Good Things Come To Those Who Wait

PULL releases in 233 days. That sounds like forever, although I know that the next time I look up, it will only be 210 days, and then 185 days, and then 70 days, and then it will be THE DAY.

Isn’t it strange how each day feels endless, but the weeks and months somehow fly by? The time between New Year’s Day and the end of the school year feels like ten minutes, every single year. And I’m caught off guard by it, every single year. Pretty soon I will be ninety-four years old and asking people how in the world this happened.

(This reminds me of my friend N., who recently wrote a check with “2002” in the date and was shocked when her husband informed her that it is, in fact, 2015.)

(Additionally: Did you know that you can scroll endlessly on your iPhone calendar? The other night I went all the way to the year 3,000, and then all the way back to the years 1 B.C. and 1 A.D. Then I stared at them, saying things like, “Oh my word. It’s basically the beginning of time. Look at this. LOOK AT THIS.”)

So anyway, 233 days might feel like an eternity, but I have a feeling it will go by much faster than we think it will. And in the meantime, here are some things you can do / think about / plan for.

1) First and foremost, I hear SHADOWS OF THE HIDDEN is a mighty fine piece of YA lit. If you’re looking for something to read, the paperback is only $9.95 on Amazon, or there is the Kindle version for a cool $4.99.

Oh! And, you can find it on Goodreads. LOOK.

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Doesn’t that look fun?

2) I’m currently brainstorming some really fun things for PULL’s release this December. It’s too early to give any details, but there will be some pretty sweet swag packs, and a super fun release party in my city of Birmingham, Alabama.

PLUS: I am gathering creative commons images of some of the places around London where PULL takes place. I want to do an Instagram/Facebook/blog series of these locations leading up to the book’s release, talking about their significance to the story (without spoilers!) as well as my own personal experience with them.

Do you want a preview?


Hare & Billet 2

This is The Hare & Billet. It’s a pub in Blackheath, which is a tiny, adorable town tucked into the southeast corner of London, near Greenwich. Most people have never heard of this pub or the magical town of Blackheath. After December 8, that will no longer be true.

Albert and Rosie, PULL’s main characters, have a very…interesting…evening in this pub. And it was one of my favorite pubs years ago, when I spent a lot of time in that neck of the woods. Plus, the NAME. Isn’t that just the greatest pub name ever?

Leave it to the English to have on-point pub names.

3) Speaking of PULL, If you haven’t added it on Goodreads yet, I’d be ever so grateful if you did. And since I posted a screenshot of SHADOWS’ page on GR, I suppose I should do the same for PULL. Don’t want them fighting over it, do I?

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There you have it.

So gear up, Grasshoppers, because there’s going to be a lot of fun stuff happening in the next 233 days. If you’re in the Birmingham area, or even if you’re not, keep an eye on this site for details about the release party and other fun things. I can’t wait to celebrate all of this with you!

I Blew All My Creativity Into A Kleenex

Well, we’re sick. All of us. My husband had some kind of devil-infection that made him hack and splutter for about 72 hours straight, and Baby J, to absolutely no one’s surprise, seems to have caught it.

(Girlfriend is like germ Velcro. If a germ passes within a radius of one mile from her body, SHE WILL ABSORB IT.)

M and I have something that people usually refer to as “just a cold,” although that description seems a bit trite for something that is straight-up devouring my sinuses from the inside out. I’m going to start saying, “Oh, it’s just a flesh-eating virus,” because that feels more accurate.


Naturally (because if the Rileys are known for anything, it’s getting sick right when we really shouldn’t, like that one Mother’s Day when I started throwing up at the exact moment our entire family arrived for the lunch we were hosting), Rob and I are supposed to go to Nashville on Friday.

To a marriage conference getaway that we received as a Christmas gift.

For the entire weekend.

That we have been looking forward to for more than four months.

Basically, we need a Germ-Busting Miracle so that we can drop our kids off at our parents’ houses WITHOUT saying things like, “Now, when she has a coughing fit…” or, “Here’s her antibiotic; she needs it twice a day, and PS, she will try to TEAR YOUR ARMS OFF YOUR BODY when you give it to her.”

Because no one wants to say those things to one’s parents as one is leaving one’s kids with said parents.

I’ve been working a lot on my Creepy Faces book lately, and actually keeping up pretty well with my writing schedule (half a chapter per day), but today, I just lost my motivation. The rainy weather, my cold, my sick kids–it just sucked all the creative life out of me.

And it reminded me: We need to be gracious with ourselves.

The sticker system is awesome, and for me, it works. I don’t know why I’m so deeply motivated by stickers, but I am. Lots of you are, too. DON’T PRETEND YOU’RE ABOVE STICKERS.

But on days when you’ve slogged through all your tasks in an Aleve-D haze, and the kids are sick and therefore grumpy, and your husband has been trapped in the house, sick, for three days–

It’s okay to miss a sticker.


Because you know what I’ve learned? That sticker can be made up later. Sure, I’m a couple days behind right now. But I’ll get there. One way or another, Creepy Faces will be written, revised, and beta’d by November.

It may not go exactly according to the plan I’ve so neatly outlined in my planner, but I will get there anyway.

Just as soon as I get over this cold… *sneezes*