Friday, October 2, 2015

Taking a Sick Day: What I've Been Up To in 2015 (Hint: I Got Engaged)

End of Day Manuscript. Ready for printing!
I currently find myself in the most inconvenient position of being positively sick. I try very hard to avoid catching colds and flu bugs, but sometimes, it can't be helped. Being this sick means that I'm confined to my bed or the couch, hopelessly depleting box after box of kleenex and drinking copious amounts of ginger tea. 

I am terribly irritable when I'm sick, because that means I can't work. Not working means I could potentially get behind on my manuscript deadlines - even though I'm actually about a week ahead of schedule. I just find it very hard to STOP, and getting sick is one of the few things that forces me to do so. 

On that note, lying on my bed, watching numerous episodes of Once Upon a Time and listening to my cat beg for a taste of my chicken-noodle soup has caused me to reflect on my past year. The highs, the lows, and the in-betweens. Are you ready? Here we go! 

My bunk was the top on the right of the picture.
Happy New Year and State of Alliance
This January, I began the new year by attending a retreat at a place called Hartland Christian Camps. Let me begin by saying that I do not like camping with large groups of people. I adore my isolation and privacy, thank you very much, and I don't like having to crawl over people to reach the bathroom in the middle of the night. But I did it. And I survived. And I even encountered my first wintery day. It was 17 degrees at night - I've never been in weather that cold before. 

Yes. I am a true California pansy. There you have it. 

I released the fifth installment of The Collapse Series, State of Alliance, at the beginning of 2015, too. And somewhere within this time I suffered from a killer sinus infection that rendered me out of commission. I remember editing pages of Alliance with a humidifier on my left and a red pen on my right. Fun times. 

Day One and Moving Boxes 
My brother and his friend helping with boxes. 
I helped my family move to a different house this spring, which meant I spent about two months hauling cardboard boxes across town, piled high with first-world crap and dusty scrapbooks from the attic (why do we have so much stuff?). It was a long, arduous process. It reminded me of how much I dislike moving. 

I released the second installment in The Zero Trilogy, Day One, somewhere in here. And I also released State of Vengeance, book six of Collapse. It was a long spring, okay? 

Universal Studios FTW. :)
Summertime Madness 
I did get to have some fun this summer! I went to Universal Studios Hollywood with some great girl pals of mine and visited Beverly Hills and the Santa Monica Pier. I went camping at Buck Rock Campground in the Sierras and got a great tan swimming during the famous Central Valley summer temperatures. My annual vacation to the mountains was canceled because of California's Rough Fire. Our cabin nearly burned down, but thank God it survived! The smoke from the fire poisoned the air in the valley for over a month. It was like breathing in dirt. Eww. Grateful for the rain and the firefighters. 

Getting Hitched and Feeling 22 
I celebrated my birthday at the beginning of this month. I played Taylor Swift's 22 over and over again until everybody got sick of it (but to be fair, I'm still not sick of it!), and had a slice of chocolate mousse cake. 

Oh. And guess what? 
I got engaged! 
Hooray! I've been dating a wonderful guy for three years, and we're finally getting married in 2016. It's safe to say that this was the highlight of my year - and my entire life. I couldn't be more excited! 

My fiancé is a great paintball player, by the way. 
He's a brave and beautiful person to be able to marry a writer - we're passionate folks, and his matter-of-fact approach to life balances out my artistic and intense lifestyle of creating novels and getting ink stains on EVERYTHING (It's a real problem, okay?!). My fiancé is part of the agricultural wheel in the Central Valley of California, part of the rare 1% of Americans who actually farm the land these days. I'm excited to be a farmer's wife, and I'm depending on Ree Drummond of Pioneer Woman to help me make the transition smoothly and tastefully (pun intended!), while still working full-time as a novelist. 

Disneyland and End of Day 
I went to Disneyland a couple of weeks ago. If you know me, you know I'm passionate about the Mouse House, and Halloweentime is my FAVORITE time of the year in the park. I just adore the pumpkins and the candy and the Nightmare Before Christmas-themed Haunted Mansion ride. It was fun. 

What's next? End of Day releases on October 9th. The last installment in The Zero Trilogy. It's sad to say goodbye, but I'm also glad to be starting new projects. 

The Holiday Season Ahead! 
Hopefully, I'll have the complete Zero Trilogy available in audiobook format for the holidays! I'll also be working feverishly to complete State of Destruction. I've got about four books releasing next year, plus I'm planning a wedding and my fiancé is going to be building our new house. So I'll be plenty busy. Wish me luck - I'm going to need lots of it! 

Thanks for catching up with me! Next week I'll be posting about Halloween and some wonderfully spooky stories you can read! 


  1. So sorry you're sick! Hope you feel better. Congratulations on your engagement!! That's so fabulous:) Oh my goodness, so jealous that you went to Disney- I love it there this time of year!!
    Grace Anne //


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