THE LONELY ONES Gets a Star!

This morning I woke up to find a missed call, a text, and several e-mails from my publishing team. I quickly opened the first thing I could... and any sleepiness I was still feeling immediately diminished when I saw the words, "The Lonely Ones Review" in the subject line. Thank you for making my entire day, week, month Kirkus! And thank you to my team and my readers. I've said it many times before and I'll keep saying it; none of this would be happening without you. 
THE LONELY ONES [STARRED REVIEW!]
Author: Kelsey Sutton
Review Issue Date: February 1, 2016
Online Publish Date: January 20, 2016
Publisher:Philomel
Pages: 240
Price ( Hardcover ): $16.99
Publication Date: April 26, 2016
ISBN ( Hardcover ): 978-0-399-17289-2
Category: Fiction
Still reeling from the effects of the recession that has thrown her family into financial turmoil and the loss of her best friend, who moved away, high school student Fain Frederick seeks solace in the only place she can find it: her own imagination. Whether she is writing or embarking on nightly adventures with magical creatures, Fain's rich imaginary life, much like Max's in Where the Wild Things Are, provides the elusive comfort she craves but cannot find in reality. It's only when the unexpected possibility of a new friendship (or perhaps even love) presents itself that Fain dares to consider abandoning her imaginary life for one in the here and now. Spare and poignant, every word of this haunting and elegant novel in verse feels painstakingly selected. It is the perfect medium for Fain to share her story. Readers will hold their breath as the vulnerable and endearing Fain navigates the treacherous minefields of both teen relationships and familial bonds in search of love and a sense of belonging. Like footprints, each poem reflects a step along Fain's journey. There is no excess here. There are no distractions. Fain's story is simply a brilliantly crafted coming-of-age novel that will appeal to the hearts and minds of all readers who have ever felt alone. (Fiction. 12 & up)

First Foreign Rights Sale

This week was particularly exciting, because not only did I finish my first semester of grad school and survive it, but I also accepted an offer from Ravensburger to publish SOME QUIET PLACE in Germany!

It's set to be a lead title in their spring 2017 lineup. I'm ridiculously ecstatic about meeting new readers and eternally thankful that my writing journey continues in such an exciting and humbling way.

Looks like I'll have to brush up on - or, you know, actually learn - some German...

Danke, my amazing friends and readers. 

THE LONELY ONES Cover Reveal

It's the big day! I'm finally able to the reveal cover of THE LONELY ONES. Coming out April 26th, 2016 from Philomel Books. I can't wait to share this story with you guys.

Enter the giveaway

to win a signed ARC!

Fain hasn’t always been lonely. Her family used to be close; she used to have good friends. But as circumstances—and people—changed, Fain was left behind. That’s when the monsters appeared.
While her parents argue and her peers and siblings either pick on or simply ignore her, Fain spends time in a world of her own making. During the day, she crafts stories of fantastical adventures, but in the darkness of night, these adventures come to life alongside a legion of imaginary creatures, with Fain as their queen.
In time, Fain begins to see possibilities and friendships emerge in her day-to-day, but when she is let down by the one relationship she thought she could trust, Fain must decide: remain queen of the imaginary creatures, or risk opening herself up to the fragile connections that can only be formed in the real world?
Told in lyrical free verse, The Lonely Ones reminds us of the need for imaginative play and the power of true friendship.

So what do you think? Also, don't forget to

add it to your Goodreads shelves

. It's also

available for pre-order

, and there may or may not be an except on the Amazon page... Happy Monday, everyone! 

BENJAMIN

You know that moment when you log onto Pinterest, and you tell yourself it'll be quick? Just a few minutes and then you'll be done. Twenty minutes, tops. And then you blink and realize that you've been pinning and scrolling for over an hour? 

Yeah, I can finally call all that time research.

ne day, a while ago, I stopped on an image. I can't find it now, but there was something simple and striking about it. There was a boy standing on Earth, gazing up at the moon. There was no caption to go along with it, but it sparked something inside me. I started writing. 

And those few sentences turned into something amazing.

Liza Kaplan at Philomel has acquired Benjamin, a middle-grade novel in verse by Kelsey Sutton. Benjamin lives on the moon, keeping watch over the world below but caring nothing for the lives he observes... until he discovers Sam, a girl who makes him long for more. Publication is planned for summer 2017, to follow the 2016 publication of Sutton's The Lonely Ones; Beth Miller at Writers House negotiated the deal for world rights.

Squee! Can't wait to share this story with you, my wonderful readers!

Friday Four (3/20/15)

1. It's been a long time since I've done one of these. There have been changes in my life which have kept me busy and away from the blog. The most notable of which is that I'm graduating college! May 8th is just around the corner and I've been scrambling to make sure I have everything I need to get that piece of paper.

2. After that... I'm heading to grad school. Yes, I'm having trouble wrapping my head around it, too. I'd briefly entertained the notion that I was done with classrooms and assignments, at least for a long time. But then I was accepted in Hamline University and offered a scholarship, which was too amazing of an opportunity to turn down. So in June I'm heading to the big city! It's exciting and terrifying.

3. Despite all the insanity, there has been some writing, as well. My middle-grade debut THE LONELY ONES is nearly complete and about to go into copy edits. I was actually given a release date this week, which is April 26th, 2016! While this may seem like an insanely long wait, I know it's going to be on me before I can blink. That's how life seems to work these days. I also have a young adult suspense coming out. Don't have much information to share just yet, but feel free to add it on Goodreads.

4. This may not seem like a big deal to some, but I feel it's substantial enough to note here. Which is that my hair is gone. I was always the girl with the long brown hair, but this week I went into a salon and had my stylist chop off ten inches and donate it. While I do keep reaching for it and find myself clutching at air, it was worth it. This video reminded me of that when I started to feel wistful. And the thing to remember is that hair grows back.

Have a great week, everyone!

Interviews

I Have Another Book Coming Out!

You may remember when I made

the announcement

for

THE LONELY ONES

, which is coming out in 2016. It felt bittersweet, because while I was ecstatic that my writing journey would continue, a year and a half is such a long time to wait to share another story with my readers. I honestly didn't expect to have a release for 2015. 

Which is why I'm so excited to write this post.

Almost two years ago, I wrote a book. It was young adult, and it was about a character that I absolutely loved. This girl was in my head so strongly that I wrote her story in just a month or two. After a few rounds of revisions, my agent sent it out on submission. And while editors had positive feedback and kind things to say about it, we couldn't find a home for this girl. 

So, after some long weeks and difficult rejections, we decided to give up on her. 

Until a couple months ago. I was sitting at home, browsing some old files on my laptop. I came across the manuscript and felt compelled to open it. A few hours later, I'd reread the entire thing. And I loved it just as much as I had the first time. For a writer, this is pretty big. I e-mailed Beth and asked if she had any ideas for bringing the girl back to life. She did.

Which is why I'm able to make this announcement. It's been two years in the making, but it just goes to show that even if you don't reach a goal or a dream right away, it can eventually happen if you don't completely let it go. 

Digital: YA

Author of SOME QUIET PLACE and the forthcoming THE LONELY ONES Kelsey Sutton’s GARDENIA, a novel of suspense in which a young woman, cursed with the power to see how long everyone has left to live, must solve her best friend’s murder before she too becomes a victim, to Randall Klein at Diversion, by Beth Miller at Writers House (World English).

I can't wait for you guys to meet Ivy and read

her story

.

Friday Five (8/8/14)

1. WHERE SILENCE GATHERS has been out for a month now. It's strange to think about. So much of being an author is waiting, circling a certain date and watching the days crawl toward it. When you actually reach that day and everything you've been waiting for happens, it's hard to let go and move on to other things. But that's what I'm doing. I hope you enjoy Alex's story, guys, and I want to thank those of you who've offered support and encouragement. I couldn't do this without you.

2. Speaking of doing other things, I've been getting one question a lot lately. What are you working on? Just in case you missed the announcement, I do have another book coming out. Granted, it's not for another year and a half, but we all know that time always moves faster than we expect it to. This book will be my middle-grade debut, and it's coming from Philomel (an imprint of Penguin). I'm so excited to explore this genre. Don't worry, though! I'm always working on a young adult manuscript, whatever else is on my plate.

3. I had a birthday this summer. And I'd like to thank Taylor Swift for releasing a song that people automatically sing every time they hear how old I am, ensuring that it's the only thing I'm able to sing for the rest of the day. I probably mumble it in my sleep. How sad is it that I had a panic attack when I realized another year had gone by? There's just so much left on my list. I still need to go skydiving, travel to Europe, learn another language, audition for a movie, participate in a poetry reading... Here's to hoping twenty-three is slower in coming. What's on your list, guys?

4. If you're a writer looking for inspiration, I'd suggest moving into a house with roommates. It's extremely entertaining and there's always something happening. At least there is where I live. In the brief time we've been in this little green house, I've witnessed fights and proposals and so much else. I accept that this is where I'm at in life right now, but I do look forward to the time when everything is quiet again, and it's just me and the dogs. I think they're pretty exhausted, too:


5. School starts in two weeks. It's hard to believe. At this point last year I was convinced I'd be somewhere else in the world, doing something besides homework and studying. But then I discovered that I was just a few credits away from a second degree. And since the school I'm at is one of the few that offers this particular program, I thought, Why not? So I'll be in Minnesota for one more year, and hopefully at the end of it I'll walk away with my degrees in hand.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Friday Five (5/16/14)

1. This blog has been pretty inactive the past few months, to say the least. But now that I'm officially graduated, I'm hoping that will change. Oh, do you like how I just casually slid that in there? Because I'm still so excited that I managed to pull it off. All the work, all the sweat, all the tears! It was worth it, because now I have an English degree to show for it. Of course, there's still a lot of school ahead - I'm a masochist like that - but this is a huge victory for both myself and my family. The fact that I messed up twice during the ceremony barely fazed me.


2. Moving sucks. Right now my tiny apartment is full of big boxes. It's amazing how much crap I managed to accumulate in two years. Most of it I'm selling or donating. Where am I moving, you ask? Just to another place in town, only this one will be full of roommates. I thought about vowing to buy less books so I wouldn't have to buy Ramen Noodles or share a place with anyone else, but who am I kidding? Hopefully that shiny new degree will help soon.

3. Over the summer, I'm working at a restaurant as a server. I have no prior experience in this setting, so it's been interesting, to say the least. I've only messed up about three hundred and twenty-nine times. Anyone who thinks serving is oh-so-easy, I welcome you to try it for a day. At least I haven't dropped a giant tray of food... yet.

4. TV shows have been wrapping up. This year I watched The Originals, Nashville, and The Big Bang Theory. Either I'm way too easy to please, or there are just some excellent writers working in television. I will admit to getting teary-eyed at least once. Also, who's keeping up with Game of Thrones? No spoilers, but Peter Dinklage deserves an Emmy for his performance this week. 

5. This past month I learned just how much I love my dogs. Dawson got... a couple of things removed. He was sent home with a cone and some painkillers. And my puppy proved that he was able to contort his body in such a way that he could still lick the stitches, because a couple days later there was an infection. After another trip to the vet, he was sent home again, this time with antibiotics and a bigger cone. I was cautioned to make him rest, and Dawson is determined to run and jump and play and make me have an ulcer. Seriously, if he wasn't so cute...

School Library Journal on WHERE SILENCE GATHERS

The release date for WHERE SILENCE GATHERS is just a couple months away now, and the reviews are starting to roll in. It's always nerve-wracking, and it's a fact of life that not everyone is going to like it. Thankfully, there are usually some reviews that make the process worthwhile. The one that landed in my inbox today is no exception:

School Library Journal

05/01/2014

Gr 9 Up—Alexandra Tate has always been able to see personified Emotions, but now she is faced with a Choice. Revenge, her best friend since the drunk driving accident that killed her family, and Forgiveness, a tempting new Choice, compete for her attention. Even six years after the tragedy, Alex struggles with her grief and tries again and again to get justice for her family's murder. Completing her senior year of high school loses priority as Alex uncovers mysteries about her father's past, is chased by haunting voices that no one else can hear, and runs from faceless attackers theatening the lives of her remaining family and friends. A poignant, heart-wrenching story of grief, love, and loss, Where Silence Gathers combines an authentic narrative with tantalizing supernatural elements to create a powerful companion novel to Sutton's debut, Some Quiet Place (Flux, 2013). This will appeal to fans of paranormal romances like Kami Garcia and Meredith Stoll's Beautiful Creatures (Little, Brown, 2009) and Lauren Kate's "Fallen" series (Delacorte) and is highly recommended for both school and public library collections.—Eden Rassette, Kenton County Public Library, KY

 

Yay! Can't wait to share this story with you, guys. 

My Middle Grade Debut

I am so ecstatic to make this announcement. This is such a special book. Not only because it is told in verse, which is a first for me. And not only because it is my middle grade debut. It's because of the subject matter itself. My editor put it perfectly in one of her e-mails:

"There are many children/teens that suffer from diagnosable ailments (among them, clinical depression or Asperger’s), which we see reflected in the children’s marketplace. But loneliness is something different. To me, loneliness is a symptom of something far deeper and more complex: feeling other, feeling less than, and feeling disconnected from those around you. While not always easily treated or palpable, the effects of loneliness are often equally devastating and traumatic. THE LONELY ONES feels at once timeless and so relevant to me for this reason—advocating for connection, kindness, compassion."

Liza had already bowled me over with her enthusiasm, but when I read that, I just knew she was the one to work with. As of right now the book won't be released until early 2016, which feels like an agonizingly long wait, but I have a feeling it'll go by faster than we think. Here is the PM announcement to hold you over until then!

Children's: Middle Grade
Kelsey Sutton's THE LONELY ONES, a novel in verse in which lonely thirteen-year-old Fain, who is queen to a legion of imaginary creatures, struggles to connect to those around her until a boy from school and an equally lonely next-door neighbor show her the value of making friends in the real world, to Liza Kaplan at Philomel, by Beth Miller at Writers House (World).

I'll post updates here when I have them! And now I'm off to go dance some more. Have a great week, everyone!

Friday Four (2/7/14)

1. Well, Where Silence Gathers is up on Netgalley, which means that it is officially exists outside of my laptop. This is nerve-wracking on so many levels. For the past year I've seen two words a lot around the blogosphere: sophomore slump. Or maybe I noticed it more because it's become a fear for me. I just keep telling myself that I'm proud of this book, and I did the best job I could. Which is all any writer can do, right? So, though it's very different from Some Quiet Place, I hope Alex's story will resonate with many readers.
 
2. I learned a very important lesson this month: I am addicted to my cell phone. See, the one I had broke beyond all repair, and I was forced to order a new one. It took a week to arrive, and in that time I had nothing else to use for my texting or obsessively-tweeting needs. And in that time I can't count how many times I reached to check my phone... only to discover my fingers were closing around empty air. I realized that I am on it constantly. Frankly, I was a little annoyed with myself. So I've made a vow to be on the phone less, and in the moment more.
 
3. In between work and school, I've been working on a new YA novel. Right now it's at 33,000 words - yes, the dreaded middle - and I'm still in love with it. Which means that it will probably end up in the "Finished" folder on my computer. Since I've been getting some curious tweets about it, I thought I would share that the tentative title is Under and my agent has called it "bizarre" and "intriguing". And for someone who didn't bat an eyelash when I sent her a book about personified emotions, you know it must be true. There are no guarantees that it will ever see the light of day, but right now, the fun I'm having with it is all that matters. What are you working on?
 
4. I've always adored E.E. Cummings, and recently I bought a volume containing some of his most well-known work. Sadly, it didn't have my favorite poem, which is I Carry Your Heart With Me. Which isn't supposed to be capitalized, but the English major in me just can't bear to spell it out the way it should be. Anyway, if you haven't heard of Cummings or read his work, I really hope you find it as special as I do.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Amber Hart's BEFORE YOU Cover Reveal

Happy Friday, everyone!

I know I haven't posted in a while. It's a good thing, actually, because it means that I'm so busy writing that I don't have the time. (School might be a factor, too.) Anyway, I had to come back today because one of my dear friends is revealing the cover for her debut! Having read some of her work, I can tell you that she is an amazing writer. You won't want to miss out on this book. And I will stop babbling now, since you're probably not reading this anyway. Without further ado, here is the cover for Amber Hart's fabulous BEFORE YOU:



Goodreads Summary:
 
Faith Watters spent her junior year traveling the world, studying in exquisite places, before returning to Oviedo High School. From the outside her life is picture-perfect. Captain of the dance team. Popular. Happy. Too bad it’s all a lie.

Eighteen-year-old Diego Alvarez hates his new life in the States, but staying in Cuba is not an option. Covered in tattoos and scars, Diego doesn’t stand a chance of fitting in. Nor does he want to. His only concern is staying hidden from his past—a past, which if it were to surface, would cost him everything. Including his life.

At Oviedo High School, it seems that Faith Watters and Diego Alvarez do not belong together. But fate is as tricky as it is lovely. Freedom with no restraint is what they long for. What they get is something different entirely.

Isn't it beautiful? And even if the cover didn't capture someone's interest, the excerpt sure will. Check it out on Amber's website. Also, don't forget to add it to your Goodreads. Look for Faith and Diego on July 29th, out from Kensington Books.

Have a great weekend!

Friday Five (12/27/13)

1. So the fall semester is  officially over. Remember all that whining I did, both on the blog and Twitter? Well, it actually paid off. The work, I mean, not the whining of it. Although that probably helped me stay sane. The proof (which is quite historic, I must say):



2. How was your Christmas? Mine was interesting, to say the least. I was nearly to my grandparents' house when my car broke down. Since all the shops were closed, I had to wait to find out what had gone wrong. The prognosis? She may or may not be permanently dead. Thankfully I have an amazing family who helped me out, which is probably why I keep dedicating my books to them. Anyway, here's to hoping that my old Buick still has some miles in her!
 
3. So I've had the new puppy for a month and a half now, and I don't know why I thought it would be as easy as raising Lewis. Every dog is different, and somehow I forgot that. Dawson is... a challenge, to say the least. He fights any kind of training, no matter how I reinforce it. One of my regulars at the coffee shop claims it's because of his terrier side. And he certainly is a terror. It helps that he's cute, though. Send positive thoughts our way!

4. Now that I've actually had some time for myself, I've been a writing machine. I've finished one manuscript and made great progress on another, and I really hope that you'll be able to read them someday. Only time will tell! How is your work coming along?

5. Now that graduation is drawing nearer and nearer, I keep thinking about how terrifying the future is. Where will I end up? What will I be doing? What if something goes wrong? It's something everyone experiences at one time or another, whether it's at the end of high school, college, or later in life. The fear and the struggle is what so many write about. So I've found it helps, when I'm in the middle of a panic attack, to think about all the fodder I now have for stories. What are your methods?
 
Have a great week, and Happy New Year!

Friday Five (12/6/13)

1. Finals are approaching, and all I can think about these days are essays and multiple-choice questions. It's hard to believe that in just five months, I'll be finished with my undergrad. How are things going for you guys? Are you wondering what on earth you were thinking when you decided to embark on this insane adventure called education? This Thanksgiving I told myself to be grateful for it. Maybe I should tattoo it on my arm or something so it's harder to forget.
 
2. Speaking of Thanksgiving, mine was more interesting than last year's. Not because of the food (which was delicious) or because of the people (who were fabulous), but because of a tiny surprise that wound up in my life. Everyone, meet the newest member of my little family, Dawson Sutton:


3. This month I woke up to some amazing news. SOME QUIET PLACE was named a Best Teen Book of 2013 by Kirkus Reviews. I'm still stunned and humbled and ecstatic, especially considering the company I'm keeping on the rest of the list. Two titles I would highly recommend are THE COLDEST GIRL IN COLDTOWN by Holly Black and ALL THE TRUTH THAT'S IN ME by Julie Berry.

4. It's a time for firsts. I recently went to my first roller derby bout. Wow, what an entertaining sport! Those girls are colorful and tough, and I don't know if I would have their mettle on the track. And they do all that shoving and skating in stylish outfits. Plus, the names. How fun are the names? I would want to do a play on one of my favorite author's names, like Charlotte Gruntë or Pain Austen. Yeah, those are horrible. I'm sorry I made you read that.

5. I feel like I should mention something writerly here but the truth is, there isn't much to say in that department right now. Promotion for SOME QUIET PLACE has come to a close, and I've been so consumed by work and school and puppies that I haven't had a chance to attempt NaNoWriMo or even write something at my own pace. Hopefully over Christmas break. Then you can watch me whine about it on Twitter.

Cover Reveal and International Giveaway for WHERE SILENCE GATHERS

It's that time again. I have finally been given the go-ahead to show you all the cover for my next novel, WHERE SILENCE GATHERS. I love it just as much as the first, and I am so excited to hear the reactions.

And even though you're probably not reading this, because you're already too busy staring at this gorgeous thing, I want to thank everyone for making my first book such a success that my publisher wanted another one. Without your enthusiasm I honestly wouldn't have been able to continue this amazing journey. So, without further ado, here it is:


Summary:

In this companion novel to the critically acclaimed Some Quiet Place, Alex must choose between Revenge and Forgiveness.

Seventeen-year-old Alexandra Tate sits outside Nate Foster’s house, clutching a gun. After serving ten years for the drunk driving accident that killed Alex’s family, Nate has been released from prison. Every night, Alex waits out of sight, building up the courage to exact her own justice. There’s just one problem: Forgiveness. Alex has been able to see personified Emotions for as long as she can remember, and Revenge is her best friend. But when Forgiveness suddenly appears, he offers Alex a choice—getting even or moving on. It’s impossible to decide when Revenge whispers in one ear . . . and Forgiveness whispers in the other.
 
Enter to win a pre-order of WHERE SILENCE GATHERS!
(This giveaway is international.)
 

And, just because I adore looking at them together...

 
Also see the cover at:
 

Friday Five (10/4/2013)

1. It's the beginning of October somehow and I'm writing this blog post from a brand-new laptop. I woke up one morning, intending to print off an essay that was due and maybe write a bit before class... and my trusty old Betsy (yes, I named my Dell Betsy) wouldn't turn on. I rushed it to the computer doctor, and he told me that there would be no reviving the old girl. So here I am, with a fancy touch-screen contraption that I'm scared of and slightly excited about and more than a little resentful towards. This computer feels like a... Philip. I don't know why. Here's to a long and fruitful relationship, Philip.
 
2. NaNoWriMo. Come on, you know I had to bring it up. November is right around the corner and the time is coming when we all disregard inconsequential things like hygiene and food for the sake of pounding out 50,000 words in thirty days. I'm definitely going to try again, "try" being the key word as I've never actually succeeded at this. Anyone else planning on being crazy with me this year?
 
3. I've actually been reading lately, and I've stumbled across some great ones. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell. So sweet and funny and painful. I loved it so much that I went out and bought Rainbow's next book, Fangirl. I also just consumed Poison Princess by Kresley Cole. This one made me nervous, because I couldn't get into it right away. But about halfway though, guys, the story picks up and it's just addicting. Last but not least, I finished Wild Awake by Hilary Smith. This book was, in a word, crazy. It truly felt like I was unraveling with the main character. It's so beautifully written and I loved it. What have you been reading?
 
4. There are so many good things on TV this fall. Someone should come and take my cable away so I actually get things done. Hello, New Girl and Scandal and Vampire Diaries and Nashville. I love-hate you all. Anyone else watching with me?
 
5. My great-grandfather passed away yesterday morning. He was 104 years old. It's strange to think of a world without him in it, and I know that this Thanksgiving I'll keep looking at his empty chair in the living room and feel that pang. I'll never forget Elmer Sutton and he will be so, so missed.
 
Hope you have a great week, guys.

When a Writer Doesn't Want to Write

I experienced something for the first time this year. 

After turning in my second book to my editor, I found that I didn't want to write. Oh, I get lazy once in a while. Choosing to watch an episode of The Vampire Diaries or stalking Ian Somerhalder on Twitter instead of opening that Word document. But something about this was different, and I knew it. I had finished a contracted manuscript, there was still some summer left, and there was all this time to start something new. And I didn't. Because when I thought about beginning a new project, I came up with a complete and blinding blank.

It was a sensation that was worrying and awful, because ever since I could pick up a pen - or, in my case, a marker - I have been writing. I have had ideas. I have had this almost overwhelming need to create stories and get words down into something palpable. This August, though, I closed Microsoft Word and it stayed closed. There was utterly no desire to try again. 

It led to sleepless nights and anxious messages to my fellow Lucky 13 members. Was I the only one dealing with this? Was it permanent? Had I finally run out of creative juices? Writing may not define me as a person, but up until that point it had been a huge part in who I was. Without it, I felt lost. Yet something kept me from actually doing it. Some part of me may have sought distractions, in new hobbies and spending time with friends and working.

Well, that's good, isn't it? someone might ask. Actually, yes, it was. Because I had been so consumed with finishing book two, these were things I hadn't done much of for weeks. Maybe months. I realize this makes writing sound like soul-sucking work. Honestly, some days, it can be. I've talked before about how grateful I am and how amazing it is to have a publisher. But with this comes the point where you don't get to write just when you feel like it or when inspiration hits, you write because your deadline is coming up and you have to make it.

So there I was, weeks of summer left. Normally I would seize this time and hurry to finish another manuscript before school started. Instead, I did everything but. After a while, the guilt and the fear got tiring, and I let it go.

Eventually I did figure it out. There wasn't an exact date or time that the answer occurred to me. It came gradually, in pieces and parts and feelings. I returned to the laptop and typed a few words. I did it again a few days later. And a few days after that. And now it's October and I'm so excited about a manuscript that I'm over halfway through. 

So why didn't I want to write? What was the big answer? Simple: I was tired.

That's it. There was no deeper meaning to my lack of desire to write. I had put everything I had into book two and I was a battery that needed recharging. Maybe writers are prone to panic, or maybe it's just a select few of us. Several other of my fellow Lucky 13 friends felt the same way. So if I learned anything in all this, one lesson over the summer, it's that writers need breaks. We feel like we should be constantly creating or striving for a word count or typing "the end". And most months out of the year, that's true. If we go a stretch of time where we just watch TV and binge with friends, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. There should be no guilt. We are human, and though we are writers, it shouldn't be everything. It shouldn't suck us dry. It could be about balance, or it could be about taking that much-needed break.

And now I'm off to have lunch with some friends. Have a great week, everyone!