Sunday, June 23, 2019

Finding Fairy Slippers

On a hike to Lupine Lake here in Western Montana, my husband, Josh, and I found no lupines (the flower mentioned in a scene of Bleeding Heart). However, we did find something I don't recall ever seeing in the wild before, something that I had wanted to spot someday but didn't expect to see on this hike...

Fairy Slippers

From a YouTube video by hike734, I had hopes that maybe we'd come across one of these flowers at some point in Montana, but I felt absolutely thrilled and blessed to see some as such a surprise!

There was one standing prettily amid the duff, regal and exotic, but not pretentious. I became so excited when my gaze landed on it, and I proceeded to gush to Josh and take pics. I'm pretty sure it was in that moment that a mosquito took advantage of my distraction to give me a good bite on my finger, but it was worth it. ;)

We spotted another one as we continued on our hike—and then, on the way back, we saw so many more in the same location that we had missed! As much as they stand out once you notice them, you do have to keep your eyes peeled for them, as they're short and easy to overlook. But they truly are beautiful with their fancy purple petals and splash of yellow.

It felt like a gift from God to see them in the wild. ♥

This is the flower my Cinderella short story is named after. You can learn a bit more about the flower on Brittanica's website. And you can learn more about Fairy Slippers on my short stories page.

If you'd like to buy a Kindle copy of this short story (combined with my Beauty and the Beast retelling, Bellflower), you can do so on Amazon! (And if you don't have a Kindle, feel free to leave a comment and let me know if you'd like for me to send you an .epub file, no charge!)

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Looking for Audiobook Reviewers (How a Star Falls)

Hi, friends! (If you follow my main blog, Seasons of Humility, please forgive the repetition of this post. I just wanted to reach out to the subscribers of this blog, as well!)

You might already know that How a Star Falls is available in audiobook format. :) I once had a list of audiobook promo codes that I had started to share but then lost track of in an old email inbox... But now Audiobook Creation Exchange (ACX) has provided an easier way to share and keep track of new promo codes, and I'd love to offer them to any readers who would like to listen and review!

Title: How a Star Falls

Genre: sweet contemporary romance

Length: approximately 2 hours

Narrator: Patrick Wilson Mahaney
(He does such a great job of conveying Derrick's character!)

How does a star fall? 
Quickly. Completely. Unexpectedly. 

Derrick Knolane escapes to Trinidad Head most evenings, avoiding his apartment and planning for the day he'll break free of Humboldt County. Working in a music store might be fine for a while, but it's far from the goal he had in mind when he got his college degree. Not to mention the fact that his roommate is a jerk and his family won't stop trying to run his life.

Then Brielle falls into his world.

She claims to be a star. Not from Hollywood, but from heaven. He thinks she's crazy. Certainly delusional. Yet, he can't just leave her alone on the cliffs. So he takes her home.

And his whole world falls apart.

A heartfelt and fanciful contemporary romance novella, How a Star Falls explores the uncertain season of new adulthood and shows that sometimes the worst inconveniences make for the best miracles of all.

Listen to a sample:

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If you're looking for a sweet little story to listen to on your next drive or while working around the house, I'd love to share How a Star Falls with you! Even if you've read it before as an ebook or paperback, it's a lot of fun to hear Patrick give voice to Derrick. :)

Interested? Send me an email ( or leave a comment with your email address, and I'll send you a promo code so you can download a FREE digital copy of the audiobook and then leave your honest review on Audible. Thank you so much for considering!

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Fun with Flowers | Personality Quiz

Which Heart's Spring heroine are you?

You might remember this quiz from the time I first posted it in 2015. :) If so, it's possible your responses (and thus, your result) might be different this time around! Or perhaps you have yet to discover which heroine from The Heart's Spring series you are...

(via PollSnack)

Possible results:

Disclaimer: This quiz is just for fun! Results may vary and may or may not actually match your personality. :)

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Fun with Flowers | Take Your Pic(k)!

As our celebration of all things flowers continues this week (don't forget to check out the ebook deals and fun book tag!), today's prompts are simple:

1. What's your favorite flower (AKA your top pick)?
2. Share some flower pics you took this year!

I think my favorite would have to be between three choices: forget-me-nots, bleeding hearts, and lupines. Since writing Forget Me Not and Bleeding Heart, I get excited to spot either of those first two flowers. :) And I love the wealth of meaning behind their names and their appearances. As for the lupine, it makes me think of my mom, the fingerprint artwork I made in first grade and gave to her, and our past day trips in late spring to see the lupines in bloom on the hillside.

To pick just one, though, I'll go with the bleeding hearts. (These flowers are so gorgeous!)

Aren't these white ones so beautiful? I didn't realize all-white bleeding hearts existed until I came across some on a walk with friends. 

And now, I present a visual garden, comprised of flowers I saw this past year, ranging from the Pacific Northwest to Alaska and Hawaii...

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Your turn! What's your favorite flower? And if you'd like to share, I'd love to see some flower pics on your blog, Instagram, or Twitter! :)

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Fun with Flowers | The Heart's Spring Book Tag

Welcome to The Heart's Spring Book Tag! Feel free to continue this tag on your blog, or you can simply post your responses in the comments below. There are only five prompts, so it should be a quick way to share with other readers about some books that have stirred your emotions. :)

Note: The prompts are based on book titles/flower names and themes in The Heart's Spring series.

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Bellflower: Name a book with beautiful writing or a profound plot that made you immediately fall in love.

The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn by Lori Benton has both wonderful writing and an engaging plot. My friend Courtney at The Green Mockingbird recently posted about rereading this book...and I think it's one I ought to reread sometime too! 

Forget Me Not: Name a book you adored in your childhood and can't forget even now.

The Disney Girls series was a fave of mine in elementary school. I still have the collection of a dozen books, minus #11, which I sadly lost at some point. This one, Adventure at Walt Disney World (#7), is super fun, with the group of friends taking a trip together, and with certain chapters featuring a journal of their time. So cute!

Bleeding Heart: Name a book that made you cry with deep compassion for a character.

I would be remiss if I didn't feature Against the Tide. There are some scenes near the end that were gut-wrenching to read, making me feel so much compassion for the heroine of the story. You can read my full review HERE.

I should also include Yesterday's Tomorrow by Catherine West, as that story affected me to the point of tears, as well. (My review can be found HERE.) Both are powerful reads!

Fairy Slippers: Name a fantasy book or fairy tale that utterly charmed you.

I absolutely enjoyed Entwined by Heather Dixon (a retelling of "The Twelve Dancing Princesses"). This is another book quite deserving of a reread!

Morning Glory: Name a book that has not yet released but you just know you'll love.

Keturah sounds really good, and I love both the author and that gorgeous cover. :) This book is set to release February 2018.

I also have to mention The Captured Bride by Michelle Griep, another author I love with a promising story premise! (The book is scheduled to release June 2018.)

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Your turn! How would you answer these prompts?

Monday, September 25, 2017

Fun with Flowers | Deals for the Week

Hello, friends!

We don't tend to see many flowers in autumn...although the tree's leaves often make up for that fact with their own variety of colors: red, gold, and burnt orange. Still, even though we've officially entered fall, I'm dedicating this week to all things flowers and spring. :)

I'm really excited to share a quick (and hopefully fun!) book tag with you all tomorrow! But first, I wanted to kick off the week by sharing some book deals. If you haven't read The Heart's Spring series, or if you wanted to gift any of the ebooks to someone else, here are some exclusive Amazon-only deals:

Bellflower + Fairy Slippers (Short Stories)

Forget Me Not (Book 1)

Bleeding Heart (Book 2)

These deals will last through Friday, September 29, 2017. See you tomorrow for some fun with books and flowers!

Sunday, August 23, 2015

The Bees Found Me

Once upon a time, my apartment was invaded by honeybees...

...and Rooglewood Press announced the theme for their next fairy-tale novella contest: Sleeping Beauty.

It seemed only right to connect the two events.

The latest WIP I've been working on sporadically? A project I've affectionately titled Sting Me to Sleep. (It's quite possible this title is as bad as The Shedding of a Star - the original title for How a Star Falls. It sounds quite epic and clever to me, but, um, you can see that I don't always have the best judgment when it comes to naming my work. So...let's just call this a working title for now and see what happens!)

What started as a terrifying experience has turned into story inspiration and an odd sort of fascination. I've even been collecting various bee paraphernalia (some items gifted by my mom): honeycomb-shaped bee dishes for my kitchen counter, bee pajamas, a bee notepad, and, from my most recent trip to the coast, a bee dishtowel, bee necklace, and a nonfiction book called The Beekeeper's Lament.

It's interesting how writing through your fears can be so freeing. A new perspective - a bit of distance to see the size and shape and solutions - can make a world of difference.

(Does this mean I won't freak out again next spring should I happen to hear buzzing in my stove vent? Mm, probably not. But still.)

Sting Me to Sleep has been quite fun to write so far. :) It's a contemporary romance with a slight fairy-tale flair. I don't know if I'm going to enter it into the Five Magic Spindles contest, as I feel it's more a modern "reimagining" of Sleeping Beauty than a retelling. More "inspired by" than strictly following the plot. I'm really not sure how exactly it's going to turn out, but I hope to finish it soon-ish and find out!

If you'd like to see my inspiration board for the story, hop on over to Pinterest. Below you'll find a snippet from the beginning of my WIP and some pictures of honeybees hard at work at a rose garden I visited with my mom and sister on Saturday...

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Unedited Snippet from Sting Me to Sleep

There were two things I feared in life above all others. 

Bees, and inconveniencing another person. 

The latter dread resided deep within me—a calcification built layer by layer, glare by glare, reprimand by reprimand, and solidified with my mother’s disappointed tears. That’s why I didn’t ask for help when the bees came. 

It was just last spring. I lived in a small rental home on the edge of town, where the grass grew a little wild because I had never bought a lawn mower and the nearest neighbors weren’t near enough to care. 

I liked the solitude. Any freelance editor would. And I was proud to have my own space after several years of rooming with strangers while building up my business. 

But the bees found me after only several months of peace. 

I had known they would find me, eventually. The kind of knowing that friends mock but always proves true. Maybe a self-fulfilling prophecy. 

Still, I wasn’t prepared for the battle that awaited me in my own home.

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*Note: I haven't forgotten about Morning Glory (Book 3 in The Heart's Spring series) or Where Trains Collide (another NA novella)! I still plan to finish and publish both stories in time, Lord willing. Stay tuned!