25 Goals: Second Quarter Update + “Rock Your 2017 Goals” Workbook

I can't believe it's already time for my second quarter update! This year is flying by so fast! But when I went through all my goals this year, I've found I'm making pretty great progress! I think it helps to have the goals at the front of my bullet journal for easy reference. It's a fast reminder to keep pushing forward and make daily progress. How are your 2017 goals going? Ready for a revamp? I've created this awesome Rock Your 2017 Goals workbook to help you plan and accomplish your goals this coming year. Sign up below to get FREE access. 1. Become a regular at a local cafe or lunch spot in Marburg, Germany. At Paprika, I [...]

By | 2017-04-21T00:49:50+00:00 March 14th, 2017|Books, Education, Goals, My Journey, Travel|11 Comments

The Importance of Dreaming Big

Originally published as a guest post on Talk Less, Say More. “I want to be a doctor, a ballerina, and a house-builder.” At my kindergarten graduation, this was my answer to the question “What do you want to be when you grow up?” As kids, we know how to dream big, don’t we? But it seems like somewhere along the way between high school and college and needing a job that will pay the rent, we seem to forget those big dream. Instead of setting our eyes on the horizon, we set our eyes on the weekend to the time when we can binge-watch our current Netflix obsession. Don’t get me wrong, we need time to relax and unwind. But [...]

Book Launch Breakdown

So before I launched my first novel, Sketchy Tacos, I had no idea what went into a book launch. For a long time, I harbored visions of the good old days when all an author had to do was write the book. Then the publishing machine would take the pretty book and get it out into the world. That vision is no longer reality. In addition to an author, a writer now much also be a publicist, marketer, and amateur web designer to name a few. So once the book is written, the work has only just begun. Three months of prep went into the book launch. To get my full launch plan enter your email below (or click here [...]

Sketchy Tacos Launch Day Celebration!

I can't believe launch day for Sketchy Tacos is finally here! I'm beyond excited!!! It's been a long and incredible journey, and I have so many people to thank for this day--which is a dream come true. Almost 4 years ago, I won the Hutton Honors College's Creative Activity Grant, which provided this poor little college girl with the funds I needed to travel Mexico to research this book. In the summer of 2013, I wrote the first draft of Sketchy Tacos. My aunt Sara Grant was writing a draft of her own at the time and we traded manuscripts every two weeks to get fresh eyes and feed back. For the next two years, I edited and rewrote Sketchy [...]

By | 2017-02-06T17:44:50+00:00 February 7th, 2017|Books, Encouragement, Goals, My Journey, Travel|7 Comments

Adventures and Victories Week 12

Hold on a second, how did it get to be February?!?! I had months to prepare for the Sketchy Tacos book launch and now it's in four days! Where did all my time go? Anyone else have a similar feeling? Tactile Adventure: This week has been a little nutty on the crocheting front. For a couple weeks now I have had the insatiable urge to MAKE ALL THE PROJECTS. So while 2/3 through one project and halfway through another, I started and finished a third random project. I think I currently have crocheting ADHD. I have now managed to wrap up 2 out of the 3 projects (kind of... there was a running out of yarn issue), and I've designed [...]

By | 2017-02-03T10:40:45+00:00 February 3rd, 2017|Books, Everyday Adventures, Goals, Health & Beauty, My Journey|3 Comments

An Inside Scoop on Sketchy Tacos: My Year in Mexico

My YA travel novel, Sketchy Tacos, has been four years in the making, and it's now available for pre-order on Amazon. I could not be more excited! In honor of Sketchy Tacos' release next week, I want to share with you about the year I spent in Mexico. Get the inside scoop on the story behind the novel! I married my husband, Alan, on May 11, 2013, and the next day we traveled to Mexico. We spent a four days at Secret's Silver Sands halfway between Cancun and Playa del Carmen. It really was a slice of paradise. It was the perfect getaway for our honeymoon since we had a short time and just wanted to enjoy each other and relax. [...]

By | 2017-04-06T11:52:57+00:00 January 31st, 2017|My Journey, Relationships, Travel|2 Comments

Adventures and Victories Week 11

Another crazy week under my belt in this new year. Tell me, is the weather as crazy where you are as it is here? We’ve been rocketing back and forth between 30 and 60 degrees since Christmas. My poor head is begging for a stable climate! Oh well. On to this week’s adventures and victories. Minor Victory: I created a new bullet journal design for my daily page. It's simpler and so much faster to create. I love making fancy pages when I have time, but too often I don't. I'm loving this new super simple page since it works the exactly the same as my fancier page. If you're interested in bullet journals--which I love because I can track my ENTIRE [...]

Three Games to Strengthen Your Skills as a Fiction Writer

As I was growing up, we had family game night at least twice a week. We played all sorts of card games and board games, like Stratego, Family Matters, and Cranium. Mom refused to play Monopoly and Risk with my dad and I because our haggling sounded too much like arguing. They're some of my favorite childhood memories. That love of games has transferred into my adult years, and luckily we've found friends with the same fascination. We'll lose hours to wonderful games that build worlds of their own. In my gaming I've come across three games in particular, that I believe can strengthen a fiction writer's skills. The app game, tile game, and card game exercise different skills [...]

Adventures and Victories Week 10

It's been a fun week of breaks and travel. The Monday off for Martin Luther King's day was wonderful, but it threw my entire week off... Well, that and the 6-hour drive up to Detroit on Tuesday, which leads me to this week's adventures and victories! Fun Adventure: We drove up to Detroit to attend the North American International Auto Show. You should see the crazy displays these car companies set up, it's pretty incredible. We got to check out the new GMC Acadia, the Chevy Bolt, and of course all the Corvettes we could find :) Mini Victory: After finishing off one afghan, I plotted a new pattern for the next blanket and began. I'm basing this one off a [...]

By | 2017-01-19T14:50:27+00:00 January 20th, 2017|Books, Character Development, Goals, My Journey, Travel|8 Comments

Adventures and Victories Week 8

Happy new year everyone! Can you believe it's 2017? I don't know about you, but I'm pretty stoked for this year. I've got some big plans, the first of which is launching my YA travel novel, Sketchy Tacos, on February 7--almost one month away! I could not be more excited... I may have even made my entire family sweat shirts with the book cover. Just sayin'. Well, enough about future adventures and victories! On to this week: Victory: I finished my first draft of the International Adventures Book 2 outline. Currently titled Saucy Schnitzel... maybe? Seriously I would love name suggestions. (Adjective preferably ending in a Y) + (some kind of traditionally German food)??? No idea. Adventure: I'm trying Medium for the [...]

By | 2017-01-06T09:31:28+00:00 January 6th, 2017|Encouragement, Everyday Adventures, My Journey|3 Comments