Writing in Chapters

Reviews | Recommendations | Writing Adventures

Clearly I am not as good at this blogging thing as I wanted to be. A post every three months is just not acceptable and giving myself the excuse that I have no time is no longer plausible. But I find myself holding in so many words, personal words. Thoughts that need to be written. So, though this may not be about books or writing it is simply a peek into my life.

Recent Events: I have moved states! This of course was very time consuming, however, I am now a resident of my birth state, California. I love being here. I have always loved California despite the bad rep that it gets throughout the media or other people. I don’t care about the gas prices or the politics. It has always felt like home to me and I am excited to start building a life here.

ASU update: I am now in my fourth semester at ASU and let me tell you a few things I have discovered about myself over the past year. I am NOT the same college student I was a few years ago. Compared to the over achieving and disciplined student that I used to be, I am still those things, however, I now have a full time job and I’m still a mom, but she is much older now. These two things made me a different kind of student which in all honesty, frustrated me. I couldn’t pull an all-nighter like I used to and I had to work study and homework time in between the kid’s homework, dance, and making sure that we were both fed dinner. It was a lot harder than I initially thought it would be juggling all of that myself. The thing that cost me the most was time with her. Although this hurt my mommy heart I know that I am setting an example for her and to me that is also important. This is where a different kind of discipline came into play. We do homework together and we make dinner together. Then we have our time to veg out and binge watch Hawaii 5-0 before her bedtime. Once she is in bed I pull out my laptop and continue wherever I left off in my assignments. This was our routine and still is with a few changes, but more on that later.

Reading/Writing update: I have not had much time to write what I want to lately. By the time I am finished with a writing assignment for one of my classes, I am too burned out to put words to paper or stay awake long enough to finish a book. I’ve taken full advantage with any break from school to binge read as many books as possible before classes begin again. In writing, I have made notes of all of the possible story lines that interest me, believe me I have a whole list. So, when the time comes when school is not a priority and I am not suffocating under my TBR, you can bet that I will bust out 80k words like it’s nobody’s business. I just have to remind myself that there is no expiration date on writing. Even if I am never published I would just love the satisfaction of saying I’ve written a book. The goals are the same even if it takes me years to finish a manuscript. But guys, several of the WIP that I have started have been marinating for years already and I know by the time they get to a full length manuscript that they are going to be so good. I’ve read many books. Some of them have been good and then there are those that are just not. I am not a slap it on paper and call it a story type of writer, when it comes to story telling I am every bit of my own worst critic. I know what I like, and I am writing the words that I want to read, then pray that someone else loves it.

If you’re still with me here, thank you. I wish I could buy you a beverage of your choosing for listening to me ramble.

My new goals for Writing in Chapters are to write at least two posts a week. Please don’t hold me to that, but hold me accountable. If you haven’t seen a post, TELL ME. But for now this is where I will end. I hope you all have a wonderful week.

Cheers. 💛

Happy Hump Day! We’re going back to basics today and discussing Writing Craft. What do you do when you’re feeling stuck in your storyline and no amount of pie or screaming into the abyss is helping?

As a perpetual learner I am always looking to learn different strategies of how to make a plot point work or how to give a character a certain voice. They are an amazing tool to have on your bookshelf because learning never ends, and using resource books to help writers through the process is a novel idea 😆 (English major joke)

So, if you’re struggling today, try going back to the basics with: The Anatomy of Story by John Truby and The Power of Point of View by Alicia Rasley. Both very informative and both incredibly helpful.

Do you read writing books? What Writing Craft ideas do you recommend?!

Space Pirates. Shut up and take my money. If you love sci-fi and space-opera type books, then Zenith is perfect for you. I mentioned in my earlier post that I had been struggling to get out of a reading slump recently. Zenith was part of the process of cleansing the reading palette, if you will. I am a sucker for a good sci-fi story and Zenith did not disappoint. Written by two very talented ladies, Sasha Alsberg and Lindsay Cummings, this book was packed with back to back kick ass girl power and a villainous queen I love to hate. I initially read the first installment of Zenith when it was just released as a novella. I remember after I had finished that I wished it would become something more because the world that Cummings and Alsberg have created was so vast that there just had to be more to it. Not long after the novella became a bestseller, the girls announced that Zenith would indeed be made into a full length novel. Needless to say my sci-fi heart squealed with glee when I read the news.

As for the book itself, it is nothing short of brilliant. We follow the Marauder, a space ship that looks as if it is made of glass, that is home to a group of all girl space pirates led by the deadly and renowned Bloody Baroness. Together they must work with the bounty hunter that set out to kill them on a rescue mission that could free them all. However, in a time of peace between worlds an evil Queen plots her revenge against the planet that took everything away from her.

Without the usual tropes that you find with most groups of female friends, the authors have brilliantly brought to life characters that are spunky, and sassy. Though we see a lot of the relationship between Andi and Lira, I would have loved to see more of Breck and Gilly. Especially Gilly. I mean, the girl is 13 and has a happy trigger finger and sass to boot. I’m here for it. I am also all about Dex. The man who pretends not to care but actually does is a weakness and I loved watching him battle with himself trying to work with a group of independent girls. Makes for endless amounts of giggle fits.

I give this book a 4/5 star rating. I am excited to see what happens in the next installment, and we get the title reveal to book two that will be happening this Friday!

Until next time darlings, happy reading!

Printed January 16, 2018 by Harlequin Teen.

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OND ELDR. BREATHE FIRE.

Raised to be a warrior, seventeen-year-old Eelyn fights alongside her Aska clansmen in an ancient rivalry against the Riki clan. Her life is brutal but simple: fight and survive. Until the day she sees the impossible on the battlefield — her brother, fighting with the enemy — the brother she watched die five years ago.”

Instantly hooked from the moment I read the synopsis, Sky in the Deep has easily become one of my favorite books of 2018. I have been in such a reading slump lately and Sky in the Deep was the perfect fix to give me the adventure to spark my interests again.

Engaging from the very first paragraph to the last, Eelyn’s journey filled the pages with equal amounts of action, sadness, and love. Woven together with a fierce girl-power friendship, fighting for what you believe in, and learning to accept that family is not just about blood. Adrienne has given us a story that is relatable and makes me want to hold my loved ones close while also reminding me that I, (we) are all lovable, strong, badass women.

Adrienne is such a phenomenal writer, stitching words together that were engaging and that tugged on all of the heart strings. I could feel her empathy and love for all her characters because there were none that were left dry and one-dimensional. Each character had their own purpose and a light to add to the journey of learning who you are, facing the ghosts haunting your past, forgiving yourself, and learning to accept the forgiveness of others. I did not feel empty or finding myself asking questions when I finished, it was absolutely perfect. I loved this book and I highly recommend it, you won’t be disappointed!

5/5 Stars

Buy Sky In the Deep!
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Published by Wednesday Books on April 24th, 2018.

Hello lovelies! Long time no see, I know. April was a crazy month as I was finishing up my last semester of classes for the year, then took a couple of weeks to SLEEP and get myself together. I had a really bad case of end of the year burnout. Any other students out there know what I’m talking about!? I can definitely say that I am looking forward to summer not just for the break, but to have more time to catch up on my TBR and WIP! I have so many ideas for future posts as well as working on something super secret and little exciting that I will elaborate on in the future… (insert evil cackle here).

Currently, I am preparing to go on a trip to see family up in the Mitten! (Michigan for non northerners) I am very excited as I have not been back for a few years. I still have yet to pack, but I am always a late packer. Although my current problem is trying to figure out which books to bring! I feel that is almost as hard as trying to figure out what and how many shoes to bring… because let’s be honest, its Michigan. You never know what you’re going to get. I am also curious to know if any other readers like to read a specific kind of genre while they travel, or if its just me? When I travel I like to read suspenseful thrillers, historical fiction, or a rich storyline that has travel as it’s center. Eat, Pray, Love is one of my favorites when I get that wanderlust bug. Do you travel a lot? I’d love to  know your recommendations!

Until next time, friends!

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Holy. Moly. I am so, so pleased with the first GoScribbler box! It is everything I hoped it would be and more!

GoScribbler is a new startup monthly subscription box specially curated for writers, by writers Lindsay Cummings and Victoria Scott.. And it’s not just for writers! GoScribbler is also for readers! Each box also contains a newly released novel and tips from the author! How awesome is that?!

The March Theme was POV (Point of View) .. Here are a few of the items you can find!

The Book – More Than We Can Tell by Brigid Kemmerer including a signed bookmark and bookplate. Brigid has also given an exclusive peek in the Writing Passport talking about using emotional touchpoints in your story.

Typewriter Stickers – these word count stickers from @saucystickers are so cute to help keep your word count goals in your planner or notebook!

#Writer Decal – Love this decal and will be putting it on my laptop

Writer Gold – This right here is not was I was expecting in a sub box but I am so thrilled with this idea. The ladies at GoScribbler have setup an exclusive Skype chat with Literary Agent, Mandy Hubbard.. (OMG)

Also found were, highlighters, pencil pouch (with a quote from my favorite series by Sarah J. Maas), and a motivational print.

Absolutely love everything and thank you so much to Lindsay and Victoria for coming up with this brilliant box! I look forward to the coming months!

Subscribe to GoScribbler Here!

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“Love is an enchantress–devious and wild. It sneaks up behind you, soft and gentle and quiet, just before it slits your throat.”

Hauntingly beautiful and magical, Shea Ernshaw’s debut novel, The Wicked Deep, brings the whimsical themes of Practical Magic and Hocus Pocus together for this story of curses, sisters, and murderous love. The eerie and mysterious town of Sparrow is cursed every summer solstice when the Swan sisters return and the drownings begin. There are always three bodies found. One for each sister.

Seventeen year old Penny Talbot has witnessed the drownings of Sparrow herself and like everyone else she awaits the fate of three unknown souls who will be the sister’s victims. However, this year Penny has found Bo Carter. Bo is an outsider who holds his own secrets, and knows nothing of the curse that weighs upon the town. Outsiders are shunned in the town of Sparrow. But when Bo refuses to leave, Penny hires him to help take care of her family’s lighthouse. The bond that they form is something Penny feels is familiar to her and she becomes desperate to keep Bo and her friends safe from the Swan sisters until the solstice is over. They cannot trust anyone and trying to avoid the witch hunt that consumes the town becomes futile as secrets are revealed and hearts are broken.

I was instantly under Ernshaw’s spell from the very first page, I could not put this book down! She has created deeply complex and emotional characters who all have their secrets to keep. I was very happy to see that some of the language was not ‘clean’. It kept the characters very real to me instead of trying to sugar coat what they were actually trying to express. I was also very moved at how she expressed the emotions of new love and old love. Ernshaw described what love feels like very poetically and also kept it very real. While keeping the realism of teenagers and young love in the modern day age, Ernshaw has also created a legend that has become a household name in the town of Sparrow with the curse of the Swan sisters. I love the little touches of magic she has weaved throughout the story from Mrs. Alba’s forgetful cakes to Penny’s mother reading tea leaves to tourists. They add a whimsical element to the town that has been touched by a death for centuries.

Ernshaw has created a brilliant story that fans of small magic, ghost stories, and quirky towns will love.

The only critique that I have for this book is that there were a few editing mistakes throughout my edition. Even with the rounds and rounds of edits and revisions, I know that debut novels go through this and sometimes things are overlooked. This does not affect my opinion of the story at all.

The Wicked Deep has easily become my favorite read of 2018 thus far and I highly recommend to readers.  5/5

Happy Reading!

Purchase The Wicked Deep Here:

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