Blog Survey | FREE Short Story “Wordless”

2018 is almost over, and that means it’s time for a survey! I’d love for you all to complete this survey to help make Notebooks and Novels even better in 2019. It’s only ten super easy questions, but it would make a big difference and be a huge help if you filled it out!

And guess what? I’ll be sending a FREE short story written by me to everyone who completes the survey! The short story, titled “Wordless,” is about a 1950s woman who suddenly loses the heart to do what she loves most and a young girl who helps her discover what life is truly about. Read on for a sneak peek! =)

The words won’t come. 

I stare at the creamy white sheet of paper sitting prettily, not a splash of ink marring it. The typewriter keys practically beg me to make them dance again. I will my fingers to move across them, to create something, anything on the page. I wait for inspiration to wash over me.

But the words won’t come.

I squeeze my eyes shut. But the words aren’t painted on the backs of my eyelids. They don’t materialize in the darkness I find there. They’re gone. Gone.

For the first time, I am wordless.

I hope that you enjoyed the sneak peek at “Wordless.” Again, if you’d like to read the full story, you can click below to take the survey. Be sure to enter your email address so I can send it to you! If you would like to take the survey but don’t want to receive “Wordless,” that’s totally okay! Just skip the first question of the survey.

“Wordless” will be sent out on January 7, 2019. If you complete the survey between January 7-31, you will receive “Wordless” on January 31, 2019.

Thank you all so much for your feedback! I really appreciate it! ❤

Like this? Check out these…

Project Canvas Blog Tour

Project Canvas Blog Tour
Project Canvas is almost here! *cue the epic music, confetti, and mounds of cake* This exciting international project is jam-packed with writerly advice, encouragement, and lots more amazingness. And guess what? It’s going to be released to the world on November 15! So many epic people contributed to this book–61 in total (including me)! Altogether, we’re from eleven different countries and six different continents. And we have all come together to make Project Canvas. I am SO EXCITED for this book to go out into the world! ❤ Read on to learn more about Project Canvas, the amazing founders, and other fun stuff. =D 
About the Book

An international writing community. 61 authors. 11 countries. 6 continents.

Are you looking for advice on how to create the perfect villain? Do you need the courage to put your story down on paper? Find this and more in Project Canvas, a writing resource written completely by teen and young adult writers and compiled by Caroline Meek and Olivia Rogers.

Project Canvas includes:

· 71 short chapters, each written by a different author

· bonus interviews with authors such as Tessa Emily Hall and Q. Gibson

· world building and character development worksheets

· and other helpful resources!

“This is a writing teacher’s dream – not a how-to book, but more of a literary testimony and homage to the process of writing. A sweet balance between the practical and the spiritual, Project Canvas is concise enough for daily meditation, yet robust enough to move the writer’s soul beyond the temporary.” –Brian Dolezal, professional development and spoken word coach at Sumner Academy of Arts and Science

About the Founders

Caroline and Olivia have been friends ever since kindergarten, when they met in a homeschooling group. Their writing journey was a slow evolution over the course of many sleepovers, games of pretend, writing stories together, and finally publishing some of them.

Caroline Meek is the editor-in-chief and co-founder of Project Canvas. She’s originally from Kansas City, Kansas, where she co-authored The Drawing in of Breath and attended Sumner Academy of Arts and Sciences. Caroline has a passion for bringing writers together and is currently studying English & Creative Writing on the Publishing track at the University of Iowa. She’s been published in The Kansas City Star, Ink Lit Mag, Wordsmith, and blogs at Of Stars and Ink-Stained Things.

Olivia Rogers is the co-founder of Project Canvas. She’s originally from the great state of Kansas, where she showed sheep, competitively debated, and also became involved in politics. Olivia believes that writing is the gateway to change. She’s currently studying Political Science and Philosophy at Kansas State University, with the goal of becoming a lawyer and continuing to advocate for others.

Other Fun Stuff… 

The fun doesn’t end with the release of this insanely amazing book. There’s also a giveaway!  Go to the giveaway post on the Project Canvas blog for a chance to win free copies of Project Canvas and more exciting goodies. =) Click here to visit the giveaway post.

And y’all, don’t forget to stop by the other amazing blogs on this tour! For a schedule of the blog tour, visit the Project Canvas blog (projectcanvasblog.blogspot.com). Also, there’s a super fun bookstagram challenge going on, and I think that I’m going to be joining in. Click here to see the blog tour schedule and check out the bookstagram challenge that Project Canvas is hosting! =)

Are you excited for this book’s release or what?! 
What is one piece of advice you’d like to give to other writers? 

What Am I? ~ A Shakespearean Sonnet

What Am I? ~ A Shakespearean Sonnet
Sometimes when I am left to ponder,
The roll of the clouds, the glow of the moon, the soar of an eagle, the height of the sky, 
I, like a child, can’t help but wonder, 
In all of this, what am I? 

The roar of the storm, the ocean wide,
Spirals of rock, evergreens, ethereal flowers and mountain kings, 
A bow of color in the sky, the ebb and flow of the passing tide,
What am I, amidst all of this creation that sings

The yawn of a canyon, the crescendo of light, 
Scampering does, skittering leaves, fluttering birds, towering trees,
The dance of stars in a dark blue night,
What am I, amidst all of these? 
Perhaps it is not what I am that I should dwell on, nor on all of this majesty,
But rather, on the hands that made all of this, and me

WHAT I LEARNED FROM WRITING DEAR JAMIE, LOVE RORY

I can’t believe that next week this fun little celebration for “Dear Jamie, Love Rory” will come to a close. It’s been so much fun celebrating with you all (and I’d just like to say THANK YOU for all of your sweet comments <3). But before the celebration ends, I’d like to share two things I learned from writing “Dear Jamie, Love Rory” with you all. 
The first thing I learned was that being afraid of failure (and letting that fear control you) can only lead to just that: failure. 
Here’s something I don’t tell anyone: At first, I wasn’t even going to enter One Teen Story. A couple years ago, I had written a story for them and ended up never sending it in. I was too afraid of losing, too embarrassed to think of others reading it. Yet I still wanted to enter someday. My fear of failure (which was fueled by plenty of self-doubt), however, kept me from doing so until One Teen Story‘s latest contest. 
About a week or so before the deadline, I told myself, “I’m just going to do this. If I lose, I lose, but at least I can finally say that I tried.” About three late-nighters, a few scrapped stories, and plenty of agonizing over everything, I sent “Dear Jamie, Love Rory” to One Teen Story

First picture ~ Grapes at a California Vineyard ~ Second Picture ~ Writing in the Redwoods

A couple months later, I received an email saying that my story was placed on a shortlist. I freaked out. A little while later, I got an email saying that “Dear Jamie, Love Rory” had won. I freaked out even more. 
Looking back at it now, if I had let my fear of failure keep me from sending my story in, I couldn’t be writing this now.  
I’m not going to lie: Failure is SCARY. It’s a crippling beast, but if you let your writerly fears rule you, you will never get the chance to reach your dreams and succeed. Being afraid of failure and letting that keeping you from taking risks can only lead to failure. Don’t be afraid. You CAN reach your goals and achieve your dreams. 
The second thing I learned was to write the story of my heart. 
In an interview with Patrick Ryan of One Story, I was asked what the best bit of writing advice was that I had received. My answer? Write the story of your heart. 
I’ve tried writing stories for others so much, that when it came time for me to throw together a story for this contest, I decided to finally let myself write the story of my heart. Once I let myself do that, my writing got better, and I began to fall in love with this beautiful craft even more. 

Let yourself go wild on the pages. Write the story you want to see on bookshelves. Write what you love. Write the story of your heart, because the world needs your story.
The Giveaway…
Before I go, just in case you didn’t know… I’m hosting a giveaway! =D I’m giving away a signed copy of “Dear Jamie, Love Rory” AND a beautiful California sticker from Kulana Stickers. Use the widget below to enter. The giveaway ends on August 9. =)

Click here to buy “Dear Jamie, Love Rory” on Kindle. 
Click here to subscribe to One Teen Story. 

What is one of your greatest writerly fears? 
What’s something you’ve learned about writing? 

DEAR JAMIE, LOVE RORY PLAYLIST + GIVEAWAY

In case you all missed my last post… “DEAR JAMIE, LOVE RORY” IS HERE!!!!! To continue the bloggy celebration in honor of its release,  I’m sharing the playlist I listened to while writing “Dear Jamie, Love Rory.”

Click here for the playlist!

Pretty much all of the music on this playlist was music that I listened to on my own trip to California. 
I can still remember singing along to “Take It All Back” on the way to a vineyard in Napa Valley, and playing some Mumford and Sons on repeat. I listened to this playlist on repeat while writing “Dear Jamie, Love Rory,” and it still hasn’t gotten old. And Nikki just so happens to be a fan of the Lumineers. 😉 I hope that you all enjoy listening to the playlist! =) 
And now, it’s giveaway time! 
I’m giving away a signed copy “Dear Jamie, Love Rory” and a beautiful California sticker from Kulana Stickers (check out their Etsy shop, you will want EVERYTHING). The sticker is a gorgeous picture of California covered in the state flower–poppies! It’ll look great on a notebook, a water bottle, a phone case-whatever you can dream up for it!

Still working on my photography “skills.” xD 
Aren’t they pretty? AND I AM GOING TO POINT OUT THAT COVER AGAIN (I still can’t believe my name is on there, or how pretty it is…). Enter below, but be sure to hurry! The giveaway ends on August 9! 

Click here to buy “Dear Jamie, Love Rory” and see some more fun extras! 
Click here to buy “Dear Jamie, Love Rory” on Kindle. 

Do you listen to music while writing? Will you be entering the giveaway? 

DEAR JAMIE, LOVE RORY IS HERE!!!!!!!

It’s here! “Dear Jamie, Love Rory” is here!!! =D Typing that out feels so surreal… And holding my story in my hands, staring at my name plastered on the pretty cover… THIS CALLS FOR MORE FIREWORKS.

I want to give a BIG thank you to everyone at One Teen Story (they’re amazing!) who helped make this little dream of mine a reality. From editing my story with Patrick Ryan to seeing it in layout to then staring at a box full of my story, this has been an amazing experience just getting it closer to publication. And now to see it published… I’m blown away, to be honest.

My mom made funfetti cupcakes to celebrate! =D 

Thank you to my family, who didn’t complain when I stayed up way past midnight writing this story and brought me cocoa and snacks (very important) during the writing process. They’re my biggest cheerleaders, and I’m so blessed to have them. Jamie, Rory, and Nikki’s story couldn’t have happened without any of the people I’ve mentioned. Seriously, I can’t believe how much God has blessed me, and I want to say THANK YOU to Him to, for giving me this wonderful gift of writing and blessing me so much.

I’d also like to thank my amazing readers for being super encouraging and sweet-I couldn’t ask for better readers! To celebrate my story’s release, I’m hosting a blog party! There will be a giveaway, a playlist, lots of pictures, and more! I hope to see you here! =) 

Click here to see an interview with me, read a snippet, and more! 

Update: It has come to my attention that there was a change in the launch date that I was unaware of, so next week is the official launch! Nonetheless, the party will go on and the links updated as soon as possible. Thanks for all of your wonderful comments! 

Do you like writing short stories? What about reading them?