Something New: Adopting

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Hey everyone!  If you like what you've been reading in these blog posts, make sure to snag a copy of Something New today! Just a quick post today; trying to beat a thunderstorm before my Internet goes out and I can't post! Now, an issue that approaches later on in the story revolves around adoption. Especially in today's society, where an increasing amount of kids are being put into "the system" thanks to the opioid epedemic, I think it's an important issue to feature in my books. The series, in this book and later on, will also discuss the struggle of deciding whether to keep a baby or give it up for adoption. While Joanna and Walter begin the foster and adoption processes because of infertility, it certainly isn't the 'second best' option. Their journey is only beginning in Something New , but Joanna will already learn that you don't have to be the birth mother to care dearly for a child.

Free eBook: Beautiful Chaos; Tuesday Only!

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Click HERE to snag a free copy!  Today only!

Fun news, everyone! To kick off the release of Something New I'll be offering a flash freebie on Kindle for Beautiful Chaos which is a must-read as well! You will be able to download free copies of Beautiful Chaos for Kindle from on Tuesday, August 28th only! Mark your calendars and leave a review once you've read it!

Something New: Inspiring the Many

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

I have a whole ream of exciting news, guys!
1) Something New is now available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback formats!  Just a quick search away.  Make sure to pick up a copy of Beautiful Chaos too if you haven't read it yet.  
2) I am looking for folks to sign up for a blog tour for Something New!  You can see the blog post about it HERE and sign up right HERE by August 28th!  
3) I will be hosting a pretty sweet giveaway September 1-8, so make sure to stay tuned for that as well. 
4) I'm in the process of opening an Etsy store, where you'll be able to purchase *signed* paperback copies of my books -- at the same list price as Amazon!  Stay tuned for information on that, which will become available as soon as my stock arrives in the mail!

Now, on to the (albeit short) blog post!
Recently, the Christian band For King & Country released a new single from their upcoming album titled "God Only Knows."  (Just putting this here: I'm in no way affiliated with For King & Country, nor are any of my products.)  I was absolutely floored by the song and thought it would be a great example to include as a message within parts of the book.  While Something New does not deal with suicide like their video does (and what an important message it is), it deals with the fallout pertaining to drug addiction and what it takes to get clean.  One character that was introduced in the first book, Beautiful Chaos, is attempting to end her addictions and she is drawn to Christianity, but thinks she's too far gone to be wanted by God or anyone else.  I think this is a crucial theme to include when discussing drug addiction because God loves you, no matter how far astray you've slipped.  He can fill the lonely spots in your life that nothing, not even drugs, can fill or take the place of.  And only He knows what to think of you -- not you, the people who try to tear you down, or even your friends/family.  Not to mention, those concepts are far overreaching than simply affecting the drug epidemic: literally everyone in this universe can benefit from that message.  

The same theme is expressed in For King & Country's song, and I listened to it on repeat while I was writing that specific section in my novel.  It's just such an important thing to impress upon others, especially young adults who struggle or are in close contact daily (whether it's through school, community, or even their families) with difficult situations that make them question their worth and who they are.  This series, especially, is concerned with young adults finding their way in a big ole world, regardless of who you are or what your qualifications are.  Jobs, marriage, finding an identity in Christ and in the community, and working to glorify God and leave your community - or the world - better than you found it. 

I hope these messages are clear in these books, because I am just so excited with the idea of sharing such themes in a real-world, (hopefully) relatable way!  

Something New Blog Tour Announcement!

Monday, August 20, 2018

Hey everyone!  Exciting news: this week, I will be publishing Something New!  (Or at least, sending the files in for review and hoping for the best because I'll scream if my formatting is messed up).

Do you guys want to help me hype this up?  I've been working on it for a year and these are my babies!  So if you do want to help me by participating in a fun week-long blog tour, please fill out THIS form!
The tour will run from September 1-September 8, alongside the giveaway which will also begin on the 1st and end on the 8th, with winners announced on the 9th.

You'll be able to sign up for a book spotlight for Something New as well as Beautiful Chaos (since it needs promoted as the 1st book you need to read before Something New!) and/or sign up for an author interview!  I won't be offering review copies of Something New unless you've already read Beautiful Chaos.  If you have, please let me know on the form and I'll be happy to send a PDF copy your way.  I will be taking sign-ups until August 28, when I will put together a schedule and send out all necessary material. 

On to the giveaway!

This is the second installment of the Mount Sterling series, and reading them in order is absolutely necessary.  Because of that, I will be hosting a giveaway for two prizes: the grand prize winner will receive a PDF copy of Beautiful Chaos AND a PDF copy of Something New!  The second place winner will receive a free PDF copy of Beautiful Chaos so they're all set to snag a copy of Something New.  

Basically, we're going to have a ton of fun with this blog tour, so make sure you sign up today!  Come one, come all!

Something New: Forgiving

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

News for anyone looking forward to Something New's release: as of August 14th, I finished the second draft!  It stands currently at around 62,000 words.  Edits begin today.

One of the key themes for Something New involves forgiveness.  When we last saw Joanna, she had plenty of people who she didn't entirely enjoy being around, suffice it to say.  She finds herself surrounded by new situations brought up by her old college roommate, an aggressor, and her uncle (okay, he's also an aggressor).  What can you do in situations like that?  Sit and fester in anger or forgive them and move on with your life.  See, if you don't forgive someone and move on, you'll sit in the past forever and you won't truly move on.  You'll just fester over it until it infects your heart and you're no better than the person you're angry at.  This is something that we'll explore in Something New, the title of which doesn't just refer to Joanna and Walter's upcoming nuptials but to living life anew: and that means cleaning and getting rid of the garbage. 

The art of forgiving is something that I think is important to explore in this series.  In Beautiful Chaos, Joanna has to forgive her stepmother for her less-than-kind actions, and she has to forgive Walter's childhood antics in order to see the young man he's become.  In Something New, she has to forgive a good many individuals in order to find peace, which is perhaps one of the rarest things in the life of any woman in her early twenties.

Walter also goes through a rough patch with the loss of his father.  The circumstances surrounding his father's death are less than ideal to say the least; a promise he made to his father was broken on that day.  He has to learn how to move on and forgive himself, which may be even harder than forgiving other people. 

Joanna and Walter are not only embarking on a new journey through life together, they're also beginning a journey of growing closer to God, which in turn will bring them closer as a couple.  To grow closer to God, they (like us) must "forgive us our debts / as we forgive our debtors" (Matthew 6:12, NKJV).  In other words, forgive others as much as God will forgive us...which is a lot, obviously.  Going back to what I was saying previously, it's important to explore the benefits of forgiveness because in today's society, it's more popular to hold grudges against other people, even entire groups, for actions they committed long ago.  I think it's evident that this mindset is fairly negative and only causes strife in our society -- look at all of the protests, the extremist groups!  Perhaps if we step out willing to forgive, we would be less likely to act out with rage and bitterness towards others.  We'll see that in this book -- and we'll see what happens when a grudge does, in fact, boil over. 

What was the hardest thing you've had to forgive someone for?  Do you agree that a lack of forgiveness is affecting our nation? 

Week In Review: It's Madness

Friday, August 10, 2018

I'm sleep-deprived and writing this a little bit ahead of schedule because I'm tired of writing quick, thoughtless posts at about 10 PM on Saturdays, so hang on! 
(So tired, in fact, that I just spent several minutes Googling vague terms for the gif I'm about to use, only to realize after I'd found it that I'd actually saved this puppy on my computer a few days ago...)
Credit: NBC's Chuck //Odyssey
This week, I transferred all of my files from CreateSpace to KDP after reading this article and whew, let me tell you: something glitched up with Beautiful Chaos and the file became corrupt and needed removed.  Thankfully, I did have the file -- but it was on my other computer (which magically began having issues...again....after I thought I had it fixed).  The compter runs, but not very fast.  At all...and when you're uploading a file that's about 460 pages and doing it repeatedly because KDP didn't want to play nice....?  Mayhem.  Admittedly, the other books I transferred worked fine, but obviously, the biggest one had to be the biggest pain!  
Image result for Loki facepalm gif
Credit: Thor // MRWGifs
And then they decided that the cover, which worked fine on CreateSpace, was too small.
“ My inaugural Telenovela GIF, the James McMahon Irish Water Spaniel Head Tilt.
Credit: Zachary Levi // 

Anyway.  It's fixed now, so all of my books are once more available for purchase on Amazon, only under a different printer.  No difference for you guys!  I'd also recommend reading that article I linked to if you're self-published.  

Currently Reading: This week, I finished Leia (review here) and gave up on Fawkes (reason here).  I just started Mother Knows Best by Serena Valentino.  I do highly recommend Leia by Claudia Gray if you're a Star Wars fan.  I know it isn't the old canon, but it's a great story and was very gripping, pretty much through the entire book.  

Current Projects: Something New: I only have about four more chapters to go!  So exciting!  Then come edits and I should be ready to go for publication...say October/November-ish?  That's my goal, anyway. And I have a super-secret plot written down for a book I want to work on as soon as my draft for Something New is done.  It's a book about Rapunzel and the gang from Tangled as well as Rapunzel's Tangled Adventures and I seriously plan to get published by Disney with it, guys.  That's my new dream that I've been praying on.  (I'm actually a lot more nervous and excited about the idea of approaching agents and getting rejected a ton, but I'm trying to act cool about it, 'kay?)
Related image
Credit: Disney's Tangled // The respectful owner of the edit, the name of which I unfortunately do not know)
Current Bible Verse: "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him."  (James 1:5, NKJV)

What have you guys been up to?  Any good reads lately? 

Something New: Model Behavior

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

In the Mount Sterling series, as well as all of my books (present and future) I plan to exemplify healthy romantic relationships.  In today's media, anything but that is represented positively.  People who work things out, are loyal, and save themselves for sole marriage to one other person only -- they simply don't make it into the equation of excitement and drama.  So  I want to depict that in my books!

It's so important to work things out if there's an argument or disagreement.  Why would anyone want to throw away months or years of loving someone just because they messed up?  Obviously, things like abuse aren't acceptable, but if you're willing to abandon a relationship just because you aren't "feeling sparks" or suddenly realized you don't like who someone really is doesn't mean you shouldn't stick around.

Loyalty feeds into this as well.  If you aren't willing to be loyal, to commit your life to someone else, then you probably need to evaluate your relationship for the other person's sake.  Our society is so concerned about our own self that we forget that our actions impact others as well, and if one person in a relationship is hurting, the other person probably is too.  Being loyal means you're committed to someone else's wellbeing, that you love them above everyone else.  Who wouldn't want to be part of that?  Why aren't we valuing that in our books, movies, and TV shows?

In this book, Joanna and Walter are going through a lot of things.  Joanna discovers just before their marriage that she is infertile.  Walter could just as easily leave her at the altar if he wanted biological kids more than he cared about her.  But he sets his wants --yes, wants; not needs-- aside because he is loyal and committed to her.  Walter and Joanna also go into a series of disagreements about where they will live upon marriage, a sticking point you may recall from the first book.  Some other issues happen as well, which test their brand-new marriage.  But realizing that life is tough isn't enough to break their bond.

They continue learning about each other as their relationship evolves from engaged to married, and they stick with it! 
They don't let their own desires and disagreements pull them away from each other; rather, they let those instances be learning experiences, things they can use to grow closer as husband and wife. I think that's something that young adults sorely need to read today; a breath of fresh air in the dumpster fire that most relationships are depicted as in today's media and even in the real world.

Is that something you want to see in a book?  Have you written anything like that?

Week In Review: Insert Snarky Title Here

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Hey everyone!  As for a title this week, I've got nothin'.  I've had a raging headache bouncing from my left and right sides since Sunday night, so that's probably why.
Hmm...what happened this week?  Well, I finally finished my "happiness" class, which resulted in more existential crises and angst than most classes so I think they need to re-title the class.  But it's over with, and I'm glad to announce I finally have enough credits in for my psychology minor, which was getting to be a bit worrisome because my college decided to stop offering fresh psych classes during the normal fall/spring semesters!
Credit: Tangled // Know Your Meme 
Currently Reading: Leia and Fawkes by Nadine Brandes
Current Projects: Still working on Something New , but I'm almost done! Current Bible Verse: I can do all things through Christ who gives me strengths (Philippians 4:13 NIV)

Make sure to tune in Monday for a special post!

Book Spotlight: "When Beauty Blooms" by Victoria Lynn!

Hey everyone!  Today I have a book spotlight for a fantastic novelette, When Beauty Blooms by Victoria Lynn.

This is a very sweet story about a young woman struggling to fit in during the Revolutionary War.  I was given an advanced reader copy of it and you can find my full review HERE, but I want to add that it was very easy to fall in love with the characters.  Very engaging!  If you're looking for one more book to read for summer, you'll definitely want to check it out!  It's available now at Amazon on Kindle & paperback. 

When Beauty Blooms Synopsis: 

"Revolutionary War Era England

Marjorie Kirk is a woman with no fortune, no prospects, no family, and no skills.  Or so she thinks.  She is awkward, shy, and the farthest thing from any semblance of a society lady.  

The new minister keeps turning up the most awkward of places and she can't help but feel that her life is doomed to one of embarrassment.  But will her flaws actually be the thing that others find the most attractive?

A story of a young woman with social anxiety and how she learned to bloom."  

Add When Beauty Blooms to your Goodreads shelf!

About the Author: 

Victoria Lynn is in her 20s and if she's not writing, she is probably sewing, singing, playing the piano, washing dishes, creating something with her hands, or learning something new.  She has a passion for serving her Creator, encouraging others and being creative.  She blogs at about writing, fashion, modesty, her walk with God and life.  She lives in Michigan with her parents and 8 siblings.

She is also hosting a Rafflecopter giveaway.  Click the link to enter for your chance to win a *signed* copy of When Beauty Blooms as well as a $10 Amazon gift card! Make sure to follow her on social media for updates and new novel releases!

For more blog tour festivities such as reviews, author interviews, and book spotlights, make sure to follow along with these lovely bloggers!
Today: Ashley Spies at Precious Moments 
August 7: Gabriellyn Gidman at PageTurners
August 8: Liv K. Fisher at The Book Sprite and Medomfo at Writings from a God Girl 
August 9: Kaylee at Kaylee's Kind of Writes and Giana at Gianna & Gemini 
August 10: Gracelyn Buckner at Literatura
August 11: Angela Watts at The Peculiar Messenger
August 12: Allison Tebo at Allison's Well
August 13: Jana Tenbrook at Reviews from the Stacks and Lilly Shyree at Live Beautifully
August 14: Hosanna Emily at Having a Heart Like His
August 15: Laura Grace at Unicorn Quester, Lydia at Spoonful of Surprises , and Allyson Kennedy at Authoring Arrowheads
August 16: Madison Guy at A Little Southern Grace
August 17: Tammy Lash at Reflections of an Author
August 18: Laura Guenot at Beautiful Things
August 19: Grace Maples at Proclaiming His Excellencies
August 20: Sunny Houk at Thatowlnerd
August 21: Rebekah Morris at Read Another Page
August 22: Abigail McKenna at Novels, Dragons, and Wardrobe Doors and Raechel Lenore at God's Peculiar Treasure Rae
August 23: Sarah at A Day In The Life
August 24: Kaitlyn Smith at Maidens for Modesty
August 25: Faith Potts at Chosen Vessels

Something New: Creating Geniuses

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

One goal of the Mount Sterling is to explore how gifted children (and adults) truly operate and integrate into everyday life.  Usually, characters in literature and movies who are depicted as genius or gifted are depicted as pretty arrogant, unpleasant; the kind of person you like because of what they've done rather than who they are.  Think Katniss Everdeen, Tony Stark, even the brooding Bruce Wayne.  They're depicted as something sort of dark and untouchable. 

And I wanted a romance with everyday geniuses because it is something I have never read.  Obviously, folks with higher IQs can and do lead normal lives; they're not always battling armies or overturning governments.  A high IQ can even be accompanied by learning disabilities.  And geniuses are as prone to stupid mistakes as everyone else!  This is something I wanted to display in the series.

Joanna: she's a linguistics master and knows more languages than she can count on her fingers.  But she's terrible at making good decisions, following her gut instinct, and is below-par with mathematics.

Walter: he's a musical prodigy and has good discernment, but is subpar in most other categories, especially physical feats. 

Alison: she is ahead in her classes but struggles to learn everything because she tends to get distracted very, very easily. 

Of course, the rest of the cast involves "normal" individuals, which adds the dilemma that many gifted or genius-level individuals face with social circles and others not understanding how they operate, even parents becoming frustrated with them.

And in book #1, Joanna and Walter find themselves in several dilemmas that they will work their way out of in the next installment of the series.  Typical issues that accompany a new couple, along with the aforementioned problems.  A central issue also surrounds the issue of being "born old," or simply being much more mature than peers of the same age.  While their peers are still trudging through college, Joanna and Walter are graduated, marrying and pursuing careers  that may or may not work out.  They might even become foster parents, if I say so myself. 

And while they might not be saving the world, they'll be helping their little slice of Kentucky in one of the best ways possible.