The World Spins Madly On: More Updates During These Chaotic Times

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I hoped I’d have more time to write during the COVID-19 “working from home situation.” Since I’ve cut out my commute, which has allowed me to stay up later, I wanted to use that extra time to work on my novel. Distraction is the death of creativity in my house…or my mind at least. But, the world spins madly on.

After working all day, it’s hard to want to be creative in the same space where I’ve worked. I’ve tried changing it up a bit. Sometimes I am in my recliner, sometimes I’m at my desk, and sometimes I go outside to work when the weather cooperates. That helps some for distractions from work, but I am both mentally and physically exhausted by the end of the day.

My kids and I have abandoned their schedules for home school. They have one more day of AMI work for the year. We’re just trying to survive at this point. I swear second-grade math might be the death of me. I really hope I don’t have to teach third-grade math! I adore my children, but there are many reasons I’m not an elementary teacher—most of those involving my lack of patience. I’m really trying, but when you put a stubborn me with my stubborn daughter, emotions run high. Continue reading

Music in Jordan’s Sister


While music is an important element in each of my novels, this is especially true for Jordan’s Sister. Taylor and Layne are singer-songwriters. Their entire lives are filled with music. I’m a writer who can barely carry a tune, and music is such an integral part of my life that I’d be lost without it.

To me, music is a doorway straight to the soul, and lyrics are poetry expressed with more feeling than what can be conveyed by words merely spoken.

There are 23 songs referenced in the novel. Four songs are featured in their entirety (because I wrote them) and the others are referenced by title only with or without the artist’s name (because doing so does not violate any copyright laws). I’d never written a song before when I wrote the songs for Jordan’s Sister. There are two each that Taylor and Layne write during the story. I’ve shared their two main songs on this blog, and the others are in the novel. Those songs won’t be shared here because one contains a major spoiler and the other is extremely cheesy (as I intended), so you’ll need the context in the book to get it.

Unfortunately, I lack the musical talents of my parents. I don’t sing well or play any instruments. I recorded myself singing both of the main songs so I won’t forget the melodies I had in mind for each. Only my husband has heard the tune of two of the songs, and it was excruciating to share that with him. I can speak to a crowd of hundreds of people but don’t ask me to sing to anyone but one of my children. I don’t know why it is that singing to others feels the same as the thought of running naked through a crowd.

I had a Spotify playlist of songs while I rewrote Caroline’s Lighthouse and have one now as I write What I Learned That Summer. Both contain songs popular during the years the stories took place. Hearing music from when I was a teenager takes me back in time to the emotions I felt then so I can better relate to those characters since their stories took place in the mid-90s when I was a teen.

The playlist for Jordan’s Sister contains the 19 songs written and performed by others which are mentioned in the book.

These songs:

Each song has some significance in the novel. I’ll share brief thoughts on each. Warning: There may be mild spoilers. Continue reading

Day 10: Countdown of my favorite love songs (for weddings)


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Thank you for sticking with me through all ten days of Valentine’s Day love song posts. To recap, days 1-9 featured the following types of love songs:

  1. Angry Love Songs
  2. Bittersweet Break Up Songs
  3. Songs for the Brokenhearted
  4. Love/Hate Songs
  5. Non-romantic Love Songs
  6. Pour Your Heart Out Love Songs
  7. Songs with Messages to New Lovers
  8. Love Story Songs
  9. Sweet Declarations Love Songs

It’s only fitting to feature my favorite wedding songs for my Valentine’s Day feature. Most were part of my wedding soundtrack (indicated by *) if they were released prior to 2005. I couldn’t narrow it down to my top three, so I have my top five and a bunch of honorable mentions. Continue reading