Wings of Wrath, by C. S. Friedman: A Review

I chose to read Wings of Wrath, by C. S. Friedman for the 2018 Reading Challenge #22, a book with alliteration in the title. When I set about choosing the books I would read this year, my first goal was to find books from my already overflowing shelves. Secondly, I wanted to read more women authors. This book was the only one on my shelves that met the criteria. Of course, it is the second book in a trilogy, so naturally, I had to read the first one too.

I loved the first book, The Feast of Souls. The characters are fabulously flawed and terrible. I wanted to read about them even when I didn’t really like them all that well. Furthermore, there was a deep sense of urgency about the first book that was very compelling. The second one, however, lacked this same urgency, and I didn’t have the same love for the characters. Still, it’s a good book, and it moves the overall story forward. I enjoyed it, and I look forward to reading the conclusion of the trilogy.

Wings of Wrath continues where the first book leaves off, deepening the sense of impending doom. The magic Friedman has conjured in this series is sort of terrifying. In one sense, as I began reading, I wanted to hate these books. The world is brutal and cruel. But at the same time, it is so beautifully rendered, I couldn’t hate it.

As for whether or not I would recommend this book, I would say yes, but with caution. This is no lighthearted, feel good fantasy. It is dark and terrible. But the writing is flawless.

Unlock the Muse – December 5, 2018

It’s the beginning of a new month. The final month of 2018. And it’s a busy one, full of holiday craft bazaars, concerts at the elementary school, lighting candles, cookie exchanges, singing Christmas trees and secret Santas.

This time of year can also be difficult for a lot of people, for a lot of different reasons. Wherever you’re at, I hope you’ll find an outlet in writing.

Here is your writing prompt for this first week of December:

What elementary or high school teacher most influenced your decision to write by helping you with your work or exposing you to great literature? Write a letter of appreciation thanking him or her. If you can locate the teacher, mail the letter.

Maybe it was a parent, or another relative who inspired you to write. A neighbor? A friend? A coworker? Whoever it was, write them a letter.

After the frenzy that is NaNoWriMo, it can be all too easy to step away from the daily writing and let “taking a break” become consistently not writing. To avoid that, here are some great tips from on how to continue (or create) a daily writing habit.

December can be a busy time filled with lots of traditional activities. My question for you this month is, how do you build these types of traditions into your fictional world?

Happy writing!

Please consider sharing a link to your response to the writing exercise. Got a question? Just ask!

NaNoWriMo Week Five: Books, Basketball and the End of All Things

This week was our final in-person writing event for this November, and I was determined to finally get my word count caught up to par. And I did it! Thanks to the huge slog on Black Friday plus three days of writing 3,000+ words, I finally managed to catch up to where I needed to be to win.

I have been hugely distracted the past week and a half or so with the 2019 Popsugar Reading Challenge. The new list of reading prompts was recently released, and I have been unable to resist working on my reading plan for next year. I am looking forward to getting back some of my reading time since NaNo is over. Especially the precious reading time I get to have with my kiddos. Oakland and I can’t resist a good story.


Speaking of the kiddos, all three of my sons are playing basketball this winter, and their first practice came this week. They are on two different teams, but fortunately, both teams have practice on the same night at the same location. After the soccer/football season we just had, this is a huge blessing! Oakland and I were hoping to get in a few words, but alas, there was simply too much chaos for writing.


I made it to 50k! It was a rough go for most of the month, but now it’s finally over. I have 50,000 words of a novel I didn’t have just 30 days ago. It is the End of All Things!

Okay, so reaching the end of the first draft isn’t really THE END. It is, in fact, only the beginning. Now, I will move on to the next stage in this process and begin turning this hot mess of a novel draft into something more palatable. Rewriting, revising, editing. Rinse and repeat. I may, however, take a bit of a break in December to catch my breath, reintroduce myself to my husband and children, catch up on my reading, and celebrate Christmas.


I went into this NaNoWriMo November with an attempted plan for the novel I intended to write. The planning didn’t go as planned, but I think the novel still came out stronger in the end for all the pre-NaNo pondering. I have a lot of work still to do, but I’m now more excited than ever about this series of stories I’m writing.

For me NaNoWriMo is a place where anything can happen, and often anything does. Now that it’s finished for another year, I plan to move forward with this series in a less mad-dash sort of way until it’s finished.