• Author Insider,  Making Of,  Revision,  Writing,  Writing Craft

    First Novel Journey – First Chapter Down!

    I’m stoked! Stoked I tell you! This week I finished the first draft of the first chapter of my first novel! I pushed past my inner critic and got it done. I’d been in a bit of a writing funk late summer to early fall when I got a tweet from a reader who had read my story, “The Road to Fjallmark” in Wyngraf Magazine. It was so positive and encouraging and it lit such a fire within me to keep writing. So readers, if you found an author’s work enjoyable, let them know! That positive tweet or message might be just the thing needed to keep them going on…

  • Education,  Memoir,  Memoir

    A Failed Teacher’s Journey Back to the Classroom

    I should begin with a confession: I am a failed teacher. I was nearly 21, on the tail end of wrapping up an English degree, and hadn’t the faintest idea of what I’d do once I crossed the graduation stage with my diploma in hand. And then it occurred to me, as I’m sure it had to the thousands of directionless humanities students before my time: I would become a teacher! How hard could it be? After all, I liked kids, loved learning, and had always enjoyed my years at school. So I signed up for a couple of education classes my last semester, took the qualifier test, and moved…

  • Book Reviews,  Reviews

    What I’ve Been Reading While My Brain Turned to Mush

    What I’d like to share in this post are some of the books I’ve read that got me through what felt like such a long summer. After getting Covid at the end of June, my brain turned temporarily to mush and I went through a period of pure laziness. I’m going to blame it on the Covid. After all, though it wasn’t too bad, it did leave me feeling completely drained and like a shell of a person. All of the intentions I had of reading to my kids each day, continuing their learning over the summer, and even working on my writing went out the window. Thankfully I’m back…

  • Personal Miscellaneous

    Chicago: A Few Short Impressions

    The past week, my family and I found ourselves fortunate enough to visit Chicago for the first time in our lives. My husband has a relative up there who invited us out, and so myself, my husband, our two kids, and my in-laws flew up. Now, I have a LOT more to say about our trip, but I want to write down a brief overview before I forget. After a short delay due to bad weather at O’Hare, we landed and were met by my husband’s cousin, Lois. She’s an older woman, originally from Kansas, who moved to Chicago 34 years ago to continue her work at Sears in the…