Monday, October 31, 2011

10 Things:

Hi, voice of reason talking here. NaNoWriMo officially starts tomorrow, and  most of us are gearing up our playlists and outlines to start writing our novels. We live for our late night writing sessions, our marathon like attitude as we push ourselves to keep writing the next word. However, I am here to remind you of 10 things you should not forget during this month. I'm sorry, the free spirited goof ball I am can not stay silent as I listen to some of you have mental breakdowns over your novel's plot lines and forget to eat because you're glued to your laptop


1. Remember to eat

2. Remember to eat Chocolate

3. Remember those family and friends of yours? Make sure to give them time.

4. Go out once a week.

5. Watch some comedic movies, Redbox is calling your name. Laughter is the best cure for a writing hangover.

6. Remember to shower, dress, do your hair a.k.a look like a presentable human being. Trust me your spouse/friends/family will thank you.

7. Everyone has responsibilities, remember to do your homework, do well at your work place, or do your jobs at home.

8. American? Don't forget thanksgiving, plan on this day having your computer off. This is a time to be with others.

9. Remind yourself why you love to write, it is easy to get fed up with it during November.

10. Above all else, have fun with this. This is meant to give you the push you need to create that story within you that was meant to be shared. However, it is not the end of the world if something goes wrong. This is a challenge! Laugh at yourself, step away if you start yelling at your computer, eat some more chocolate if you start feeling depressed. This is sure to be a great and fun month if you allow it.

Keep Calm and Drink Tea,

Sunday, October 30, 2011

plot-ish {rachel}

i finally feel like i have a footing. it's taken me six months to come up with this concept.

i'm honestly not sure what took me quite so long to let loose and allow my inspiration to create this concept in my head.

i will admit, a very large portion of this came to me in the bathtub {of all places} on Friday night. i now hold fast to cucumber melon body wash, and the power of a relaxing soak.

i am sharing this plot with you all. it comes direct from my NaNoWriMo profile, which is what i'm sharing with the world at large.

please understand. this plot is a seedling. the barest beginnings of what are yet to grow from my ever-growing inspiration.

take it in, if you will. drink it down like the copious amounts of coffee and Dr. Pepper that will accompany me in this process.

as a little girl, Caitlyn never wanted a fairytale life. in fairytales, all the fathers die and there's so much pain before the love. all she wanted was to grow up at her father's estate, marry the stableboy {Ashley}, and live in her own version of "happily ever after."
but her father dies anyway, fairytale or not. blamed for her father's death by her already bullying half-brother, she is still raised as a Duke's daughter, but treated with nothing but disdain.
when the time comes for her to marry, her brother cruelly ignores her pleas to marry Ashley as Caitlyn's father had always intended. instead, he chooses Royce, a sinister man who has a history for losing wives to mysterious deaths.
passed as a pawn from one frightening overlord to another, Caitlyn struggles to maintain her individuality while still preparing herself to become a murderer's bride.
she has faith still. she knows that love is stronger, faith is deeper. her father's words echo in her head: "you are this to some, you are that to others. but you are always mine, and you are always more."
will she find herself trapped forever, or will she find a way to be Cut Loose?
this is rough, i know.
be gentle with my soul. please?
-blessings abound,

Thursday, October 27, 2011


{via pinterest}
i'm touched by so many things.

wood, freshly hewed and polished alike. candles, their flames flickering in the darkness of night. lanterns with their soft beams casting a warm glow over me and my soul.

i surround myself with these things when the time comes for me to write. i know what piques my mind, what pushes my inspiration to its highest point.

i rent films. not movies filled with careless words and meaningless drivel. but films, rich with colour and life so gorgeous that it makes me melt.

An Education. 
Edward Scissorhands. 
Anne of Green Gables. 
The Chronicles of Narnia. Shakespeare in Love. 

i fill my ears with soundtracks to life and love. i find artists that don't just sing, but whisper their souls between the notes. i find those melodies that change and transform. 

Imogene Heap
John Williams
Hans Zimmer 
The Swell Season
Owl City

my senses come alive during this month. i slip between the words and find my place to snuggle up and watch this world pass.

what inspires your NaNoWriMo? what pushes you down this path? 

who are your guides?

-blessings abound,

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Outlines, Procrastination, and Hunger

 I am a relatively funny person right? If you are a follower on my blog Petals and Freckles you know that I often blog about my own embarrassing, clumsy experiences. This is for a chance to have you laugh along WITH me.
That is probably why I despise outlines so much. There is no humor in it's context, no cynicism etched into it's numbering system. Just a skeleton of ideas to fill with veins and meat later.
So here I am, sucking peanut butter off a spoon, creating my outline. I really can not get enough peanut butter lately, although my husband really likes the crunchy stuff and I'm craving smooth  smuckers. That is all beside the point though, the point is, I hate outlines.
It is like the preparation before a marathon. Wait, maybe that is a bad example being that I'm not great at long distance running so I've never actually prepared for a marathon. Hmm..let's see is like cooking the meat before a meal. No one really likes doing it, but after it's done and added to the meal itself, it is exceptional and worth it. Unless you're a vegetarian, in which case imagine food processing before making pesto sauce. Pesto sauce sounds really good right now doesn't it? Sorry, apparently procrastinating makes me hungry.

Back on track..There are things in life, preparations we have to take, to make our final goal it's best. No, we may not like doing them, and yes they can be tedious, but they are worth it! So if you are like me and dread outlining, hang in there! We will get through this! The fun of writing is just around the corner!

Now I am going to see if I have all the ingredients to making pesto sauce for tonight's dinner.

Till Next time -

Keep Calm and Drink Tea, 

Monday, October 24, 2011

cover art {rachel}

it's seven days from the beginning.

seven days until my life turns into words and clicking laptop keys and late nights where i see sunsets and sunrises before my eyes ever close in slumber.

seven days until my husband begins his understanding meal plan of mac-'n'-cheese and tuna helper.

seven days until Ali and i launch upon this glorious adventure of thirty days and fifty thousand words.

today was another day of prep. a day of pouring over photos and character names. of creating cover art for my novel.

it's freeing for me to see the cover of the book i will soon be composing. it's a sign that there is some sort of structure. a plan for its creation.

currently, i have four covers. i'm not sure which one i will be choosing.

would you care to aid me in my decision? 

each one is a fragment. a corner of the story yet to be told, but that i can see so well in the corner of my novelist's mind.

seven days until the curtain opens.

and i feel ready. if only just a little.

-blessings abound,

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Novelist {Alexandria's Ediction}

Sum up your novel in five words or less.Witty, Quirky, Comedic, Romantic, Inspiring 

Novel title?
Confessions of an Almost Bride  

Sum up your main character(s) in one word each.
Alyssa: Determined 
Eric: Patient 

Advice for newbies in three words?

Laugh at yourself. 

Tell us about your secondary characters, how do they affect the story?
The secondary characters are the tapestry that holds the story together. The family and friends that give their opinions, support, and sometimes lack there of, affect Alyssa and Erics emotions as well as their relationship. 

Do you plan to stay up till midnight on the 31st?
Probably will be in the living room on the iPad with chocolate and a mug full of Earl Grey ready to go!

How many years have you done NaNo?
Just 2009, I was so close to completing and hit writers block. Not this year though! 

What came first, characters, or plot idea?
All came together at once. Honestly the book is based off of my own experiences 

How much prep do you do before November?
I do a lot of inspirations prep. You can see my Nano Inspiration Board here

Now be honest, how do you really feel about NaNo?I'm excited!!! Succeed or Fail I'm excited to give this a try =)
Keep Calm and Drink Tea,

Counting Down

It's that time again, a week before some of us throw ourselves at the mercy of our word documents and mac pages, and write till our minds and fingers are sore.

I am back from my beach wedding, back from the insanity of wedding planning, and all is becoming calm around me. I am preparing to finish a book this year, while learning what it means to be a wife.

Here I am, the week before, diving into the gloriousness of my muses, Audrey Hepburn, Katherine Hepburn, and Jane Austen.
I know exactly what I am going to write about this year. I am eager to start this journey and watch it lead me to knew and exciting ones.

This is why we created this blog in the first place, to state our confessions as we toil away on our novels, to keep us going, to wallow in our own self pity for 5 minutes, then get back to writing.

I know my voice has been more like a whisper on this blog...busy swimming in a sea of lace and flowers, but I'm back, bold, spunky, and ready to write!

Have you ever just had an idea in your head that just wants to leap from your soul and onto any medium it can find? That's me right now, with a story, a character, a beautiful beginning in mind and waiting till November 1st to bring it to life.

So here we go, the countdown begins as I twiddle my thumbs in anticipation.  7,6,5,4,3,2,1........GO

Keep Calm and Drink Tea, 

Saturday, October 22, 2011

novelist {rachel's edition}

{via pinterest}
sum up your novel in five words or less.
music. eyes. ruins. luggage. freedom. 

{yes, i'm fully aware that my list could not be more disjointed. but there's a beauty in that, i think.}
Novel title?

current title: Cut Loose
be aware, this could change. it usually does. 

 Sum up your main character(s) in one word each.
Coleen: freedom

Allistar: passion

{names pending and subject to change. A LOT}

Advice for newbies in three words?

never give up.
Tell us about your secondary characters, how do they affect the story?
honestly, i'm not exactly sure yet. i'm already having problems with my secondary male lead running away with himself. i'm feeling the creeping fingers of frustration slipping over me already, and it's still nine days before we start. this may not be a good thing.

Do you plan to stay up till midnight on the 31st?

yes. i always do. i would be far too excited about starting to actually sleep anyway. so i stay up and write until i crash, wake up, and write more and more and more. 

{via pinterest}

How many years have you done NaNo?
three. 2009, i completed 50,216 words. 2010, i barely scraped 10,000. this year will be the best of them all.

What came first, characters, or plot idea?
characters. i have only the barest scraps of plot.

How much prep do you do before November?

quite a bit, actually. having my NaNo pinterest board as a springboard has truly helped me a great deal. it's been nice to be able to mentally coordinate and physically view my ideas as they come together. 

Now be honest, how do you really feel about NaNo?
in a word: terrified. i always get this way before NaNo though. it's a beautiful kind of fear, the kind that will spur me on to the completion of this novel. i'm more than a little excited, as well. i cannot wait to see what November brings me. 

-blessings abound,

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

to question and to answer

here we are.

twelve days from one of the biggest months in a writer's life. 

at this point, i'm honestly not sure if i'm ready to undertake this task yet again. it's my third year, sacrificing an entire thirty days toward the creation of a brand-new novel. breathing life into a new chapter, day after day after day. 

are you joining us? 

have you ever done this before? is this your first? your fifth? have you been writing since the beginning? 

for those of you who have never done this before

what questions do you have?

for those of you who have walked this path time and time again

what answers can you share?

this is a group effort. individual stories, but all one great work.

so please, share with us together. 

what are your questions?
what are your answers?

ask and we will answer.

share and you will be shared. 

twelve days and counting.

-blessings abound,

down the aisle

for those of you who did not already know,

our beautiful Ali is now a wife. 

on october 16th {sunday}, ali and zach became man and wife. 

the wedding was beautiful. 


i can hardly begin to describe it to you all. 

it was the most romantic, simple, blissful wedding i have ever seen in my entire life. 

i was honoured beyond measure to have been a part of this day. 

a few notes from ali that she asked me to share with all of you:

  • she and her new husband, Zach, will be on their honeymoon from sunday night until sometime next week. she will be back to posting -- both here and at her personal blog -- and commenting when she comes home. 
  • she loves you all so very much, and so appreciates your support and words of love and encouragement leading up to this day.
  • wedding pictures will slowly begin to trickle onto her blog, my blog, and this blog in the near future, so please keep your eyes open. 
ali has been so blessed by each and every one of you as she begins her life with her new husband. 

thank you from the depths of her heart...

...and from mine. 
blessings abound,
the maid of honour 

Friday, October 7, 2011

soul's genre

{via pinterest}
the countdown to NaNoWriMo is slowly ticking down.

twenty-four days remaining.

and now the time has come to decide.

what will your story be?

and where will it begin? it must have a year in which to dwell...and a genre which to inhabit.

genre is tricky. 

when you begin to write, you must ask yourself the most important of all questions:

have i found a niche or have i fallen into a rut?

do you write for your genre because you love it...

because your nights are filled with dreams of knights and fair maidens, 
of cowboys on dusty horseback, 
or things that have not yet come but are whispering from the future? 

do you write because these worlds intoxicate your soul? are you captivated, lost, and overwhelmed because these places love you back?

or do you write because, when pen meets paper, when soul and words collide, you find yourself with a sigh and a muttered

i don't know what to write. so i guess i'll write this. i always do. 

my dear friend, do not let your stories die because you feel compelled. trapped.

for this death is the worst of all. you kill not only your characters and your literary light...but part of your ink-stained soul dies as well.

write the truth. not the requirement.

write for love. 
for passion.

do because you love. not because you must.

seek. define.

what is your soul's genre?

-blessings abound,

Monday, October 3, 2011


{via pinterest}
i've said it here already.

but i'm drawn to eyes.

and now as nanowrimo draws closer, i am getting more and more captivated by those little things that stare and pull and tug at my ink-blotched heart.

i find myself running my fingers over the worn wood of doors, searching for the stories in these portals. do you know? does anyone know what happened behind these entryways? loves lost, heart proclaimed, lives taken away.

and there there are the innocents. 

spoons and eggs and all those little things that are too much overlooked and not enough dwelt upon. their sacred appeal is lost in the shuffle.

and we start to write in twenty-seven days.

this countdown is getting shorter

but my list of fascinations are getting longer and longer.

i like that.

{via pinterest}
so i ask you.

what things captivate? fascinate? entrance?

share with me. 

-blessings abound,

{on an unrelated note: our beautiful Ali is getting married in two weeks. won't you join with me in wishing her and her handsome groom well? look for more wedding posts from us both in coming days, both here and at our respective locations}