In honor of my book’s upcoming release, I thought I might share with you a little bit about it. The story of where it came from, how it came about, and some of the why behind The Promised One: The Chalam Færytales.

If you’re in the street team, or if you’ve poked around my site or social media enough, you probably know that the first book (actually, the first three books) is an allegory of the Old Testament. In saying that, I want to make something clear: this is not a character for character, scene for scene allegory. Instead, it is an interpretive allegory, meaning that it is heavily inspired by many of the people depicted in the Old Testament, and while themes are the same, it is not just the same story with different names. The main character, Prince Ferryl is heavily based off of two men in the Bible: namely King David and Moses. As you get to know him and read his story, hopefully you will pick up on some of the parallels from his life with that of the lives of these two heroes of the faith. But again, Prince Ferryl’s life does not follow the same paths of these men. He doesn’t go to the enemy king demanding for the release of slaves, he doesn’t see a woman bathing on a roof and take her to be his wife, etc. But he does face a lot of the same themes that Moses and David faced—learning to trust in a God he doesn’t understand, finding himself through faith, and learning to let go of what he wanted for the story Providence had intended for him all along. (Oh, and there may or may not be a burning bush in one of the subsequent novels…)

You might be reading this and wondering what in the world is the point of this kind of story. The truth is, I think the idea of The Promised One was birthed in me when I was a little girl. I remember from a young age, I would lay in a clover patch in my backyard, look up at the sky, and wonder who God is. I would wonder how he created all the things around me—the trees and the bees and the clouds and the wind. Later, those thoughts got a little deeper, to the point that I would ask myself philosophical questions like, “If the universe is so big, surely there is more life out there. And if there is more life, then would God redeem them the same way he redeemed us?” From those thoughts, my mind would wander down wild paths, imagining the story of the Messiah played out in a different world, with different people, a different savior of all souls.

Thus, The Promised One was born.

It’s a conceptual story—a fæerytale based around that idea. What if God redeemed another people? What would their story look like? How would they come to understand that this God of the universe is as undeniable as he is unbelievable? And what would their Messiah be like?

More than that, it is a story about love in its many forms. It’s a love letter to remind us that the heart is the canvas upon which Providence creates his masterpiece. It’s a fæerytale to teach us that love is the catalyst by which hope is born and faith is fostered.

As you read these stories, I hope they inspire you. I hope they encourage you. But most of all, I hope they point you to a providential God that is remarkable, uncontainable, and beautiful. I hope you read these stories and find a little of yourself in Prince Ferryl, or in Elizabeth, or in Michael, or in Delaney. I hope you get lost in another world, another time, another place; and I hope you are encouraged to dig a little deeper into the magic of Providence.

The Promised One: The Chalam Færytales (Book I)

Available January 9, 2018

Some færytales end with a kiss, but for Elizabeth and Ferryl, the kiss is only the beginning.

When the memories of their happily-ever-before are inexplicably stolen, Elizabeth sets off to uncover the truth and save her fabled love with the crown prince, no matter the cost. Meanwhile, Prince Ferryl must unravel the mystery behind his father’s crippling headaches, grapple with the band of rebels infiltrating the borders of his kingdom with suspicious acumen, and undermine the manipulation of a queen with an unslakable thirst for power and control. All while trying to keep his mind off the beautiful stranger who seems to know and understand him too well.

The Promised One is the first book of The Chalam Færytales series—a coming-of-age epic fantasy, a story that begins after the first kiss. It’s a færytale to remind us that magic is everywhere, if only we look—and love may be the most powerful magic there is.

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So a few months ago, I had this idea: what if I made a group on Facebook for writers? A place where we could learn from each other, grow in our craft, figure out things as a community, problem-solve.

So I just made one. I’ll never forget that first day when I invited someone to join. About three members in, a person commented on my invitation to join and said, “Why would I join this? There are only three members.” I was a little dejected, but I pressed on.

Fast forward five months later and we’re about 500 members strong and growing every day. I have been overjoyed at what’s going on and the response from the members. We’re an active, uplifting, realistic, useful community unlike any other writing group on Facebook (and believe me, I’m a member of most of them). We’ve started something organic—a true community built on the principle that the best way to grow in your craft is to surround yourself with like-minded people with similar goals.

Thus, Ampersand Write was born. A Facebook group made for writers, by writers.

As the group grew, I got another crazy idea: What if we had a website where we could provide our members with articles about the biggest questions we get? What if we had a place where we could list real businesses and services that we’ve not only personally used, but recommend so that writers don’t have to sift through so many weeds just to find a reliable editor? Or a decent cover designer? What if?

So today, we officially launched ampersandwrite.com. It’s a community, it’s a resource, it’s a hub of information made to help the budding, aspiring writer find exactly what they’re looking for. It’s active, it’s growing, and it’s awesome—we hope you agree!

Who are the &W Admins?

So who are we that we think we know so much? Glad you asked. hahaha

We are a team of four women: three Texans and a Brit. Some of us have been friends for more than a decade. Some of us are neighbors. Some of us met on Facebook! We are mothers and writers and poets and songwriters. We are marketing directors and professional editors and USA Today Best-Selling authors. We all bring something unique to the table, with different goals and ambitions in the writing world. We’ve each made mistakes and learned the hard way in various aspects of this business. But there is one thing we’ve each learned for certain: the writing community is awesome, but it can be overwhelming. When we put our heads together, we realized that we just might be able to make a place that is useful to writers: a resource for all things writing.

Whether you are looking to self publish or traditionally publish, whether you need an editor or a cover designer, whether you need grammatical advice or have a question about how to query an agent, our goal is to be a hub of resources to help you better your craft and learn this business of writing.

So if you haven’t yet, come join us over on Ampersand Write. We’d love to have you!

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So most of you know I’m a musician. It’s in my blood, it colors my world. So of course, music has had a HUGE impact on the writing and creation of The Promised One. It has been a labor of love that started with a tiny seed of an idea. Watered with passion and a whole lot of music, a story—a whole world—started growing. It’s still growing. I love sharing it with you.

So, I thought you might like to hear some of the songs that inspired the books. There are many, many more and I will add them over time. But there is one in particular that I think might very well be the theme song of the first book. “Make Believe” by Cohen is a gorgeous, ethereal story of fairytale love. I imagine the song playing as Ferryl and Elizabeth make their way across the lush palace lawns of Benalle, racing their horses, Eagle’s wings spread wide across the emerald expanse.

Listen. Enjoy. And read the story again. The book is coming, my friends. And I can’t wait!

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Fallen in love with Ferryl and Elizabeth? Yeah, me too. Why not show your love with a little wallpaper? Available for your computer, phone or tablet, you can show the world your love for The Promised One and look good doing it.

Many have asked the significance of the image, and while I can’t give it all away (because the book will answer most of your questions), I can say that the image is of a chalam tree, chalam being the Hebrew transliteration for dream. The ancient Navarian legends say that those who share of the fruit from a chalam will share of the same destiny.

Yeah, so that’s all I can tell you about that… *rubs hands, laughs maniacally*

And that moth? Well, let’s just say that not all is rosy in the land of The Promised One.

Oh man, I can’t WAIT to share this book with you. For now, download some wallpaper, read the teaser story and help spread the word!

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Oh man, oh man! I’m so excited, guys. It’s time for another short story! This one takes us back to the very beginning—back to when Elizabeth and Ferryl first met, when their friendship first bloomed. You’ll find out a little more about how Elizabeth came to Navah, about her mysterious past. And you’ll find out what the world looked like through her five-year-old eyes. Not to mention you get to meet a whole slew of new characters, including Ferryl’s surly brother, Derwin.

It was such a blast to get into my characters’ heads as children. I’ve been living in their minds, viewing the world through their eyes for so long that it’s surreal to start sharing it with the real world. But I’ve fallen in love with Elizabeth and Ferryl (and SO MANY more characters you’ve yet to meet). So I hope you’ll enjoy reading this second short story as much as I enjoyed writing it.

As a site note: I’ve read/heard some comments from those of you who are thinking these are chapters of the book. I want to make it clear that these are NOT chapters, but short stories. They are stories in and of themselves, and serve as prequels, if you will, to the main story, which is forthcoming. So in case you’re thinking, “Okay, this is a little disjointed and doesn’t follow any kind of timeline,”  you’re right. Think of these as little 0ne-shot opportunities to get to know the characters whose world I am building and will soon release in the full-length version. Hope that clears things up!

Happy reading!

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I am so very thrilled to share with you something I have been working on for a long time (and consequently, something I’ve been *dying* to tell you about). I’d like to officially introduce you to the world of The Promised One, a fantasy series I’ve been writing since 2015.

I’m currently immersed in the writing/editing/writing more/editing more life that is novel creation. It’s a crazy world that I NEVER IN A MILLION YEARS thought I’d ever want to be a part of. But something just clicked in me one day about two and a half years ago, and since then, I’ve penned six (yes, SIX) full-length manuscripts, with plans for MANY more.

That being said, this is the very first work I’m sharing with the world. It’s set in the world of the series I’m writing, but it is not part of the major work. It was originally the prologue for the first book in the series, but as editing goes, it made its way to the cutting room floor.

But then one day I had this crazy idea that it might make a good short story. And that it might make a good introduction to this world I’m creating. And that you might like to read it as a little appetizer before the main course.

So I’m releasing it. *bites nails nervously*

I’ll say this: in the hours after I quietly released it to a select few, I was shocked at the amount of strangers who commented or contacted me to let me know that they wanted MORE, MORE, MORE. It certainly whetted my appetite for this whole world of online writing; and it gave me the gumption to say that perhaps I’m on to something. Maybe you’ll agree.

So without further ado, I am proud to introduce you to “The Promised One: The Fall”, a short story. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I’ve enjoyed creating it.