Author: Allison Grace

Behold Our God Theology Review + Interview with Eliana From Eliana the Writer!

Behold Our God Theology Review + Interview with Eliana From Eliana the Writer!

I know this technically is not a Christmas song, but sometimes we forget Who the baby in the manger really is. I recently read an article on Grace To You that addressed this topic.

This song is one of my favorites (as well as one of my friend’s favorites, but more on that later).

The first two verses speak of God as King and Ruler of all the earth. They tell of His great power and His omniscience (a big word that just means “all-knowing”). I am reminded of Isaiah 40:12-14, which reads,

Who has measured the waters in the hollow of His hand,
And marked off the heavens by the span,
And calculated the dust of the earth by the measure,
And weighed the mountains in a balance
And the hills in a pair of scales?
Who has directed the Spirit of the LORD,
Or as His counselor has informed Him?
With whom did He consult and who gave Him understanding?
And who taught Him in the path of justice and taught Him knowledge
And informed Him of the way of understanding?

Both “Behold Our God” and Isaiah ask rhetorical questions, to which the only answer is God.

The final verse talks about Jesus and His sacrificial death. The same God who holds the oceans and knows all things is the baby in the manger. One of the names of Jesus is Emmanuel, which means “God with us.” Isn’t it staggering to think about how God humbled Himself to become a man and die for our salvation?

This Christmas, let’s not forget Who the newborn baby lying in the manger is.


Now, I mentioned something about one of my friends also liking this song. That’s because she has just re-released her blog and I wanted to help her celebrate!

If you haven’t noticed, I love interviewing people, so here is an exclusive interview with Eliana!

Welcome to my blog! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your blog?

Hi, I’m Eliana! The main thing you need to know about me is that I love Jesus. I’m also a homeschooler, a high school sophomore, an INFJ, and the oldest of eleven.

My blog is all about following Jesus right where I am. Its tagline is “living out faith to the fullest in a large family.” I write about things I learn in the Bible, getting along with siblings, glorifying God, and more. 

Wow, our personalities are almost the same! I’m an INFP. When did you first start blogging and why do you blog?

I started my blog back in February, after I joined the Young Writer’s Workshop, to help me consistently practice and grow in writing. (Back then I used Blogger.) But I also had that additional hope I think every blogger has–to encourage and inspire with my words. 

I agree, I think most bloggers do have that dream, myself included. Which authors have inspired you the most?

Hmm, this is a tough one. XD Brett and Alex Harris wrote Do Hard Things, and that was awesome. Jaquelle Crowe is definitely inspiring, between her book, This Changes Everything, and her blog, jaquellecrowe.com. I’m not sure if fiction necessarily “inspires” me too much, but it doesn’t have to be favorite to inspire me when it does. But I should definitely mention J. K. Rowling and Shannon Messenger.

This Changes Everything is one of my favorite books! When you aren’t writing, what do you like to do?

Well, I like to read, but that is kind of obvious since I write. XD I also like art and graphic design. (My favorite color is purple! =D) Watercolor pencils are amazing, and Canva is really fun!

And you are really good at graphic design!

Eliana's graphic
Eliana made this for one of my blog posts!

Just for fun, if you could meet any person, living or dead, who would it be? Not counting Jesus, of course. 😉

If Jesus doesn’t count, then maybe Paul? Or perhaps Esther or Ruth or Mary…

I can’t wait to meet them in heaven! Thanks so much for being on my blog, Eliana!

Want to check out Eliana’s blog? You can find it here: https://elianathewriter.com/


Oliver’s Travels!

Oliver and the bear
On his North Pole adventure, Oliver narrowly escaped being eaten by a bear!
Theology Review: Noel by Lauren Daigle

Theology Review: Noel by Lauren Daigle

It’s finally socially acceptable to listen to Christmas music! I thought over the next few weeks I’d do a theology review of some Christmas songs.

This song was written by Chris Tomlin, but sung by Lauren Daigle.

The words focus on Christ as Savior and King in His incarnation. She sings about Christ’s eternal nature, “There before the world began,” and references other Scriptures, such as the famous passage in Isaiah that says, “Unto us a Child is born.” (Isaiah 9:6-7)

As I was working on my morning devotional recently, I came across this section in the commentary I’m reading on 1 Peter:

One image of the Son of God supersedes all others in significance and is crucial to the purpose of His incarnation. It is that of Jesus as the suffering Servant and the crucified Savior. At the Cross He most clearly displayed His deity and humanity together and completed His redemptive work, the atonement for sin—the reason He came into the world. (“The MacArthur New Testament Commentary 1 Peter, John MacArthur, p.166)

It reminded me of the line in “Noel” which goes, “Born to suffer, born to save.”

This Christmas, we must remember that God became man because of our sin and our desperate need of a Savior.

 


 

Oliver’s Travels!

Oliver and Rudolph
Oliver took a trip to the North Pole (a.k.a the zoo) and hung out with Santa’s reindeer!

Winter To Be Read List

Winter To Be Read List

I really need to stop writing to-be-read lists because I’m always sick when I’m working on them. All the more time to read, I guess. 😉

Now that Thanksgiving is over, it is officially Christmas season and almost winter! Nothing could be better on a cold day than curling up with a book (or audiobook) and reading for hours. I have eight books I’m hoping to finish by the end of February.

 

The Inheritance by Tamera Alexander

I read a book by Tamera Alexander (With This Pledge) earlier this year and loved it. I don’t usually read westerns, but I just audiobooked one last week and I enjoyed it, so I’ll give this one a go!

 

A Christmas Carol and Other Stories by Charles Dickens

I confess, I have already read two of the three stories in this collection—A Christmas Carol and The Chimes. All I have left is The Cricket on the Hearth, which I haven’t read before.

 

Chester and Gus by Cammie McGovern

This looks like an adorable story from the point of view of a service dog. I’m hoping it won’t be sad like a lot of dog books tend to be.

 

Breach of Trust by DiAnn Mills

I have a lot of books on my shelves by DiAnn Mills and I’m hoping to get through some of them this winter. This one is a romantic suspense and looks pretty interesting.

 

A Texas Legacy Christmas by DiAnn Mills

I’ve heard great things about this little book (which happens to belong to my mom 😉). I’ve been saving it for Christmas season. I better get reading!

 

When the Lion Roars by DiAnn Mills

Last DiAnn Mills book for now. XD This book takes place in Sudan and the blurb says something about “the redemptive power of sacrifice.” I love stories with sacrificial characters in them.

 

No Better Friend by Robert Weintraub

Another dog story! This book has been on my shelves for a long time. The cover says it’s about “A man, a dog, and their incredible true story of friendship and survival in World War II.”

 

The Christmas Doll by Elvira Woodruff

I’ve read this book several times and it used to be one of my favorites. It’s been a while since I’ve given it a re-read, so I’m excited about this! It’s about two orphan sisters who live in London. It has a Dickens-esque vibe.

 

You might be wondering if I finished my fall TBR. No, no I did not. Will I finish my winter TBR? Probably not, but we’ll see.

Have you read any of the books on my winter TBR? What are you reading right now? What is your favorite Christmas story (besides the one in the Bible 😉)?

 


 

Oliver’s Travels!

Oliver and my fall TBR
Oliver likes nothing better than sitting on top of a stack of books.

Why I Love Audiobooks + Resistance Audiobook Tour!

Why I Love Audiobooks + Resistance Audiobook Tour!

Hey guys, and welcome to this week’s blog post! Today I want to talk to you about audiobooks.

Here you might start to cringe. Are audiobooks even books? Are they cheating?

Yes, recorded books are still books. While it’s certainly a different experience listening to a story than reading it on paper, audiobook fans aren’t cheating.

I love to listen to audiobooks and I want to share my top three reasons why. Then I’m going to share an author interview I did to celebrate the release of a new audiobook! (Hehe, I’m not going to tell you who it is quite yet. =P)

#1

I like audiobooks because I can listen to them while doing other activities. Whether it’s crocheting, cleaning the kitchen, or making dinner, audiobooks give me something interesting to do while doing these repetitive tasks. It might seem strange, but trying to do those things without having some kind of music, podcast, sermon, or audiobook playing drives me crazy.

While I’ve never driven a long distance by myself, I’ve heard many people talk about taking audiobooks on road trips.

#2

Audiobooks help me to ingest stories in a different way than reading. When you listen to a book, you’ll notice different things than if you were reading that same story. This is one of the reasons writers suggest reading your manuscript out loud when you edit. For some reason, this helps you catch more errors than just reading it silently.

They also help me with pronunciation, whether it’s simply expanding my vocabulary or learning a phrase from another language. For example, I just recently finished listening to Romanov by Nadine Brandes (it’s an Anastasia retelling). This book has some Russian in it. I do not know Russian and therefore I have no clue how to pronounce Russian words. But now, I can attempt to say some of the phrases Brandes used with a bit more confidence than before.

#3

Audiobooks are awesome because they are less frustrating to stop than a book. At least, for me they are.

Since I multi-task, if I spend three hours on an audiobook and I didn’t enjoy it, I still got three hours worth of work done. But if I was reading that same book, I couldn’t be doing anything else. I cannot count how many books I’ve started reading and stopped halfway through for one reason or another.

 

Audiobooks are a great way to “read” when you’re too busy to sit down with a physical book. Who knows, you might even learn a new word or two!

Now that I’ve (hopefully) talked you into giving audiobooks a chance, I want to tell you about a new one that just came out!

Resistance by Jaye L.  Knight is one of my favorite books of all time (and the one that inspired me to write) and now it’s an audiobook! *excited squealing*

(Keep reading to see an exclusive interview with the author and a giveaway!)

Resistance audiobook blog tour and author interview

About the Book

“Don’t you know? Animals like you have no soul.”

 Could God ever love a half-blood all of society looks upon with such fear and disdain? Jace once believed so, but when a tragic loss shatters the only peace he’s ever known, his faith crumbles as the nagging doubts he’s tried to put behind him descend on his grieving heart. With them come the haunting memories of the bloodstained past he longs to forget, but can never escape.

 Taken from home at a young age and raised to serve the emperor, Kyrin Altair lives every day under a dangerous pretense of loyalty. After her unique observation skills and perfect memory place her into direct service to the emperor, Kyrin finds herself in further jeopardy as it becomes increasingly difficult to hide her belief in Elôm, the one true God.

 Following the emperor’s declaration to enforce the worship of false gods under the penalty of death, many lives are endangered. But there are those willing to risk everything to take a stand and offer aid to the persecuted. With their lives traveling paths they never could have imagined, Jace and Kyrin must fight to overcome their own fears and conflicts with society as they become part of the resistance.

 

Available now on Audible and iTunes!

 

Haven’t discovered the world of Ilyon yet? Find out more at the official Ilyon Chronicles website!

 

 

eBook Sale!

Now is the perfect time to get into the series! Starting Friday, November 29th, all books from Ilyon Chronicles will be discounted. You can even get the prequel novella for free! So be sure to check them out on Amazon.

 

Resistance audiobook blog tour and author interview

 

 

About the Author

Resistance audiobook Jaye L. Knight

Jaye L. Knight is an award-winning author, homeschool graduate, and shameless tea addict with a passion for Christian fantasy. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God’s love shines as a light to offer hope. She has been penning stories since the age of eight and resides in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.

 

You can connect with Jaye on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Etsy.

 

 

 

About the Narrator

Resistance audiobook narrator

Lance Rasmussen is an audiobook narrator and actor based in Denver, CO. A graduate with a BFA in Acting from Utah State University, and an MFA in Acting from Louisiana State University, he now narrates and produces audiobooks from his home studio while working at various regional theaters across the country. More information can be found at www.lanceras.com. Follow him on Instagram at @LCRasmus.

 

And now for the interview with Jaye L. Knight!

First question, what is it like to listen to someone else read your book? Is it really weird?

It actually is super weird. You know how some actors can’t watch themselves on film? It kind of feels like that. I get kind of cringy about my own writing when someone else is reading it. But since I have to proof the chapters once they are recorded, I have to listen to it. 😉

That makes perfect sense. The few times my mom has read my writing out loud I get cringy too. What scene was the most fun to write when you were working on Resistance?

Wow, that was a long time ago considering I started it in 2011. I’d probably have to say that the first interactions between Jace and Kyrin were probably some of the most fun. They were scenes I had been looking forward to since the beginning of the story. I loved their slow growth to friendship.

I love their friendship too! If you could go back to when you first got the spark of an idea for Ilyon, what would you tell yourself, looking back now?

I might warn myself that it was going to take almost ten years to finish. Then again, I might not have even started it if I’d known that. I never imagined it would be such a long process. I wish I could have finished a couple of years ago before life seemed to get crazy, but I’ll get there.

If you could write absolutely anything you wanted to, what would it be?

Right now I have so many stories calling to me it’s ridiculous. I really want to write the sequel to my yet-to-be-released contemporary romance novel (written under the pen name Jaye Elliot). I also really want to try my hand at something post-apocalyptic.

Too many ideas seems to be a common author problem. XD What is one question you wish you were asked more often? Why? And how would you respond to that question?

I’m not sure. I guess I don’t get asked about my kitties very often. 😉 I love my kitties. My kitties are my kids. Yes, I may be something of a crazy (awesome) cat lady. But hey, even though I live alone, my house has never felt lonely or empty with my babies around.

Aw! I love kitties too!

 

Giveaway!

Share in the excitement of the release and enter to win one of 3 copies of the Resistance audiobook! Winners will receive a free download code to use on Audible. Open internationally!

Click here for the giveaway! Ends 11/23/19.

 

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, November 18

 

Tuesday, November 19

 

Wednesday, November 20

 

Thursday, November 21

 

Friday, November 22

 

Saturday, November 23

 


 

Oliver’s Travels!

Oliver and Resistance
Oliver likes how the cover brings out his eyes.

The Importance of Taking Breaks: Recovering From Burnout 

The Importance of Taking Breaks: Recovering From Burnout 

As writers, we like to write as fast as we can and as much as we can. We often don’t know when it’s time for us to stop. We keep pushing ourselves and pushing ourselves until we can’t go anymore.

We give ourselves burnout.

Burnout is caused by continuously trying to write when you are out of mental energy or motivation. It’s the equivalent of driving on fumes. You can’t expect to finish a road trip if you floor it the whole time. You’ll need to stop and refuel a few times.

Let me tell you something from my own experience—it’s very hard to come to that realization and understand when you need to stop writing. We often get stuck on the mentality that if we just push through it will get better. But instead it just gets harder and harder until we just give up.

While there certainly are times when we just need to force ourselves to write, prolonged difficulty in our writing could be a sign of a bigger issue than just writer’s block.

“But taking breaks is silly,” you might say, “it’s easier to just ignore the struggles and just keep going. I’ll stop when I finish my project.”

Resting is essential for writers. Even if you think you can make it, if you are really struggling, it’s good to set aside your work for a bit. However, resting might seem counter-productive to the more driven of us writers.

But there are things you can do while on break that can refresh your mental energy and refill your writing “gas tank.”

Read

It’s very important for writers to read because it allows them to see what other people have written. Sometimes reading a book will spark an idea for fixing an issue in your writing. It is also relaxing and can take your mind off your writing problems for a while. (I do not recommend reading as a form of escapism.)

Be Creative

Many writers have found that doing something creative outside of writing helps rejuvenate them from everything from writer’s block to burnout. I like to crochet and play my instruments. Doing these activities helps take my mind off writing for a little bit and helps me to restore some of my mental energy. You could try finding a new hobby, baking a batch of cookies, or even taking your dog for a walk.

Watch TV

When I’m struggling with writing, I’ve found that watching movies refills my “well of inspiration,” so to speak. Movies and TV shows allow you to see stories in a different way than you do when you’re reading a book. When you’re watching TV, you hear the soundtrack and see the special effects, which, unfortunately, are not in books. But those details add to the story. You might notice how in a fight scene the camera focuses in on a particular detail and then get an idea on how that might help you next time you are writing.

 

I know some people (including myself), who can bounce back after a couple days. But fully recovering from burnout might take weeks or even months.

The key is patience. Give yourself grace and don’t pressure yourself when you aren’t ready.

Taking breaks will help you to write better and more efficiently. Stop to re-fill your tank. Otherwise, you’ll stall out on the highway.

 


 

Oliver’s Travels!

Oliver and Dicken's books
Oliver wishes I had bought a copy of Oliver Twist at the antique store, but alas, I chose my favorite (A Tale of Two Cities) and one I’d never heard of, but looked interesting.

Announcing New Blog Topic! + No Longer Slaves by Bethel Music

Announcing New Blog Topic! + No Longer Slaves by Bethel Music

You might have noticed the past few weeks I’ve been posting little devotional-type articles about Christian songs. It was partially an experiment and partially the beginning of a new blog topic.

And now I’d like to announce my latest blog topic: The Theology Behind The Song.

Why am I doing this?

If you are anything like me, you are almost always listening to music. Whether that is while you study, commute, write, or do chores, there’s a constant stream of songs pouring into your ears.

Those songs slowly seep into our minds and we can sing along mindlessly without really understanding what we are saying. Songs teach us many things—from the alphabet, to multiplication tables, to theology.

My goal with this new section is to help us all critically evaluate the Christian songs we hear on the radio. We need to be like the Bereans in Acts 17:11 who compared everything to Scripture.

I know this is a big swing from weekly writing articles, but don’t worry, I’ll still be posting about writing and reading.

 

We all struggle with fears. Spiders. Darkness. Heights. Rejection.

This song reminds me of Romans 8:31-39. The first verse reads: “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us?”

Paul is talking about greater fears than spiders here. He’s talking about the fear of man—persecution, suffering, death.

“Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So do not fear, you are more valuable than many sparrows.” Matthew 10:28-31

As Christians, we shouldn’t live in fear of what man might do to us. We shouldn’t be afraid of being rejected by the world because of our faith.

Men cannot destroy our souls. They can hurt our physical bodies and torment our minds, but they cannot steal our salvation.

The chorus of this song reminds us that we are “no longer slaves to fear” but we are children of God.

We must live boldly for Christ, remembering that we are God’s children.

I think these lyrics are pretty sound in theology. Definitely a good one to listen to.

 


 

Oliver’s Travels!

Oliver reading LotR
Oliver is attempting to read Return of the King with me, but the one volume version of Lord of the Rings is a bit hard for him to handle.

Casting Crowns: Nobody

Casting Crowns: Nobody

 

This is one of those songs that’s so easy to sing along to without really understanding the words. How many of us actually are content being nobodies? How many of us can say if the world forgets our names after we die, we’re cool with it? I know I can’t.

As fallen people, we are selfish. We live so others notice us. We want to be remembered. Our lives are all about us.

But this song reminds us we are to live so the world can see Jesus in us. There’s nothing in us that’s worth admiring, except for the work Christ has done. We were saved by grace alone.

God choose the nobodies of this world to do mighty works for Him. “For consider your calling, brethren, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble; but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, and the base things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, so that no man may boast before God.” 1 Corinthians 1:16-29

John the Baptist said, “He must increase, but I must decrease.” (John 3:30)

We must stop trying to be “somebodies” and focus on showing the world Somebody. Somebody so much greater than we could ever be. That Somebody is Jesus.

 


 

 

Oliver’s Travels!

 

Oliver and candles
Oliver thinks the candlelight makes him look mysterious.

No Pressure by Danny Gokey–Thoughts on the Song

No Pressure by Danny Gokey–Thoughts on the Song

I find it ironic that I’m writing about a song entitled “No Pressure” when I just started college and am dealing with all the pressures that come along with that.

In life, we are pressured continuously by friends, family, school, work, and our own expectations for ourselves. The weight of all of that can drag us down into discouragement and frustration.

What I love about this song is that it reminds us that we do not have to earn God’s grace. He gives it to us freely. We don’t receive grace because we were “good enough.” Before God awakened our hearts, we were all dead in our trespasses (Eph. 2:1).

Our salvation comes through God’s grace, through faith, not because of anything we did.

“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9 (ESV)

We could not have earned salvation because Isaiah says that “all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment” in God’s sight (64:6).

Salvation is all of God!

Even after we are saved, God continues to shower us with His grace and forgiveness. That does not mean, however, that we can continue in sin because we will be forgiven.

“What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?” Romans 6:1-2 (ESV)

We are commanded to become more like Christ and seek to obey Him (1 Peter 1:14-17).

Next time you are struggling with all the pressures of life, take a moment to praise God that He gives you grace freely. We can always rejoice in our salvation, no matter our situation.

 

*A guy from church painted my hand for me. Isn’t it good?

 


 

Oliver’s Travels!

Oliver doing college
Oliver decided to help me get ahead with my college assignments. Thanks, buddy!

Pumpkins, Puppies, Pirates, and Professors!

Pumpkins, Puppies, Pirates, and Professors!

Fall has finally come! And with it come college classes!

You heard me right, I’m starting college. If you had told me a few months ago I would be going to college, I wouldn’t have believed you. In fact, I might have laughed. But after much prayer and discussion, my parents and I decided this would be the best route for me.

I’m getting a degree in English and Creative Writing through Liberty University Online. That means I get to stay at home and do all my class work on my laptop! No dorms! No cafeteria food!

I’m pretty excited about getting started! My first day is Monday, the 21st. Prayers would be appreciated!

Now onto the pumpkins, puppies, and pirates I promised…

 

Allison Grace the pirate

Let me explain the bandana. My brother and I are into Pirates of the Caribbean right now and his birthday theme was pirates. So I decided to “dress up.”

Simon with pumpkin

Simon tried to take a bite of my pumpkin.

Reese and pumpkin

Reese gave it a good spit shine.

Allison Grace with pumpkin

Then I got to carve it!

 

Allison Grace with pumpkin

I made Liberty University’s logo!

Oliver with pumpkin

 

Glowing pumpkins

What makes that photo so awesome are the phantom gnomes in the background. On the right is Jerome, on the left is Spurgeon.

Reese

We took Reese for a hike…

Berries

found some berries…

Woolly bear

and a woolly bear.

Oliver in tree

Oliver climbed a tree with gorgeous yellow leaves. This might be my favorite picture ever of him. 😍

 

Reese eating cake

We always share birthday cake with our dogs, and Reese has the funniest facial expressions ever. She loves to carry around paper plates. XD

 

And now, I have delivered pumpkins, puppies, pirates, and professors.


What do you like to do in fall? Have you carved a pumpkin yet? Does your dog like birthday cake? Have you ever seen The Pirates of the Caribbean?

Not Squirrels–Things We Call Distractions, But Really Aren’t

Not Squirrels–Things We Call Distractions, But Really Aren’t

A few weeks ago, we talked about my dog Reese who loves squirrels. I compared her obsessive focus on the furry beasts to a writer’s tendency to chase “squirrels” when he should be writing.

You can find that post here!

Eliana's graphic
My sweet friend, Eliana, made this graphic for me! Isn’t it gorgeous?

 

Today I’d like to address another problem that has come up in my own life. That is the subject of “not-squirrels” or things we think are distractions but actually aren’t.

 

God and Church

Do you know how tempting it is to skip or shorten your devotional time so you can go write? This particularly becomes a problem on busy days. It won’t really hurt anything if we skip it for just one day, right?

But church, quiet time/devotions, prayer, worship, etc. are NOT distractions for writing. Your faith is a million times more important than writing.

In the end, how much you’ve written won’t matter. Your faith will.

The happiness you find when writing is nothing compared to the joy you have in salvation in Christ. Don’t take it for granted.

 

School

Whether you’re in college, private school, homeschool, or public school, it’s very easy to see doing homework as a waste of time.

While we see benefit to literature and English classes—they directly influence our writing—other subjects, such as math, science, government, economics, history, and music don’t seem to be very helpful.

“How will knowing how to find the log of 15 help me with life? What do I care if Joan has a savings account with 1.2% interest compounded annually? Who cares?” That was my attitude towards math.

Even if there are subjects you hate, you still have to do them. Don’t slack on school so you can write.

This is coming from a master procrastinator. Since I was homeschooled, my mom made my writing part of my assignments. So I’d spend all morning writing then I’d be stuck with an afternoon (and early evening) of economics, Spanish, science, and all the other things I didn’t want to work on.

Yes, writing is important, but if you are a student, your school needs to come first.

 

Family

Spending time with your family is—guess what—more important than writing in the long run. You’ll be around these people for most, if not all, of your life. The relationships you have with them truly matter.

Take opportunities to hang out—watch movies, play games, go on a day trip. These life experiences actually will strengthen your writing.

 

Don’t mark these things off as “squirrels.” Because they are not-squirrels. These things matter. Don’t take them for granted or view them as burdens. They will shape and form you as a person and as a writer.

 


 

Oliver’s Travels!

Oliver and Allison
Oliver joined me at another band concert a few weeks ago! He’s not big enough to play any instruments, so he just sings along.