What I’m Reading and Writing in October and Why It Matters


The goal for 2016 is 60 Books. Five each month. That’s math I can handle.

{Side note for everyone asking how homeschooling is going: I’m not cut out to teach math. Thank you for your attention to this public service announcement/cry for help.}

Goodreads says I’ve completed 36 books and am therefore 11 behind schedule. Well if I wanted to advertise every time I read a trashy mindless romance novel… I’d still be behind schedule because the whole point of this challenge was to be more intentional with more choices.

Which lately amounts to a lot of Joshilyn Jackson, Lianne Moriarty (too much actually if there can be such a thing), and books by my friends.

I have author friends. That’s the best part of a writer’s life really. That and knowing my best thoughts come early, while I’m still in pajamas and the coffee’s barely been brewed and the day’s hardly begun.

This month that stack has been migrating around my house from the nightstand to the back porch because we got new-to-us furniture from my grandmother’s house. I tuck a book in my bag for Amelia’s physical therapy nights and take one when we head to the park because this mama can only roll down the hill so many times.

Here’s the list of October’s goodies, top to bottom:

  1. A Light in the Window, Jan Karon. Working my way through Mitford as I come out of it at the community theater. I like these for pure simple escape. We should all be so blessed to have a Mitford and a Father Tim.
  2. Prayers for While My Child is Away, Edie Melson. I pick this up every now and then right now because my kids are with me 24/7. But I love it even then, because all the time our children need our prayers for making wise choices. {And by the way Edie is one of my dear author friends and I happen to have an extra copy of this looking for a home. Comment and you might win!}
  3. Bittersweet, Shauna Niequist. I’ve been working my way through this for months because Shauna is like nuggets of gold for my soul. Nearing the end, which is probably why it’s still on my “currently reading” list.
  4. Still Life: The Art of Nurturing a Quiet Soul. A friend gave me this when I first left teaching in 2011. I’ve kept it out because it’s pretty… and then a few weeks ago I started reading it in the mornings. Lovely and simple reminders to enjoy and rest in the every day ordinary.
  5. For the Love, Jen Hatmaker. I figured I’d start this when I finished Bittersweet but I might need to rethink that plan because I’m pretty sure I need to read about enacting the “no drama” zone in my life.
  6. The Nightingale, Kristin Hannah. Just finished this for book club and wow. WOW. If you really want to experience life in occupied France during WWII (and get a few chills about today) read this. It’s less intimidating than All the Light We Cannot See but no less impactful.
  7. Backseat Saints, Joshilyn Jackson. She’s my new favorite go-to for southern lit that’s funny, biting, and redemptive and this is the fifth Jackson novel I’ve read this year. Unlike Moriarty whose brand is similar across books, Joshilyn Jackson delivers entirely new stories each time and I adore her round about way of telling the truth of life–no one is beyond redemption.
  8. A History of Edisto Island, 1861-2006, Charles Spencer. Obviously I’m researching for my new novel, but I’ve always found a good history of a place I love irresistible. I’m thinking about just using this for my homeschool history curriculum because two birds, one stone and all that.

The new novel is an extension (not an exact sequel) to Still Waters which releases in 2017 with Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas. If you want to be in on all that news as it’s happening, be sure to sign up for my newsletter. The goal is to crank things up around here come new year.

I’m still penning words over at the local paper and other places, so when things are quiet around here, you might want to check out The Northeast Georgian or the Buford Weekly Illustrated. The freelance side has been good to me with other local publications, but what I love best are these places that let me be myself and share my thoughts. I’m not going to tell you who to vote for in the coming weeks, but I will tell you this: no matter what the sun’s going to rise the next day.


Don’t forget to leave me a little comment love here or on social media and I’ll randomly pick a winner for Edie’s prayer book!

One thought on “What I’m Reading and Writing in October and Why It Matters

  1. Pingback: The Not To-Do List

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