Writing Update #9


Guess what!

Someone besides a family member or best friend who has known me for years has started reading Destiny! I’m not freaking out or anything. Nope. Not at all. Emma (@_ewmma on Twitter) and I swapped WIPs. Well, part of them. She hasn’t finished part two of her creepy, nightmare inducing, addicting af, amazing book yet, and I’m only roughly halfway through revisions.

I just want to thank Emma for reading my WIP and confirming that it isn’t just a trash fire…well it might still be one, just not as bad of one as I thought. LOL

Anyways, I had to pause my revisions to go back to the beginning of my WIP to make some tense changes before I could hand it off to Emma, so that’s what I’ve been working on for the last 3? weeks. Now I’m caught back up to where I left off and my goal is to work on a few more chapters.

NaNoWriMo starts on Friday and my goal and hope is to keep up revisions while working on this other story. I’m back in the mindset and the groove with Desitny and I now have Emma to keep me accountable because wants more chapters to read. This is great, because it means I’m being held accountable.

I’m going to aim for at least 3 chapters a week, but if I get to only 2, that will be fine.

This isn’t a very long update, but Y’ALL SOMEONE READ MY BOOK. Someone who hasn’t known me for years or is a family member. I was terrified to send it out into the world. I know it isn’t a perfect book, or completely polished, but I love these characters and want everyone to love them too. Emma’s reactions have been SO GREAT and pretty hysterical at times. She has a lot of theories – and I can’t answer any of them. I’m so excited to have her read the next half of my book and hear her reactions. My biggest fear was that she wasn’t going to like it. That it was going to flop. If that had happened, I have no idea what I would have done, how I would have reacted.

And her book is so good. I legit could not put it down. There were scenes that I held my breath through the entire time because of the tension, and omfg the ending to Part One, WTF WAS THAT. I’m not okay, Emma. I need to know what happens next.

Anyways, I’m super excited about this and I’m actually looking forward to finishing up revisions and then maybe finally taking that next step in querying.


It’s That Time of The Year Again – NaNoWriMo

Nano 2019.jpgI can’t believe it’s the end of October. Didn’t it just start? Here we are, October 30th, Halloween is tomorrow, and November starts Friday.

That’s the real spooky thing about October – that it passes so quickly and suddenly it’s time to write 50,000 words in 30 days.

This post is going to basically be a quick rundown of how I handle the stress and fun that is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), what my project is going to be, and the items that I always have with me, whether I’m home or out. So, let’s jump into that first.

Must Have Items:

  1. Mac
  2. Journal
  3. Planner
  4. Sketch Book
  5. Phone (inspo pics are on there)
  6. Coffee

If I’m out writing I also need:

  1. Charger
  2. Wallet
  3. Coffee (again)
  4. A snack

I also like getting myself a treat, like some kind of candy or chocolate I don’t normally eat year-round as a reward for hitting daily word goals. Last year it was Hershey’s Cookies n’ Cream Drops – and I kind of got carried away. Instead of eating them at word goals, I kind of went through bags of them as I was writing. I legit haven’t had them since.

I do have an entire post dedicated to what I have with me when I write – you can check out that here – my NaNo needs don’t vary much from my standard writing needs.

This year I’m planning on doing a YA Beach Contemporary. It’s definitely more on the fluffy side and I’m excited to work on it! I feel like I know the characters pretty well, it’ll just be a matter of seeing if they do what I want them to do. Who knows? It’s going to be set in Topsail, North Carolina, a place I know and love and I’m so ready for it to be Friday. It’s taking every ounce of control to NOT start writing it. While I am excited to start this book (I’ve been really wanting to write it for a while now, but I’m back into revising my SF WIP so I haven’t touched it) there is some anxiety and stress that comes along with it. If you’re interested, I did a post where I created the core group of characters in this YA Contemp, as Sims! You can check them out here!

Screen Shot 2019-10-29 at 7.48.19 PM

Which leads me into my next part – How I handle NaNoWriMo.

This will be my 9th year in a row (I started as a Senior in High School) but only my 2nd year in a row where I don’t really have to worry about much else and can focus more on writing. You can check out my NaNo journey here. I’ve probably talked about this before,  but my biggest fear and stressor is falling behind. Every year without fail, I hit a lull, around the 1.5-week mark and words become a struggle. It often leads to me skipping days and then having to make them up. It sucks, not gonna lie. Missing a day here or there, it happens, life happens. But I’m talking about big roadblocks, writer’s block, the days where words legit refuse to form – those days screw me every time. I end up super behind and rushing to finish thousands of words in the final days.

So, here are a few tips that I apply to myself every year –

  1. If you’re on a writing roll, you’ve met your daily word count (and time permits) keep writing. Rack up an extra 100, 200, 500 words. That way if you miss a day, or don’t have the time, energy, etc to write, you’re not as far behind.
  2. If you do fall behind, it’s not the end of the world. I know it feels like it is, and stress and anxiety enter into your life and makes you feel like crap.
  3. Just breathe.
  4. NaNo is supposed to be fun, and a way to get your butt in a chair to write. It’s fun to ‘win’ and hit that 50k mark, but it’s not a necessity! Any words you do write in November, is that many more than you had prior and that is always a good thing!
  5. Try not and get discouraged if you see other people with much higher word counts. It’s not a race against them.
  6. Remember this is only a first draft! (if it’s not, remember you’re trying to write 50k in 30 days) your story isn’t going to be perfect.
  7. If you hit writer’s block, just write. I know that probably sounds contrived, but just write. Whether you skip ahead to the next scene, or just write anything – even if it’s out of character – writing is the best way to push past.
    1. Though, if that isn’t working, and you can’t even get 100 – 250 words on the page, it’s always a good thing to take a break and come back. It’s better to do that, than stare uselessly at a computer screen for hours not accomplishing anything.
  8. Take a walk. Listen to some music. Read a book. Watch a movie. Cuddle your pet. Do something to give yourself a break. NaNo is a very easy way to burn yourself out. (I know I take most of December off and just relax. Creatively I’m often pretty burned out)
  9. Having people cheering you on is always a benefit. Have a few people, a person in your corner, IRL friends or online – someone you can talk to/at if you hit a point in your story.
  10. Do a bit of planning – I’m not a plotter, more of a plantser (I’m mainly a pantser). I usually have a vauge idea of where I want my story to go, some key moments I want my characters to hit. If you’re a full-on plotter/outliner – I envy you. If you’re not, we’re in the same boat and that’s okay! Go full creative outlet mode!

Now, I know there are many of these types of posts out there, and a million different ways of making it through the next month. As much as I wrote this post for the newbie NaNo-er, it’s also serving as a reminder to me that NaNo isn’t make or break. It’s supposed to be a fun activity to get people to write and tell the stories that they have swirling around inside of their heads. I’ve always enjoyed NaNoWriMo – stress and all. It’s my excuse to try and write one of the shiny new ideas that have been floating around in my head all year.

If you’re doing NaNo and want to be buddies on the site – I’m [ lexacourtney ] on there, the image above shows my icon and name. I need more buddies and I want to be buddies with you! Anyone who follows me, will get a follow back! I hope you all have a wonderful and successful NaNo (whatever your projects and goals might be)!

I’ll also being doing Weekly Updates each Friday start to finish! That means the first one, will be this Friday! During these posts I’ll be sharing word counts, the occasional sneak peek and most likely a checklist of any important plot elements. Check back in and if you want, feel free to share your current word counts on that post so we can cheer each other on!

Book Review: Gravemaidens (Gravemaidens #1)

gravemaidenss.jpgTitle: Gravemaidens (Gravemaidens #1)

Author: Kelly Coon

Pub. Date: October 29, 2019

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

The start of a fierce fantasy duology about three maidens who are chosen for their land’s greatest honor…and one girl determined to save her sister from the grave.

In the walled city-state of Alu, Kammani wants nothing more than to become the accomplished healer her father used to be before her family was cast out of their privileged life in shame.

When Alu’s ruler falls deathly ill, Kammani’s beautiful little sister, Nanaea, is chosen as one of three sacred maidens to join him in the afterlife. It’s an honor. A tradition. And Nanaea believes it is her chance to live an even grander life than the one that was stolen from her.

But Kammani sees the selection for what it really is—a death sentence.

Desperate to save her sister, Kammani schemes her way into the palace to heal the ruler. There she discovers more danger lurking in the sand-stone corridors than she could have ever imagined and that her own life—and heart—are at stake. But Kammani will stop at nothing to dig up the palace’s buried secrets even if it means sacrificing everything…including herself.

This will be a spoiler free review. There are a few semi-graphic scenes in this book.

This book ended up being different than I thought it was going to be. To be totally honest, I’m not sure if I ever read the synopsis or just knew I had to read it based on other people’s reviews and the hype. I’m also in the middle of a horrible reading slump but was able to make my way through this book. Overall, I enjoyed it, but I’m not sure if I would have enjoyed it more if I weren’t in a slump. It also took me about half the book to realize that one of the characters I thought I didn’t like, was false, and it was actually because I didn’t care for the MC.

I also want to say that I much more enjoyed the second half of the book, and I’m actually kind of excited to read the next one. I’m really curious as to how it will all end.

I felt a little bored by the first half, and sometimes I felt like I was sure of what was happening. I feel like that could be a good thing, since Kammani has no clue as to what’s actually happening, and only has theories.

There are also some very bad and hateful people in this book, and I hope they all meet their demise in book 2.

At the beginning of the book I thought Dagan (the love interest) to be a bit absurd, and he doesn’t wear a shirt like at all. He’s swoony, caring and deeply in love with Kammani and it’s cute. But I found him to be a bit annoying. Though my thoughts on him have vastly changed. I still think it’s weird that he went to a festival shirtless, but okay.

Nanaea is your average 15-year-old girl – annoying and moody as hell. I couldn’t stand her, and that probably because she’s a super accurate representation of a real teenage girl? Was I ever that annoying, if so, Mom & Dad I apologize. Everything was drama with her, and she didn’t listen. Ultimately her reasoning comes out, and while it makes sense for her character, it’s misguided. She’s an accurate teen, but annoying as hell. I’m interested in seeing what part she plays in book 2.

I’m conflicted about Nasu. Part of me wants him to be a potential Love interest for Kammani, but the other half of me doesn’t want that at all, and I just want them to be really good, die for each other friends. But their relationship seems to hint at him having feelings for her.

I loved Iltani, a devious little mischievous mind. She’s the best and so loyal. I wish she’d been in the book more, but my hope is that she has a bigger role to play in the next one.

I wasn’t sure about Nin Arwia, but I’m glad that she’s with the group. Like Kammani, her journey is far from over and it’ll be interesting to see what she ultimately does.

And finally, Kammani. I’ll be honest, she’s not my fave. As a character, I thought she was very immature, and it was annoying how she strung Dagan along. She tries playing adult and it backfired every single time. But I think that’s also what makes her character so great – that she plays being a grownup, shouldering burdens and trying with every ounce of her being to set things right. But in reality, her world is crumbling around her and there’s nothing she can do about it. She never just let’s herself be or be happy. She feels like she can’t, and it nearly costs her everything. Instead of being rational and taking the time to come up with a plan that isn’t guaranteed to fail, she rushes in headfirst every time. For the adult she pretends to be, she basically ignores every piece of sound advice given to her.

This book is definitely a ride and the world Kelly has created is rich and vivid. It’s cruel and wonderful. It’s accusatory and forgiving. The characters exist in a world where status and traditions are highly honored and praised, and to be outspoken against them is tantamount to treason. It’s about realizing that the thing we might want most in the world, aren’t actually what we want at all. Sometimes facing reality is the hardest thing we can do. That accepting help, instead of shouldering everything yourself is the best thing, because when there are people in your corner, your chances of succeeding are much higher.

It about fighting for what’s right and learning from your mistakes. These characters aren’t perfect, and they have a hell of a lot more growing up to do, but I’m anticipatingly waiting for the next book. While I wasn’t a fan of every character in this book and thought the second half was better than the first, I definitely understand the hype and I hope you all pick up this book and check it out! If anything, read it to fall in love with soft Dagan who wants nothing more in the world to marry and cherish the girl he loves, and give her everything and anything she could ever want…Kammani, if you don’t want him, send him my way. 😂

Check out Gravemaidens, out today!



Comfy Questions

It’s time for another round of questions and answers! This is technically one of those 1 Like = 1 Answer prompts on Twitter, but I like doing them for my blog – especially when they aren’t book related! So, let’s jump into this!IMG_6662.PNG

  1. How do you drink your tea?

With honey! My favorite tea is Tazo’s Baked Organic Cinnamon Apple (or some variation of those words lol). It tastes like Autumn in a mug and warm hugs. I just add a bit of honey to it and I don’t take the tea bag out until I finish it.

  1. Favorite dessert?

Ooo, this is hard. I love a good cheesecake, but I’m also a sucker for cream puffs. Put them in front of me, and I’ll legit eat them all. But a good ice cream is great as well.

  1. Favorite season and why?

Probably Fall, I love boots and cozy sweaters. But I don’t really have a solid favorite. I enjoy all the seasons, and I need them all. I need to freeze in the winter and thaw in the summer. Then repeat.

  1. What cheers you up?

Staring at my dog. Or watching Farscape.

  1. Dogs or cats?

Both? But I have a mild allergy to cats, so I have to be a bit careful around them. I’ve never owned a cat, just two doggos.

  1. What is your dream holiday?

Cozying up in a cabin in the Swiss Alps.

But I’m also kind of torn, because a tropical paradise would be nice as well.

  1. How many kids do you want?

At least two.

  1. Favorite weather?

A cool 75 degrees with a bit of sun. But I love listening to the rain and a storm if I’m writing or reading.

  1. What would your last meal be?

I’ve never ever thought about this, so I have no actual idea.

  1. You can spend 24 hours anywhere, any year, where do you choose?

Probably sometime between 1961-63. When the US chose 7 pilots to do the first manned US flights into Space during the Space Race. It must’ve been an amazing time to be alive, to witness it, and the hype surrounding the events. The whole US working towards one goal.

OR I’d want to find out what actually happened in Ykaterinburg to the Romanovs. I like the fairytale that the animated movie and the Broadway show has created, but it would be nice(?) to know the truth.

  1. If you were a ghost, who or where would you haunt?

I would probably haunt a bookstore. Tbh.

  1. What is your family ancestry?

Scottish and Slovenian and something else that is eluding me at this time.

  1. What scares you?

A lot of things. But I’m not a fan of being alone in the dark. I have too active of an imagination for that shit. Also, scary movies that involve possession/hauntings (especially if they are based on real events) or anything that involves the capturing of evil things in film or in mirrors. I just – nope.

  1. What are you most grateful for?

My doggo. He’s my whole world.

  1. Dream Job?

Full time, JK Rowling success, Author. Give me that franchise!

  1. Do you believe in aliens?

Yep. The universe is too big for there to not be anyone/thing else out there. Do I believe in little green men? Eh. I won’t discount it, but I doubt our first contact (if /when it happens) is going to come from bulbous, big eyed, little green men.

  1. Favorite sport?

Eh, I guess soccer. I played for quite a few years when I was younger and enjoyed it.

  1. How do you relax after a long day?

Shower and a beer or wine. Then food and Netflix.

  1. If you could meet one historical figure, who would you choose and why?

Honestly, I have no idea.

  1. If you had to be a teacher, what subject would you teach?
    I have the degree; I’d just need one for teaching.
  2. Describe your perfect day.

I’d be able to sleep in late – like 11, but when I wake up it still be early morning, so I’d have a full day to do things. I’d have coffee and breakfast. And then I’d just be able to lounge around to read and write and pause to walk my dog and maybe take a nice long bath, and then have some yummy food, maybe sushi or Chinese food. Then I’d sit outside by the fire pit, wrapped in warm sweater with a few friends, and a bottle or two of wine and we’d just hang out chatting.

  1. Describe yourself in a sentence.

Always there, even when I shouldn’t be.

  1. Who makes you laugh the most?

My dad. We have basically the same sense of humor, much to my mom’s dismay LOL.

  1. What superpower would you choose?

Apparition. I know that a HP thing, but damn, it would come in handy. Being able to just * poof * to places. I’d never have to pay for gas again!

  1. Favorite animal?

Outside of dogs? Nope, it’s dogs.

  1. Biggest accomplishment?

Finishing this post? Jk.

Probably my Girl Scouts Bronze Award I did years ago in England. My troop organized a basketball tournament for a group of kids with special needs whose funding had been cut. We got the Boy Scouts, a group of military personnel and my troop (obv) to play in this big tournament, and at the end there were certificates and little pins handed out. The smiles on their faces and the joy that radiated from them for just being able to play the game they loved dearly was the best thing ever. It wasn’t about winning, but just playing the game and having fun.

You may have seen this on Twitter, but if you want to to this, I tag you!

Book Collection: Jennifer L. Armentrout

Hey Jen!

img_6102I can’t believe I’ve been reading Jen’s books since 2012. I remember the first time I ever met her – it was in Boonsboro at Turn the Page (Nora Robert’s bookstore). I honestly can’t remember if my friend and I went up for Jen, or for Nora, but I know we both left with copies of Obsidian and Half-Blood. My mom was heading up to Frostburg (Maryland) for a high school reunion and luckily Boonsboro is on the way, so we managed to convince her to take a detour for this signing.

Upon arriving at my grandparent’s house, my friend and I promptly sat down and started reading. I don’t remember which book I started with – probably Obsidian because my friend insisted that we read the same book at the same time.

From then on, I was a fan. We were fans. We scoured bookstores on and near release days for the next books and they were always read instantly. At the time, our local Books-A-Million always had our most anticipated books out a day early and we always bought them. (This was well before either of us were aware of release week sales and how they impact making best seller lists) We were avid readers and had found a new favorite author.

I’ve been a fan of Jen’s books since a Senior in High School – I’ve been reading them for quite a long time. Her stories often feel like coming home. I know if I pick on up, there’s like a 99% chance that I’m going to enjoy it. Her books are often the ones to get me out of reading slumps.

Since Jen is semi-local, I’ve been fortunate enough to see her at a bunch of events – from the Baltimore Book Festival, to launches, conventions and her own creation: Apollycon.

My friend and I went to the first one in Philly in 2015 (I think), and then to the fourth and fifth ones in D.C. in 2018 & 2019. And I’m going again next year, 2020!

(Pic – left: 2018, right: 2019 with Drew Leighty and Jennifer L. Armentrout and my bff / I definitely prefer 2019’s pic more)

Apollycon is always fun – you can see my recap of 2019 here! I always enjoy going and seeing Jen and all the other amazing authors. I usually have bruises on my shoulders by the end of the weekend. But even if Jen were the only author there, I wanted to see, I’d still go. I’ll support Jen and her books for as long as she’s writing. I love them and her so much.

(Pic – left: 2018, right: 2019 with Drew Leighty and Jennifer L. Armentrout / I definitely perfer 2019’s pic more)

I’m fortunate to consider Jen a friend and any way I can support her, I will. I remember finding her books. I remember how the light filtered through curtains as I laid on a bed at my grandparents and fell in love with her characters. I remember the anxious anticipation for the next book in her various series and showing up to each event with new copies of her books for her to sign. I love her characters, her stories, her worlds and I will read and reread them for forever.

I’ve been reading and supporting her for years now and I love doing it. I love promoting her work and getting people to fall in love with Daemon, Aiden, Seth, Luc, Roth, Zayne and the various other hot, swoon-y love interests she’s created over the years. I mean, who doesn’t want hot and snarky alien neighbors, or Greek God descendants with kick ass powers or a Prince of Hell and his Gargoyle opponent? She writes anything and everything and has you wishing that these characters were real.

Let’s finally jump into the reason you probably clicked on this post – the books! I’m going to be eternally broke if Jen’s books keep coming out with revamped covers, because I need them all. All these books currently occupy almost an entire shelf (minus 3 spots). It’s a long shelf too, like 6 feet and basically a shrine to Jen’s books.


I thought I had a lot of Brigid’s books…Jen’s occupied 2 bags and it was beyond difficult to carry both down the stairs. I managed, because there was no way I was making more than one trip. I also fought my glasses trying to slide right off the end of my nose the entire time. Setting them up on the banister and trying to fit them all in and have them look good was a challenge as well. It’s funny how, on a shelf they don’t look as numerous, but the minute you take them off and stack them up, it’s glaringly evident.

A quick run-down of Jen’s books – (This is going to be anything by quick, but here we go!)

Screen Shot 2019-10-24 at 1.43.23 AM.png

Phew. Typing them all out also puts the number of books she has into perspective. I don’t own every single one of her books. Besides the de Vincent books and the Anthologies (not a fan tbh) I’ve read everything else. I opted to post a screen grab, over actually typing them out in WordPress because this post would have been a mile long otherwise.


Okay, I’m going to start with my favorite, the Covenant Series! Here I have pictured the original paperbacks (bottom),then the new paperbacks with the gorgeous covers – I still need to buy the rest of the series (middle). Then I have the UK edition of Half Blood (purple spine) and finally the Titan Books. These aren’t necessarily part of the Covenant Series, but they’re a direct spin-off!

Here are some links – make sure you check them out!

Covenant / Titan

Pic: (top to bottom) The Return / The Power / The Struggle / The Prophecy / UK Half Blood / Half Blood (New US) / Pure (New US) / Deity (New US) / Daimon / Half Blood / Pure / Deity / Elixir / Apollyon / Sentinel 

img_6094Next up, the Lux series! I’ve since added a finished copy of The Burning Shadow to my collection, but unfortunately it’s not pictured. I took all these pictures weeks ago when the weather was still guaranteed to be nice. Which is a good thing since it’s rained for days here. I love Katy and Daemon and they will always have a special place in my heart. Here I have pictured the original paperbacks (top) I need to get the new covers. Opposition is the redone cover to match the first four books. Then Oblivion is Obsidian from Daemons POV and Obsession is an Arum novel. Then I have the US ARCs for The Darkest Star and The Burning Shadow , and finally a finished copy of The Darkest Star. 

Here are some links – make sure you check them out!

Lux / Arum  / Origin 

Pic: (top to bottom) Shadows / Obsidian / Onyx / Opal / Origin / Opposition / Oblivion / Obsession / The Darkest Star US ARC / The Burning Shadow US ARC / The Darkest Star 

img_6097Next we have the Dark Elements Series – which is another favorite, shocker! I have the second one on my TBR to read before the end of the year, just because. It’s time for a reread. I love Roth and Zayne and these books are just fun. Here I have pictured the new US covers (top) I freaking love them. Then the original covers, plus an ARC of Stone Cold Touch (my first ever Jen ARC!) and then a US ARC of Storm and Fury plus a finished copy. I’m super excited for the next book in the Harbinger series as the first one left me with my jaw dropped.

Here are some links – make sure you check them out!

Dark Elements / Harbinger 

Pic (top to bottom) White Hot Kiss (New US) / Stone Cold Touch (New US) / Every Last Breath (New US) / White Hot Kiss / Stone Cold Touch US ARC / Stone Cold Touch / Every Last Breath / Storm and Fury US ARC / Storm and Fury 

img_6098Then we have the Wicked Trilogy and these books are great! I loved Ren and Ivy and I can’t forget Tink and his Amazon Prime addiction. New Orleans, fae and tons of drama and romance, you don’t want to miss these characters or this world Jen has created. It’s fantastic. These books are definitely due for a reread and I would honestly love nothing more than to drop everything I’m currently reading to do so. Here I have pictured the original paperbacks, plus the 1001 Dark Night’s novellas, and there’s a third on the way!

Here are some links – make sure you check them out!

Wicked Trilogy

Pic (top to bottom) Wicked / Torn / Brave / The Prince / The King 

We’re coming down to the wire – two photo’s left!

img_6099Next is the Wait for You Series. The great thing about these books, is that you can read them in order, but they’re also standalones and can be read in whatever order you want. I love these books, my favorite being Stay with Me, but I do have one gripe, you might be able to see what it is from the picture.

These books aren’t stacked in order – which is listed above in the backlist photo. The mass market paperback style seriously annoys me to no end. That, and there are various pubs and none of them are uniform. Shelving them is a nightmare. But anyways, I have the whole series, with Trust in Me (green spine) being a novella, as well as the 1001 Dark Night’s novella Dream of You (bottom).

Here are some links – make sure you check them out!

Wait for You Series

Pic (top to bottom) Forever with You / Fall with Me / Trust in Me / Wait for You / Be with Me / Stay with Me / Fire in You / Dream of You

img_6100Finally, we are at the end. This stack is a mix of YA standalones and some NA.

The Dead List is probably my favorite of of this stack of books. I read it back when she published it on Wattpad. It’s definitely a bit of a thriller murder mystery and it’s so fun!

You really can’t go wrong with any of these books and they all range in genre! That’s one of the things I love about Jen and her books – she writes everything and they’re always pretty good and easy to get lost in.

Here are some links – make sure you check them out!

de Vincent / Till Death / The Dead List / Frigid / If There’s No Tomorrow / The Problem with Forever / Don’t Look Back / Cursed 

Pic (top to bottom) Moonlight Sins / Moonlight Seduction / Till Death / The Dead List / Frigid / Scorched / If There’s No Tomorrow / The Problem with Forever / Don’t Look Back / Cursed 

Phew! The scary thing is that this collection is only ever going to get bigger. Jen’s latest release The Burning Shadow just came out earlier this month, and the cover for Rage and Ruin was revealed, it’s gorgeous! I cannot wait to read it! If you haven’t yet fallen into the world that is Jennifer L. Armentrout, you’re missing out and you should fix that immediately. I would recommend starting with the Covenant Series (I have a whole review for the entire series here) but if you were to ask my best friend, she would insist on the Lux series. So, really you can’t go wrong with either!

Currently Reading & Watching #8

Image result for sims  gifsI’m in a slump so this is going to be short. In the last week and a half, I have spent more time watching Netflix and playing Sims4 instead of reading. Nothing is holding my interest. I keep picking up books only to put them down not even 50 pages in.

It’s like I posted my ambitious end of the year TBR and all desire to read went out the window. And I know it’s bad when even shows aren’t working as a distraction. Sims seems to be working, since I don’t actually play Sims but just create new characters and build them houses – yes, that’s about all I do. The only problem with playing Sims again, is that I want to spend all my money on the different expansion packs and stuff packs and game packs, and I can’t right now. I want them all.



The Light at the Bottom of the World – London Shah

I couldn’t get into this. Whether it’s solely because of this slump or if it’s because it sounds super similar to another book, I read a handful of years ago, I’m not entirely sure. I’ve heard nothing but good things, but the fact that this feels very familiar and I’m in a slump, doesn’t bode well for potentially finishing this book. Fall releases have been really letting me down lately, and I’m kind of tired DNFing everything I start.

Gravemaidens – Kelly Coon

Okay, I’m starting this one tonight, and I’m trying to clear my mind so I can go in open. I’m going to forcibly ignore my slump and try to get hooked. A friend told me something vague and non-spoilery about this book, so I’m hoping the interest I have in finding out what she was referring to is enough to keep my interest.


Grey’s Anatomy (Netflix)

This is my third rewatch – don’t judge. I’m such trash for this show it’s ridiculous. Mainly I just put it on for background noise while I’m playing Sims. I just passed the Izzy+Denny plot line – which I HATE. And I’m super not a fan of Cristina and Burke’s relationship. I’m also not much of an Izzy or Cristina fan. And since Alex has become my favorite character on the show due to the newer seasons, he’s so hard to hate now.

The Walking Dead (Live TV)

So far this season has been kind of ‘meh’ but give me more Negan. He’s become my favorite part of the show, and he’s not on nearly often enough.

Supernatural (Live TV)

This is the final season, which is super bitter-sweet but so far, I’ve really enjoyed it! I’m excited to see where the show is going to go this season!



Ten Books in My Amazon Cart

I’m on a buying ban. It’s the 17th and I’ve purchased one book in October – it was a preorder. I’m actually kind of surprised as to how well I’ve been sticking to this band, though when you have no extra funds to buy every single book you desire, it’s kind of easy.

That doesn’t mean I still don’t “shop”. The holidays are coming up and there are a few books I’ll be asking for, for Christmas.\

Now, there are many more than 10 books in my cart/saved for later, but for the sake of keeping this post on the shorter side, I’m limiting it.

  1. Failed Future (Air Awakens: Vortex Chronicles #3) – Elise Kova

I’ve read this but haven’t yet been able to purchase it. I need the paperback copy to go with the rest of my series.

  1. Sovereign Sacrifice (Air Awakens: Vortex Chronicles #4) – Elise Kova

This just came out, and since I’m on a ban, it sadly must wait.

  1. Lullaby (The Sand Maiden Book One) – L.R. W. Lee

This has popped up on my radar for a while now, and a friend finally convinced me to read it. Curse this book buying ban.

  1. Serpent & Dove – Shelby Mahurin

This one is killing me! I can’t believe I don’t already own a finished copy.

  1. All That We See or Seem (Dreamworld Duology #1) – Kristina Mahr

Honestly, the cover drew me in. It also sounds like it’ll be a good read.

  1. The Last Hope (The Raging Ones #2) – Krista & Becca Ritchie

I’ve read and loved this and desperately need it on my shelf. I’m sad it’s not on there yet.

  1. Royally Yours (Royally Series) – Emma Chase

I’ve enjoyed the other books in the series and want this one to complete the set.

  1. Bride of the Sea: A Little Mermaid Retelling (Otherworld) – Emma Hamm

The cover is gorgeous and I’m a sucker for anything Little Mermaid.

  1. Mistress of Thieves (Chronicles of a Cutpurse #1) – Carrie Summers

I love Carrie’s writing and do intend on reading everything she publishes.

  1. Nightforged (Shattering of the Nocturnai #1) – Carrie Summers

Ugh, I just want to own all of her books.

A SIMple Introduction

I’m still not reading.

Into the Crooked Place is still sitting on my ottoman, untouched for like the fourth day in a row. I’ve read none of this week’s releases. I’ve spent most of the day revising – so at least there has been some form of productivity happening.

Anyways, last night I played a bit of Sims to kind of take my mind off things. By “play” I mean I made my hundredth family and their house. I never actually “play” Sims. I thoroughly enjoy the creating of the Sims and the house. I don’t use Mods or Custom Content – mainly because I literally just learned about them and am still looking into it. I don’t own all the expansion/world/stuff packs (though I want to desperately, one day) so my options are a bit limited.

I’ve made families of pretty much every character I’ve ever created plus a few favorites from other authors. But today I’m going to introduce you to the characters that are in my Beach Contemporary WIP. I’m like 95% certain that this is going to be my NaNoWriMo project this year, so it works out.

This isn’t obviously the entire cast of characters, just the core 4. These Sims are as accurate as I could get them, with limited options and no custom content.

Before I jump into the character intros, a synopsis of this WIP is

Cassidy “Cassie” Lawrence and her family go to the beach every year with the Malcolm’s. Then Cassie found herself trapped under a giant circular pool float out in the surf unable to get out from under it.

 It’s been two years; everyone is back and Cassie remembers everything from that day. Ryan saving her. Her near instant crush on him after the fact. And most importantly, being too shy to tell him how she feels.

But what if Cassie’s affections are for the wrong person?

(Beach Contemporary WIP© 2019 Abee)

Screen Shot 2019-10-16 at 11.04.40 PM

First up –

Name: Cassidy “Cassie” Lawrence:

Age: 18 (almost 19)

DOB: September 19, 2000

Height: 5’7”

Eyes: Bright Green

Hair: Light Brown

Family: Mom + Dad + Younger Brother + Dog

Fun Fact: Always has a book on her

Quirks: Prone to twiddle with things to occupy her mind

She wants to be a writer, loves to read and is very creative and goal oriented.

Screen Shot 2019-10-16 at 11.04.54 PM

Screen Shot 2019-10-16 at 10.55.21 PMNext –

Name: Chase Hunt

Age: 19

DOB: April 8, 2000

Height: 6’0”

Eyes: Pale Green

Hair: Sandy Blond

Family: Mom + Younger Sister

Fun Fact: He got his tattoo without his mother knowing at 16 – instantly grounded for a month.

Quirk: Hates bugs

He’s going to school to become a personal trainer, likes being outside, can be very goofy and loves to cook.

Screen Shot 2019-10-16 at 10.55.31 PM

Screen Shot 2019-10-16 at 11.09.44 PMThird –

Name: Layne Edwards

Age: 20

DOB: January 2, 1999

Height: 5’5”

Eyes: Dark Brown

Hair: Platinum Blonde

Family: Mom + Dad + Younger Brother + Younger Sister + Cat

Fun Fact: Has a massive Influencer Following on Instagram.

Quirk: Snorts when she laughs, is embarrassed by it

She wants to be liked by everyone, very romantic, can be jealous and also loves trying new recipes.

Screen Shot 2019-10-16 at 11.05.33 PM

Screen Shot 2019-10-16 at 11.05.40 PMFinally –

Name: Ryan Malcolm

Age: 19

DOB: November 30, 2000

Height: 6’1”

Eyes: Amber

Hair: Dark Brown

Family: Mom + Dad + Younger Sister 2x

Fun Fact: Believes in Ghosts

Quirk: Sneezes when he’s nervous

Wants to be a bartender (against his parent’s wishes), is romantic, athletic and always hungry.

Screen Shot 2019-10-16 at 11.06.00 PM

Phew, that took longer than I expected! I’m also going to include their various looks, because 1) this book takes place at the beach, so bathing suits are a must and 2) I spent too much time creating and then screenshotting and cropping the images to not use them.

I’m getting excited to work on this WIP. Scenes keep popping into my head. I don’t want to get too technical in my plans for NaNoWriMo since I do have plans to do a dedicated post. So, think of this as a little sneak peek into the story I plan to write!

*Also, if anyone wants to give me a crash course in Mods and/or Custom Content (basically how it all works) I’d be forever grateful. There’s so much information online I’m not entirely sure who to trust. The few videos I’ve watched have been kind of vague as well.


I’m Stressed…Just a Bit.

I’m not even sure if it’s actually stress or a slight reading slump or what, but I’m woefully behind on October Book Releasee (there are so many of them) and it’s bumming me out. It doesn’t help that a lot of them I ended up DNFing and even more so the desire I had to read them back in January has faded.

I’m trying to push myself through them, but I’m thinking I need to take a break and just read something for fun that I don’t need to review. I think I need something low to no pressure. The idea of taking a break to read something for fun, stresses me out because I want to try and get the October Releases done in October.

So, what I actually end up doing is not reading at all because that makes total sense I know. It’s also why this post is going up versus a book review. I’m also very much into wanting to work on my WIP, but because I feel this pressure to read, I ignore it, and no shows but Grey’s is capturing my attention so basically the majority of my outlets are crumbling around me.

Also NaNoWriMo is quickly approaching and I think I know what I want to write, but I also can’t bring myself to commit to it. I gave myself a self-imposed deadline, which is this Friday, so I have time to do some prep and it’s stressing me out as well.


There are just not enough hours in a day. I need more.

On a good note, I did finish a book last night and enjoyed it and I read the first part of a friends WIP and it was amazing! She read the first five chapters of mine, and I was so nervous! No one outside of my family and friends who have known me for years had read it, but she liked it! The fact that I need to get more chapters to her is a motivation and hopefully I can jump into it tomorrow.


I think I’m going to play some Sims to get my mind off everything and start fresh tomorrow (today when you’re reading this).


What do you do when you feel a bit burned out and uninspired? Let me know below.

Book Review: Sovereign Sacrifice (Air Awakens: Vortex Chronicles #4)

sovereign sacrificeTitle: Sovereign Sacrifice (Air Awakens: Vortex Chronicles #4)

Author: Elise Kova

Pub. Date: October 15, 2019

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

Vi was supposed to be the perfect crown princess. Then, she abandoned her throne.
Vi was supposed to save the world as its Champion. Then, the world she loved vanished.

Now, all she knows is that she has deadly magic and brutal cunning and she’s ready to settle some scores.

Old loves and new allies tell her to play it safe. But Vi is done with caution. She has a chance to right ancient wrongs and this princess-turned-warrior isn’t turning back.

She’s ready to bring an end to the vortex of death the world is trapped in.

This will be a spoiler free review. I want to profusely thank Elise for gifting me an early copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Before I jump into the actual review, I just want to quickly shout out HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY/RELEASE DAY to Sovereign Sacrifice and to Elise! You can grab your copy today! If you haven’t yet read any books in the Air Awakens world, then you’re seriously missing out and should rectify that immediately. Even better, you can start with the Vortex Chronicles, or the original Air Awakens Series, or even the Golden Guard Trilogy! Personally, I would recommend Golden Guard, Air Awakens, Vortex Chronicles, but it’s totally up to you!

I should not be writing this review right now.

I’m not okay.

I legit just finished reading

What do you mean I have to WAIT for book five? For Crystal Caged?

I’ll just be over here sobbing in a corner while I wait.

Once again Elise has knocked it so far out of the park that the ball is currently still heading away from Earth. I mean, oh my god. At the end of Failed Future I was shocked and had no clue what to expect Vi to do next. Vi does everything in this book and then some and we saw some sides to her that surprised me. She definitely goes through some major character developments in this book, and despite being slapped in the face with the fact that “the world she knew was gone” Vi handles herself very well. I’m so excited to see how Vi pulls off her plan devised at the end of this book.

Old and new faces resurface in this book, and the very future of the world is at stake. No pressure right? Vi has to navigate this world carefully, but what would you try and do to save the future?

I honestly don’t know what to say because I just want to scream about every single little thing that happened in this book, but S P O I L E R S. At this point it is kind of hard to talk about vague occurrences because we’re so deep in this narrative. A slight misstep could ruin so many mind-blowing moments that Elise has so artfully crafted.

This is one of those series (the whole Air Awakens World) that I wish I could actually scrub from my mind and experience for the first time all over again. With each new book, Elise continues to solidify her place as one of my all-time favorite fantasy authors – easily top five, no, top three. I fall in love with her writing with each new book and the sheer intricacy of her worlds and her characters. I’m super excited and honestly, a bit anxious to see what she does in Crystal Caged and whether or not Vi is going to be successful in her journey.

I’ll say it again, if you haven’t yet picked up these books, please do so. I’m forever glad that Facebook targeted an ad for Air Awakens at me. I would have been seriously missing out and wouldn’t have fallen in love with these characters. Sovereign Sacrifice is out today, so pick up your copy and dive in!