Wednesday, December 17, 2014


Loving being home!

Today I went to the mall, mostly because I needed to get my hair cut (and it looks wonderful, I think) but while I was waiting for rush hour to be over, I wandered around JCPenny. They had a whole collection of Frozen t-shirts... and I didn't get any. I'm kind of kicking myself for that now, but maybe I'll find one under the Christmas tree. 

Saturday, December 13, 2014


Wednesday morning began  with the miserable experience of saying farewell to Liz. She went home to California for Christmas. I won't see her in person until next fall (although she promised to Skype with story ideas!)

Then yesterday afternoon, Faith left. She lives in Illinois. The apartment was so very empty without them there, and all I had to do was pack.

Then this morning, Sarah came to get my stuff, since she's storing stuff for me until fall. We went to Starbucks on the way to her house, just because. Then I had to say goodbye to her, too, but this time it wasn't a sad goodbye. The next time I see her will be in the British Isles!

Okay, Europe! Here I come!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Finals Begin

Ugh. Words everyone wants to use to start their day.

On the bright side, I get to go home this Sunday. I'll miss my roommates Liz and Faith next spring, though! But I plan to have lots of exciting stories to tell them for next fall.

For anyone else starting finals today, good luck! Keep calm, study hard, and remember that you can do this.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

New Travel Blog

Hey, everyone!

I just created a new blog called Marta's Travel Blog, where I'm going to post all the information about my travels to Europe this spring. If you're at all interested, go take a look! I put in a gadget that should let you put in your email, so you will get notifications when I put up a new post.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

It's Finally Here...

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I know I never got around to posting my list of things I'm grateful for, but I never have room to list everything. Besides, the list this year would be pretty similar to last year's.

With one exception...

Last year, I (think I) posted about being happy Graystone was almost finished. This year, I get to post about Graystone actually being published!

If you can't believe how long that took, neither can I. But no matter - it's here now. The cover is beautiful, as usual (thanks, Laura!) and it's available through Amazon (special link coming) or through my website. One of the early readers was Elizabeth Anne McKinney, author of Young Falcon, and you can see her review on the back cover.

Graystone features three main characters: Nathan'el, Conch, and Nurida. The three of them find themselves fighting the same enemy on different battlefields, and against some strange and mysterious enemies. I think my favorite of those three is Conch, because he's very determined, but I think Nurida and Nathan'el are interesting characters, too. When you read Graystone, leave a comment on my blog and let me know which character you like the best!

Before I forget - thank you, Lord God, for the gift of seeing Graystone in print.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

For High School and College Students...

...because I can't imagine anyone younger than ninth grade would be the slightest bit interested in Dante's Inferno.

For all you high school/college people who are forced to read Dante's classic poem, or who read it because you actually enjoy it, I have some interesting news: one of my classmates, Ethan Jahns, has published his modern translation of Inferno and is selling it on Amazon. I got my (signed) copy yesterday, and began perusing it a little bit. It's very easy to read, and the layout is nice and spread out, instead of all scrunched together like most classic stories seem to be. This is the cover:

I asked him about the cover, and he says the red triangle represents the cone shape of Dante's Hell.

You can buy it on Amazon for $10.80. Remember that if you look for it, search "Ethan C. Jahns" in the Amazon search widget to the right near the top of the blog. Any time you search using that app and buy something, Amazon sends some of the profits to my blog.

Anyway - that's really cool, Ethan! Way to go!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The Selection by Kiera Cass

Amazon really needs to quit with that "You may also like..." bar. It's always right - I always find something I really like. I decided to browse it as my reward to myself for getting my papers all turned in on time.

This time it showed me The Selection series by Kiera Cass, the first book of which is call The Selection. The basic storyline is that a prince has come of age, and a competition, the Selection, is held among thirty-five women from the kingdom. The main character is a girl called America Singer, who is already in love with someone from her home, which, of course, leads her to some very difficult choices as she has to choose between the print and her childhood love. At the same time as the selection, two groups of rebels threaten the palace, and no one seems to know what they want.

I read through the first book in one sitting, and it left me with a deep impression of Ms. Cass's writing skill. She has an exciting style of writing and a gift for connecting with the reader. America is an intriguing, likable character who, I think, the majority of young women can relate to. I don't think many young men would find this book very interesting, but then, I don't think they are the intended audience. Beyond a doubt, any high school or college girl will find something in this novel to connect to, or be inspired by.

Definitely five stars! And since it's a series, I expect I'll get the next one, too.