood homes.

Where the Christmas music is pulled out and played with gusto throughout the house, in the car, within the stores—filling the world with tunes of celebration for this wondrous time. Those favorite Christmas movies make their appearance and are watched for the hundredth time, but are still as thrilling as the first.

Boxes are brought down from the attic and their contents transform the house with Christmas trees and ornaments, garland, lights, festive knick-knacks galore—all decked out to celebrate. Mugs with happy Christmas scenes are dug from the back of the cabinet to be filled with warm, sweet smelling drinks, adding to the sugary aromas of the cookies in the oven.

Cuttings of Christmas paper litters the room of gifts being wrapped, a smile on the wrapper’s face as they think of their loved one opening the special present.

There are parties to go to, and family to meet, and yet more shopping to do. But that’s okay. Because it’s Christmas time. The merriest time of the year.

But what makes these days so special? What brings on such merriment? Sure, the decorating and gifts and festive music are fun. But what about that little thrill inside you? That warm joy that can’t even be described? What causes this certain feeling only December brings?

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour,
which is Christ the Lord.

Ah, there it is. Life. It’s not the lights and tinsel and pretty wrapped gifts that spur on the deep rooted joy within. It’s Life. Our Saviour’s life, given so WE may have life. Joy to the world.

I think December is the best time of year because it’s a reminder of our Lord, Who chose to come down as a humble babe and sacrifice for us. So that we may live. Now that is something to celebrate.

These December days are the best days. So let’s fill them with the beauty of life, just as Jesus filled us with life. With love, cheer, and joy.

Happy December!

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