Sunday, October 21, 2012


“You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

I must go camping.  Outdoors.  I don’t want to do it but I suspect, deep down, that I cannot.  I wonder if I should give it a shot.  As I began reading Cheryl Strayed’s “Wild,” I compared her experience level at the beginning of her journey to my own. I thought if she could hike the Pacific Coast Trail from the Mojave Desert to the Bridge of the Gods on the Oregon-Washington border, I could possibly survive a few days out there.  Probably.

The memoir is exquisitely written, covering the author's physical and spiritual journey on the Pacific Coast Trail.  We're about the same age--she is one year older.  Cheryl left her home, her family and her marriage behind in the first week of June, 1995 to head down to Mojave, California and hike back up to the Pacific Northwest.

I was headed there myself that week, albeit in a car.  I did not leave my marriage behind--though just two months earlier I'd vowed to let it leave without me.  By the time June arrived, I'd decided to go with my husband and we each drove a car over 2,500 miles from New Orleans to Tacoma, taking turns chauffeuring the dog.  

In 1995, I remember thinking that I should have already finished a novel--the same thought the author has during her hike.  

I could publish a novel.  I want to do it but I suspect, deep down, that I cannot.  I wonder if I have truly given it a fair shot.   I finished reading “Wild.” I compared Cheryl Strayed's writing style to my own and am both inspired and humbled.  There is still a chance I could make it as a hiker.

Monday, October 08, 2012

Who will be your book this season?

Buying a book is a worthwhile investment.

Buying a book written by a friend of your friend is cool.

Buying a book written by your friend is awesome!

Slowly filling a shelf with books written by people you know (or knew) is priceless!

Monday, October 01, 2012

Burning with excitement!

It's here!  I am so excited for Jen!    I have been lucky enough to see Jen's drafts evolve into this captivating novel and now you can read it, too!  The Burning of Isobel Key is here!

The Burning of Isobel Key
New Adult/Contemporary

When Lou travels to Scotland, she’s a mess.  She’s twenty-six, unemployed, and unsure of herself.  It doesn’t help that she’s traveling with Tammy, her best friend, who is everything Lou is not.
At first, the trip pushes Lou towards the brink of depression, but then she meets Brian, a handsome local tour guide.  When Brian tells the tourists about the countless witches burned in Scotland, Lou starts to listen.  And when she discovers information about Isobel Key, one of the victims of the seventeenth century, Lou finds renewed purpose.
She sets out to learn the truth of the condemned witch, but she isn’t prepared for the knowledge that waits for her.  Lou must face her demons if she has any hope of righting the wrongs of the past.
THE BURNING OF ISOBEL KEY, available from Barnes & Noble and Amazon Fall 2012.
Paperback: $14.95
E-Book (Kindle or Nook): $2.99
Book Extras

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Jen McConnel first began writing poetry as a child. Since then, her words have appeared in a variety of magazines and journals, including Sagewoman, PanGaia, and The Storyteller (where she won the people’s choice 3rd place award for her poem, “Luna”).

She is also an active reviewer for Voices of Youth Advocates (VOYA), and proud member of SCBWI, NCWN, and SCWW.
A Michigander by birth, she now lives and writes in the beautiful state of North Carolina. When she isn’t crafting worlds of fiction, she teaches writing composition at a community college. Once upon a time, she was a middle school teacher, a librarian, and a bookseller, but those are stories for another time.

Published & Upcoming Works
  • The Burning of Isobel Key: Contemporary new adult with a spattering of historical mystery.  Coming October 2012
  • Priestess of Moab: Historical fiction.  Coming Spring 2013

Favorite Genres
  • YA: anything!
  • Historical fiction
  • Paranormal

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