Highlights of December 2018

December 31, 2018

So um. 2018 is over tomorrow.

*casually passes out*

(we can all tell how this month's been xD)

Well, it's December, so obviously all the holiday things happened. I made a literal landslide of cards, some as a fundraiser for my cousin and some to send out to the gazillion people on my Christmas card list (some of them have ... still not gone out, to be honest ... but I got sick on Christmas Eve, okay? I've been down for awhile! ;D). I adore making Christmas cards though, so that was tons of fun.

And then my relatives came up for a surprise visit the week before Christmas (which was literally the best surprise and it was almost spoiled multiple times ;D) and we had an absolute blast. We also had a gingerbread house competition that skyrocketed xD. (I'M COMPETITIVE, OKAY? My sisters call me Stark (as in Tony) as a nickname for a reason ;D)

We also went to my younger sisters' piano recital while my relatives were visiting, and it was super fun, I always love watching them play (plus, one of them played a really complicated version of The Greatest Showman, which sounded AH-MAZING, so <3 <3 <3. Actually, she has a music YouTube channel, so you should definitely go check her out over at Skylar Reese. (and Jaidyn, who also played at the recital, has a cooking channel right here!)    

I've also spent a portion of December designing my bullet journal, which has been lots of fun, I can't wait to start using it in 2019! I may or may not have a YouTube video coming up about it ... you'll have to wait and see! ;)

Marvel rewatches happened, too - some more of my  siblings are finally old enough to watch them, so we went through all the Captain America movies + Spiderman: Homecoming + a few others with them. It's been a ton of fun! (also INFINITY WAR IS FINALLY ON NETFLIX, SO *scrambles away to watch it again and cry* xD. I'll be rewatching it with my sisters at midnight tonight!)

And, since it's the end of the year, I've also been planning out social media stuff for 2019 - and trust me, I have some fun stuff planned for all my social media outlets ;). I can't wait to show you guys!

Well, for starters, I was published by Splickety again! They're actually closing their doors, so I was in their final issue, which I was really happy about. You can check out the Christmas Abroad issue of Splickety right here (in which you'll find my piece, The Red-Eye Flight). 

Speaking of publishing - remember when I mentioned Havok Publishing being open for submissions? Well, I am now one of the associate editors for Havok Publishing, AND it's launching AT MIDNIGHT TONIGHT! Coming from someone who has secret-y insider info (shh...) Havok is going to be SERIOUSLY epic. So make sure not to miss that! (and if you're more of a writer than a reader, we're always accepting submissions right here, and we'd love to see yours!) 

I've also dived deep into the world of freelance writing for more than just fun. I've been submitting to a ton of places (seriously, you guys, if you're ever looking for links to places to submit to, I'm your  gal), and I'm really excited to see what happens from here.

I did a little editing again on Forgotten (*cough* my monster novel *cough*) but after realizing it basically had FOUR CLIMAXES (...how did I does this? *passes out*), my brain kind of shut down on me xD. So I took a break on it for a little while, but I plan to start up on it again in a couple days. Prayers would be appreciated for that, because it is seriously giving me grief xD.

Also, I've been on and off considering starting up freelance editing. Would you guys be interested in that (it would either be free or extremely low pricing), or do you never really look into using freelance editors for your writing? Let me know in the comments!

I finished my reread of The Raven Cycle this month! Oh my gracious do I love this series <3 <3 <3. It was especially fun this time because one of my good friends was reading it at the same time (for the first time!), as were my sisters (also for the first time - and they're still not done yet! xD) so it was basically a Raven Cycle bonanza and I HAD SO MUCH FUN.

Y'all have heard me rave about this series enough, so I'll simply drop the link to my review of this series that I did earlier this year, and say that I LOVE THE RAVEN CYCLE <3

On The Blog 



On YouTube 



Also - the winner of the Fawkes Book Swag giveaway is Allison Riera! Congrats, Allison - I'll be emailing you soon, so be watching for it! ;)

- Gray Marie did an awesome post about annoying tropes to leave in 2018, and it was super insightful, would definitely recommend it.

- I know it's well past Christmas, but Lisa Elis wrote a short holiday piece that I ABSOLUTELY ADORE and y'all need to run over and read it before winter ends because it is the best thing ever *shoos you away*

- (as is this post by Hanna Rothfuss, "At Last, The King" - short and quick, but well worth reading even if it isn't anywhere near Christmas anymore ;D)

- Also, do yourself a favor and hop on over to Deborah O' Carroll's blog and read her recent post about her writing and characters. I DIE EVERY TIME SHE POSTS SNIPPETS OR CHARACTER INTERVIEWS. BECAUSE THEY ARE GOLD <3.

- Victoria at Wanderer's Pen did a book review of Mortal Engines, which was great - I'm super excited to read the book and then see the movie (hopefully soon!).

- An awesome post went up on Story Ember's on what Thanos and Ultron can teach us about creating villains, and it was super helpful. I think I figured out what's wrong with one of my villains by reading it xD. Would definitely recommend!

- Rooglewood's Five Poison Apples anthology released! I'm so proud of the authors in this anthology (especially the sweet Skye Hoffert and Maddie Morrow!) and I absolutely can't wait to read their beautiful works. It's going to be amazing!

- Bitter Winter by Jaye L. Knight and Decree by Tricia Mingerink  both released, which of course made all of us fangirls scream with happiness. I'm so excited to read them both!

- Also, INFINITY WAR IS FINALLY ON NETFLIX. Who's ready to cry scream die watch it again? (*cough*me*cough*)
Jan 2019 is going to be INSANE, people - absolutely TONS of stuff going on over at Havok, so I really hope you'll be following along over there, because we've got so much epic stuff coming. And I'll be active on my Instagram and YouTube, as per usual (I've got some neat stuff coming!) 

As for the blog? I've got some special posts planned that I think you're going to like ... but for now, I'm keeping it under wraps ;). You'll just have to wait and see...

I hope your December (and your 2018!) was amazing, and that January is just as good! LET'S GO CONQUER 2019, MY FRIENDS. <3

~ Savannah Grace 

how was your December?
are you excited for Havok's launch?

10 Gifts for Writers and Bookworms + A GIVEAWAY!!

December 21, 2018


(*insert the sound of my festivity-loving soul singing hallelujah*)

Which means buying presents for that lovely bookworm/writer in your life - and absolutely dying as you try to find them something that...isn't a book.

I'm here to help you out.(*whispers* and also a smol giveaway because #fun) This post is a little late, but I figured it might be good for some of y'all who are still looking for last-minute gifts (*cough* me *cough*) ;D. Let's go!

1.  Book-Inspired Candles

Or just candles in general! What writer/bookworm doesn't like to have a devouring little flame right next to their books as they write?? *has a panic attack as I light yet another candle*

When it comes to bookish candles, I love Novelly Yours (they have a great selection, and the scents are so good!), and I've also heard lots of good things about In The Wick of Time, and author S.D. Grimm also creates and sells candles in her Esty shop, BookishlyGrimm!

image credit Novelly Yours
2. Bookshelf decorations 

What writer or bookworm doesn't have a shelf OVERFLOWING with books? And what writer or bookworm doesn't want JUST ONE MORE THING to cause the shelf to overflow with??

*sheepishly raises hand*

You know what, maybe I should have added "bookshelf" to this list ;D. But pretty much every bookworm or writer will love getting a cute bookshelf trinket for Christmas - Funko Pops are always fun, and so are quirky bookends, and there are tons of other options out there! (I mean, just search up "bookshelf decor" on Amazon or Google. The possibilities or endless O.O)

3. Literary Shirts/Totes/Gloves/Socks/You name it 

Literally EVERYTHING can be bought literary-style now - tote bags, fingerless gloves, hoodies, scarves. Pretty much every clothing item in existence. And literary-inspired gift are (spoiler alert) GREAT for bookworms! ;D Litographs and Storiarts always have epic products, so I would suggest starting there.

image credit Litographs

4.  A subscription to Kindle Unlimited or Audible

Kindle Unlimited is A TREASURE TROVE, you guys - literally, a treasure trove. I'm not the biggest fan of eBooks personally, but if you know someone who is, this would be an incredible gift to get them! (or Audible, if they are a lover of audio books) I mean, giving them access to tons and tons of Kindle books for free? Um, yeah, please and thank you!

5.  A Book Poster

Because what else should we do with our bare, blank walls but cover them in gorgeous literary posters? Litographs has some super-nice ones that are really cool, I could look through them for days (warning: don't start browsing unless you have a good amount of time on your hands. It's like a never-ending abyss of book-things ;D).
image credit Litographs

6. Notebooks

Alright, yes - EVERY writer has way more notebooks than they can use. But why is this? Because we love notebooks with every fiber of our being ;D. Notebooks are a pretty sure-fire way to a writer's heart, so if you're stuck trying to find a gift that ISN'T a book, notebooks are a pretty good way to go. (bonus points if it's a unique or quirky notebook!) 

7. A subscription to a book box

Guys. Book boxes. They are literally a bookworm's dream come true. And there's so, so many of them out there! I would recommend Owl Crate, Once Upon a Book Club, Unicorn Crate, or FairyLoot's boxes for the reader in your life. And if it's a writer you're buying for, you might want to check out Scribbler - they're a subscription box geared more towards novelists, and they also have the most epic stuff.

image credit Unicorn Crate
8. A Book-ish Care Package (or maybe just food) 

My sisters made me a massive snack box (so large that we named it xD) before I left for Realm Makers a few months ago, and it was such a fun gift! And I have a feeling a lot of your writer and bookworm friends would enjoy it, too - plus it's a SUPER fun gift to put together! There's so many options for things to fill it with: bookmarks,jewelry, pens, stationary, FOOD ;D. The possibilities are endless!

9. Book-inspired Jewelry 

Was I or was I not thrilled when my sisters bought me an Evenstar necklace, based off of one of my favorite fandoms of all-time? (hint: there's only one right answer here ;D) Book-inspired jewelry is super fun, and there's so much of it! Etsy is the best place to look for stuff like this, I'm always astonished by the creativity of all the people that sell stuff there.

10. A Book

You knew this was coming YOU KNEW IT ;D. Just to give you the most obvious one for last - bookworms and writers LOVE BOOKS! (shocker, yes)

BUT if you want a tad more help, here as some of my top recommendations in a few genres (there are some content issues with a couple of them, so use discretion if your reader is on the young side ;)):

- Fantasy: Caraval by Stephanie Garber or Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi (or Storm Siren by Mary Weber)
- Historical Fantasy: Fawkes by Nadine Brandes
- Historical: The Lost Girl of Astor Street by Stephanie Morrill
- Sci-Fi: The Evaporation of Sofi Snow by Mary Weber
- Dystopian: Scythe by Neal Shusterman
- Middle Grade:  Circus Mirandus by Cassie Beasley or the Wingfeather series by Andrew Peterson
- Contemporary: Porch Swing Girl by Taylor Bennett or Wonder by R.J. Palacio (or A Thousand Perfect Notes by C.G. Drews)   
- Fairytale Retelling: Entwined by Heather Dixon
- Short Story/Flash Fiction: Stars and Soul by Rosalie Valentine or Dear Jamie, Love Rory by Micaiah Saldana

And there are some of my gift recommendations for y'all! But I have a bonus one for you - guess what else bookworms/writers love? Book swag! SO I thought I would put together a smol book swag giveway for y'all, just for fun - and it's all book swag that goes with the incredible Fawkes, by Nadine Brandes. If this book isn't on your Christmas list, it should be!

This giveaway includes:

- a signed Fawkes bookplate and bookmark
- a custom Fawkes bookmark
- a Fawkes mask card (your choice of one of these two!)

Here's hoping I can make a Brandes fan smile with this little giveaway ;D. Y'all can enter using THIS FORM - and the giveaway is open until the 24th! (EDIT: until the 31st, actually) (Christmas Eve, y'all! I'm already prepared to not sleep a wink) I'll email the winner shortly after New Year's day. 

Best of luck, y'all, and happy holidays! <3

~ Savannah Grace

what's the best bookish/writerly gift you've been given?
are you a fan of Nadine Brandes' books?

Book Review - Stars and Soul by Rosalie Valentine

December 6, 2018

You've probably heard me shout about this book a time or two when it released. Or seven. Or ten.

And now I finally get to review it for you!! Who wants to hear my thoughts on Stars and Soul?

4 Stars

Oh gracious, you guys - I LOVED Stars and Soul! It was such a perfectly sci-fi read, and included some of the best flash fiction I've ever read. It's also adorably tiny, so I was able to read it all in one sitting. And since it's so tiny, I'll be reviewing it story-by-story - there were four in this collection, and I enjoyed them all!

From The Back Cover 

A scheming imperial family.
A bedraggled starship captain.
A runaway artificial intelligence.
A dying general.

Four small stories of stars and soul.

“A fun, thoughtful, quick read.” – Steve Rzasa, author of The Face of the Deep series

“Rosalie Valentine needs no more than 1,000 words to send your emotions stirring.” – Nadine Brandes, author of the Out of Time series, Fawkes, and Romanov

- That Softness. When a book starts out with a story like That Softness, you know the whole thing is going to be good. I SERIOUSLY wanted a full novel of That Softness when I finished it, it felt like there was so much more to the story of the siblings in this piece! I honestly couldn't stop thinking about this one after I stopped reading it, it was so good.  

- Captain-ish-ness. This one came very, very close to being my absolute favorite! Fallon was so relatable and I just absolutely loved her and her frazzled-captain attitude ;D. She was such a vivid character and I adored her, she totally made the entire story.

- Nothing. I love a good AI story, and Nothing was certainly one of those. It was super intriguing, and I really wanted to know what happened next! (also, can we just pause a moment to realize how amazing the names Oberon and Domino are for story characters? Thanks)
- Star-Rise. Oh look! And here we come to my absolute favorite story in the entire collection! Star-rise was so, SO good. I had high expectations for it going in (I blame the amazing title art ;D), and it met them in such an epic way! It was the best story with which to end Stars and Soul and I ADORED IT. <3 <3 <3
- It was so short! I guess this was to be expected, since Stars and Soul is a collection of flash fiction, but it was just so shooooooort ;D. Which did make the pacing feel a tad fast sometimes, but overall IT WAS SO GREAT and I was seriously impressed by this book of flash fiction!
Stars and Soul was such a perfect collection of gloriously galaxy-inspired stories. If you love a) flash fiction or b) short sci-fi stories (there's a tongue twister), you would love this teeny little book! (it would also make the perfect stocking stuffer for your bookworm friends!) I would definitely recommend it to y'all, I think you guys will love it.

And there are my thoughts on the amazing little collection that is Stars an Soul by Rosalie Valentine! I hope y'all enjoyed it and that YOU'RE HAVING A LOVELY HOLIDAY SEASON SO FAR <3. Keep being epic, my friends!

~ Savannah Grace 

have you read this book yet?
do you enjoy reading/writing flash fiction?