Friday, March 17, 2017

21 Answers to the Question: What Item Would You Bring If You Were Abandoned on a Small, Deserted Island?

This seems to be a ridiculously popular question (I've heard at least 100 different variations of it). Like, who cares anyways, really? But, just because I could, I decided to come up with 21 answers...why? No reason really except that I've finished my blog tour and needed a breather blog post to keep you entertained until I post the end-of-the-month-recap. (Which, btw, will include both February AND March overview...yes, I realized I missed last month. Forgive me. I was a LITTLE preoccupied.) And, because true to my personality, I'm being completely random. You're welcome. 
Feel free to leave YOUR favorite answer in the comments. ;) I always love reading what y'all come up with. But here are my answers in no particular order:

1: A ship, airplane, or helicopter. SO I CAN GET OFF THE ISLAND. Also, the ability to know how to work all of those things would be really cool. (What's the use of an airplane if I don't know how to fly it? But I digress. Small details.) 

2: FOOD. Must. Have. Food. None of this coconut and banana nonsense. Like, REAL food. 

3: Water. Unless the island already HAS a source of water...then I wouldn't mind having some apple juice handy. Or lemonade. Nothing is quite so refreshing as a cool glass of lemonade on a hot day in the tropics. Can I hear an amen?

Assuming there is food and water already on the island...

4: Sunscreen/tanning lotion. *shrugs* If I'm gonna be forced to be on a beach, might as work on my tan. (Or, if you're one of us lucky red-heads who can't tan to save our lives, I'd skip this answer.)

5: My Bible. Because obviously God wanted me to spend more time with Him if He caused me to be dumped on this island. 

6: Internet. Is that possible...? Like, to get internet on an island? If I end up there then it'd become my personal (literally) hot spot, right? But I'd also need a phone or computer I guess to really make that work...which puts me over my limit of one thing. So...

7: A way to contact people. (What an extroverted answer, am I right? :P) But seriously, it would be nice to let people know where I am so they could come and save me. Particularly if I happen to be acquainted with any knights in shining armor...


9: A really, really large book that I've wanted to read for a long time and keep procrastinating Les Misrables, War and Peace, or The Count of Monte Cristo. 

10: A wild horse. Because every kid stuck with a wild horse on an island always manage to have a special bond with them and train them to do the coolest things.  

11: Starbucks. I need my coffee, ok? Don't laugh at me. (Also, the Starbucks drinks would have to be free money.)

12: A million dollars. For absolutely no reason. I just felt like that should be an answer in here somewhere.

13: A puppy. Because when is NOT a good time to have a puppy nearby? Never. That's right. 

14: My writing computer. With that to keep me busy, I could get SO MUCH done. Can you imagine how many books I'd be able to complete? No, me neither. But it would be a lot. 

15: A pigeon. So I could send messages back and forth to people. Which is like the ONLY reason to own a pigeon. 

16: A parrot. In order to teach it how to say "Polly wants a cracker." No other reason. Just that.

17: A camera. I could get really good at photography. Like REALLY good. It's a hobby I've always wanted to try my hand at, what can I say?

18: A journal. So I can record everything I do every day like a good castaway always does. (Also to take notes about life as a castaway so I can use it for a future character in a future author can't be too careful, right? Never know when that experience will come in handy.)

19: A weapon. 'Cause a gal has gotta protect herself somehow, right? 

20: Music. So I can listen to it. 'Nuff said.

21: A cave. Because what's a deserted island without a cave? (Also, I was running out of answers...and this popped into my brain so I used it. I legit had no reason for adding it except that I thought of it. Welcome to my life.)

Goodness, that was harder than I thought it would be. Who knew 21 answers would be so difficult to come up with? Sheesh. 
But I did it. *takes a chocolate break* 

Now, out of the questions below, which one do YOU GUYS want 21 answers for next? Vote below in the comments (I'll number them so it's easier for you to do so) and I'll start working on the post ASAP!  

Big Family Questions:
1: Are ALL those kids yours?
2: Why does your family have so many children?
3: How do you DO it?

Education Questions:
1: What college do you go to?
2: What are you studying/majoring in college?
3: What's your dream job?
4: Favorite school subject?

Writing Questions:
1: What are you writing about?
2: What's your book about?
3: Are you hoping to become famous?

1: What do you do with your time?
2: What's your political stand?
3: Anybody want a peanut?
4: How would you describe yourself in one word?

Vote below! Otherwise, hope you all have a fabulous day. My flame-throwing unicorn sends his love. :)

Friday, March 10, 2017

The Princess and I: PHOTO SHOOT

It started out as a normal work day at the secretary calls, emails, and printing out bulletins. (Which was LESS of a headache this week...but still managed to be a pain nonetheless. It took only two tries to get the right bulletin printed this time...unlike the three times it took me last time. Ok, ok, I'm getting waaaaaay ahead of myself here.) *cough*
Anyways, after the morning passed and I had idea dawned on me. With the rare, sunny day (though it was still windy) I decided to do the postponed photo shoot with my book. I had planned to do one as part of my blog tour...but instead it snowed. So, yeah. No such luck.
BUT TODAY I did it. I went outside after working hours and took some pictures of my two very willing (I seriously typed out 'William' instead of 'willing' there first by accident. *face palm*) and compliant models: my beautiful book and the handsome weapon who served as the main inspiration for Safeguard (Megan's sword...for those of you who haven't read my book.)
Our church patio served as a perfect background for the photo shoot...though it was a little embarrassing how much moss is growing on the cement. (But, in our defense, our spring work party is THIS SATURDAY. So.) It ended up giving a very authentic look to the pictures though, I was very pleased with the results and I hope you are too! :D

The cover. <3 Yeah, this MIGHT be my favorite picture. ;)

The inside.

The copyright page. Yep, this is what appears in my book. Totally.

Not the best photographer by any stretch of the imagination...
but I did like how this one has the book blurred and the sword clear.

I love how you can really see the details on my friend Safeguard here. :)

This is what the back looks like guys. ^_^

The spine...

The lighting was a little weird on this one...but I love the overall feel of the cement. Totally castely, (yes I just made up that word) am I right?

If only I had tipped the book the OTHER way...#regrets

This picture made Safeguard look short...

So, as all guys would, he demanded a better picture of him.
*rolls eyes*

This ties as my other favorite (along with the first one) picture. :)
Don't these two make the perfect couple. <3 ;)

But I leave the final vote to you all. :P Which picture was YOUR favorite? Have a fabulous day!

Saturday, March 4, 2017

A Question of Honor: Author Interview and Spotlight

This morning, I slept in, feeling all was right with the world. My book was safely out, I just completed a successful week as my church's sub secretary (with my Dad gone at the Shepherd's Conference in California I might I was working at church without someone to help with technical glitches. Thank goodness nothing weird happened...even if it DID take me four tries to get the children's bulletin printed properly. -_-) and THEN I realized that I hadn't scheduled the post I promised you guys yesterday as part of the final day in Jesseca Wheaton's blog tour!! 

So, after a small panic attack, I'm racing to get this post written and published so you all can read it. XD 

Without further ado, here's some info about the book and author to wet your appetite and make you want to read the story. ;)

The gorgeous cover. :)
About the Book:
A Man. A child. A war.
When German soldiers invade France during World War II, young Joyanna's perfect world is shattered. In the hands of those who hate her, she battles to comprehend why people can be so ruthless and cold toward those whom they have never met.
David Sullivan, pilot in the Royal Air Force, was certain he would never hate, but a painful loss forces him to either reconsider or do the inconceivable—forgive.
He is suddenly challenged by the realization that doing God's will is not easy, but most important.
With the lives of freedom-fighters relying on him, he must learn the difficult lesson that he is not in control, but merely one who must surrender his heart of obedience to One greater. 
A sudden turn of events lands Joyanna and David in the same country—but for far different reasons.
When their paths cross, David finds he must make a decision that will affect them both for the rest of their lives.
Will he chose vengeance, or will he let his life be ruled by a higher standard? A standard of Honor.

About the Author:
Jesseca is an 18-year old daughter, sister, and a child of God. Her days are spent reading, cooking, spending time with siblings, or playing piano. And writing, of course! At an early age words fascinated her, and her love for the printed page has only grown. She lives with her parents and seven siblings in the sunny state of Kansas, and she’s convinced there’s no place like home.

Jesseca was kind enough to answer my questions and now you lucky folks get to read them!! :D 

1) I know you read a lot of WWII books. Which one helped the most (inspiration/facts/research) in the writing of "A Question of Honor"? 
Just one? I'd have to say Duel of Eagles by Peter Townsend. While it took a while to get into because he went through the history of the Royal Air Force, it was incredibly helpful! Mr. Townsend himself was a pilot in the Battle of Britain, and reading about his firsthand experience was just . . . amazing. It's a book I'd highly recommend if you'd like to read more about the Battle of Britain. :) It was my go-to book during the whole researching and then editing process. 

2) Which part of writing "A Question of Honor" was the hardest? Which was the easiest?
This should count as questions 2 and 3. ;) Okay, well, the hardest was writing authentic flying scenes. I have never been in a fighter plane, much less a WWII era fighter. I'm also not a pilot. It took a lot of research to try and figure out the ins and outs of the planes, what the pilots would be worried about, who the machines worked, etc. 
The easiest part was probably either writing Joyanna, or writing the banter between David and Gil. Because they're just awesome. 

3) Which part of your story was the most challenging to write (emotionally, mentally, or physically)? 
Emotionally, the hardest part was a scene near the middle of the book when the war really comes home in the character's lives. I won't say anymore because, well, spoilers. ;)
Mentally, again, the dogfights between the planes. I still don't feel I've quite done them justice, but I've done my very best to make sure they reflect some degree of accuracy. 
Physically . . . umm, I don't recall any scene that was challenging to write in this particular way. :) Unless you call attending WWII reenactments and asking questions physically challenging. It was, though also incredibly helpful and fun! 

4) Which character do you relate to the most? (I won't be cruel and ask you which one is your an author I understand. B-) 
Micah. Hands down. Micah is literally me, only from a male point of view. I can relate to him in so many different areas, whether it be his slightly sarcastic, dry sense of humor, to his interest in medicine, and the way he notices small details about people. No, he's not a main character in this book, but in the next book . . . well, I'll just say he gets some more time on the pages. ;) 

5) How many Questions of War books are you planning to write? 
Well, the original plan was three books in the series. Than four. Now I'm not sure whether it'll be three or four to the series. I have definite plans for at least two more books, and depending on how they go, there may be one more needed to wrap everything up. Write now I'm just going to take it a book at a time and see where it goes! 

Friday, March 3, 2017

The Princess & I Blog Tour: RELEASE DAY!!!

(Out of compassion I'm setting this blog post to be released at midnight exactly so you early birds--and my dear friends across the world where it's already Saturday--will see this sooner. Goes to show what a nice author I am. :P)
*crashes through ceiling in explosion of glitter*
*hands out chocolate and ice cream cones*
It's here. The day is here. My beloved story is available to the world. I'm excited...don't get me wrong...but this is kind of scary too. I mean, people are going to READ MY BOOK. Who wouldn't feel a little nervous about that? 
Now is the moment when I sort of panic inside hoping my editors have caught all the typos, and that the format doesn't get messed up somehow...not to mention checking and double checking my "thank you" page to make sure I haven't forgotten anyone. 
But...despite all of my forebodings, I'm still going to follow through with this and give you the links to where you can find my book. 
Lulu Bookstore* (my book is on a 25% sale there until it comes out on Amazon and Barnes & Noble as a peace offering for not reading all the terms and conditions. *looks into sky and whistles innocently*)

*(Note from the editor: As it turns out, my book WON'T be available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble for another six to eight WEEKS. O.o Sorry guys. I totally understand if you don't get my book until then...I will tell you when I see it on there. Inconveniences of self-publishing. -_-)
*nervously bites fingernails* Ok, guys. The rest is up to you! At some point in the near future I'm going to host a book signing at my local library, so if any of you are nearby you're welcome to attend that and wait to buy a signed copy! (Also, I may be doing a giveaway on Goodreads soonish...but not totally sure about that yet so don't take my words and use them against me later. :P)
Be sure to also go to Alea Harper and Hanne T's blogs for the final interview and spotlight. *wipes away tears* 
No one warned me about the bitter-sweet moment that happens when you complete a blog tour. 
It's been a journey. 
(Quite a long one, in fact, if you think about the time when I STARTED this crazy story.)
There have been both struggles and triumphs, small and large, in the whole process. I've dealt with writer's block, plot holes, and strange things that ended up in my story...I'm not sure how. 'Cause I'm almost positive that it wasn't ME. Editing was both a headache (when isn't it, really?) and a joy (because my editors were fabulous <3). I learned SO MUCH during this book I'd never be able to tell you about it all in a single blog post. (Hence the "Life of an Author" posts I'm going to do on here. ;) 
"The Princess and I" taught me so much...not just in becoming a better writer (I hope) but also in other things. There were real struggles in that story that I went through myself. The writing process was challenging even as it was enjoyable. I almost, almost started crying during the writing of a certain part of the story (some of you can give an educated guess at which part that was). Later, after Lemuel Houston's death, I reread that section and actually did start crying...because I could relate to it so much better. 
That's my hope for you all. I want you to be able to pick up my story and find a character (not necessarily the main character) and find that you can relate to them, or sympathize with them. I wanted the story to be as real to my audience as fiction can possibly be. And I want it to bring glory to my God. 
I have been asked by a couple different people what my plans for the future are. (I know, my favorite question EVER. *voice drips in sarcasm*) 
"Do you have any plans for future books?"
"Will we be seeing the characters of The Princess and I again soon?"
"Any ideas for a sequel?"
So far, my answer has been "I don't know yet", "We'll have to see", "Maybe...", etc. I've hmmed and hahed. I've tried to skillfully avoid the question many different ways. And, in all honesty, when I answered the questions at first, I really didn't have any idea for another book. 
But...*cue dramatic music*
Inspiration struck. *cue thunder and lightening bolt sound* 
Those of you who follow me on Pinterest MAY have seen a sudden influx in Medieval characters appear in your feeds or on my character's list...because I got an idea. 
It came to me in a far more sudden fashion than "The Princess & I" did. (It was during my Dad's Wednesday night sermon. Don't ask why it came during a sermon. I have no idea.) 
Due to spoilers for the first book, I won't give you the basic plot line (that and the fact that being me, the plot will change completely by the time I actually get around to writing it) but, as a teaser, I WILL give you the working titles which are...

Wait for it....


Can't bring this information on you too suddenly or you might have heart failure or something....

Ok, ok, I'm sensing some tense vibes in the air...


The King's Cousin

(The) Cousin of a King


My King, My Cousin

So...what do you all think?
Which one is your favorite of the three I gave you?
Are you excited to see the old characters again? (And meet some new ones?)
Feel free to give me some ideas for settings (maybe less land, more water?), or characters (who do you want to be in it? First person, or third person?). I'm totally open to anything right now.
To those of you who have read my story, is there anything (or anyone) you want to see in this new book? 
I have a few other books I'm working on completing the writing part of right now (including getting another book ready for publication) so who knows when I'll actually end up sitting down and writing this one...but if the demand is high enough, maybe I'll feel motivated and get it started sooner. B-) Just a thought.

Well. It's come to this. I'm going to shamelessly advertise my book all across the web until you buy the sooner you do so, the sooner I'll stop bugging you. ;) 
Reviews are worth their weight in gold to authors, myself included. I'm a huge fan of honest reviewers, so please...if you HAVE read my book, I would LOVE it if you left one for my story on any of the sites I gave in the beginning of this blog post. (Have fun scrolling back up through my ramblings to find them again. :P) 
One last thing...remember my friend Jesseca from Whimsical Writings is ALSO releasing a book today! While you're looking for my story, be sure to check out her story too...because I can tell you her book is worth it.
In fact, tomorrow I'm giving you all a spotlight AND an author interview with this amazing young lady and her beautiful book as a part of HER blog tour that's going on right now. 
So, until tomorrow then! Hope you all have a fantastic day! May your wifi be strong, your internet fast, and your book searching successful. :D 
(Despite my book not being on Amazon or Barnes & Noble...grrrrr. Still upset at myself about that. Ugh.)

Thursday, March 2, 2017

The Princess & I Blog Tour: Day Four


Tomorrow guys. TOMORROW MY BOOK WILL BE OUT. O.O Please tell me I'm not the only one completely freaking out. I think my family is sick and tired of my gushing at this point, so I'm trying to vent my feelings on you guys instead. Hopefully you don't mind. ;) 

Anyways, today I'm joined by Marrock (go read his know you want to), Grace (yep, hers too) and Savannah (...and hers) which are a collection of reviews, spotlights, and interviews. 

As promised in yesterday's post, I'm going to introduce you to the cast of my book. Obviously, I won't be able to give ALL the characters that play a part in "The Princess and I", but I thought I'd at least give you a little glimpse into my personal favorites. (Take note of the S in favorites.) I will include pictures, but they are only how I pictured my characters (or as close as Pinterest could come). Please feel free to picture my characters however you choose to. Also, I will be giving you spoiler free information about each one just for fun. Ready? Good.

MBTI Personality Type: ISFJ
Worst Fear: Failure or the Inability to keep a promise
Gifted In: The ability to learn something quickly
Most Likely to Get Angry/Frustrated: If someone insults or harms someone close to her
Favorite Way to Dress: Simple and practical. Dresses, boots, and a warm cloak. Colors would mostly be dark shades of blues, greens, and browns.
How Would She Want to Spend a Day?: Depending on the weather, she would either be reading inside or riding her horse, Duke, outside. Both activities would be done alone.

MBTI Personality Type: ENTJ
Worst Fear: The loss of a loved one
Gifted In: Strategy
Most Likely to Get Angry/Frustrated: If he feels helpless
Favorite Way to Dress: If he's at home tending the animals then he'll dress casual, but at his work with King Frederick he dresses better. If there's a feast happening, then he goes all out and really dresses to impress. :)
How Would He Want to Spend a Day?: *cough* Preferably in the company if a certain someone. *cough* But if not that, then spending time doing something active with his multiple friends.  

MBTI Personality Type: ENFP
Worst Fear: The feeling of being unprepared or rejection from people he admires
Gifted In: People skills
Most Likely to Get Angry/Frustrated: If he feels he has been falsely accused
Favorite Way to Dress: Casual. Always. Unless...he HAS to dress up for something important. Then, of course, he would. But he wouldn't like it.
How Would He Want to Spend a Day?: Hanging out with friends. Probably swordfighting. 

King Frederick:
MBTI Personality Type: INFJ
Worst Fear: Being alone or letting down those he loves
Gifted In: Leadership
Most Likely to Get Angry/Frustrated: If he's contradicted 
Favorite Way to Dress: It's important to him to dress his rank, and he does...but if he had his way, he'd spend his time in the comforting warmth of his dressing robe and slippers. 
How Would He Want to Spend a Day?: If possible, he'd want to spend it free of his kingly duties. Either playing an enjoyable game of chess by a crackling fireplace, spending time in the gardens with his daughter, or leading a rousing hunt.

Princess Christine:

MBTI Personality Type: ENFJ
Worst Fear: Being put in charge of something important
Gifted In: Making everyone feel comfortable
Most Likely to Get Angry/Frustrated: If someone/circumstances make her feel contained or caged
Favorite Way to Dress: She likes to dress up for anything really. She enjoys beautiful things.
How Would She Want to Spend a Day?: Talking with her friends around a table, maybe doing something together that keeps their hands busy like mending or drawing. She also enjoys the outdoors, and might suggest a ride through the village so she can visit with some of the villagers and look in on those who she knows are sick. 


MBTI Personality Type: ESTJ
Worst Fear: To be in a bad situation completely out of his control and not being able to fix it
Gifted In: Horsemanship
Most Likely to Get Angry/Frustrated: If people don't listen to him
Favorite Way to Dress: Practical and neat, he prefers his clothes clean and durable. 
How Would He Want to Spend a Day?: Riding a horse. Or spending quality time with the people close to him.

MBTI Personality Type: INFP
Worst Fear: To be treated unfairly
Gifted In: Compassion
Most Likely to Get Angry/Frustrated: If he's worried
Favorite Way to Dress: Hmm...he's not very particular in his dress. So mostly casual, I guess. ;)
How Would He Want to Spend a Day?: Doing the things he loves (fishing, hunting, or swimming) by himself or with a select group of friends without the worries of his overbearing imployer hanging over his head at all.


Which character is your favorite? (Don't you dare ask me which one is MY favorite. There is NO WAY I'd be able to choose...) Did any of them have your personality? If not, which one was closest? Until tomorrow *internal screaming* I bid you a fond farewell! ;) 

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

The Princess & I Blog Tour: Day Three

We've reached the half-way point guys!! TWO MORE DAYS (not counting this one) UNTIL MY BOOK IS RELEASED!!! *cheers* 
I'm joined today by Rebekah (go to her blog. Just do it.) and Marrock (also his. Do it.) In this part of the blog tour. So excited to have you along for the ride! 

As promised, today I'm giving you a list of 21 things I had to research for my book. Some of the subjects are normal...things you would expect someone to research in order to write a Medieval story. Other subjects...are a bit odd to put it one way. Ready? Let's go!

1: Life in a castle
2: Castles, inside and outside
3: Wildlife of the British Isles
4: Weather and Terrain in England
5: Ranks and titles of Medieval soldiers and nobility
6: Age of Squires and Pages
7: Weapons of the Medieval ages
8: Layout of a typical castle and surrounding buildings
9: Village life in Medieval England
10: How do wolves act when they have rabies? 
11: How do you deal with broken legs? 
12: Popular names during the Medieval ages
13: The difference between swordfighting and fencing
14: Swordfighting techniques
15: Causes of death after being stabbed
16: How long until the body goes cold/stiff after death?
17: Medieval courtship/relationship building 
18: How did titles get passed down between family members?
19: What sorts of things were sold/bought in Medieval marketplaces?
20: Popular songs during the Medieval Ages
21: The lyrics to "Greensleeves"

Whew! If you made it through that list...have some chocolate! :D 

Which one was your favorite thing I had to look up? Which one was your least favorite? Have you ever had to look any of these things up?

For those of you who made it to the end of this post, here's a picture and story. 

Yep, my characters made it into one of my siblings math problems. It's ALMOST as awesome as having your own name in a math problem! (Not that I would EVER buy 153 watermelons...) Anyways, it was fun to see my own beloved characters sharing a pie (probably made by Megan) in a math lesson. ^_^

Blog Tour for Project Canvas!! *cue intense celebration*

GUYS, I couldn't be more excited to share about this incredible book that is going to be available for you to get your hands on in just ...