Daican’s Heir: Release Day

So, I’m a little late over here since release day for Daican’s Heir was on Friday, but the important thing is IT’S HERE!!! Yay! It feels like the time between the cover reveal and the final release flew by (which was rather nice, honestly), and even though I’ve already read it, it still doesn’t feel like it could possibly be out yet. And yes, I am already planning to read it again as soon as I get my hands on the paperback. The ebook satisfied my lack of patience, but it will never be the same as reading it in “literal” print.

Now for some info for those of you interested in devouring this book as well (not saying I recommend staying up till 3am to read it, but also not saying I regret it).


For three years, the Resistance has suffered under oppression—first from Emperor Daican and now from his daughter. In her quest for vengeance, Davira has ripped Arcacia apart, and more blood is spilled every day. Newly married, all Jace and Kyrin want is to be able to live their lives in peace. In order to do that, they must help restore the rightful heir to Arcacia’s throne.

Carrying the weight of everyone’s hopes for the future, Daniel works every day to be the leader and king they have all fought so hard to see him become. With the Resistance and their allies from all across Ilyon united behind him, he prepares for a final confrontation with Davira. But to do so will require facing the full might of Arcacia’s military and Davira’s wrath.

When Jace and Kyrin become the primary targets of her ravenous hatred, Daniel finds himself in a race against time to stop his sister and avoid the bloodbath she is determined to unleash. Can he find a way to protect his loved ones and bring peace to Ilyon or will Davira succeed in bringing them all to their knees and destroying everything they hold dear?

Purchase Links

Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0BN26TZMJ

Paperback: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0BVDV1ZBK

Autographed Paperback: https://nerdcatcreations.com/products/pre-order-daicans-heir-book-6-autographed

Also, if the idea of finally reading Daican’s Heir isn’t exciting enough, Jaye is also hosting a giveaway over on Facebook and Instagram, so definitely check that out as well. There is a custom Jace Funco Pop, dragon bookmark by @lydiasvintage, Ilyon Chronicles mug, and autographed copy of the book! The giveaway is open (within the US only) February 17-24.



Jaye’s Author Links




Until next time! 💕


Happy New Year and Letting Goals Change (already!)

Well, Happy New Year everyone, and I hope you’ve been able to stay on track better than I have! School finished in more of a whirlwind than even I anticipated, and followed up by the craziness of the holidays my goals fell out the proverbial window. Eugene Meltsner reference anyone?

While I’ve done a bit of writing, a smidge of reading (there’s actually a book on my lap as I write this), and a little organizing, I have fallen far short of the lofty dreams I’d imagined for this year. Do I sound dramatic for the middle of January? Probably. But it’s still hard for my ambitious, perfectionistic side to take. Yes, I know I can’t do everything all at once, but it’s also hard to admit I would rather spend a few hours watching videos on my phone after a ten hour day of work, than work on the many projects I think I “should” be working on.

As Elsa famously sang, however, I think it’s ok—to a point—to Let it Go. Trying to accomplish everything in the first week of the year isn’t a realistic goal, and in reality, the impossibility of that list just keeps me from getting anything done.

I had to stop writing this post the other night because I could feel myself starting to ramble, though I couldn’t pinpoint that as the problem at the time. True to the point I was trying to make, however, the tug of a hundred commitments made it impossible to focus on one. And that is the point I would like to make. Let the goals go. Now that’s not to say there’s anything inherently wrong with setting goals. I absolutely love goals. But when having too many is getting in the way of doing any, it’s a good indication that stepping back might be what’s needed.

Make a list if that’s what you need to get them out of your head, and then pick one or two to tackle and forget about the rest. They’ve waited this long, they can probably wait a while longer. Also, give yourself room to accept a less than perfect result when you do finally finish. Speaking of which, I just watched a video which delves into the same topic (perhaps why it was on my mind this morning), so I will link it here for you.

With that said, I will try to take my own advice and accept this post as “less-than-perfect” and let myself tackle the next goal on my mental list. What goals are you trying to tackle this year?

Until next time! 💕

Cover Reveal: Daican’s Heir by Jaye L. Knight

Ok everyone, I cannot begin to express how excited I was/am to get to participate in this cover reveal! *does a happy dance*  It may or may not also have been the final push I needed to get this blog up and running on the timeline that I did. BUT, all that aside (because I can’t wait any longer), today is the cover reveal for Daican’s Heir by Jaye L. Knight! *does yet another happy dance*

And without further ado…

About the Book

For three years, the Resistance has suffered under oppression—first from Emperor Daican and now from his daughter. In her quest for vengeance, Davira has ripped Arcacia apart, and more blood is spilled every day. Newly married, all Jace and Kyrin want is to be able to live their lives in peace. In order to do that, they must help restore the rightful heir to Arcacia’s throne.

Carrying the weight of everyone’s hopes for the future, Daniel works every day to be the leader and king they have all fought so hard to see him become. With the Resistance and their allies from all across Ilyon united behind him, he prepares for a final confrontation with Davira. But to do so will require facing the full might of Arcacia’s military and Davira’s wrath.

When Jace and Kyrin become the primary targets of her ravenous hatred, Daniel finds himself in a race against time to stop his sister and avoid the bloodbath she is determined to unleash. Can he find a way to protect his loved ones and bring peace to Ilyon or will Davira succeed in bringing them all to their knees and destroying everything they hold dear?

Pre-Order Information

Pre-order available now. Coming early 2023. Official release date to be announced.

Pre-Order Link

To preorder Daican’s Heir, click here.

Author Links





A little backstory. I originally found Jaye’s books through Lady Grace (which, if you haven’t checked it out, is another amazing blog. I don’t think she has posted in a while, but there are still so many that are worth reading). For some reason, I had initially had majorly low expectations and was hesitant to check the series out, so I am so glad I caved one day and ordered them from the library, because The Ilyon Chronicles is now one of my favorite book series of all time (which I do not say lightly… anyone who knows me can attest to what a difficult time I have choosing favorites, and I have read a LOT of books).

Now, I don’t want to raise your expectations sky high, but this is just how dedicated I am to this series:

  • I purchased several of the series brand new (very rare… you’re talking to a library book sale/used bookstore shopper here).
  • I signed up for a newsletter (like, the first and currently only newsletter I have ever signed up for).
  • Oh, I also did my first ever pre-order for this very book (Daican’s Heir, in case I haven’t said it enough already in this post), even though I rarely read eBooks.

So yes, I am DEDICATED to this series! Haha. Are you sold yet? Ok, I will stop raving now, but seriously, check the series out!!! I can’t wait to read the final installment!

Anddddd, if this entire post wasn’t exciting enough already, here’s a sneak peak at the first chapter of Daican’s Heir!

Chapter 1 Sneak Peak

Jace didn’t like ships.
His stomach had threatened to heave itself up his throat since he’d re-boarded the talcrin
vessel an hour ago. So far he’d managed to keep it in place, but Holden wasn’t so lucky. He had
already lost what remained of his supper over the edge and now leaned heavily on the railing.
Clearly, it would take a lot more than the two days they’d previously spent on board, sneaking
the Militia into Samara, for their stomachs to get used to the sea.
A low groan rumbled from Holden’s hunched form. “Remind me never to set foot on a ship
again after this. I’ll happily stick to dragons.”
Jace had to agree with him there. As much as he hated heights, he’d far rather fly with Gem
right now. And it wasn’t just his churning gut that bothered him. Despite only small waves
rippling the sea, each dip and tilt of the ship robbed him of balance. The lack of solid footing left
him feeling vulnerable. Not that he had any threats to worry about just yet. Those awaited him on
Footsteps passed behind him, and he looked over his shoulder. Though pre-dawn darkness
cloaked the ship, and they’d forgone any lanterns that could give away their position, General
Torva strode across the deck with a confident stride. He made an impressive figure, as most
talcrins did. He reminded Jace of Sam, especially in stature, though his hair was long and
gathered into small braids, and his eyes flashed a cunning copper.
Their talcrin allies were obviously masters of the sea. Jace hadn’t seen any of them on the
verge of losing their stomach contents, though maybe that had not been the case when they’d
first left Arda a few weeks ago. Somehow, Rayad and Trask didn’t seem affected either.
Torva stopped at the railing a couple yards away, feet planted and fists on his hips as he
stared out over the dark sea. His bronze scale-mail glinted faintly like dragon scales. Jace had
never seen armor quite like it.
“We should be nearing the city.”
Jace scanned the horizon. He could barely make out the shore from this distance—just a
black line against the indigo water and sky. No signs of a city, but the talcrins would know better
how far they had traveled.
Someone else drew near. Jace shifted, and Rayad put his hand on his shoulder.
“How are you doing?”
Jace wasn’t sure if the question was in regards to his queasiness or what lay ahead. He
shrugged. He still thought Balen should have chosen someone other than him to lead this
mission. Someone with actual leadership skills and experience. But then, he was the one who
could see in the dark, and their plan to take back Samara’s capital depended on infiltrating the
city undetected. Logically, he offered the greatest chance of success.
Rayad gave his shoulder a squeeze. “We’ll be right behind you.”

Let me know if you’ve read this series (and if you love it as much as I do), or if you’d like to read it now that I’ve raved about it!

Until next time! 💕

10 Tips for Success as an Online College Student

(from a straight A student)

Now, I hesitate to mention anything dealing with grades before I’m fully graduated and they’re safely set in stone, but I also feel obliged to provide my qualifications for this post.  After all, who am I to tell you what works? 

With that out of the way, first the short answer: Follow the instructions and turn things in on time. 

Yes, it’s that simple. Honestly, I wouldn’t have to say any more than that and you’d do just fine. But, seeing as you’re probably here for something more specific, I did make a list. 😉

  1. Make a schedule. Currently I use a planner, and my journal-addicted-self loves getting to pick out a new one each year, but I started out simply using notebook paper and a pencil. This year I also upgraded to using erasable markers (because I had them on hand and wasn’t using them for anything else, if you really want to know), with a different color for each class. It seems I am constantly changing my schedule, so it has been very helpful.  For all my fellow list lovers, I highly recommend making a checklist with every assignment, so the feeling of accomplishment can encourage you as you check things off.  Maybe it’s only me but checking off boxes is just satisfying. Plus, it gives a nice visual of how much closer you are to being done.
  1. Read the instructions!!! And announcements.  And emails. And any other way your professor and/or school provides instructions. Often there are important details in different places, so you need to check everywhere. Don’t forget to look at the rubric. Odds are you can get ten points out of fifty just for spelling everything correctly and having the proper format. AND, if you have the same type of assignment each week, and you do it right the first time, you can just copy paste and use that as a template, and you have a guaranteed ten points every time. Viola!
  1. Know your professor. Every professor has preferences and nuances to the way they grade assignments and expect instructions to be followed. Some are strict and some are more lenient; some professors provide very specific instructions, and others give you the gist of what they want and let you run with it.  Find what your professor is looking for in that class and cater to it.  This usually boils down to reading the feedback on every assignment (which seems like a given, but I’ve learned not to assume anything), so don’t panic if it takes you a week or two to get a feel for what your professor is looking for. 

An example: In most of my classes professors have been pretty lax on requiring a References/Works Cited section on discussion board posts. Many times there will be a required number of in-text citations, but as long as you have those, you’re good to go.  For one of my current classes, however, I lost a few points on my first DB for not having a reference section.  It hadn’t been specified, so based on my past experience I didn’t even give it a second thought. I didn’t contest it, but I have applied that feedback to the rest of my posts.  The same went for my DB replies.  The instructions only mentioned a requirement of one citation in the thread, but the feedback implied the professor preferred a citation in every reply as well.  She wasn’t going to take off any points, but I took heed of the comment and have been adding in a citation to every reply anyhow.  Go the extra mile; professors are probably going to notice it, and if you make a silly mistake later, maybe they’ll give some grace knowing how much effort you’ve put into following their instructions. 

  1. Calculate points. This is one of my favorite tricks, and usually provides some consolation in the middle of a rough class (not today, of course, but we aren’t going to talk about that).  Other schools may be different, but my syllabus always includes a grading “key” so to speak. Basically, how many points equal an A, B, C, etc. Using mine as an example, every class has a maximum of 1010 points, and to get an A, you need 900 or more points. That means I have a leeway of 110 points throughout the class, or roughly 13pts a week. So, if I’ve just finished week 4, and feeling depressed I’ve lost 30 points already, if I do the math (13*4), I know I’m actually doing pretty good, because in theory I could have lost 52pts and still be on track. Along the same lines, I generally like to “save” points for later in the class, when I generally have a final project with a larger point value.
  1. Find something interesting. This one can be hard, and is another I’ve gotten worse at over time, but try to have enthusiasm for what you’re learning in each class. Even if you don’t like the subject matter, just picking one interesting aspect can help. For me personally, if I don’t want to learn about something, it is doubly difficult to get myself to spend enough time studying to do well.
  1. Only take the notes you need. Let’s face it. I am a terrible, awful, pathetic note taker.  I just don’t like taking the time if I don’t have to. Call me lazy. But really, the effort is only worth it if you personally benefit from them. I try to take notes, but half the time my quizzes are open book, so I am using the textbook the entire time anyhow. If you have practice quizzes though, I would definitely recommend copying the questions and answers down (if the real quiz is open notes, of course), as depending on the class, the practice and real quiz questions may be word for word. This probably isn’t the best advice, but I wanted to put it out there to show it is possible to still be a good student and get good grades, even if you are someone who avoids taking notes if at all possible.
  1. Proofread. This is another tip that I feel like should be obvious but doesn’t seem to be.  There have been so many discussion boards where I have read other students’ posts and wondered if they even took the time to reread the post once before posting it.  Now, let’s be fair, I’ve missed my own share of grammatical and spelling errors, but I try to make sure it isn’t something that happens frequently.  This also ties in with points one and eight, because if you don’t schedule enough time to work on an assignment, you aren’t going to have much time to edit and perfect it. The large majority of my errors have been when I put something off till the last minute.
  1. Work ahead. I cannot emphasize enough how much I love the feeling of being ahead. You never know what will happen, and no one is going to be upset about finishing early (that I know of anyhow), so work ahead as much as possible.  I was once able to finish a class an entire week early (only once, mind you, but it was also right before Christmas break, so I got an extended vacation).  If your classes are like mine and open for viewing a couple days early, take the time to write out your schedule and watch some of the lectures. You can’t turn anything in, but you can get it ready or started.  Don’t procrastinate if you can help it. It probably speaks for itself, but things are much less stressful if you don’t try to write essays an hour before turning them in. I would never, of course… 
  1. Expect technology to malfunction. Ug. I could—and probably will—do an entire post on dealing with technology as an online student, but the number of tales I could tell might fill a novella. Suffice it to say, leave yourself plenty of time to figure out any new program, even if it seems simple.  Remember, it’s going to take time to download, update, sign up and sign into, etc.  Then there’s usually a learning curve with the program’s features, and then you can finally START working on the actual assignment.  If all goes well nothing will glitch in between. Always be prepared to spend more time than expected fighting technology. The same goes for turning things in; leave yourself enough time to make sure your assignment will upload, especially if it is in a file format you haven’t used before.
  1. Take breaks.  And not just in the midst of studying.  Try to schedule an entire day off. When I first started taking classes, I scheduled everything Monday-Friday and gave myself the entire weekend off. *sighs in procrastinating college student* Those were the good old days.  Mind you, I was taking the minimum number of courses for a full-time student and didn’t have work, so my sole priority was school. Though I only work part-time even now, I have a pretty unpredictable work schedule and heavier class schedule, which combined with random life activities and procrastination, has drained my time off to next to nil. That said, I requested a full week off from work for my final week of school (still hard to believe it’s already coming up!) so I can hopefully finish up strong and end my classes the way I started. 

Bonus tip: Don’t panic. I know it’s hard, and I do it more than necessary and everything ends up fine, but really, remember to calm down.  Technology is going to glitch, you’re going to miss an instruction, and maybe you’ll turn something in late.  You can still get good grades. I have experienced all of the above, sadly. Life may send crazy things your way, and the content might not make sense.  There will be moments when it will be incredibly overwhelming. But relax. And talk to your professors. Ask questions, and answer them!  I’m terrible about reaching out for help, but I really think it is something I missed out on. I have had so many wonderful professors who I know would have helped, but for the most part I ignored that valuable resource, in part due to my situation at the time, and in part to my own personality. 

Ok, my apologies for the lengthy post tonight, but I had so much fun coming up with this!  That said, I want to disclaim it with the note that what works for me won’t necessarily work for you, and vice versa. 

Let me know your tips, and if any of these tips help you! And if you have any questions on any of these points, feel free to ask! I may have been terrible at asking for help, but I loved the few opportunities I had to help other students.

Until next time! 💕

Name Them One by One

Dealing with Difficult Circumstances and Counting Your Blessings

Leave it to me to reference a song right off the bat, but I’ll just use it to give due warning for the things to come.

WARNING: Songs/lyrics will be referenced at any and all opportunities.  What can I say, except you’re welcome? (if you know, you know😉)

Joking aside, after hands down the most traumatic year of my life, there is still so much to be thankful for. Obviously, this topic was on my mind for Thanksgiving, but I also think it shouldn’t take a holiday to compel us to consider our blessings. It should be a daily practice, if not more frequently than that, though I’ll be the first to admit I fall far short of that standard. So, in the spirit of improvement, I think we should count some blessings.

In the early months of 2022, I was drowning in guilt at every opportunity. The dark clouds felt like they would never lift for more than a moment. I wouldn’t say I was depressed (if so, it was high functioning), as I’m optimistic to a fault, but all that to say, I think it’s easy to acknowledge someone with visible depression is struggling, but that doesn’t mean those who can smile and keep going through anything and everything aren’t struggling too. It is incredibly difficult to keep trying, and trying again, when again and again is feels like you’ll never be good enough, never accomplish enough, never do enough.

Even when you want to be productive and deeply desire to redeem the days (Ephesians 5:16-18), it can still be difficult to shake the feeling of worthlessness. To those who may be feeling the same way, I don’t even know what words I could have conveyed to help myself mere months ago, but I can say this:

God is faithful, He will make a way, and He does have a plan, even in this. It might end up crazier than you ever could have dreamed, and you might someday find you’re one of “those” people, but keep hoping, keep praying, and don’t lose heart. You’re not alone, and though I know I still would have felt alone and misunderstood no matter what anyone tried to say (and may still at times), just know that you may someday be surprised. More people than I ever imagined have gone through painfully similar circumstances, even in my small circle of acquaintances. It’s a terrible reality, but at the same time, comforting. As I believe Solomon said, “There is nothing new under the sun…” (Ecclesiastes 1:9).

Fast forward, though this week has been a rough one and the guilt is trying to slide back, sneaking its grimy, grasping fingers around my mind, it no longer has the upper hand. One (huge) blessing. Praise the Lord! I am only weeks away from the end of my classes. My final classes. It hardly seems possible the time has flown that quickly. Two blessings. One of my deepest desires and a frequent prayer was that I would be able to go to church, maybe even *gasp* regularly someday. I never could have imagined the circumstances it would take to bring it about, but I can say with joy and certainty that prayer was answered, and others too as a result. Three blessings.

One of my favorite verses in recent years has often come to mind when I’m counting my blessings, for it certainly speaks to a prominent message in my life, even more with each passing day. Four blessings.

Psalm 63:7

I think of how much you have helped me;

I sing for joy in the shadow of your protecting wings.

And here is this blog, an ambition long in the making. Five blessings, and so many more I could name them until the end of time.

Count your blessings. Name them, one by one. Do any stand out to you? Share them if you’d like.

Until next time! 💕


For those who may not be familiar with the hymn Count Your Blessings, and for those who may just want to listen to it now, here’s a link to a guitar version of the song I have enjoyed listening to before. Enjoy!

Count Your Blessings | Fingerstyle Guitar

The First Thought

According to personality tests, I am a feeler. And I’m not about to disagree with that descriptor; I do feel a lot of things, deeply. But I am also a thinker, perhaps because I feel so deeply. The two, oddly enough, go hand in hand. I think that is because of the ‘why.’ I have always been the person who wanted to know why. That’s a reason I struggled with algebra (there may have been a pinch of stubbornness involved too). The why didn’t make sense. I didn’t see any reason to replace numbers with letters, or memorize that y=mx+b is slope, though obviously that is one of the few things I do remember from algebra, not that I can say I’ve used it since. When I am feeling happy, sad, upset, etc., being gifted with the joy of overthinking, I tend to try to analyze it, to figure out why.

That lengthy explanation aside, here’s a smaller one: I have been wanting to start a blog, for years, literally. I have been writing and collecting posts for this project for over three years, with the hope of someday using them. Yes, that is the extent of my indecisiveness/perfectionism/procrastination/whatever-you-want-to-call-it. I love reading them, and the blogger ‘vibe’ has often seemed to simply fit. In person I tend more towards listening and observing while others talk, but in recent years I have found an outlet for pent up words I didn’t know I had in writing. That’s another story for another time though.

Honestly, as I mentioned in my first post, between work, college, and life, I don’t have much time to start a blog right now either. But it is a desire that hasn’t faded over the span of time, even in the busyness of life. And now, more than ever, I feel the urgency of time. We have so little of it, and once lost, we can never get it back. It’s an almost overwhelming responsibility to use that gift wisely, when you think about it, and I haven’t been doing the best job of it lately. My phone has become rather a time trap for me the past couple weeks, a distraction from stress that’s only helping me hide from the real problems. So here I am, trying to face one of them.

Anyhow, I intended for this post to be a bit about my vision for this blog, not the first internal rant of many. More than anything, I hope this blog will be a place to share thoughts that build others up and draw them closer to God. I hope even some fragment of a thought brings encouragement or inspiration to someone else, and that my words may ease another’s burden in some small way. Even to bring a smile to someone’s face on a difficult day… those are the moments worth writing for, the thoughts my mind is laden with.

What are your thoughts on thinking? Are you an overthinker or an underthinker?

Until the next time! 💕

A Story, a Schedule, and a Place to Start

Once upon a time… there was a blog. Many of them actually.

Welcome to a new corner of the internet! I couldn’t decide whether this would be a place for music, a place for writing, or a place for random thoughts, so knowing me, it will be a mosaic of all of the above, and probably some other stuff too! I am a nearly graduated college student, so I may also post some advice for fellow students out there. Anything to make it easier, right? 😉

By all accounts, this is terrible timing for me to launch a blog. Given life’s current dramas, the upcoming holidays, work, school, et cetera. But at the same time, there will never be a good time. And I finally have the extra motivation to do it now.  Not tomorrow or someday, but today. I once wrote to a new pen pal on Christmas Day, now here I am launching a blog the day after Thanksgiving, so at least I’m staying in character, right?

Anyhow, it’s looking like I’m as bad at small talk and introductions in writing as I am in person (fellow introverts, I know you feel my pain), so this shall be the end of my little ‘introductory’ post, and I will dive into the fun stuff. My tentative goal is to post every week, though until the end of this year (aka, the end of school), I’m not going to hold myself too tightly to that.

If you feel like it, go ahead and introduce yourself in the comments.  I’d love to meet who made it over to this little collection of thoughts-to-be!

Until next time! 💕