Amidst all of the craziness in the past month, a lot of it falling into the negatively charged and emotionally draining realm, there has also been a very positive, inspiring and exciting flame that has been growing; something that started out as a surprise to me, after being an extended an invitation, and now, something I can finally announce to you! Upon accepting, ideas were traded, foundations were laid and the ground work was set out, with the goal being to share with the world come December. Well, friends, December is only a few days a way and I don’t think I can keep it a secret anymore.
I am so stoked, and beyond honored, and utterly nervous, to announce to you, dear readers, that I am embarking on a journey with three other amazing, inspiring and talented writers; a journey where we write and share short stories regularly, in the hopes to not only challenge and grow ourselves as writers, but to also help encourage, inspire and motivate the community that just might grow alongside us.
We’re called Muse in Pocket, Pen in Hand.
Our blog launched a few days ago with our first post explaining who and what we are (I linked it just above, so you could check it out, if you’d like). Basically, it’s a blog where we post four separate short stories (one per week) by four different writers based off the same prompt. We’ll also sprinkle in inspiration stories, featured bloggers, writing prompts for others to follow along, musing music and other fantastic randomness to make this blog everything we want to make it.
Before I go on to brag about the three other writers I’m floored to share this blog with, I do have to pause to have a small freak out moment: writing this post, my excitement levels are through the roof. Considering writing has been a labor instead of a passion lately, making this commitment and challenging myself and my craft is a huge–and needed–step forward. Especially because I am absolutely terrified to do it, mainly considering I’m obviously shite at writing short stories. I’m a lengthy writer and my ideas cannot be tamed. Though I’ve taken a few classes where I wrote a handful of short stories each, I never felt that was my strength. I feel my best writing comes out through novel-length works. So when I was first invited to be part of this adventure, after I got past being floored and looking around the room to make sure I wasn’t be mistaken for the much more talented writer standing behind me, I was so nervous. I was committing to writing 12 short stories a year. But not just that. I’d also be publishing them for anyone to read and rip apart, if they so choose.
Naturally, I swallowed my fear and agreed before they changed their mind.
I’m still terrified. Though I have a rough draft of my first story, not slated to be published for the world to read until December 23rd, I’m still hesitant. I’m still wary. But that’s exactly where I need to be: out of my comfort zone, taking risks, embracing fears. Dreams aren’t accomplished otherwise. But even if this change of pace doesn’t help my writing grow (hint: it will), the chance to be inspired and work alongside three amazing, talented, inspiring and encouraging women is something I cannot pass up and makes every moment of banging my head on the table when my ideas try to run away from me (towards novel-status, if you follow me) makes it worth it.
I bet you want to meet them.
Come, I’ll introduce you.
First up is Joyce. She’s the genius behind The Writes of Passage, a blog that I’ve been following for a while now and love to get lost within. She lives in Singapore, has gone on enough amazing traveling adventures that I don’t think my jealousy is unfounded and writes in realms ranging from contemporary to fantasy to magical realism. You should probably check out her published novel, Lambs for Dinner, if for no other reason than to be able to brag that you read her before she was on the NY Times #1 Bestseller List. I am so thankful for her taking charge on this and bringing us together. Her compassion, her drive, her honesty and her humor have all been delightful and I cannot wait for you to get to know her as I have.
Next up is Becky, my fellow stuck-in-the-states writer (though she might not consider herself stuck like I do, living on the coast). She’s currently reviving her blog All the Pieces, writes YA contemporary and I actually don’t think I knew her before Joyce introduced us through this collaboration. I am especially grateful for that introduction, because Becky is one hell of an individual. Not only can she write, but she also is an amazing artist who I may try and convince to do fanart of my writing one day, simply so I can say I own a piece by her before she’s in all the galleries (plus, have really bomb artwork of my characters). Her liveliness, her courage, her authenticity and her creativity blow me through the roof and if she isn’t on your radar, well, you can thank me later for correcting that error now.
Our last victim is Meredith, who lives on the other side of the pond in England, where she is currently killing her PhD (it’s trying to kill her, but alas, it’s efforts are for naught, she’s slaying it too well). If those two facts alone don’t already prove she is the definition of a BAMF, well, check out her blog, M.A. Crosbie, and there’s all the proof you need to know I’m right. Meredith and I somehow stumbled upon one another’s blogs and her comments on mine have always been insightful, uplifting and encouraging, just like she is naturally. When I realized we’d be growing closer through our blog together, I was beyond stoked. I already admired the hell out of her and now that I know her even better, that admiration has only grown tenfold. She’s a beautiful example of persevering and fighting for your dreams and I strive to follow her example. I’m so stoked for you to read her historical fiction. I know I am.
And then there’s me, who you already know. Trust me, we’re having the same reaction right now: how did this kid (me) get into cohorts with all of those rockstars she just introduced me to? (Answer: sheer dumb luck, I think.) And I bet I can continue to guess what you’re thinking: Wow, I have so many new blogs to go follow! (Yes, yes you do.) Hm, this Muse in Pocket, Pen in Hand sounds rather interesting. I may have to check it out when the first story is published on December 2nd. (Yes, you really should.) I wonder how Nicole learned how to be so accurately telepathic? (I…fear I can’t disclose that information. *sneaks away quietly*)
So friends, there you have it. I am so stoked and blessed to be part of this new creative endeavor. If it sounds interesting to you, I’d love for you to check out our blog, give it a follow or share it with your friends. We’re really excited about it. As always, thanks for reading my ridiculously-lengthy posts and for your support in general. I wouldn’t have been able to reach the point where I am, actually collaborating on my third blog, without such a fantastic community to make me believe I could do it in the first place, even when they were unaware it was happening. Here’s to new friends, exciting adventures and challenging our comfort zones! 🙂