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Friday, March 3, 2017

February is Over

Honestly I'm at the point where I have no idea what to put as intros for my monthly wrap-up posts. I mean I kinda want to do something dramatic like "As February rides off into the sunset, a new era of the blogiverse has arrived on our doorsteps." But then again I think we're all glad I don't go there. 

And no, don't look at me like that. I am definitely not three days late. Because I'm never late. 

Anyways. This has been awkward intros with Jonathan. 

On to the actual post. 

(I'm tired of trying to find seasonal pictures, so instead you're getting an arbitrary picture of ice cream. So yeah don't spend too much time trying to figure out how this relates to February. Because spoiler: it doesn't.) 


Favorite Fiction

(not counting my rereads of both Salt to the Sea and Martin Hospitality

The Scourge by Jennifer A. Nielsen- This is by the author of The Ascendance Trilogy, so what did I expect? SASS. SASS AND SNARK IN LARGE QUANTITIES. And I was not disappointed. This is clever and ingenious, definitely recommended!

Favorite Nonfiction 

No God but One: Allah or Jesus? by Nabeel Qureshi- I looooved this author's other book, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus, so I had high hopes for this one. It didn't disappoint! While I definitely don't agree with all of the theology in here, this was well-organized and made complicated concepts easy to understand. If you have any Muslim friends, then you need to read this. 

The Ultimate Proof of Creation by Jason Lisle- MIND=BLOWN. LITERALLY. This is about how to defend your faith logically and I think everyone should read this at some point. That is all. 

Not Recommended 

The Art of Work by Jeff Goins- I have A LOT to say about this one, haha. Maybe I'll post a review later this month? Just to prove to all you guys who don't stalk me on Goodreads that I DO ACTUALLY WRITE NEGATIVE REVIEWS if I don't like a book and I actually don't throw out 5-star ratings for everything. I just mainly post positive ones here. xD

Imaginary Jesus by Matt Mikalatos- Fabulous concept, but there's definitely some doctrinal issues here. I posted a pretty thorough review on Goodreads, so you can go check that out if you're curious. 

Currently working on editing both The Raven Project (FINALLY) and Library of Lies while trying not to get distracted by a historical fantasy plot bunny that may or may not involve dragons.

The Raven Project 


YES I PRINTED IT OUT. Thanks to some help from both Hannah and Sarah I managed to work through the technicalities and get this thing printed! (ALSO SARAH LOOK IT'S NOT OVERLY CONTRASTED)

I'm almost done reading it through, and I've officially started draft 2. Which is both exciting and exhausting because I have sooo much to fix. xD My main character is too passive, the plot isn't driven enough, and the villains are pretty flat. 

*cracks knuckles* So I've got some hefty work to do- basically I'm reworking the plot to make it less aimless and a bit tighter and trying to put the main character in more control. Plus throwing in a few other cool elements just for fun because I want to and I can, mwahaha. 

I shake my head to dispel the memories, but I only succeed in making the ache even worse. What I really need right now is some good, old-fashioned ice- and maybe an ibuprofen. 

I glide over the floor in the dark. The fact that I’ve lived in this house my entire life aids me in my ninja-like endeavors, but as I slide open the freezer, it creaks loudly, and pale light mixed with the cold both blinds me and whisks my breath away. 

Blinking, I plunge my hand into the frigid interior and fumble around for an ice pack. It takes me a moment, but my fingers eventually caress something cold and smooth. I don’t waste any time, promptly shoving it onto my recently acquired black eye. The chilling sensation sends an initial wave of additional pain over my face, but it dulls after a few seconds. I let out an exhausted sigh and flop down into one of the kitchen chairs. 


I jerk my head up, then twist my neck to search the dark kitchen. The sound wasn’t caused by me landing on the wooden chair- it has a softer, quieter, more sinister lilt to it, as if someone is trying not to be heard. 

I rise from the chair, slowly. My breaths are short, still, silent. The whir of the refrigerator, the hum of the freezer, and the distant rumbling of the heater all blend together in a futile effort to make the silence less thick. Less dangerous. 



Library of Lies

In which I share all about why my alpha readers are probably better than yours and how amazing they are at catching EVERYTHING. xD

Alpha reading is going slowly but surely, and VERY well. I've only finished editing part 1 of my novel, but it's definitely much smoother now, and I've worked out a lot of things I was sorta hazy on before. 

Everyone has been really great with giving concrete suggestions- which is basically the most helpful thing of ever. So I'm making some really great progress! If you're one of my alpha readers and you're reading this then THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP BECAUSE IT'S INCREDIBLE. 

Evidently this was a big month for blog stats. Because I... um... hit 50k pageviews?? AND I HIT 100 GFC FOLLOWERS? 


Seriously though, I'm kind of in shock? 50,000 pageviews is way more than I expected. O.O Plus I only posted three times this month, so it's a little weird that I hit so many views. 

In other news, I'm currently on internet break from everything but my own blog and alpha reading (on Google Docs) because life was getting crazy, heh. I needed some time to focus in on school and writing. *nods* So I should be getting back on Goodreads and such at some point.

And I got my new page for Library of Lies up. FINALLY. That was on my mental to-do list for way too long so I'm glad it's done. xD Check it out here!

ALSO I MADE AN AWESOME CONTACT PAGE. But I haven't had time to play around with the html yet and get it to work- so look for that at some point in the distant future. XD

Let's all just take a moment here to appreciate how far my graphic design skills have come. (Canva + Unsplash = my blog.) 

SO HOW ABOUT YOU GUYS?? How goes writing and reading and such? What projects are you currently working on? Last book you read? TELL ME EVERYTHING.  

~ Jonathan 


  1. Intros are a struggle. But! Congrats on 100 followers -- and The Raven Project looks so cool! Honestly, I'm sometimes motivated to write just so I can print a draft out. 😂

    1. IKR they are haha. Thanks so much! :D This was my first time printing out anything I've ever written so that was pretty cool xD

  2. Well I was going to write 80k of draft two of Red King, my NaNo novel about stabbyniess and insanity and dreams, but hehe nope. I had a bunny. About Italy and traveling and foster kids and half siblings and a dog. So now i'm editing 73k of Red King in March and then writing a first draft in April.
    I'm going to die.

    1. O.O DUDE YOU'RE CRAZY. XD I applaud you though lol

  3. Wow. You have been busy. O.o
    I LOVE the cover of your book! "The Raven Project" looks AMAZING...and why wouldn't it if you use the word "ninja" within the first chapter? ;) Looking forward to beta reading it. B-)
    I've been pretty busy myself, what with publishing my book this week and all...so I probably won't even DO a monthly recap until end of March. Then I'll just squish the last two months into one.
    Congrats on all those fabulous stats!! *applauds* Good luck with all your school and writing!! Also, kudos for having ice cream in your title picture. Ice cream can apply to ANY month of the year. Absolutely.

    1. Haha- yes. Yes I have been. xD
      EEK THANKS. I was afraid it was going to end up really dark but it ended up working out fine haha. LOL well when I'm done with draft 2 it might be ready for beta readers. I SHALL MAKE SURE TO POKE YOU THOUGH WHEN IT IS. XD
      OH WHAAAAT THAT WAS THIS WEEK??? *throws confetti everywhere* CONGRATS. :D I need to go buy a copy haha.
      Thanks! Good luck to you too! TRUUEE IT CAN but then it's sorta weird when it's a winter month. xP

  4. dude okay so it's slightly contrasted in a purple-ish way but I actually think that gives it a cool look so?...annyyways. I'll say it - it looks great okay XD

    ALSO. did you get the 5.5x8.5 bc that looks like cream paper and #didntknowthatwaspossible

    1. YES but okay on Lulu it was like a lot darker. as in, like everything was almost black except for the sky?? SO IDK WHAT HAPPENED. but next time: Gimp will be used lol.

      hmmm I'm not sure?? xD I think I got 6 by 9 but now that I'm looking at it the paper does look a little cream...

  5. eeeeeeeep, you got your book printed, that's so cool!!!! the cover is fantastic! and the excerpt, whooooooaaaaaaa. yes, I noticed the ninja reference, and it made me think, ah yes, this is Jonny's book, there's ninjas. XD XD

    hmm, for writing...I started writing my novel, so that's cool. it's going a bit slow since things keep being kinda crazy(and I also keep getting distracted by a certain plot bunny but shhh XD), but hopefully it'll go faster here soon. :P

    I read The Scourge, and yaaaas, it was really good! I sort of had the plot figured out, but I didn't know exactly /how/ it would be resolved... XP I just finished the Makilien Trilogy, which are awesome. *nods* and the first Blood of Kings book, which was good. *looks at still-towering tbr pile* hm. gotta get to all those too...in my spare time. :P

    we miss you guys on the forum...can't wait for when you come back!

    1. yeeesss thank you I was pretty excited! :D haha yup exactly xD

      WAIT WHAT YOU DID?? *SCREAMS* THAT'S SO EXCITING. I'm literally like bouncing over here. xP Slow is okay, but TSK. do not get distracted by plot bunnies. *totally not hypocritical at all* :P

      ooh yes I loved that one! yeah haha same- I knew a lot of it but there was still enough to surprise me. nice! good luck with the tbr haha :D

      same! tell everyone I said hi haha xD

  6. Ninja on the second page YES. *applauds*

    Oooh ooh so did you work out whether Lulu posts to Australia? BECAUSE I SO SUPER DUPER WANT TO PRINT MY BOOK ALSO.

    1. YES THANK YOU XD My thoughts exactly haha

      OH OKAY YES I DID. And YES THEY DO. XP At least I'm pretty sure they do? When you make an account there's a 'change store' option, and the different stores are different countries- and one of the countries is Australia sooooo xD

    2. YAY. Thank you for doing that for me! *throws pizza* Imma print my book yaaaaassss.

  7. I WAS going to ask what the ice cream was all about... but then you explained. :P (I think you just saved yourself from having to answer a lot of questions about that. Good job.)

    Wow, 11 books? I feel like everyone has gotten more reading done this past month than I have. I came out with 5. :P

    Are you like, a professional torturer or something? Because that's what you're doing to me every. single. time. you share. a snippet. I don't know how much more I can take, Jonathan! Is it time for beta readers yet? But seriously, this is yet another AMAZING snippet. How are you so good at this? :P

    50K PAGEVIEWS?! Dude, you're famous!! :D Oh, an internet break is a good idea. I should probably do that to at some point. :P Yay, you got up your new page for Library of Lies! :D

    I'm glad you had a great February. I hope March treats you well. :) *wanders off to look at your new page*

    1. Haha yeah I just randomly pulled it off Canva, shhhh. xD Don't tell anyone.

      5 IS GOOD TOO THOUGH. Especially since I read at least 1 novella and most of the other books were shorter.

      OH MY WORD. XP I think that's probably the strangest compliment I've ever received but THANK YOU LOL. I'm so glad you like them haha- and as far as beta readers goes... not sure yet? I'm doing like a full blown rewrite so... maybe like... a year? #SORRY XD

      RIGHT? It sorta took me by surprise haha. Well I don't know about being famous but I do know God's doing something over here. :D Haha yeah it's going pretty well so far, and yes go check out the page! XD

      Thanks! Same for you! :D

  8. Can't wait to read "The Raven Project"! Your cover looks great! And I noticed Samara's Peril and Half Blood on the edge of the pic. XD #Ilyonchroniclesnerd

    Writing and reading is going pretty slowly, but I'm thinking that March holds great potential. I'm currently reading A Time to Die—finally. I've been "dying" to read it forever! I'm continuing work on Dragon Chronicles and I'm starting a story with some friends.

    What? Tell me I didn't bore you with all that! You SAID to tell you everything?? ;) lol

    I'm glad you had a good month! Happy March!

    1. Haha thanks! :D LOL YES I DO. If the picture would have been bigger you would have seen Resistance and The King's Scrolls. #Illyonchroniclesnerdalso XP

      YEESS A TIME TO DIE IS SO GOOD. One of my favorites! Good luck with your writing- and go you for co writing, I've always wanted to try that one time but I think I'm probably too stubborn haha.

      Hehehe nope not bored at all xD

      Same to you, Bethany!

    2. I figured that Resistance and The King's Scrolls were probably right alongside the others. ;) You can't just have book three! Love that series so much!

      Which is your favorite book out of all of Nadine Brandes?

    3. TRUE. XD It's one of my favorites haha. :D

      Oh, hmmm. I think I really liked A Time to Speak the most? I don't remember them that well though, to be honest. IT'S BEEN SO LONG SINCE I'VE READ THEM LOL. I should reread... :D

  9. I thought that was your best intro ever (says the person who has only been following your blog for two months :P)

    AHHH. YOU PRINTED YOUR BOOK. That is SO exciting. I literally stared at mine for two hours straight when I got them.

    My February? *laughs nervously* Oh, that thing. Um.... down the drain? I got my book off to betas though, so I guess it was productive. Now I'm editing. A lot. I'm re-outling/re-writing the messy sequel and trying to resist the urge to write a whole new novel in Camp next month (I may or may not win this struggle). XD

    audrey caylin

    1. In that case you win the award for best taste in intros. xD

      YESS I KNOW. I can relate haha

      Eek good luck with betas!! That's so awesome, hope that goes well :D YES SAME ON THE EDITING PART. And I'm also trying not to start a whole new novel anytime soon, haha.

  10. AHHH CONGRATS ON YOUR STATS!! O.O that's so impressive! And when I read your snippet, my breathing halted and my heart sped up so WELL DONE WITH SUSPENSE WRITING, DUDE *applauds*

    The Scourge is so goooooood *flails* I really loved the book as a whole, but I especially liked the themes she dealt with. It was just such a good book! :D

    And also YOUR BOOK IS SO PRETTY! I actually just did the same thing and am waiting for it to come in the mail and IT IS KILLING ME CAUSE I NEED IT NOW.

    1. THANK YOOUU. XD Your comment about the snippet may or may not have made me jump for joy, haha. (That was from Chapter 1 so I needed it to be engaging. xP)

      YES IKR. I definitely agree- it was great. :D

      Thanks! Oh my wooord I feel your pain, haha. Mine took like... 10ish days to come? WAITING WAS HARD. XD

  11. That's so rad you got your draft printed. You're so inspiring to me honestly-- you motivate me so much to write. Great wrap-up!

    1. Haha yes I agree. xD WELL THANKS. That inspires me to blog, haha. :D

  12. HOW DO YOU EVER GET SO MUCH READING DONE. I'm lucky if I finish one book a month. XD

    Also, your graphics are amazing, btw, how do you make them?

    I'm SO SORRY for kinda falling off reading your blog posts, heh heh...life has completely taken over. BUT I will try to check my reading list more often so I don't miss your posts anymore. XP

    1. WELL A LOT OF THEM WERE SHORTER BOOKS? Tsk Luke you need to read more then. xD

      Thanks! My rule of thumb: USE CANVA. IT IS BEST. (canva.com) Also if you need free photos to use then use Unsplash. (unsplash.com, I think)

      LOL NO YOU'RE GOOD. :D I'm actually on break for now so I'm not even checking my reading list... #oops xP

  13. DUUDDEE. Your book is legit so thick. What's the word count again?? *scrolls back up to admire it* Also, thumbs up on the cover. XD

    1. THAAANKS. XD The first draft is like 92kish, but I'm hoping the second draft will be shorter. Maybe. If it's possible to make the second draft shorter than the first one. xP

  14. AHH! CONGRATULATIONS ON THE RAVEN PROJECT!! It looks soooo nice. Does it smell good? xD That's important, lol. *high five* (ALSO, NINJA. AHA!)
    Good luck on editing and everything, Jonathan! =D My motto while editing and rewriting is: I can do all things with Christ which strengthens me!
    God bless!
    -Ang | thepeculiarmessenger.wordpress.com

    1. THANKS GLAD YOU LIKE IT. :D Haha unfortunately it doesn't really smell like anything? xD (YES IKR)
      Thanks, I'll need it. And yeess good motto :D

  15. DUDE, your book cover looks amazing! Wow... *can't get over the beauty*
    OMW, 11 books in a month is crazy! Great job! XD

    1. THANKS. :D It took me awhile to find a good picture haha. :D
      Yeah lol- but it's good because I probably won't get as much done this month, so that gives me some leeway for my goal. xD

  16. Hahahahhahaha I am totally not late for commenting. Nope. Never XD


    Wut. 11 books. How. I read like 6. HOW DO PEOPLE READ SO MUCH. *pouts*

    *grins* yes i am the most fabulous alpha reader ever, thank you. you are very blessed to have me and my precious time XP Jk, I'm probably actually the worst alpha-er of ever.


    1. Heh and I'm totally not late replying. xP

      HEY WELL THANKS. :D Glad you like it! And yes it is fairly thick- but I double spaced it. :P #kindacheating (it's like 92kish)

      OKAY BUT YES YOU ARE TBH. I hereby crown you Queen of All Things Grammar because you basically know aaaallll the grammar things. xD

      OH OKAY YES ALSO THIS. I'm not officially signed up yet, but I do plan on going. God has me in a place where I think this is what He wants but at the same time there's always that lingering doubt, heh. BUT YES LONG STORY SHORT: I will probably be there. Unless a tsunami happens or Jesus comes back or something, haha. :D SO I SHALL LOOK FOR YOU THERE.

    2. Hah that's totally okay XD I understand how stressful and time-consuming life can be ;)

      *whispers* cheater... :P

      Aw well thanks XD that's *counts on fingers* two times I've been named Queen of Grammar, and I'm also Queen of Snow and perhaps another that I cannot remember XD

      Mmhmm, I understand :D Omw, a tsunami in Colorado? XD BUT also you should probably sign up before your bday if you can so you can still get the teen registration XP (I'll probably have to come up to YOU, since I know what you look like but you don't know what /I/ look like :P.) But alas, I hope you go :D

    3. #totallycheating xD But I'm hoping to make draft 2 a lot shorter- that way I have more freedom with the sequel. :D

      LOL alright then. xD

      OH TRUUUEE I SHOULD. I didn't even think of that?? So points to you for being on top of it haha. xD (YES YOU WILL. Because my stalking skills are good, but not THAT good. :P)

  17. Ooh, okay... So, writing is going good. Well, it's okay. OKAY FINE IT'S DOING TERRIBLE! I mean, it's really hard yelling at the editor inside me and saying SHUT UP! And the plot needs major fixing, even though I havn't gotten very far I just know. I'm magical like that.

    As for reading, the last book I read was The Maze Runner by James Dashner.

    I'm currently working on "Facility 52". It's a dystopian-futuristic kind of thing, and it seems to be falling apart. But I'm having fun, so yeah.

    AND DUDE HOW DID YOU PRINT THAT THING OFF?!!?!?! I mean, I'm no where NEAR to finishing draft 1, but seriously! That's so cool!

    Anyway, I better stop rambling now. ;)


    1. I CAN RELATE. XD Even on draft 2 of Raven I feel like that a lot of the time, haha. I'm attempting to plot out the entire storyline though? So that should help with the plot.

      Ooh nice! Although that wasn't my favorite by ANY stretch of the word, heh. XP

      That sounds pretty cool- I was in the same place for my first draft of Raven. Everything is falling apart but it's still fun, haha. xP

      Okay so it's a website called Lulu. (google it, it will come up) Basically they let you print your book out just for yourself. Formatting is kinda tricky but not too hard if you have MS Word. :D YOU SHOULD TRY IT WHEN YOU'RE DONE WITH DRAFT ONE. XD It's super motivating!

      Hehe same. :P

  18. February was such a crazy month for me. XD EVERYTHING happened all at once. But I'm really excited about how my writing has been going.

    I tagged you for the Sunshine Blogger Tag. :)

    1. IKR SAME. Like somehow I ended up starting edits on two different novels? #oops xD It is exciting though!

      HEY COOL. :D I'm currently on break from all blogs but my own, but when I'm done with the break, I'll try and remember to check that out!

  19. Yes the struggle is real with wrap up blog intros xD
    Also, your book is beautiful!! Ah all you writers make me so jealous.
    *Low key goes and stalks your Goodreads because negative reviews*

    1. IKR especially when they're late haha XD
      Thank you!! Hahaha well you should totally write a novel sometime then :P
      Hehehe well have fun with that XP



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