Sooooo, there’s another birthday this week. And it’s my blog’s! It’s officially past the terrible twos and into its childhood. (Is that weird? That’s weird…) ANYWAY. To celebrate, I’ll be answering y’all’s questions, sharing some of what I’ve been up to… and making (what I think is) an awesome announcement! So without further ado, let’s go!
What is your favourite Disney movie?
I have to pick one??? D:
The first thing off the top of my head is The Emperor’s New Groove. I’ll go with that one if only so I don’t go into options overload. XD It’s an awesome movie in so many areas.
If you could choose five books to suddenly own (as in you wouldn’t have to pay for them), which books would you pick?
Ooooooh… I really want to pick PFW books, but I’m torn on that since I also want to buy them to support the authors. So… Hm… Maybe
- A Time To Speak by Nadine Brandes
- A Time to Die by Nadine Brandes (love her, too, so I want to support her also, but… maybe I’ll just use reviews to do it. I really want to know what happens in the rest of this series. XD)
- The Phoenix: An Unnatural History of a Mythical Beast by Joseph Nigg
- The Boy Who Steals Houses by C.G. Drews
- and Write Worlds Your Readers Won’t Forget by Stant Litore
(Going through my lists, so many of them were “But I want to buy that one to support the author!” XD)
What do you think of peanut butter on pancakes?
I’m pretty sure I’ve never had it, but it sounds peculiar.
What is your favourite mythical creature and/or being?
THE PHOENIX. I’m sorry. They’re just really cool. XD Dragons are a pretty close second, though.
What is your favourite genre and why is it?
Fantasy. Because it doesn’t have rules (relatively speaking), you get to see (or create) things that have never been created before, and it allows for exploration of real-world issues in a fictional world where they can be explored from different angles and in different contexts.
What is your favourite story that you’ve written or planned?
Calligraphy Guild. I have a few others that I really like, too, but Calligraphy Guild is the one that I consistently adore, that I’m super passionate about finishing and polishing and putting out, that has a huge list of things I love about it when I need motivation… So definitely Calligraphy Guild. ^-^
Do you like or love nature?
Depends on the nature. Cold weather and (biting) bugs are unpleasant, but pretty much everything else falls under the “love” category. The ocean, forests, mountains, flowers, trees, animals, peace and quiet, birdsong, soft breezes, sunshine, rain, thunderstorms, mud between toes, soft warm grass… The list goes on and on.
How has God grown you through your stories?
Oooh, that’s a deep question. *thinks a minute* He’s taught me to depend on Him more, even in the “little” things. He’s deepened my knowledge of Him as a Storyteller. He’s led me to speak more through my writing, instead of mostly skirting around faith because I don’t want to alienate readers (I still don’t write overtly Christian stories, most of the time, but I don’t avoid it anymore; and when a story calls for it, I will be overt). So… several things. And probably more I’m not thinking of off the top of my head.
How do you arrange your bookshelf?
Currently it’s arranged in alphabetical order by title (more or less; a few things are fudged to keep single authors’ books together, but only in one spot that I remember), and I have it split into the following sections: traditionally published books, indie published books, writing books, other non-fiction books. But I want to re-integrate my traditional and indie books, because they haven’t been split very long and it’s annoying me that they’re not the way they were. XD My best friend thinks I’m crazy for sorting them alphabetically by title, but if I sorted them any other way I don’t think I’d be able to find anything. XD
What was the first story that you wrote about?
It was a mystery story that made no sense, had no original characters, and involved a kidnapping that was resolved through true love (because that’s not at all messed-up). I would burn it, but it’s long-gone somewhere.
What are your top three favorite authors (or books)?
Three? That’s it? D:
Or something like that. But this list doesn’t include Tolkien or Wayne Thomas Batson or any of the other PFW authors or Love and the Sea and Everything in Between by Brian McBride or Do Hard Things by Brett and Alex Harris or ANDREW PETERSON. DRAT. He’s definitely in the top three. THERE ARE TOO MANYYYYY. D: D: D:
What’s been your experience with indie books?
It’s been somewhat mixed, but for the most part it’s been good. Almost all of them are in need of further proofreading, which hurts my grammar-loving soul. But as far as storytelling is concerned, I think I’ve had more good experiences than bad. Though the bad ones tend to be… pretty bad. :/ I always cringe to write reviews of those, because it makes me sad to not be able to just say good things about all indie writers always, lol.
If you could meet any writer, from any time, who would they be?
YOU’RE MAKING ME CHOOSE FAVORITES AGAIN. *long sigh* I have a top… four.
But I guess if I have to choose one…
Probably Andrew Peterson.
But Nadine Brandes is super close second, and Hannah Heath is way up there, and Tolkien would be amazing, so…
What is one book you’ve always wanted to read, but haven’t yet?
…I know I must have an answer to this.
Ah! The Myriad Constellation series by Wayne Thomas Batson. I started reading the first one… last year, maybe? But it was on Kindle and I forgot about it. ;P
Have real world events effected your writing/blogging?
Somewhat, at least. They’ve affected my mental energy to write or blog several times, lol. If book releases count as real-world events, those affect my blogging at least a few times a year. And I’ll semi-frequently write posts based on conversations I’ve had with people.
My second blog is definitely impacted by real-world events, lol.
As far as writing is concerned… it’s impacted by my beliefs about real-world issues. And sometimes things I’m going through will end up in stories (which happened with The Shadow Raven back when I was working on that). My writing is usually impacted less directly by big things going on, but they definitely start my mind spinning with situations, themes, characters, etc. that might end up in books later.
What is your favourite book?
(I’m noticing a lot of you use British spelling. Are you from Britain? Australia? Canada?)
100 Days of Sunlight makes me super happy every time I read it, so I’ll go with that one.
If you were to pick a book and be able to tell the author to make a connected book but about a different character in that universe, what book and what character from that book?
I know I have someone. *thinks* *looks at bookshelves* WAIT. NEWT. From The Maze Runner. He deserved better. Soooo much better. We don’t even find out his name in The Fever Code, even though multiple opportunities are RIGHT THERE, and clearly I’m still salty.
What is the most boring book you’ve ever read?
The Last of the Mohicans. (Sorry, Eden!) I was assigned to read it for school and I couldn’t stand it.
If you could meet any fictional character, who would you meet and why?
Choicessss… Y’all are really trying to make me suffer today, aren’t you? XD
I think Tom Bombadil would be cool to meet. He’s so fun and quirky and hospitable, plus super wise and mysterious, and I just feel like he’d be really fun and interesting to spend time with. (That link is to a super interesting article about Tom Bombadil and why enigmas are valuable in storytelling.)
If you could meet anyone from history (*as in, who is currently dead*) who would it be and why?
Ooh! I can use this one to pick Tolkien!
Now quick, next question before I think of a bunch of other people.
If you could live anywhere in the world where would you live and why?
Tennessee. I don’t know where in Tennessee. But Tennessee seems like a really Southern-hospitality, sunshine, music, lots-of-cool-people place to live. (Maybe I’m just biased because all of the people I know from Tennessee are awesome. XD)
If you had to change your name what would you change it to?
Autumn. It’s been my screen name for forever (though I’m working on retiring it, which is a little bit sad), to the degree that I respond to it almost the same as my real name. XD Plus it’s pretty and I feel like it fits me.
What’s your favourite colour?
Maroon/burgundy for clothes. Various shades of blue-green for pretty much everything else.
What I’ve been writing:
My writing projects have changed so much since a year ago. XD I haven’t worked on The Half-Elves since… maybe early this year? And I went on indefinite hiatus with The Shadow Raven early this year, also. I still haven’t touched The Masked Captain to work on editing it. I did continue working on short stories, including one of the two I mentioned last year (Caithan), which went on to be featured in the new edition of Short Story Collection vol. 1!
Calligraphy Guild is the one that’s stuck around. I was only in the outlining stage a year ago, and now I’m almost finished with my first rewrite! Maybe in another year it’ll be on its way to publication?
My current goal for Calligraphy Guild is to finish this rewrite, which has been going fairly smoothly (if rather slowly). But I’m coming toward the end, which needs serious pacing help, and I’m kind of dreading that part of the process, lol. But! After I’ve finished this rewrite, I can tweak a few other structural things that came up during this rewrite, and when those are finished I’ll be able to put the first chapter up on the blog for my “newsletter subscribers”! (You’ll understand why that’s in quotes in a minute.)
I’ve been sharing this draft with alpha-readers, which has been a lot of fun, as well as super helpful and super encouraging. (Thank you, Emma and Maple! ^-^) It’s mostly satisfying the nagging “I want to share this story!” feeling for now. XD
After this draft, and the structural edits I mentioned, I’ll move onto several rounds of more specific edits (to deepen characters, flesh out settings, etc.), then line-edits, and then beta-readers! Which you’ll hear about again when the time comes. ;) (If you want to hear about it first, you can sign up for my street team newsletter.)
What I’ve been reading
I’ve read a lot this year, but some highlights include
- The Tomb of the Sea Witch by Kyle Robert Shultz (book 2 of the Beaumont and Beasley series)
- The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen
- Dear Author by Laura A. Grace
- This Changes Everything by Jaquelle Crowe (Ferris)
- 100 Days of Sunlight by Abbie Emmons (reread)
- A Time to Die by Nadine Brandes
- The Lord of the Rings (reread)
- Steward Stories by Beth Wangler
- To Best the Boys by Mary Weber
- Not Write Now by Kyle Robert Shultz
- and Love and the Sea and Everything in Between by Brian McBride
I’m currently reading
- The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien
- Circle of Shadows by Evelyn Skye
Mild language warning for 100 Days of Sunlight, violence warning for A Time to Die, and several warnings on Love and the Sea and Everything in Between (Love and the Sea doesn’t pull any punches, but it still handles everything pretty well and I’d still recommend it to older readers. If anyone wants more specifics, feel free to email me).
And now for the exciting news! Drumroll please…
I started a Discord channel! :D
It’s intended to replace my newsletter with something more personal and interactive, as well as more flexible. By joining, you’ll gain access to the same benefits (the resource library, blog post updates, writing snippets, and, when available, novel first chapters), as well as be able to chat with me and other readers/writers! I hope to see you there! ^-^
As always, thank you so much for being here, for reading my posts, for commenting, for subscribing, just for all you do to support me and my blog. And to all you silent readers out there, thank you, too. I know you’re there. :)
Here’s to another year of blogging!