100 Days of Sunlight blog tour!

A boy who wants to help and a girl who thinks there’s no way he can understand what she’s going through–that’s the story told in 100 Days of Sunlight, a new YA release with a heartwarming message of living in the light and understanding the beauty in being seen. The book quickly jumped to #1 New Release for its genre on Amazon, and there’s a good reason: It’s a strong, well-told story with a cover that’s visually stunning and instantly appealing. Now readers everywhere are squealing, laughing, and happily sighing about the book (at least, I am).

But for author Abbie Emmons, writing novels is nothing new.

“I completed 7 novels before I wrote 100 Days of Sunlight, and they all helped shape me to be the writer I am today,” Abbie said. “Also, I wrote so much fanfiction as a kid. I always look back on my older writings and think about how much every single word shaped me and improved my technique.”

100 Days of Sunlight was born during NaNoWriMo 2017. Abbie first came up with the story’s concept seven months beforehand, and when November rolled around, she was surprised at how quickly the words leaped onto the page: “Two weeks into NaNoWriMo, I reached my goal of 50,000 words and by the 27th day I had finished the whole book.”

Fast forward to today and 100 Days is out in the world after lots of editing and a long back-and-forth formatting process.

“I’m… a perfectionist, so I’m kind of obsessed with making sure I’ve crossed every t and dotted every i,” Abbie said about the indie publishing process.

Now a long list of 5-star reviews on both Goodreads and Amazon proves that readers (myself included) are falling in love with main characters Tessa and Weston, plus the overall aesthetic of the novel (which includes lots of sunlight, poetry, and waffles). Readers relate to Abbie’s well-drawn characters, and Abbie herself does, too.

“Tessa and I share a lot of the same personality traits and habits,” Abbie says about her character, who blogs, writes, eats lots of waffles, and reads lots of books. “I can also relate a lot to Tessa’s internal journey of coming out of her comfort zone to accept love and support from others, even when she feels like just closing up and hiding.” Abbie also adds that both herself and Tessa are INFJ’s.

And Abbie can see how she’s similar to Weston, too: “I can relate so much to his sunshiney optimism and sense of humor. At one point in the book, he says that he ‘laughs and cries at all the wrong times’ and I feel like that describes me pretty well.”

Abbie’s lifestyle focuses on multiple creative passions, and that’s what her blog centers on, too–not only does she write novels, but she’s a musician, and she even designed her own book cover for 100 Days.

I always had a vision for what it would look like, and I find it easier to just make a thing myself rather than explain it to someone else, if I can,” she said. “Luckily, I spent most of my childhood playing on Photoshop with graphic design, so I was able to design the book cover without much struggle.”

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Abbie’s daily life incorporates all of her passions with an impressive amount of discipline and a focus on productivity. A day in her life varies based on what projects she’s focusing on at the moment. She’s a big fan of calendar blocking to plan out her day, though, finding that this method helps her make the most of her time. “I like to accomplish my most time-sensitive tasks in the morning, then work on the important-not-urgent ones in the afternoon, and my evenings are designated for working on projects further down the road.”

100 Days of Sunlight is an amazing debut novel, but for Abbie’s blog subscribers who regularly read her beautiful words and recognize how hard she works every day, that’s no surprise. 100 Days is a must-have for your YA contemporary shelf and Abbie’s disciplined lifestyle is an inspiration for creatives everywhere.

Check out Abbie’s book and connect with her on social at the links below:

Buy 100 Days of Sunlight | Add 100 Days of Sunlight on Goodreads

YouTube | Author website | Blog | Instagram | Facebook

Have you read 100 Days of Sunlight yet? What did you think of it? How do you make time in your daily life to focus on your own creative passions?

 

What I Spend In A Week

Several months ago, YouTuber Monica Church did a video titled Tracking My Finances For A Week (Day One). It was pretty interesting to watch (although I was also appalled at how much money she spent, lol–$186 in just one day). So this week (August 4th through August 10th) I thought I’d do something similar in the form of a blog post! My guess is that I’ll be way under Monica’s daily amount of $186 for my whole week since I paid my rent and other bills last week, but we’ll see! Here’s how much money I spend, plus how I spend it, in an average week.

Sunday Total: $3.99

I rented Baby Driver on Amazon and re-watched it. (It’s so good.) Other than that, it was a quiet day for my wallet.

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Monday Total: $27.22

On my walk to get the mail, I had a stroke of inspiration and decided I needed a doormat, so I immediately came back up and started shopping for one. After way too much time browsing Harry Potter doormats on Etsy (#procrastination), I ended up buying a doormat from JCPenney that says “There’s no place like home” in script. It was on sale and ended up being $27.22 with shipping (it came just three days later and is super cute).

(I would have also paid $25 for counseling on Monday, but I canceled my appointment because I played too hard over the weekend and needed a quiet day at home to rest and recover.)

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Tuesday Total: $80.96

I got gas, which cost $25.98. Working from home is great–sometimes I only have to get gas once a month!

I also picked up a grocery order from Walmart, which cost $54.98. The amount of money I spend on groceries fluctuates a lot. Some weeks I struggle to hit $30 (the minimum required for a Walmart pickup grocery order); other weeks, like this one, it’s near $60. I don’t worry too much if the number gets high. My grocery order includes not only food but household items (i.e. cat litter and toothpaste). And I don’t mind paying extra for pre-prepared food  (i.e. sliced fruit and cooked bacon) because I often don’t have enough energy to cook, so buying pre-prepped food ensures I’ll actually eat. Plus, I will often go weeks without eating out–so all of that to say, I don’t really worry about setting a strict budget for groceries. I just buy the food I want.

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Eggs, dairy-free ice cream, bagels, Tostitos, toothpaste, frozen waffles, cat litter, cucumbers, bell peppers, tomatoes, bananas, cantaloupe, frozen broccoli, hamburger patties, frozen french fries, and pre-cooked bacon.

Wednesday Total: $7.00

I went with my mom, the two-year-old she keeps, and some friends to a local waterpark and had to pay $7 admission.

Thursday Total: $25.00

I had a $25 co-pay for a doctor’s appointment (where I was officially diagnosed as lactose intolerant). Other than that, I didn’t spend any money on Thursday. During tap dance class, an employee at the rec center came and pulled me out of class to explain to me my options for purchasing a pass so I could practice alone in the dance studio, but I decided not to buy a pass; I’d only be allowed to practice like that until we get new floors in the studio at Thanksgiving, and I’d have to pay every time I go, so I’ll just keep practicing in my parents’ kitchen for free.

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Friday Total: $0

I didn’t spend any money on Friday.

Saturday Total: $0

I didn’t spend any money on Saturday.

Total for the Week: $144.17

All in all, I spent about $145 this week. Over $100 of that money was spent on things I had to pay for–life expenses like groceries, gas for my car, and the doctor. The other $40 was on fun stuff; mainly the doormat (an abnormal purchase, haha), and then also a movie and admission to the waterpark. This was a pretty average week-in-the-life spending-wise for me. It was a really fun week. And my favorite thing I spent money on this week is my cute new doormat!

What do you spend your money on the most?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

July 2019 Monthly Wrap-Up

July involved a lot of sickness, a lot of stress/burnout from work, and a lot of weariness. There were some good times too, but overall I was glad to see July go.

I didn’t make it out a whole lot this month to tap class or Bible study or comparable activities. We hung out with old friends on the Fourth for board games, food, and Spider-Man: Far From Home. I spent time mentoring a younger girl from church, got involved with music ministry, and went to a fellowship lunch. My friend Emma visited from college for a fun weekend involving lots of salad and Hadestown (and an 11:00 PM call to the police lol). Dad and I went to a butterfly farm and Joshua and I went to Chattanooga for a weekend, despite my health being very poor. And that’s about it.

July made me realize I really needed some more boundaries in my life. I needed to take a step back–several steps, actually, because I was dying. So now I’ve done that. For real, this time. And it’s so amazing and refreshing.

 

 

This month I’m…

Reading: The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate and The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate, Jacqueline Kelly (reread). A Very Large Expanse of Sea and Shatter Me, Tahereh Mafi (reread). Letting Go of Gravity, Meg Leder (reread). Call It What You Want and Letters to the Lost, Brigid Kemmerer (LTTL, reread). The Running Dream, Wendelin Van Draanen (reread). The Deceivers, Kristen Simmons (reread). I Lived on Butterfly Hill, Marjorie Agosin. The Borrowers, The Borrowers Afloat, The Borrowers Aloft, and The Borrowers Avenged, Mary Norton (reread). With the Fire On High, Elizabeth Acevedo. Understood Betsy, Dorothy Canfield (reread). Farmer Boy, Laura Ingalls Wilder (reread). Every Soul a Star, Wendy Mass (reread). 18 total. I also speed-read and summarized 8 nonfiction books for work.

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And I ordered myself a subscription book box for the first time ever!

Watching: Spider-Man: Far From Home. Mamma Mia. Good Witch season 2. Madelaine Petsch and Emma Abrahamson on YouTube.

Listening to: bad guy, listen before i go, and COPYCAT (Sofi Tukker remix), Billie Eilish. Hey Look Ma, I Made It, Panic! At The Disco. Sucker, Jonas Brothers. Colourway and Anchor, Novo Amor. Fallin’ All In You and If I Can’t Have You (Gryffin Remix), Shawn Mendes. Dancing Queen, Mamma Mia. Take Off All Your Cool, Diamonds Are Forever, and Mona Lisa, Sabrina Carpenter. God Help The Outcasts, Hunchback of Notre Dame. Blood for Blood, Sarah Sparks. He Has Time, Common Hymnal. Hadestown, especially Wait For Me (Reprise).

Writing: I set a goal for Camp NaNo to write a 10,000 fanfiction to ease my way back into writing fiction. I only made it to 7.3k, but that’s more fiction than I’ve written in over a year probably, and it was so amazing and just downright fun to rediscover who I am as a fiction writer. I also posted a story I wrote last February and received over 100 responses in 24 hours! I’m going to keep focusing on fanfiction for a while just to have fun and build up my fiction muscles again.

As far as work writing, I did a million projects for 18 separate clients. I made a ton of money but it was not fun haha and that’s all we’re going to say about that.

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Eating: Not a lot because I was nauseous and having stomach issues most of the month (it seems I’m lactose intolerant now?). Cute strawberries for the Fourth. Talenti layer gelato, mint cookie (this was before my lactose intolerant epiphany). Chicken and zucchini foil packets. Lots of waffles cause apparently that’s all that sounds good when I’m sick. Asiago cheese bagels. Pork chops. And the most amazing meal ever: a salad with cucumber, tomato, bell pepper, hard boiled egg, bacon, and balsamic vinaigrette plus butterscotch bars.

 

Loving: Lin-Manuel Miranda and William Daniels Talk Hamilton, 1776, Mr. Feeny, and More (Playbill). We hired Fiverr workers to write about Fiverr’s IPO (Quartz). Learn Something New This Summer (The Rebelution). Why Spoonies Should Be Mentors (Romans 5:3-5). Open Hands (Madyson Grace). Slow Down (Through the Wasteland). Lili Reinhart and Cole Sprouse: On Relationships, Riverdale, and What the Future Holds (W Mag). How This Fake Financial Expert Tricked Outlets Into Publishing Her Advice (Huffpost). Working Full-Time Despite Chronic Illness Does Not Mean I’m “OK” (The Mighty). Crushing Burnout Before It Crushes You, The Goodness Revolt.

Grateful for: Finally having a church family. Laughing hysterically over a dice game with my friend, mom, and grandma while it rains outside.

What did you do in July?