Dawn Chandler Blog Tour ++ An Author Interview

Hi everyone. Today, I have a fun post to share with you.  I am interviewing Eliza Noel today, gearing up for the release of her book, Dawn Chandler. Let’s begin!

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1. When did you first realize that you loved writing?

I’m really not sure…maybe when I started Dawn Chandler at age 12. I wrote stuff before that, but I wasn’t as dedicated and excited about it.

2. Do you write by hand or on the computer?

On the computer, but I do enjoy doing it by hand occasionally. If I’m journaling or just doing a writing exercise I’ll usually do it by hand.

3. Is your writing inspired by other authors?

I’ve definitely seen that my writing will start sounding like specific authors (C.S. Lewis or Jane Austen maybe) when I’m reading one of their books, but I usually go back and edit it to make it sound more like me. Overall, I can’t think of a specific author.

4. What does your writing day look like?

Lately I’ve been doing so much formatting and promotional stuff just whenever I can that I haven’t had a normal writing schedule. If I’m feeling motivated and get a decent amount of sleep I’ll get up at 5:30 a.m. and work on writing-related things until about 7:30 a.m..

5.Where did you first come up with the idea of Dawn Chandler?

 I was on a family trip in Lone Pine when I went to the drugstore, bought a composition notebook, and started writing. Fun fact though- at that point the book didn’t take place in Lone Pine. I changed it to that later.

6. How long did it take you to write Dawn Chandler?

From idea to publishing date about seven years. There were a lot of breaks throughout that time though.

7. Do you have a favorite character?

What is it that you like most about him/her? My favorite is Kenneth, Dawn’s older brother. I like him because he’s funny and caring.

8. What was it like self-publishing your book?

It’s been up and down, hahaha. Overall it was good. I liked the control I had over all the details. There were a lot of moments when I was formatting that were frustrating. I almost hired someone to do it for me, but now I’m glad I pushed through and will know how to do it next time.

9. Is there anything else you would like to say?

Yes, thanks for taking the time to interview me, Rebecca!

 

Dawn Chandler.jpgDawn Chandler likes the way her life is— or was. She liked going to the mall with her best friend, excelling at middle school, and attending church with her family. Typical life for a twelve-year-old in the city of Fresno.

When Dawn’s parents announced they were going to homeschool her, on her birthday no less, she felt like her world was falling apart. Normal kids are supposed to go to school, not read books at home. To make matters worse, they may be leaving the only home she’s ever known.

What are her parents thinking?

Before making the final moving decision, the Chandler family visits Lone Pine, a small town between Mt. Whitney and Death Valley. While there, Dawn and her siblings become acquainted with their eccentric great uncle, explore the new area, and meet a large homeschooling family. All of this makes the ‘vacation’ more bearable. Still, Dawn isn’t sure if she can make the move and leave everything she’s familiar with behind.

Can Dawn learn the values of faith, family, and contentment?

Pre-order Dawn Chandler from Amazon.

Enter to win a paperback copy of Dawn Chandler

 

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Eliza Noel is a home school graduate with passion for Jesus, people, and literature. Growing up, her favorite books were always Nancy Drew, Anne of Green Gables, and Pride and Prejudice. Around age twelve she wanted to read something with positive values in a modern setting, but couldn’t find what she was looking for. So she wrote it.

When not doing something book-related (reading, writing, blogging, bookstagramming), Eliza works at her day jobs, spends time with her many younger siblings, longboards, has coffee with friends, eats chocolate, and listens to music. California is home, but she would like to travel more and feels she could learn to be content anywhere.

You can follow her writing journey and see snippets of her everyday life on elizanoelauthor.blogspot.com or by following @elizanoelauthor on social media.

 

 

4 Ways to Make Time to Read in Your Day

School, sports practice, cheer, work, church, commitments, writing, blogging—the never-ending vortex of things to do, places to be, and things you want to do spiraling out of control. Sleep? Pffttt. Who needs that? Family? They exist, too. We do want to spend time with them. Speak with them once in a while.

We go from one place to another, never stopping, and at night, drained and worn out, we collapse into bed and attempt to catch forty-winks.

What suffers?

Read the rest at Illuminate YA.com!

Rebecca Morgan

Shadowkeeper Release and Interview

Who can’t resist a good myth retelling?

Fairy tale retellings are the “in” thing right now,  and don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy them, but myths have always been my jam. When I was seven years old and studying the Greeks and Romans, I soaked up the myths like a sponge, loving the stories, and just falling in love with the culture of the Romans and the Greeks — something I still adore to this day. 

If you’re like me, you’re in luck. My friend, Hope Ann, released a novella Monday, inspired not by one, but by TWO myths Add it to your TBR pile– you don’t want to miss this one — it’s Rebecca beta-tested and approved. 🙂 

 

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Death can die as easily as any other man.

Cedra has kept her sister safe for years. None of that changes just because Pethra got herself kidnapped by Death himself.

Claiming the questionable aid of Death’s weary older brother, the Shadowkeeper, Cedra forces her way through mist and shadows in pursuit of her hapless sister. But Death wants much more than he has revealed.

A wish that will splinter her and Pethra’s world no matter what she chooses: death, or a chain.

Loosely inspired by the stories of Hades and Persephone and Castor and Pollux, Shadowkeeper will sweep you into a world of wavering mists, shadowy passages, and the love of two siblings fastening them with ties stronger than Death himself.

 

~ Interview ~

What inspired Shadowkeeper?
One evening, my best friend and I were talking about mythology, what ifs, and ourselves—basically placing ourselves in the situations and what we would do. The two stories we interwove with this conversation was Hades and Persephone and Castor and Pollux. From that conversation came this story.

How long did it take you to write Shadowkeeper?
The rough draft too… three weeks? It was part of NaNo and would have been after, except I ended up ditching the first few chapters and restarting, because the voice wasn’t working. Editing and beta reading included, it is my fastest project yet and took around two and a half months to write and publish.

Do you have a favorite character?
Hard to say. Halcion, perhaps. He was a lot of fun—the world-weary brother of Death himself. He also underwent the most transformation from draft to draft, turning into the lovable but somewhat tortured character he is now.

When were you first published?
At the beginning of 2016, I believe.

Do you have a special place that you write?
Normally at my desk in my room, but anywhere it is quiet, really. Now that it’s winter and cold, I’ll sometimes write at the dining room table with headphones on.

Thanks for stopping by Hope! 

 

You can find Shadowkeeper here.

And because we all love Pinterest boards, here is the one for Shadowkeeper

 


B1bZ4qbZT1S._SY200_Hope Ann likes to think herself a dragon-riding, griffin-taming founder of worlds and explorer of legends. Using chocolate, she bribes a wide ring of spies, from the realm leapers of Aslaria to the double agents of Elkbend, for their stories. She thrives on frost, steel, and the tears of her readers which she secretly mixes into iced coffee. Deep in her hobbit hole, her actual life involves staying up too late writing, reading, researching stab wounds, and struggling to remember the difference between ‘effect’ and ‘affect’. Based in Indiana, she is the self-published author of the Legends of Light series. Hope Ann helps other writers as a personal writing coach and is the Communications Coordinator at Story Embers. You can find out more about her at https://authorhopeann.com/


 

Rebecca Morgan

One Small Step: Winter Workshop 2019

It’s been a week since I came home from the OYAN Winter Workshop, a workshop for older students who have taken the One Year Adventure Novel curriculum. It was a wonderful week filled with God moments, joy, and memories. This year’s theme was One Small Step.

 

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“When I first looked back at the Earth, standing on the Moon, I cried.” Alan Shepherd

 

Memory #1 My Critique Group

Guys, I had a fabulous critique group this year with some pretty amazing stories, from a Snow White retelling to werewolves (don’t let that scare you). Every day had us laughing, wiping tears from our eyes and screaming “no” at the top of our lungs. There are pretty amazing writers in the OYAN community and the future of literature looks promising. 😊

My own work has improved in that I was able to deceive them, give them feels, and sink their ship. I feel immensely happy — my writing has improved to be able to lead readers astray down dark forest paths. ** cue evil laughter**

Memory #2 Being with Young Adult Writers

Writing as a young adult is hard with so many responsibilities. At the Winter Workshop, there are other young adult writers in the same boat. There, we come together in solidarity, talk about our stories, and even do some brainstorming.  A bonus at this Winter Workshop was we had an hour of undisturbed writing every day, and it was so nice to be able to get back into my story world.

Memory #3 Sour Patch Kids and Tea

One of my lovely friends brought sour patch kids and tea for us during our writing sessions and it was literally the best thing ever. #writerfuel

 

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Memory #4 The Snow

On the 31st, we had a snow fall.  One minute we were quietly writing, till someone said it was snowing. Then doors were thrown open and we stood outside in the snow, wet, cold, and laughing. This southern girl was happy.

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Memory #5 Friends

This Winter Workshop, I was able to grow closer to old friends, and make some new ones. Friends are precious things. They are there to help you through a rough time, talk with you, lift you up. After going years with not having any, I treasure those that I have made through OYAN.

 

Memory #6 Lack of Sleep

The latest I ever made it was 2:00. Who can go to bed when there is so much to talk about? Tribbles. Star Wars. Star Trek. Home states. Very badly written fan fiction that has you holding your sides aching with laughter. There is no shortage of laughter at the Winter Workshop.

               

Memory #7 My Mentor Session with Stephanie Morrill

I knew I shouldn’t have been terrified, I know Stephanie.

But I was. 

Anytime someone reads my writing I break out in hives. But it was honestly the best 30 minutes ever. She loved my story, and I was able to brainstorm that dreaded ending with her.

 

rebecca's winter workshop 2019 pictures 504Selfie with Stephanie Morrill after many failed attempts.

Memory #8 The Sessions

Not only does Winter Workshop have adventures with friends, but it also has some amazing sessions.

Mr. S talked about story beats, great questions of genre, and who’s telling your story. Jenn Bailey spoke on worldbuilding and magic systems. And Stephanie Morrill taught us about all the little things. I love to color code my notes but it’s very hard when you’re furiously scribbling down all the things.  So many notes.

Memory #9 God Mourns with us, and Wants Us to Invite Him into Our Mourning.

Mrs. S, a member of the OYAN and our beloved matriarch spoke on this. Never have I ever thought of God in this way. 2018 was a year of loss for me.  Of health. Joy. Friendships. And while I knew God was there, and there was a reason for all of this, it never resonated with me that He would be in the same room with me, mourning with me. This may be the lesson that I take and hold the most through 2019.

2019 is a new year. A year of new opportunities. New people to meet. And new challenges. But this year I’m going to take it on one small step at a time. With God. With my friends. My family.

And the new year doesn’t seem so challenging from that point of view.

 

Rebecca Morgan

Coffee Shop Devos by Tessa Emily Hall Review

Hello everyone! Can you believe Christmas is only eight days away? I’ve finished my shopping– I just need to wrap everything, something I usually get done Christmas Eve. A word to the wise, this is not a smart thing to do.

I did a short review of Coffee Shop Devos by Tessa Emily Hall on Instagram and on my giveaway post, but I’ve needed to do a longer and better post. Something I wanted to do when I had completely read her devotional and had some free time.

Published by Bethany House Publishers
Publication Date September 18, 2018
Genres: Devotional
Written for: High-School/Young Adult
Pages: 400

41JyGSTx6bL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_There’s something special about spending time at a coffee shop with a friend–engaging in a meaningful conversation, then leaving refueled and ready to tackle the rest of the day. What if your quiet times with God energized you the same way?

Coffee Shop Devos offers a warm atmosphere that will inspire you to discover your God-given purpose and live to your greatest potential. Choose your devo flavor in the Menu of Contents based on your current need. Then lean into deeper intimacy with Christ through reflection and prayer.

Along the way, you’ll pick up tips and recipes for making your own coffee-shop beverage–regular or decaf–to enjoy while you read. And don’t forget to share your journey with your friends! #CoffeeShopDevos
Each of the 180 challenging and motivational devotions will leave you feeling refreshed and reinvigorated–almost as though you’ve shared a steaming pot of brew at a coffee shop with your Creator.

**I received a free copy of Coffee Shop Devos from the publisher in exchange for a review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. **

Over the years I was subject to many girls’ devotionals that never seemed to teach anything. They talked down to me, as if I was immature and only interested in boys and makeup (which I wasn’t). I longed for something more, for someone to take me seriously and to TEACH me.

When Tessa announced her Coffee Shop Devos, I was thrilled. If it was anything like her other work, I knew it was going to be good.

Tessa’s devos are honest, simple, and sweet. She’s personal with you, in a way I’ve never seen in a devotional.

I liked how Tessa wove the coffee theme into the book, with each section dedicated to a different coffee drink and a different need (ex. the fifth section is “Macchiato–Healing for Heartache.”).

Other examples are:

Mocha—Inspiration for the Soul
Latte—Comfort in Trials
Espresso—Joy for Each Moment.
Cappuccino—All About Relationships

I also really enjoyed the quotes that were included at the end of each devotional—often they were just what I needed and they were uplifting and encouraging.

Tessa’s Coffee Shop Devos are food for your soul, giving you a little bit of everything that you need to get you through your day. From lessons on God’s never-failing love, the seasons of life, and trusting in God’s plan, to transforming the trash and living to our greatest potential, Coffee Shop Devos is a pick-me-up that any young lady can glean encouragement from. It makes the perfect gift for the friend or sister in your life—the perfect guide to help them in the New Year, and for many years to come.


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Tessa Emily Hall is an award-winning author who writes inspirational yet authentic YA fiction to show teens they’re not alone. Her passion for shedding light on clean entertainment and media for teens led her to a career as an Associate Agent at Hartline Literary Agency, YA Acquisitions Editor for Illuminate YA (LPC Imprint), and Founder/Editor of PursueMagazine.net. Tessa’s first teen devotional, COFFEE SHOP DEVOS, will release with Bethany House in 2018. She’s guilty of making way too many lattes and never finishing her to-read list. When her fingers aren’t flying 116 WPM across the keyboard, she can be found speaking to teens, decorating art journals, and acting in Christian films. Her favorite way to procrastinate is by connecting with readers on her blog, mailing list, social media (@tessaemilyhall), and website: http://www.tessaemilyhall.com.


 

Rebecca Morgan