Sunday, March 18, 2018

Writing Update #5: We Tried Yoga

Hey guys! Thought I'd just let you know that these titles are completely random and just a statement about what I did that day. I don't know why. Maybe because I always end up writing these updates right before midnight and I'm very tired. Anywho. I had a dream last night, woke up, and wrote almost 1000 words on my phone that I then texted to myself. So.

For Brightly She Burns

Words Written: 3,212

Words Total: 11,067

Music: Walk Through the Fire by Zayde Wolf Ft. Ruelle (I'm one of those on repeat people, oops)

Fave Passage:

I shouted in surprise and waived my hand around, causing the wolf’s slobber to be flung everywhere. Making a noise, I wiped my hand on my pants and looked back at the creature. The wolf didn’t have a face, per se, but I was sure that it was grinning, and I could see the strange, shadowy tongue wagging in pleasure.

“For a shadow you sure have a lot of spit.”

This line always makes me laugh (it's made it through multiple rewrites of this story). 

Happy Writing!


Friday, March 16, 2018

Writing Update #4: So Tired

For Brightly She Burns

Words Written: 1,520

Words Total: 7,855

Music: Mr. Sandman by SYML and Walk Through the Fire by Zade Wolf & Ruelle

Fave Passage:

Do not worry, Farrow. The voice, smooth and deep and quiet, whispered sung hummed across my mind. It almost sounded like another language, the words lilting and light. The world blinked in and out as I uselessly fought unconsciousness. You have nothing to fear. Sleep.

And then I let the darkness take me.

Happy Writing!


Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Writing Update #3: On a Roll

For Brightly She Burns

Words Written: 2,281

Words Total: 6,334

Music: The Born King by Daniel Pemberton

Fave Passage:

A dress that looked made of molten gold clung to her body, her dark hair pooling on the armrest where she rested her head on her bent arm. She was too bright, too beautiful. She was life and death and the last moment of brilliance before the sun sank below the mountains that stood in the north.

Nails, long and sharp and painted black, tapped against a pale, pale cheek. The Goddess of the Sun was sitting in the room, mere feet away from me.

And she was smiling as though she had just won a prize.

Happy Writing!


Monday, March 12, 2018

Writing Update #2: Damn You, Daylight Savings

So. Children of the Sun and Moon. That one that had almost 60,000 words? Yeah. I scrapped it. *laughs hysterically*

BUT I restarted it as the story that I think it was supposed to be all along so I am proud to present

... *drumroll please*....

FOR BRIGHTLY SHE BURNS (formerly Children of the Sun and Moon)

Date: Monday, March 12, 2018

Words Written: 2,252

Words Total: 4,060

Music:  Sweet Dreams (A Wrinkle In Time Trailer Song) ft. Dresage

Fave Passage:

There were ten gods in the Pantheon of Trectoros, each with their own kingdom. Devany was in the center, as was fitting I suppose, in the dry desert climate and a palace made of gold. Then there was Strata with her schools of logic, Perclarion and his brothels, Grera with her fields, Rhys hidden in his mountains, and Seron, doing whatever the hell the God of Trickery does. At the farthest points of the compass were Huron in the south with his jungles and dense forests and the greatest hunters on the continent; Fost in the north, the island surrounded by waves so rough they were said to break ships completely in half; Egon to the east, a collection of islands and people who were rumored to be able to breath underwater; and then finally Oron to the west, where there once stood a grand temple made of white stone that shone in the moonlight and where stars used to fall to the earth and dance. Or so the stories went.

Happy Writing!


Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Writing Update #1: Let's Get Started, Shall We?

Hi all!

In case you didn't know, along with reading books, I also have dreams of being writer! After participating in NanoWrimo this last November (I won! And a day early too!) I have really gotten back into the swing of things with writing and thought I'd share my journey with you! I saw a post like this on another blog - I cannot remember for the life of me the name so forgive me - and thought it was a great way to share and also give myself a sense of accountability 😬😬.

I actually have three different WIPs right now, because I hate myself, so I'll give a little rundown of each.

Children of the Sun and Moon:
  • Current Word Count: 58,919
  • Alanna the Lioness meets Dividing Eden: A young woman training to be an assassin must battle her classmates, her twin brother, and the gods to kill the king and save the world from ruin. 
  • Not a fan of the title (lol)
  • New Adult Fantasy. 
  • A kickass heroine
  • A brother who makes bad choices 
  • Gods who have too much time on their hands. 
  • Assassins. 
  • Kings. 
  • A sexy god of death, an irritating god of the moon, and a bloodthirsty goddess of the sun. 

114 Griffiths Hall:
  • Current Word Count: 252 (plus a mock newsletter, so more!)
  • You've Got Mail meets Fangirl: A girl gets attached to mystery classmates when she decides to write an unsolicited "Ask Annie"-esque column in her dorm's newsletter after she realizes she can hear all the conversations that happen in the stairwell outside her room. 
  • YA/NA Contemporary
  • Exposes the seedy underbelly of college band parties (just kidding)
  • One person may or may not be the hot guy from English class
  • Based on an actual experience

Strong Are the Wicked:
  • Current Word Count: 11,735
  • I don't have a good pitch for this yet, except that there are traces of Cruel Prince. Casten lives in Wicked, a city that rewards those who do evil with magic. When her sister is taken as part of game of power by the ruling class, called the Fair Ones, Casten follows her to the palace with the goal of proving that there are different forms of power. 
  • A land that's alive and likes people who do bad things
  • A girl who fights back by being kind
  • Sisters
  • Sexy fae-esque creatures
  • Some really horrible fae-esque creatures
  • A ferret-like creature named Sid who is literally darkness but I still imagine as being very cute.
And here is my first writing update! 

Strong are the Wicked

Words written today: 1, 729

Favorite Line(s): 
"But she wanted power, more so than the rest of us. She wanted more. She wanted. Wanting was fine, anywhere other than Wicked. Here, wanting came with the caveat of horrible things, of cruelty and blood. She wanted and was willing to do something about it and that made her all that much better and all that much worse."

Thanks for reading! 


Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Burn Bright (Alpha & Omega #5) by Patricia Briggs - Review

Release Day: March 6, 2018

They are the wild and the broken. The werewolves too damaged to live safely among their own kind. For their own good, they have been exiled to the outskirts of Aspen Creek, Montana. Close enough to the Marrok’s pack to have its support; far enough away to not cause any harm.

With their Alpha out of the country, Charles and Anna are on call when an SOS comes in from the fae mate of one such wildling. Heading into the mountainous wilderness, they interrupt the abduction of the wolf–but can’t stop blood from being shed. Now Charles and Anna must use their skills–his as enforcer, hers as peacemaker–to track down the attackers, reopening a painful chapter in the past that springs from the darkest magic of the witch born…

---------------------------- Amazon, B&N, Goodreads ----------------------------

The Mercy Thompson and Alpha and Omega series are some of my favorite paranormal romance/adventure/ checks all the boxes, really. I was so happy to be approved on Netgalley for Burn Bright and I devoured it in one day (I went to bed very late). 

I really like the Alpha and Omega series because of the vastly different voice compared to the Mercy Thompson series. Don't get me wrong, I love Mercy, but the calmness and the narrative of this series is a nice break. That being said, this book is jam packed with action and mystery and killer plants. No really. Everything becomes potentially killer in this book and you can't trust anyone since there is a traitor in the pack and skinwalkers and all sorts of dangers. I think that the lore in this series is fantastic, and I love the touches of Native American legend that is tied in with the touches of Welsh lore with Bran and werewolves and witches. Patricia Briggs is a queen when it comes to having well developed worlds, even within the one we know. 

As always, Charles and Anna are adorable and wonderful. I like that the conflict in the book had nothing to do with their relationship - in fact, it's their respect and trust that usually seems to get them out of tough situations. I really appreciate a female main character whose strength is her kindness and quietness, for lack of a better term. I really enjoy seeing Anna and how her personality works within a story with so many strong characters. They are both much more calculation and internal than the other characters in the series, and it's always fun to see how they will solve the problems that arise in each book. 

Personally, I kind of miss the days when the plot could be a little more focused because there were less moving parts. There is now so much moving around in multiple series that I long for the book that was just a tad more...simple, I suppose. I understand the need to keep the story forward with so many books, but I kind of miss watching the development of Charles and Anna's relationship and their own characters. While the plot is a magical romp forward, sometimes I found Charles and Anna's interactions a little stagnant. 

In Burn Bright, the werewolves are thrown into the fire when it comes to other fantastical creatures that had previously existed semi-peacefully alongside the pack. Now everything is in chaos all across the supernatural world and as usual, it seems to always gravitate towards Charles, Anna, and Bran and Company. Fans of the Mercy Thompson series might miss some of the snark but fans of Charles and Anna will find this latest installment a wonderful fit and will be left excited about what's to come.
** I received a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. **
Read more about Patricia Briggs here:

Happy Reading! 

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Leaving Everest by Megan Westfield - Review

Twenty-year-old Emily Winslowe has had an adventurous upbringing. Daughter of a Himalayan mountain guide, she has climbed Mount Everest and other peaks most Americans only dream of. But for all her mountaineering prowess, she's lacking some key experiences. Namely, guys. Especially one guy in particular—Luke Norgay, her childhood best friend who she hasn't seen since he left for college in the United States two years ago.

Luke unexpectedly reappears as a guide just in time for the Everest climbing season. He's even more handsome than she remembers, and that something that had been building between them during their last season together is back in front of them, bigger than ever.

The problem is, there's a detail about Emily's past that Luke doesn't know. It's the reason she ended up in the Himalayas in the first place...and the reason she must make it to the summit of Mount Everest this year. It's also the reason she would never consider following him back to Washington after the climbing season ends.

But first, they'll have to survive the mountain.

---------------------------- Amazon, B&N, Goodreads -----------------------------

I have to preface this by admitting that anything having to do with Mount Everest is a guilty pleasure of mine. Into Thin Air by John Krakauer is one of my favorite books and I've seen every documentary about the mountain. So when I read this description I was so excited to see how it combined something so severe and extreme as Mount Everest and one of my favorite genres, romance!

I loved Leaving Everest. I think that the great thing about this book is that it has the perfect balance of the conflict of climbing this very dangerous mountain with the conflict of doing other less dangerous but just as scary things in your life. Emily is afraid to leave Nepal and Luke is afraid of coming back, and their fears don't have much to do with climbing the highest mountain at all. Rather, their fears and insecurities lie in much more normal problems, such as loss and the pressure to succeed and feeling out of place, which are all just heightened by their situation on the mountain.

Emily is a fantastic narrator, who is struggling to figure out what she wants out of life when all she's known in climbing, and doing so with her dad. Making life and death decisions while on all the deadliest peaks in the world make her decisions concerning things like putting off college seem pretty easy. However, when Luke comes back to visit family after two years in college in Washington state, she realizes just how much she's been missing. Emily and Luke have fantastic chemistry and an ease to them that really establishes their past relationship to each other. The way they support each other, despite their spats, is great. I like that their relationship is built on trust, a trust that's only strengthened by the danger of climbing Everest. The way their relationship, both friendly and romantic, evolves throughout this story is heartwarming and heart wrenching and made me smile like a crazy person on the subway while I was reading.

I also liked that Luke is the child of a former Sherpa that worked with Emily's dad, and his feelings of coming back "Westernized" and climbing as visitor, rather than as someone who had grown up there. Ideas of displacement and growth are really interesting in the book, and I liked that Luke struggles with his identity when he comes back.

While this might not appeal to fans of Into Thin Air, anyone who has a strange fascination (like me) with Everest or K2 who likes romance will love this book. And for anyone who could care less about extreme sports, you will still love this book. At its heart, Leaving Everest is about facing your fears, whether it be leaving for college, telling the boy you've always loved how you feel, or climbing the highest mountain in the world. Funny and riveting and romantic.

I liked this book so much that I downloaded Megan's first book, Lessons on Gravity, which focuses on rock climbing, right after I finished Leaving Everest. I liked it too - 4 cupcakes!
** I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review **
Find out more about Megan and her books here:

Megan Westfield has dabbled in many hobbies and pastimes over the years, ranging from playing the cello to cake decorating (i.e., icing-eating) to a dozen different outdoor adventure sports. Eventually, she discovered the only way to do it all was though writing—her first and strongest passion. She writes new adult fiction because she loves exploring the powerful and formative years between high school and the quarter-life crisis. As a reader, her favorite books are those with a truly unique, real-world setting, and, of course, a love story.

Megan grew up in Washington state, attended college in Oregon, and lived in Virginia, California, and Rhode Island during her five years as a navy officer. She is now a permanent resident of San Diego where she and her husband count family beach time with their two young kids as an adventure sport. Megan was formerly the editor of a small weekly newspaper in Southern California and is represented by Melissa Edwards of Stonesong.

Happy Reading!