Saturday, October 31, 2020

Life is too Crazy :\


 

Hello Readers!

This has been a crazy week, and NaNoWriMo is just a few days away! *internal panicking* I'm so sorry that this post is late. :( 

I don't know if I'm ready or not. Most of my WIP is outlined, but I still feel very unprepared. 

To be honest, I should be prepping right now, but my brain needs a break from WWI and outlining for a moment. 

Today I was gonna tell you about Charlotte de Bourbon, I'd still love to, but sadly time will not allow that to happen today. 

If you're a writer I hope you're ready for NaNoWriMo. 

If you celebrate Reformation Day (like me) Happy Reformation day! 

This is gonna wrap up this post, I'll try to keep you updated on my NaNoWriMo stats. 

Soli Deo Gloria,

Mattie May

 

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

A Very Bookish Thanksgiving Blog Tour!



Hello Readers!

You'll notice my blog header changed, but don't worry, it'll be back next week; but why did it temporarily change? I'm glad you asked! 

We're taking a quick break from our series on women of the Reformation to participate in a blog tour! I'm very excited about this book and tour. 

I'm really excited about this because I got to participate in the Facebook launch party and it was so much fun, I loved getting to know the different authors and learn more about the stories, I'm very excited about this blog post! 

Let's dive in, shall we?


Welcome to A Very Bookish Thanksgiving Blog Tour 📚📚🍁🍂🦃




Five stories.
Five book-lovers.
Five Thanksgiving novellas inspired by five classics.
This is a limited-edition novella collection with contributions by five different authors.





The Promise of Acorns ~ Kelsey Bryant
Erin Moore is a nanny whose strained relationship with Thanksgiving becomes even more complicated when her new employer asks her to teach his grandchildren about the holiday. The results surprise them both.
Inspired by Jane Eyre





As Long as I Belong ~ Sarah Holman
Young Analise Marshall has always felt like she straddles two worlds, like Jane Austen’s Fanny Price. Yet, near Thanksgiving, she faces the fact she might soon not belong anywhere at all.
Inspired by Mansfield Park





The Windles and the Lost Boy ~ Rebekah Jones
All Lost Boys could find refuge with Patrick Quill. Jeremy might do the same—if he could find him and if Patrick is real.
Inspired by Peter Pan





Grand Intentions ~ J. Grace Pennington
Pippa has always dreamed of being a great novelist, but between her job and helping her mom raise her three younger brothers, she never seems to be able to write. So when her grandmother offers her a few months away with all the time she could wish for, she’s sure to write the story she’s always dreamed of—or does her problem run deeper than she thinks?
Inspired by Great Expectations





A Fine Day Tomorrow ~ Amanda Tero
Essie March never planned to do much with her life, being the sickly one of the family. And just as she starts to pursue her dream of nursing, it seems that everything stands in her way to prevent it.
Inspired by Little Women


***

Releases on October 26!

Available for pre-order now at this link

(The price will go up from $2.99 to $4.99 on October 26, so get it now!)


***

About the Authors:


Kelsey Bryant is an author, editor, and martial arts instructor from Central Texas. She loves God, her family, classic literature, and anything that transports her to the past.





Sarah Holman lives in Central Texas with her amazing family. When not working on her next novel, she can usually be found hanging out with her siblings, reading, or taking long walks. If there is anything adventuresome about her life, it’s because she serves a God with a destiny bigger than anything she could have imagined.





Rebekah Jones is first and foremost a follower of the Living God. She started writing as a little girl, seeking to glorify her King with her books and stories. Rebekah is an old soul in a young body (she’s not 12—honest!). While her exact age is classified, her interests are not. Among them are reading a variety of books, singing, playing and composing music, studying all manner of subjects, nannying an adventurous group of youngsters, and, of course, writing her books, poems, articles, and short stories. She writes a wide range of books from gentle children’s adventures to family sagas to murder mysteries.





J. Grace Pennington has been telling stories since she could talk and writing them down since age five. Now she lives in the great state of Texas, where she writes as much as adult life permits. When she’s not writing she enjoys reading good books, having adventures with her husband, and looking up at the stars.





Amanda Tero grew up attending a one room school with her eleven siblings—and loved it! She also fell in love with reading to the point her mom withheld her books to get her to do her chores. That love of reading turned into a love of writing YA fiction. Amanda is a music teacher by day and a literary guide by night, creating stories that whisk readers off to new eras and introduce them to heroic but flawed characters that live out their faith in astonishing ways.



***

Giveaway!

Enter this giveaway for a chance to win a fun fall package!


Giveaway package includes Hello Autumn sign, Thankful jar, Fall cozy, and Autumn-themed charm necklace

Enter Here! 🍁🍂🍁

*** 

That's a wrap y'all! Which story sounds the most exciting to you? What is your favorite part about fall? Let me know in the comments! 

Blessings,

Mattie May

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Women of the Reformation: Lady Jane Grey ~ Guest post by Al


 

Hello Readers!

I'm so excited to bring you a guest post on one of my other favorite women of the reformation, Lady Jane Grey! 

Al is a teen HisFic writer from NZ. She is currently working on a story that takes place during the 5th Century in England. Al enjoys writing, reading, and going on adventures. 

***

~Lady Jane Grey~

    Hello there! I’m Al.
    For as long as I can remember, Lady Jane Grey has been one of my favourite historical figures. Her story and the way she kept up incredible faith throughout many trials is so inspirational to me. She was a teenager when she died, but managed to leave a forgotten legacy everyone should know about.
    
    Jane was born around 1537. Through her mother’s lineage, she had a very distant claim to the throne, but not enough to give her the title of princess. She was educated by the best tutors, learning Latin, Greek, French, Hebrew, and Italian. She loved to read, preferring it over popular sports of the time, such as hunting.
    
    At nine years old, her parents sent her away to live with Catherine Parr, the late King Henry VIII’s widow. It is said Jane was glad to go, as she was regularly beaten and chastised by her parents, though there is little proof of this. She enjoyed her new life with Catherine and her husband, Thomas Seymour, but her joy was short-lived. Catherine died in childbirth a few years later, and Thomas was sent to the executioner's block for treason.

    Thereafter, Jane spent most of her time at court. Her scheming father and the Duke of Northumberland began to devise a plot that would ultimately be her downfall. Jane was forced to marry Northumberland’s son Guildford, who she barely knew. It was around this time King Edward VI was taken very ill and wrote out his Device For Succession. With Northumberland’s persuasion, Edward appointed Jane and any of her male heirs as his successors, as he didn't want his catholic sister Mary to undo his Protestant reforms. It’s speculated Northumberland himself forged the postscript which would make his daughter-in-law queen, but no proof has been found.

    Within weeks, Edward passed away. Jane was proclaimed queen by the nobles, despite her resistance to the idea. However, Edward’s sister Mary had the support of the populace and made it clear she wouldn’t stand for Jane’s theft of her title. With an army, she marched through the country, gaining support as she went. On July 19, most of the nobles relented and proclaimed Mary queen, even Jane’s father. After a nine-day reign, Jane was imprisoned in the Tower of London, alongside her husband.

    Jane pleaded guilty to treason for usurping the throne and was sentenced to death. She was given many chances to relinquish her Protestant religion in favour of Catholicism, in the hopes her soul would be saved before she died, but she held fast to her faith. 

    On February 15, sixteen-year-old Jane was forced to watch her husband’s execution, before meeting her own untimely fate on the chopping block.

    Many people have said Jane fell victim to the schemes of the traitorous men in her life, but I believe God used her to do great things. She may not have been queen for very long, but her incredible faith is still an inspiration to us today. Her life was not easy, yet she worked through it, knowing God had a purpose for her and believing she could fulfill it.

    In a letter to her sister before she died, Jane wrote these inspirational words: 
‘It [The Bible] is the testament and last will which He bequeathed unto us wretches and wretched sinners which shall lead you to the path of eternal joy and if you, with a good mind read it and with an earnest desire follow it, no doubt it shall bring you to an immortal and everlasting life.’ 
It is clear Jane went to her end knowing she had gained the gift of eternal life.

    We can all learn something valuable from Jane’s story. I encourage you to read more about this incredible young woman and read the entire letter she wrote to her sister before her death. Letter by Lady Jane Grey

***

That's all for today, y'all! 

Blessings,

Mattie May and Al


Saturday, October 10, 2020

Women of the Reformation: Olympia Morata


 

Hello Readers! 

I'm so sorry this post is late, life has been crazy, and trying to squeeze things in between NaNo prep has been a challenge, to say the least. 

Today I'm going to tell you about possibly my favorite historical figure. (Although there are so many, I'd be hard-pressed to pick one, Olympia is most definitely at the top of my list. 😉)

Olympia Morata has been a hero of mine since I read the book Weight of a Flame: The Passion of Olympia Morata by Simonetta Carr a few years ago. 

With no further ado: 

***

Olympia Morata

    Olympia Morata was born in 1526 in Ferrara, Italy to Fulvio Pellegrino Morato and Lucrezia Morata. She was their oldest and first daughter. 

    At the young age of thirteen Olympia was fluent in Latin and Greek, at this time (1539), She was invited to tutor and be a companion of study to Anna d’Este the daughter of Duke Ercole II and Duchess Renee of France, at the royal court of Ferrara. 

    Unfortunately, in 1548 her beloved father fell ill, and she was called home to care for him. Shortly after her return, Fulvio died and Olympia was devastated. 

    Up to this point, Olympia had not really cared about what she believed, but with the passing of her father, she began to wonder. After finding a letter in his desk to a friend, this letter helped her clearly see what her father believed and encouraged her to follow in his steps.

    Olympia requested to return to court, but she was no longer needed since she was now a protestant and Anna now resided in France with her husband Francis, Duke of Guise, who was a fierce persecutor of the Huguenots.

    With Fulvio dead and Olympia out of work, the Morata family became very poor. Most families of that time would have sent their children to convents or monasteries, but because the Moratas were Protestant, they would not.

    When Olympia’s father had been sick, a doctor from Germany called Andreas Grunthler had helped her father and in 1550 at age twenty-four Olympia married him. Unfortunately, Olympia had poor health her entire life and was unable to have her own children, so she cared for her eight-year-old brother, Emilio. 

    Soon Olympia and Andreas were forced to flee the country because of the pressing persecution of Protestants. So, the young couple moved to Schweinfurt, Germany, which was Andreas’ childhood home. On the way, Olympia finished her translation of Psalm 23 into Greek meter. By the end of her life, she translated all the Psalms into Greek meter.

    Shortly after arriving, Schweinfurt was occupied by the soldiers of Albert Alciabides. Andreas was put in charge of the army’s hospital. Unfortunately, when Alciabides left, the enemy poured in. Many fled to the church, but it was lit on fire causing the whole town to be set ablaze, Olympia and her little family found themselves running again.

    Olympia, Andreas, and Emilio all fled to Heidelberg. The year was 1555 and Andreas was accepted as a professor of medicine at the university, while Olympia tutored students in Latin and Greek. But while under siege in Schweinfurt Olympia had developed a fever that never fully subsided, and a few months later at the young age of twenty-nine, she died. Less than two months after her death the plague swept through Heidelberg, taking with it, Andreas and Emilio, who was only thirteen. 

    Olympia was an encouragement to many, even writing letters to Anna after her marriage encouraging her to become a protestant. This poem she wrote shortly before her death tells us that she did not fear death but longed to be with Christ, May we all be able to say this one day:

“I long to fade away so great is my confidence in Christ, and to be with Him in whom my life thrives.” 

    Olympia is an inspiration to me because she is an example of a godly woman who was willing to give up a life of luxury for a life of hardship. She stands out to me because of her love for learning and her dedication to God.

    If you’d like to learn more about the life of Olympia Morata I’d recommend, Weight of a Flame: The Passion of Olympia Morata by Simonetta Carr

***

And that's a wrap y'all! hope you enjoyed learning about Olympia Morata as much as I have. 

Blessings,

Mattie May



Wednesday, September 30, 2020

NaNoWriMo Annoucement an October Posting Schedule!



Hello All! 

I'm super excited about today's post!

First I'm going to go over what I'm posting in October, Lord willing 😅

I'm going to do two posts on two different women of the Reformation time period, I'm going to have a fellow HisFic writer, do a third one! 😀I'm not sure what the 4th week of October looks like, but we'll see! 😄 

I'd like to officially announce my current WIP (which is what I will be drafting for NaNoWriMo!) This novel is set during The Great War, now known as World War One. I've always wanted a write a story during this era, so I'm super excited about this! 

For fun, I designed a cover and have a working title! 


Working Summary: 

Kenneth is fighting for the Navy in The Great War. Jenny is a simple girl from the English countryside; longing to do all she can to help with the war effort in any way she can, like her Mother. An anxious woman, a part of the Red Cross searching for a lost husband. George is a devoted husband and father. He longs to get home to his blind daughter and worried wife. A couple with a son fighting in the war volunteer to care for a young blind girl. Allan is a soldier on his way to ANZAC. Only time will tell if he and the other brave soldiers will come out alive. A tale of bravery, hardship, and tears, On The Field, tells the story of the brave husbands, fathers, sweethearts, and brothers fighting in The Great War. 

And now for the MC's: 

Jenny Blair:

She is my most developed character so far... she has a special board thing for her: 



George and Mabel Blair:
Parents of Jenny, George joins the Marines and Mabel helps with the Red Cross. We won't talk about what author schemes I have planned for them. *evil laughter* 

Kenneth Martin:
My navy guy. I'm really excited about him for a few reasons. One, since my great-grandpa on my dad's side, had the middle name of Kenneth, and second, both Daddy and his daddy, Papa, were in the Navy.

Those are my MC's I have a few supporting characters that I'm also very excited about, but they have yet to be better developed.

That's all for now folks. Hope y'all enjoyed a peek at what I'm working on! 

Blessings,
Mattie May, The Blossoming Writer 



Interview with Author Kellyn Roth!


 

Hello Readers! 

I'm so excited about this, I had so much fun getting to interview Kellyn and I hope y'all enjoy the interview as much I did! 

First, a little bit about Kellyn, before we get started!



Kellyn Roth is a Christian historical women’s fiction & romance author from North-Eastern Oregon who has independently published multiple novels, the most notable being The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy series. You should definitely call her Kell.

Kell lives on family-owned property outside an unmemorable but historical town with her parents, two little brothers, arbitrary cat, precious border collies, a dozen cows, and lots of chickens. She also possesses a classic, vintage aesthetic which does not at all speak to her country girl side, but such is life.

When not writing, Kell likes to blog, teach writing to her various students, have day jobs which allow her to keep her car properly insured, and spend lavish amounts of money on Dairy Queen french fries. She also likes to talk about Keira Knightley and her own books. Just … way too much. You’ve been warned.

***

~And now, for the interview!~


Mattie: What first inspired you to write?  


Kell: Honestly, there wasn't any one thing. I've been writing stories since I was seven, and before that, my family would write down stories, poems, and songs for me! So I frankly have no clue. I just always have!


Mattie: That's really neat. ^-^ 

Who has encouraged you the most in your writing journey? 


Kell: It's varied a lot from year to year! But it's always been my writing friends, whoever they are in any given season. And, of course, my "real life" friends, who wrote with me and eventually just encouraged me to keep writing. They're really awesome. To name drop - Sonja, Eva, Aimee, and my bestie Bailey.


Mattie: That's neat. My writing friends have been a great encouragement to me as well. 

Why do you write Historical Fiction?


Kell: Because modern-day life is super boring, but I'm not creative enough for fantasy! 😉 But also, I believe history needs to be shared so we don't repeat mistakes - and people need to be better understood regardless of the era.


Mattie: That's very relatable for me. 🙂 

What is your favorite period of history to write about?


Kell: I honestly struggle to pick one, but I do love the 1940s. There's something so snappy about it, from the dialogue to the intense, horrible situations. It has a marvelous chaotic energy.


Mattie: As I've been looking at your novels and short-stories, it seemed that a few were set in that time frame 😉 

Who are some of your favorite Historical fiction authors?


Kell: Well, I have quite a few, but some that come to mind are Kristi Ann Hunter, Karen Witemeyer, Tamera Alexander, Sarah Sundin, Roseanna M. White, Regina Jennings, Julie Klassen, Jesseca Wheaton, and Carrie Turansky


Mattie: I've heard of some of them, I'll have to look into the rest 🙂 

How much research do you normally do before beginning the writing process?


Kell: It depends a lot on the book! Like, for some, especially if it's a continuation of a series, not much at all. For others, I'll have several books to read. But usually I do quite a bit of research mid-draft or while editing, usually for small details.


Mattie: Will you be participating in NaNoWriMo this year?


Kell: Almost certainly! I just haven't chosen a project. 😜 I really have to get on that, says I as I continue to do other things. I'll probably choose just a few days before!


Mattie: What is your current WIP/s about? 


Kell: Well, a couple things I'm working on include:

  1. Book 3 in my series, The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy, which finally have me writing about Alice as an adult!
  2. A novella from that same series set between book 2 and book 3.
  3. A new novel that is a bit of a secret, but it's a Regency romance with a lot of mistaken identities, failed schemes, and ridiculous characters.

Mattie: All of those sound really neat!

What times of the day are your most productive?


Kell: Usually sometime after 10 PM. Unfortunately, I have to be getting to sleep an hour after that! So I make myself work whenever.


Mattie: How much do you plan before writing a novel? 


Kell: I'm the kind of writer who does a pretty detailed outline - I like to know exactly what the characters are going to do at all times. However, I'm not the type to fill out detailed character sheets or such - the characters can develop themselves as far as I'm concerned. It's the plot that needs a little work!



Mattie: How do you get past writer's block? Or are you one of those special people who doesn't get it?


Kell: I do get it, but I just write anyways! I always say writing is no super special creative itch that you somehow can only scratch at certain times. It's a trained skill - and it is possible to train yourself to write on command. That said, there are times when writers need a break - it's important to avoid mistaking burnout for writer's block.


Mattie: That's neat, and a good thing to keep in mind.

Could you tell us a bit about your Growing Writers Program?


Kell: Well, essentially, I'm joining with Faith Blum and Zach Sollie to offer a 12-week program for young writers looking for instruction, encouragement, and critique in the art of fiction writing. Basically, it's our way to offer an advanced course that will help beginners level up as writers. I also do writing coaching on various subjects privately.


Mattie: What would be your piece of advice to a young or beginning writer?


Kell: I'd say "stick with it and don't be prideful because we can all improve and we all need critique to do so."


Mattie: Which is your favorite novel/short story you've written? 


Kell: I think right now that'd be The Dressmaker's Secret. I'm immensely proud of my recent rewrite!


Mattie: Do you have a favorite character from your works or another's? 


Kell: I have quite a few! I adore Peter Strauss, Jordy McAllen, and from my latest project, the unannounced one, a guy named Philip Harriot.


Mattie: Is there anything in particular that makes those characters your favorites?


Kell: Well, Peter is just the gentlest, sweetest, best person on earth. I would die for him - and, probably, he'd die for the world if asked! He's also got the best thoughts on everything.

Jordy is ... well, he has the same personality and habits of my best friend, Bailey. 

Then Philip is just fun. I enjoy writing him with his carefree snark and his lack of concern for what others think of him.


Mattie: Anything else you'd like to share with us? 


Kell: Hmm, no, I think I'm good. Thanks so much for interviewing me!


Mattie: You're so welcome, I had fun!

***

That's a wrap folks, hope y'all enjoyed the interview! 

If you want to learn more about Kell check out her blog here: Lilacs and Reveries. If you'd like to learn more about her lovely books, you can check them out here: Kellyn's Books! You can buy her books on Amazon here: Amazon ~ Kellyn Roth Author.

Have a lovely rest of your week! 

Blessings,

Mattie May


Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Why I Write HisFic Pt 3 + And 2 Special Announcements!



Hello Readers! 

Welcome to Why I write HisFic Part 3! 

Last week I talked about why HisFic is important, and this week I'm going to talk about why history inspires me and gives me hope!

Make sure you read to the end for two very special and exciting announcements! 

Let's get started, shall we? 

History is real. It really happened. (Oh wow, imagine that!) Other genres don't have that. Because it's real, it's easy for me to relate to, even if it took place hundreds of years ago. Because it's real, it inspires me. 

History gives me hope, and history inspires me. 

History gives me hope: 

It shows me that normal people can overcome crazy difficulties and trials. I love reading and learning about people who were the least likely, and God did amazing things through them. It gives me hope that one day, maybe I'll be able to do something. 

History inspires me:

I love to read and learn about the young men and women in history who did amazing things; they show me that as a young woman I can do things too. I might not speak five languages or tutor in a royal court, but I can do things in my own life, world, and country. 

History shows that even in the darkest moments, God is still there. God still cares, and God is going to work through the toughest situations. He's still on the throne. It inspires me to keep trusting and keep living because I have hope.

***

I hope you've enjoyed reading this series as much as I have in writing it. In case you were starting to feel sad that it was going to come to an end... as all good things must. It is not the end... yet. I'm very excited to announce that I will be interviewing author and writing coach Kellyn Roth! 

I recently found her through an email I got about her recently started Growing Writers program (which ya'll should totally go check out at this link: Growing Writers Program.) 

If you want to learn more about Kellyn and her lovely books, you can visit her website here: kellynrothauthor.com

And now, for the second announcement! *insert drum roll* 

Everlasting Gold is back on Amazon! It's finally done! Such a relief. Check it out and see the slightly revised cover here: Everlasting Gold paperback

And that's all, for now, folks, have a lovely rest of your week! 

Blessings,

Mattie May