Birthday Reflections

To be honest, pre-birthday week has been a challenge. A couple of difficulties have left me feeling a little down and out. Then again, dealing with people is always a challenge, and that applies every week of the year. Rather than focus on the negative, however, I’m reflecting on how I can turn these challenges…

Quiet Voices Can Also Roar

Ever since I can remember, I was told, “Speak up,” “What was that again?” or “I can’t hear you.” My naturally soft-spoken voice was like the high, soft notes of a piano competing against a raging bass guitar or the endless pounding of the drumline. Among my opinionated friends, it was often difficult to get…

Snapshot Memory

Jill jingled the keys, unlocking the door for the first time. On the other side, she heard a perky voice. “Oh, hello.” The girl, although petite, held herself in a confident manner, straight-backed and chin jutted up. Almond-slit amber eyes met Jill’s gaze head on. Her coffee-brown hair had tints of blonde and curled down…

My Summer 2016 Reading List

I have a huge TBR pile this summer, which consists mostly of young adult paranormal/fantasy, or retellings of classic literature/fairy tales. That’s just how I roll… Here’s my summer reading list. The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler About: Elyse, a talented singer, loses her voice after an accident, so she goes to a town…

Goals for My First Writers Conference

In preparation for my upcoming writers conference, I’ve made a list of five goals I’d like to achieve. Since it’s my first conference, I’m not very sure what to expect, so I’m making my goals simple. Hopefully next year I can expand on them. Hand out 10 business cards. Attend 9 lectures. Have 8 meals…

Snapshot in a Coffee Shop (A Short Story)

The coffee grinds wafted by her nose before she even opened the door. Kaley’s eyes scanned the room, looking for a place to sit. Every table was occupied. She flipped through the calendar in her head, realized it was likely the week before finals, and remembered those days just a few years before when she’d…

Stepping Through the Threshold: Part 2

There are some people you meet in life who you realize you were destined to meet, who you believe God has placed there to help you through some circumstance or to teach you a life lesson. Some of these people may be less than savory characters. That woman who stops you in traffic just to…

Stepping Through the Threshold: Part 1

As my knees hit the black asphalt, which could fry an egg thanks to the California summer sun, I didn’t know what burned the most—the skin that peeled away from my kneecaps, or the layer of pride that peeled away from my humiliated eleven year-old heart. Two boys snickered as they ran past me. To…

Ice-Fingered Mists & Truffle-Topped Monasteries

I have a frenemy. Her name: Descriptive Writing. She is difficult to figure out, elusive and slippery, and sometimes I get the feeling that she despises me. At times she’s willing to have a heart-to-heart chat over coffee, only to rush off mid-sentence for no apparent reason. But then there are times when she bares…

What I’ve Been Working On

It’s been difficult to separate out the good critiques from the non-constructive ones. But when several people suggest splitting my book into two parts, I think that’s reason to believe the suggestion is valid. So after a long inner debate with myself, I chopped my story in half and started working on making the first…

The Contract

The fragrance of freshly brewed coffee and pastries wafted in the air. The shop was packed, but he was easily identifiable by his red plaid scarf. I slid in the seat across from him, and though we’d never met, he smiled at me easily, as though we’d been friends our entire lives. His outward appearance…