Today, we’re excited to be hosting a stop on the official blog tour for The Artisans by Julie Reece, now in stores. Below, check out our guest post from Julie, then keep reading to learn more about The Artisans and enter to win a copy of the book!
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~My Favorite Writing Spot~
by Julie Reece
Most of the time, I write in my bed, or catch a few moments at work (shhh) don’t tell. I even write on my laptop in the car when my husband and I are on a road trip (and to answer your question, yes, he is a saint). But my most favoritist <<I know it’s not a real word, but I like it, and it’s staying>> place to write is at the barn. I don’t own this barn, it belongs to my boss. The man is eighty-six-years-old and still rides every week. He’s pretty much John Wayne, and he lets us keep our horses there free of charge in exchange for shoveling poo. That’s another story.
Anyway, I get interrupted a lot when I’m writing. I’m dyslexic and have ADD, so interrupting me is easy. At home it’s a loud TV, a whooshing dishwasher, kids who can’t remember where they put their shoes, or a cat that thinks my lap is his throne. At work its phone calls or pesky clients who dare to come to the office and, you know, actually want my attention. Sheesh.
At the barn, I can’t say I’m not distracted, but it’s different out there.
I pull up a soccer chair in the breezeway between the stalls and sit with my laptop. The shade keeps the heat off, but the wind is subtle and warm. My husband is mowing, so I smell gas and oil, but the breeze mixes the scent with fresh-cut grass. The sound of the motor makes a constant, dull hum and it works just like white noise in my brain—easily tuned out. Horses whinny and munch hay. A bee whizzes past my head, a dog barks, wind rattles the leaves in the massive oak trees over the roof. You’d think every little sound would drive me batty, like it does at work, but no. Somehow, the natural sounds are peaceful and, if anything, they drive my imagination harder. I’m more productive out here.
Eventually, clouds pass over the sun and the sky darkens. I look at my cell and four hours have passed like four minutes. I glance up and notice the mower has stopped. My husband walks over and kisses the top of my head. He smiles down at me. “Done writing?”
“Never,” I say, and we give each other these big, stupid grins because we both know it’s true. I’ll be finished when I’m dead.
Then we load up the car and drive off somewhere to grab dinner out. We talk and laugh. It’s a good day. A day wrapped in peace, and magic, and creativity. I’m more thankful for that little barn than I can say.
So, how about you? Do you have a favorite place that feels special above any other? I’d love for you to leave a comment and tell me all about it!
My thanks to Sara and everyone at Novel Novice for having me here today and for being awesome! Thinking about my favorite writing place this week has made me grateful all over again.
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They say death can be beautiful. But after the death of her mother, seventeen-year-old Raven Weathersby gives up her dream of becoming a fashion designer, barely surviving life in the South Carolina lowlands.
To make ends meet, Raven works after school as a seamstress creating stunning works of fashion that often rival the great names of the day.
Instead of making things easier on the high school senior, her stepdad’s drinking leads to a run in with the highly reclusive heir to the Maddox family fortune, Gideon Maddox.
But Raven’s stepdad’s drying out and in no condition to attend the meeting with Maddox. So Raven volunteers to take his place and offers to repay the debt in order to keep the only father she’s ever known out of jail, or worse.
Gideon Maddox agrees, outlining an outrageous demand: Raven must live in his home for a year while she designs for Maddox Industries’ clothing line, signing over her creative rights.
Her handsome young captor is arrogant and infuriating to the nth degree, and Raven can’t imagine working for him, let alone sharing the same space for more than five minutes.
But nothing is ever as it seems. Is Gideon Maddox the monster the world believes him to be? And can he stand to let the young seamstress see him as he really is?
Born in Ohio, I lived next to my grandfather’s horse farm until the fourth grade. Summers were about riding, fishing and make-believe, while winter brought sledding and ice-skating on frozen ponds. Most of life was magical, but not all.
I struggled with multiple learning disabilities, did not excel in school. I spent much of my time looking out windows and daydreaming. In the fourth grade (with the help of one very nice teacher) I fought dyslexia for my right to read, like a prince fights a dragon in order to free the princess locked in a tower, and I won.
Afterwards, I read like a fiend. I invented stories where I could be the princess… or a gifted heroine from another world who kicked bad guy butt to win the heart of a charismatic hero. Who wouldn’t want to be a part of that? Later, I moved to Florida where I continued to fantasize about superpowers and monsters, fabricating stories (my mother called it lying) and sharing them with my friends.
Then I thought I’d write one down…
Hooked, I’ve been writing ever since. I write historical, contemporary, urban fantasy, adventure, and young adult romances. I love strong heroines, sweeping tales of mystery and epic adventure… which must include a really hot guy. My writing is proof you can work hard to overcome any obstacle. Don’t give up. I say, if you write, write on!