InstaLove Exists

currently playing on my laptop: You Should Know Where I’m Coming From by Banks

You know the term Insta-Love or maybe instalove. It’s when two characters see one another and either immediately or pretty shortly thereafter fall completely in loooovvveee.


Many readers say this is a load of junk. Many times it is a load of junk. But I’m here to tell you it happened with my husband and me. I saw my future husband at a Halloween party and I knew I loved him. It’s as simple and as complicated as that. He wore a costume of a character I thought was fresh and unique. Just the look in his eye, for some unknown reason, told me he was going to be the love of my life. I didn’t know if he would reciprocate. Lucky for me, he did love me back, although I think it took him far longer to figure that out.😉

I only say this so that if there are characters in your story that have an instant connection, dare I say LOVE, it isn’t as impossible as some would claim. It is surely a very rare thing. But it happened to me.

Happy writing and may there be more love than hate in your world!


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Writing Tips: Action Scenes Part II

currently playing on my laptop: Warrior by Aurora

Good Saturday, writers! Here is another Writing Tips video for you. This week, I’m on location at my family’s martial arts’ studio and I’ll show you a couple of moves for your character to use when he/she takes down the bad guy. I hope you enjoy it!

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Yurt: A Home Far Prettier Than It Sounds

currently playing on my laptop: Dark Necessities by the Red Hot Chili Peppers

When you research history and cultures to write a deeply escapist fantasy, you come across cool things. Some stick with you more than others. For me, one of these sticky discoveries is the yurt. The collapsable homes, used by nomads in Russia, Kazakhstan, and Mongolia, seem so cozy. And exotic. They’re made of wooden slats, then covered in felted wool.


See? It has a skylight and everything. C’mon. You know that looks so fabulous.

Yurta 2

This cut out illustration shows how the cooking fire works with the smoke coming out of the top. Do you see the latticed woodwork?


Kazakh jurt

So who is with me? Let’s go build some yurts!

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Writing Tips: Action Scenes, Part I

I made another Saturday writing tips video for you! This one goes over three things to watch out for when writing action scenes. Let me know if you like it or have anything to add. I’m totally open to any and all thoughts!:) Have a great weekend, everyone, and keep on creating!

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Don’t Stress Out, Writers

currently playing on my laptop: Heathens by Twenty-one Pilots

First off, I’m sorry for the late posting. I’m trying to post every Sunday evening, but yesterday was both Father’s Day here in the US and also my wedding anniversary.:)


This is so meta. I’m stressing, so I’m going to give you ways to relieve stress. It’ll help me. I swear it will. 


A little pressure can be great to light the fire under us and get us working, but stress that freezes you up is no good. Here are some ways I’ll combat my I-have-so-much-to-do-and-I-do-not-know-where-to-start.

  1. Make a list Lists are THE BEST. Write just three things you’d like to accomplish today. Order them according to priority and give them an appointment time. Stick to that action like you do for those appointments where you’ll have to pay the person even if you don’t show up.
  2. Take three yoga-style lion breaths Your body is like a machine. The heat under your skin and the sweat on your lip is your machine going wonky because of your mindset. Don’t throw out simple fixes like this. You change your oil, right? Well, switch out your body’s stress tank. Breathe deep through the nose, filling your lungs, your hips, your arms and legs. Breathe out strong and hard like a bad ass lion. Three times, baby. Just do it.
  3. For one minute, imagine you on your deathbed No, really. What is important on your virtual deathbed? That dirty countertop? Doubt it. Remember when your work day is finished, you still have that friend/family/alone time/nature/God/cat/dog/hedgehog to enjoy. This one is kind of a This too shall pass type of deal.


I hope this helps you! It definitely helped me, so thanks for being a part of that. You are a bad ass lion.

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Writing Tips: Plotting Your Story

now playing on my laptop: Let It Go by James Bay

Hey all! It’s time for another Saturday writing tips video! This one gives you some practical advice on how to get started plotting. I hope you enjoy it!

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Why You Should Pay Attention to Fan Art

currently playing on my laptop: Handclap by Fitz and the Tantrums

I LOVE fan art inspired by my favorite reads. But in addition to simply enjoying the beauty of the sketches, paintings, photographs, and more, I value what the pieces show about the fan.


Which characters grabbed them. What elements of those characters appealed to them. If the fan saw romance where I missed it. If the fan noticed a connection I ignored. Did the reader see fear where I saw arrogance? How about the way they hold themselves or even their weapon. How they wear their clothing or uniform. What is the pivotal point in the story according to the fan?


Fan art shows us writers what people love about their favorite stories and that is very valuable. We must endeavor to make our own characters shine in readers’ eyes.


(For me, the characters shown are Sophia from ROOK, Kell from A DARKER SHADE OF MAGIC, Po from GRACELING, Lorelai from THE SHADOW QUEEN, Arin from THE WINNER’S CURSE, Elisa from GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS, Gansey from THE RAVEN BOYS, and Sean and Puck from THE SCORPIO RACES.)

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