Looking through my recent posts, I realized it's been a long, and I mean long, time since I last updated you all on what's happening...

Looking through my recent posts, I realized it's been a long, and I mean long, time since I last updated you all on what's happening with me. So long that I couldn't find the number of my last 'Am Currently' post. Why not shake things up then? Why not make a new kind of post to share about my writing, life, and reading, behind the quill pen?

I'm still experimenting with the format, so please, let me know what you think! And send any ideas you have my way!

This section will be all about the things I'm grateful for this month, or the last few. I'm realizing how much I complain about... everything, so this is me trying to make myself also appreciate the positives! God's blessed me with so much and being thankful is incredibly important. Right now I'm thankful for...

- A beautiful, green suburb that I can wander without fear for my safety.
- A job where I can make a difference.
- New! Books!
- The opportunity to attend a university and study what I love.
- A new Bible study where I feel welcome.

It would be horrific if I neglected to rant and rave about all the books I've been reading lately, or plan on reading soon! At this point my room has been conquered by books, but I'm not complaining.

Recent Reads:
Love and the Sea and Everything in Between by Brian McBride --- raw, intense, yet weaved with beauty and quiet, endless truths. A must-read for all of you who enjoy contemporary, or those searching for books that represent mental health struggles for what they are.
The Traitor's Kiss by Erin Beaty --- full of spies, deception, and secrets! I love a good political drama, and while the plot twist left me confused for a few chapters, it did blow my mind.
Project Canvas --- it's a treasure trove of advice from young authors all around the world. If you've a question about writing, it probably has the answer somewhere in there. Sooo many nuggets of wisdom!

Current Reads:
Mark of the Raven by Morgan L. Busse --- I'm hooked! Only about a third of the way through, but I love the contrast between Selene's actions and convictions.
Son of Hamas by Mosab Hassan Yousef --- This is my nonfiction read for the month, and it came strongly recommended. I'm hoping to learn more about the conflict in the Holy Land and the author's journey to accepting Jesus.

True to its name, this section is fairly predictable. Ink and Quill is for me to share about my writing (or lack of it), from short stories to classwork to novel projects.

For the last month or so, as Golden Revenge is off with my lovely editor Audrey Caylin, I've been working on brainstorming, outlining, and beginning the first draft of Call of the Vanished. To sum it up quickly, Call of the Vanished is a portal fantasy following several POVs, the main one being Lonnie, whose sister was the first and only human to ever cross over the portal to another world which appeared in his old backyard. Ever since he's been followed around by a man only he can see. Now an interworld exchange program has opened up, just as Lonnie begins to gain memories showing him that his sister didn't leave Earth willingly after all...

I've been battling to figure out what the story's overarching plot is, and it's changed multiple times at this point. For now I've settled on one, and so comes the difficult part; weaving all the stories together so that they form a tapestry, not a tangled ball of yarn. I may or may not have shifted around or discarded a few POVs at this point. Hopefully I'll have nailed down whose stories I need to share soon!

Here's a quick snippet from the first draft of Call of the Vanished, one of the few paragraphs I can share without giving away spoilers:

Lonie frowned as they came to a stop at the shore of Lake Salter. Naming genius. Light, murky blue lapped at the sky’s lower edge, ripples sending shivers through the orange and pink clouds. Dead trees clawed out of the water. Wind flattened down tuffs of green scrub in the dirty sand, and yanked at Summer’s braid, playing with loose strands. The warmth in her eyes as she smiled pooled in him. 
She was beautiful. There was no other way to say it.

Here's where I'll share everything that doesn't happen behind a screen, pen, or book. In other words, for all the fun life happenings and business that likes to claw time out of my hands. 

I start university (college for my American friends) next week, which is both exciting and nervewracking! My first assignment for my creative writing class is interesting, namely that I have to go to the beach with a few other students and write about it. I'll also be taking a Social and Digital Media class which should be really useful as well.

Apart from that, I'm still English tutoring a few days a week. It can be challenging but also really enjoyable at times! I love helping the kids out with creating stories and workshopping their writing to make it shine.

I probably should have slid this into the gratefulness log, but the Bible Project podcast has been a huge blessing to my life recently. I listen to it when I go for walks or commute to work/uni, and the depth of their teaching is prompting me to explore the Bible and who God is more and more. If you haven't listened to it, I encourage you to start with the first episode of the 'God Series' and work your way through them!

What do you think of the new format? How's life for you at the moment? What have you been reading recently, and how is your writing going? What are you grateful for?
Have a wonderful day! <3

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  1. Aaaaah, Mark of the Raven is SOOO GOOOD!!!

    I really like this format, and it was really enjoyable to read about what you've been today lately :))


    1. It is!!!!! I finished it last week and especially loved the ending. :D

      Aw thank you, I'm so glad! Hope you're well!

  2. Ooh, I love this format! (So much I might try formatting my own monthly wrap-ups similarly, if you don't mind.)
    I loved the opportunity to get to know a bit of what's been going on your life, too!

    1. Go for it, I'd love to see you take on a similar format! :) Thanks so much, I'm glad! <3

  3. Yes I love the format!!! <333. It’s so pretty and colorful.

    I really need to read Mark of the Raven. It’s on my bookshelf, and though I haven’t gotten to it yet, it sounds amazing.

    That description of Lake Salter is beautiful. <3 I can’t wait to hear more about Call of the Vanished!

    Danielle @ Snapper

    1. Awww thank you! Yay, I love the colours too haha! xD

      You definitely must! It's a touch slow at the beginning, but once the tension amps up wowza is all I could say. :D

      Thanks so much, it means a lot to hear that! <3

  4. The format is awesome and it's lovely seeing what you've been up to! Good luck with the uni studies! I hope you manage to squeeze everything in, because I know how quick uni life gets hectic haha. I've been reading a ton lately (trying to get on top of that mammoth TBR) and I'm currently doing a huge Grisha reread and am onto Crooked Kingdom. I'm also hoping to start Four Dead Queens or Slayer next week!

    1. Thanks so much Cait! :D Haha yeah the readings are just about killing me at the moment, but I'm handling the first week okay so far. We'll see how we go later in the semester. xD Oooh I still haven't gotten around to Crooked Kingdom, though I know I need to! I also really want to read Four Dead Queens; it sounds amazing!! Hope to hear your thoughts on it. :)

  5. Oh, his format is so great! Call of the Vanished sounds really interesting, I can't wait to see where it goes!!

    1. Thanks so much, that's so kind of you to say so!! :D

  6. I like this new format! It's great. ^ ^ It sounds like you have some lovely things going on!

    1. Thank you Victoria, glad you think so! :D I do, I hope you do as well!!