Tuesday, March 31, 2015

If you've read Taken, you most likely threw the book at the wall when you finished. Or, you flipped through the few blank pages in the back searching for more. Or, as many did, sent me messages with horrible names in them. Don't worry, I hold no grudges.

Yes, it's a cliff hanger. And yes, I did it on purpose. I know how frustrating it is now, but just think how much better the reveal will be when L&F2 finally surfaces. Don't fret. It's a work in progress. It took me four years to write Taken. We are turning the corner into year two for it's sequel. Give it a few more... 

That's not the point here. I wanted to show you what I made today. It's not words on a page, though it will help me further understand this world I've created and bring you more words on a page. Maybe it will even help me to write those words faster? (did you see me shrug? I shrugged.)

Drum roll please... What you already scrolled down and looked! Cheater!

Please don't be too upset at the quality here. I took the picture with my iPad. Plus it's quantity, not quality. Oh nevermind.

 So, this is Jarth. I had a big long explanation as to where the name Jarth came from but I will be concise. The Norse word for earth, ground or soil is jǫrð. I've seen it transferred to Latin letters as both jar and jord. In the end, I mashed all my findings together and named it Jarth. In Torian, that means earthen house. There we have the name for the Cole Legacy home.

I am well aware of how badly you want to know where it's located, who lives in it, why it's there, how old it is. I get that so... I guess I will get to putting words on my page.

Don't forget to enter your shelfie for a signed copy of Taken. Enter Here!

*Torian- the official language of Tori!

Monday, March 30, 2015

I've been living in a fog. Spring is in the air meaning my garden is begging for attention, yet so are my children. Sports and extracurriculars are beginning to overlap so I get to drive around town a couple extra times a week. All this makes for a very tired Mommy and I apologize for my sudden absence from your world as well.

On top of all this, I started reading Game of Thrones. Let me just take a minute to say, WOW. I heard that it was good and I know everyone loves the show. However, I didn't expect to be quite so enthralled. It's wonderful. I love the dimension of the characters. I love all the hidden symbolism. I love the way the mythology is twisted into it. I could keep rambling... In short, I love it!

In honor of my distractions and the fact that it's springtime and just because I'm feeling generous, I would like to giveaway a book! It's really simple. Take a picture of your bookshelf and add that picture as a comment on this facebook post! Next Monday, I will pick a winner at random and send a signed book!

 Victoria Allred on Facebook.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Friday? Already?

I had big plans this week. I was to write by morning and go places by afternoon and crash by evening. Well, things didn't turn out as I had planned. We had an EXTREMELY lazy spring break and I have to say, I enjoyed it. Granted, I didn't get much new material written, I did get... nope didn't do much of that either.
 I guess I really didn't accomplish anything. Well, sometimes even the badasses need a few days do sit around and do nothing.  Excuse my while I return to my coffee. Turns out I need a little more before I can form full sentences.

How about a snippet from a time I could complete a thought? 

With each quickening footfall, the scent became stronger. The bitter smell of the forager’s blood didn’t compare in any way to that of a young man on the hunt. A human comparison would be the magnetism of an overly salty bag of potato chips opposed to the sweet fragrance of a king size candy bar. Both cause the mouth to water and satiate taste buds, but in very different ways.

Saturday, March 14, 2015


Well, it's Saturday. Yesterday was the first day of spring break. While that means I will not be called into work as the schools are closed for the next week, it also means my kids are home all week. It also means, I get to write old school style with pen and paper in the randomest of places. Do you think they would frown on me writing at the zoo?

You may say a good mom would put her writing aside for the week and focus diligently on her children. They are only going to be little once, right? I understand that they will grow up and move out of my house someday and I will look back at the time I sat at this computer typing away and wish I had spent more time with them. Honestly though, doesn't EVERY parent everywhere do that in some aspect of raising kids. I wish I didn't work so much. I wish I had hugged them more. I wish I had taken them more places.

The way I see it, I am forcing my children to be self-sufficient for a few hours a day. So many children are catered to day and night, that many can't do simple tasks such as pour a bowl of cereal or find a way to entertain themselves. Forcing my children to do so while I pound away at this keyboard, does two things. It prepares them for a world where no one will be there to wait on them hand and foot and allows me to create some glimmer of insight or fantastic fiction to send into the universe!

I'm sorry. That soap box is just so hard to ignore. My point? You will probably not hear from me much this week! But don't worry, I will be writing! Hey, I may even post a few reviews of the places I go! There are some wonderful parks in Kansas!

If you miss me too much, find me at any of the millions of social media sites I've taken residence on!

I am sure there are many more, but here are just a few ways to get your Tori fix! Or, you could read Taken!

Monday, March 9, 2015


The polar bear make me feel better. He's kinda cute, huh?
Good Morning!! I have something embarrassing to share. Actually, I don't get embarrassed easily, so I guess I just have something to share.

Let's frame it out. During my talk with the middle schoolers Friday, one of the students asked me when I write and I told him all the time. Anytime something comes to me, I rush to put it on paper. (I didn't share with him the time I was writing on an envelope on the highway. shh.)  I also told him how my kids have learned when to speak to me and when not. They've also learned to do a lot more for themselves because I will not stop in the middle of a thought to cater to them. Said student wasn't quite sure how to respond. His facial expression was somewhere between amused and appalled.

Ok, so this is what happened. I went to put Aidan's lunch box in his backpack this morning and guess what I found. All the school work he was supposed to have finished from his sick day Thursday. I totally forgot because I was so focused on revamping Taken. To make matters worse, my oldest comes out crying at 7:20 because she had homework too! I would say that is a serious mom fail! 

Epic. Mom. Fail.

Moral of the story? Tend to your children before diving into a book! Yeah, right. I'm sure it will happen again . . . Don't judge. I still have three very happy and healthy children (and their homework will be done tonight).

Change of subject. What do you think of this? It's just a thought, but please, comment. It's better than Taken, right?

Happy Monday! 

May your day be filled with-- Who am I kidding it's Monday. I hope you make it, through!

Friday, March 6, 2015

Am I successful?

I'm going to speak to a few middle school students today about being a writer. These are students who have vocalized an interest in such a career. A large part of me wants to scream from the rooftops about how good it feels to be recognized; a larger part of me wants to hide under the covers.

It's just so intimidating. I'm not a successful writer. Yes, I can write. I sit at my computer and write all day some days. On Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, even here occasionally. On a very rare occasion something of substances flows from my fingers into a word document. Truthfully, I don't get paid to write. I submit works of fiction that are often unpublished. I made a whopping, wait for it, $12.54 off my eBook on Amazon last year. I do so because it brings me pleasure.

I said I'm not successful. Some days I agree with that and some days I heavily disagree. What is it to be a successful writer? J.K. Rowling is a fluke. Yes, she gave us the most read work of humankind, but this happens once in a millennium. Authors rarely make such ridiculous amounts of money. Let's look at Suzanne Collins. Few people know she wrote for children's television shows before creating Hunger Games. And withe the cult following of that work, her other series, The Underland Chronicles, came out of the woodwork.

With all this in mind, can I consider myself a successful writer? I mean, I can string sentences together and sometimes in logical order? I may not sell many books, but each day I learn new things. Each day, I tweak my craft just enough to see myself blossom.

I believe there are two levels of success. First would be the ability to put forth legible, interesting works of literature. Second being the ability to make some kind of income doing so. The second very much depends upon the first. If you can not create the work, you can not make money doing so.

OK. I am pretty sure this post is very much all over the place. (If you made it this far, pat yourself on the back!) Consider it a bit of stream of consciousness with some true insight splattered throughout! I have, however, managed to pump myself up for today's meeting. Now, just to shower and leave before I lose my nerve...

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Writing Mommy

I sat down to write a really awesome blog post about how much I write and what I write about and what gives me inspiration. BUT (yup there it is) as I clicked to post that awesome gif of Jenny Schecter, my kids all woke up. It's as if the click of the mouse signified my need to be productive and it woke everyone up!!

I will admit, trying to write while raising children is an endless challenge. Especially if I have a productive work week (I sub at the local elementary school) and I can only write when they are home. I know I'm not the only human being that is trying to make a substantial contribution to the literary world while dealing with other obligations. It's just that when you are in the midst of a huge breakthrough and your children say, "Hey, Mom" all those little inspirational birdies fly away never to return.

For instance, I rewrote the last sentence three time while fighting with a six year old about buying gold bricks in some stupid Lego game on the iPad. (No, I will not go down the I hate technology road. You're welcome.)

So, how do I keep going? Well, I write. (stops to answer my husband's phone call.) Between phone calls and cooking meals and breaking up fights, I write. On anything I can get my hands on.  Anywhere I find inspiration.

Now, I must get something done before someone realizes I just wrote a whole blog post!

The way I see it, someday I will get a few minutes of silence to...  (did I mention it's a snow day here?)