poetry

seasons of the skull (a poem)

autumn:
a thousand years ago i lived in the dna of ancestors
i’ll never meet as i walk my hundred years on this earth…
but i might walk over their bones and not even know it.

spring:
and then i was born from an endless entity of the past,
with growing wonder and question for the new dawn,
as the rain and wind bakes in the glow of the rising sun.

summer:
as those who live now turn to those who will come after,
the truth of my future remains hidden within my own mind,
as i am only one person, with one dream, and one chance.

winter:
but a dream can shatter into a million fragments in seconds,
and i wonder where my dream really came from in the first place:
if it was from me, or the people who comprise my future and past.

 

thoughts

19 RESOLUTIONS FOR 2019

Hello, my dear and wonderful readers!

2019 is upon us, and if you’re like me, you probably have some resolutions up your sleeve. While every day is a perfect start to aim for a new goal, New Year’s Day is always a nice reminder to freshen things up a bit!

I hope you all have been thinking of some resolutions of your own, but I thought I would share 19 of my personal resolutions for this defining year! And remember–everything is what you make it.


1. More water

I’m addicted to Diet Coke, so this doesn’t really need more explaining, other than the fact that I need to incorporate more water into my diet. Maybe some of you rely on coffee to get you through the day, and while an occasional cup of joe or gallon of Diet Coke is permissible, I plan on setting certain days as water-only days. (We’ll see how this goes.)

2. Track Tuesday

Some friends and I have recently implemented “Track Tuesday” into our weekly schedule. This simply means that we take one night out of the week to exercise, whether that be jogging (for me and Miss Givenchy) or weightlifting (for the chicos). It’s probably better to exercise more than once a week, but for now, this is a good starting point.

3. Speak my mind

Recently I read a news article entitled “Are you a people pleaser?” My answer would be an emphatic yes. I let others control me in so many aspects, and sometimes I never reveal what I’m truly thinking. Enough of that! It’s important to say what you think, or people will always take advantage of you.

4. Learn to go for it

We’re put in certain situations for a reason. 2018 taught me to remember that you’re in charge of your own life, and 2019 will be the year of going for it. What do I mean by this? I’m simply saying that we only have a set time on this Earth, and we waste so much time, whether that be playing video games, spending hours and hours on the phone (see #5), or, something relatable to all of humankind, worrying.

Therefore, I say that we spend our time going for it. Don’t be afraid to try new things. Channel your discomfort into new passions, new memories, and new discoveries.

img_5630
Memphis Zoo (December 2018) Attempting to skate: I am terrible, but one day I won’t have to hold onto the wall the entire time. 😉

5. Less time on phone

A few days ago, I checked the “screen time” on my iPhone and almost threw the thing at the wall. I spent seven hours on that thing in the span of 24 hours, which is absolutely unacceptable. There are so many other things I could have done with that seven hours: Hanging out with family and friends, working on new books, planning trips, making money. Instead, I was watching pointless videos, reading nonsense facts online, and lying around with nothing to show for it.

It’s time to spend less time on all technology, because the physical world around us is too amazing to forget.

6. Read more books

In today’s society, we are constantly pounded by information. It seems as if everywhere we go, an excess of knowledge is available at our fingertips. While this has its positives, there are also some negatives to this sort of reliance on technology, especially considering #5.

Therefore, I will challenge myself to read more novels in this upcoming year. Books are great methods to relieve stress and relax, and it is a great way to entertain your brain. When I am overwhelmed by the world around me, books are a source of escape. Therefore, it is time to read as much as possible!

7. Don’t be so cryptic

Some of you may have no idea what I am writing about on this, but I bet some of you can relate. Simply put, I am pretty cryptic. I am not the biggest fan of people knowing where I am or what I am doing, and I have gained quite the reputation as “Kryptic Katie.”

In 2019 I will work on being more open with people. It is important that we remember our loved ones do truly care about us, and it is important to keep them in the loop.

8. Go to church more, pray more

Prayer is a beautiful, wonderful thing, and I urge all of you to try it out. I have been slacking on this front, but I truly believe in the power of belief and faith, and so I want to pray more this year.

9. Spend more time with those I love

It is time to be bittersweet: Time is passing by, and we’re growing older, each and every one of us. It is time to realize this, because when we let our days go with no thought for the future, we can sometimes forget how important the present is–and to treasure each moment.

Therefore, we need to spend more time with the people we love, even when it feels mundane or boring or annoying, because there will be a day when we won’t see them again.

Rejoice in the relationships you have, even in the low points. And in 2019 we should work on spending more time with the people we love.

10. Write a novel that matters

Writers, listen up!

This is the year we need to actually write something–and something that matters! What does this mean? Doesn’t everything we write matter? Well, if I’m being completely honest, I find a difference between some of my novels. For example, a romance like Mystic Mississippi does not have the same value as one of my magical realism books.

Different genres exist for different purposes, but I want to write something that has symbolism, magic, and value for my readers. This will be the year when I write something out of my comfort zone, but something that needs to be written.

img_5417
Malibu, California (December 2018)

11. Extend the olive branch

I have spent so much time thinking of outcomes and possibilities and what-ifs instead of actually pursuing what matters (#4, anyone?). However, I have also learned that it is imperative to be kind and good-hearted to both the people I meet and the people I know.

I’m sick of losing relationships, or not even getting a chance to develop these relationships, because I haven’t extended the olive branch. I make mistakes, and I want forgiveness. I don’t want to hide away in my transgressions, but instead to find growth and develop as a person.

Olive branch, even when I am stubborn.

12. Dress up more

Well, this is going to be an interesting resolution. My entire life, I have been a fan of super casual clothing. In summertime, I am in t-shirts; in winter, I am in t-shirts covered with sweaters. However, going to college has taught me that there is value in dressing up, even if it’s just a little better than normal.

While dressing up doesn’t define a person, it can matter in the realm of relationships. Our identities are personified in so many aspects, and the way we dress ourselves can present certain characteristics before we even say a word. Therefore, I have decided I want to banish the t-shirts (even if just for a few days per week) in favor of a more stylish look.

13. Learn to cook better

This is a huge one. I am so sick and tired of eating microwaveable meals at college, and when I come home and have access to a kitchen, I’m always making pasta or sandwiches. Therefore, I want to expand my cooking abilities.

14. Wear glasses more

This may seem a little random, but it is! I have terrible vision and rely on contacts for 99% of my waking life. However, I want to wear my glasses more because, well, it is just a change, I suppose. Plus, my friends refer to my alter ego as “Glasses Katie.” Pretty ridiculous, I know.

15. Learn the ukulele

In December 2018, so only a month ago, a few friends introduced me to both the guitar and the ukulele. They love to play, and since I am always around them, I found myself strumming the ukulele one night. My friend Even taught me some chords on the “uke,” while my friend Matt worked with me on guitar.

Christmas break rolled around, and I found myself missing the ukulele, and missing it a lot. So I did a quick search on Amazon, bought one for $30, and have been playing non-stop since. My fingers are calloused, my family annoyed with my endless songs, and my brain on fire.

The ukulele is such a peaceful, happy instrument, and it is so much fun to play. I totally recommend for you guys to check it out, even if you aren’t the biggest fans of music. It’s very easy to learn, and I hope to develop my abilities this year.

16. Clean more

This should be on everyone’s resolutions list, if we’re being quite honest. While I am all for individuality, cleanliness is a must. It isn’t the most fun thing to keep up with, and I’m guilty of being a slob, but it’s time to grow up and keep a clean work space and living arrangement.

17. Exfoliate the skin

Okay, here is a slightly more comedic point on this resolutions list. Recently I got a facial at the spa (now that experience should be a blog post) and was told to exfoliate my skin more. Time to live up to that tip.

And for those of you who have never had a facial… Get one done this year. It is an interesting experience, to say the least.

18. Talk about things that matter

So often we get caught up in the mundane life that what really matters is swept under the rug. We lose sight of the people we love, and our own feelings are ignored. This is why we have to be intentional to discuss things–and the things that matter most to us.

In 2019 I hope to be both myself and open to new conversations. I want to hash out my opinions and listen to others’, without fear or annoyance or pre-judgments. But this also means that I hope others will respect my own thoughts, and be open to talking about these issues as well.

19. Remember to do what I love

It is no secret that writing is my passion, and it’s my favorite thing in the world. (And I’m sure this is true for a lot of you who are reading this blog.) However, we must remember to make time for our passions. We must be intentional, we cannot cave into boredom or laziness, and we must remember who we are in the process.

People and circumstance will always wear on us, just like eroding winds carving out chunks of canyon. But this doesn’t mean it can’t create something beautiful, and we must use our experiences to further what sets our souls on fire. At college, I lose sight of my writing, because there are so many other things to do. But we cannot always think like this, or we can lose our contentment and drive.

Do what you love in this year. It’s worth it.


YOUR RESOLUTIONS.

Now it’s up to you: What do you want to resolve of yourself in this upcoming year? Already a week of January has flown by, and the year will follow shortly. Make sure to think of your own list, and stick to it, because if we don’t make the first step, we sure aren’t going to make the entire journey.

Until next time,

-K.

img_5629-e1546831463147.jpeg
It’s your year.

 

thoughts

FIVE YEARS FROM NOW

Today I thought it would be interesting to do a little “where will I be five years from now” post. This is totally out of the blue, but it reflects some nervous thoughts I’ve had about where I’ll be in the next few years. So why not write about it?

Maybe this will inspire you to consider where you’ll be in five years’ time as well. It doesn’t matter how old you are in this moment in time, because life is a constant whirlwind, and who knows what is going to happen tomorrow, let alone next year.

In preparation for this blog post, I randomly looked up a “five years’ time generator” to see what the internet thinks I will be doing then. If you’d like to take the test, here is the link. These were my results:

In five years, you will be:

A Happy Camper

You’re on your way to a happy, content place if you’re not already there. You have a positive outlook that can’t be swayed by life events or a changing environment, so you’re going to be happy no matter what. Congratulations I’m jealous.

 

I was expecting a little more detail, but it is the internet, so… I’ll spice it up by giving my own thoughts. So without further ado, here we go…


1. JOB

Well, this is pretty important, I guess… Hopefully I’ll have a job (haha). In five years I will be twenty-five, so I should be pretty set in the realm of a career path. I really plan on pursuing the pilot route, so, if everything works out according to plan, maybe I’ll be at a regional airline by then.

🙂

2. RELATIONSHIPS

Relationships are constantly in flux. Some moments are great, and others aren’t as good. While I have many relationships that stay strong with distance, it breaks my heart to consider that I’ll be living thousands of miles away from some of my closest friends in only a year.

That being said, I believe true friendships stay intact no matter where you may go. I believe I’ll end up living in my hometown, and I don’t know where my best friends will end up. However, I try not to fixate on this and remember that the time I get with them, with my family, with anyone really, is a true blessing, because change can and will come at any moment.

On a different note, I do see myself married by twenty-five. To whom, I haven’t got the slightest idea, but something tells me he’ll show up soon enough. 🙂

Now that is a weird thought…

3. WRITING

Five years is a whole lot of time, but it also isn’t that much. When i really think about it, so much has happened since I was fifteen, and so much will happen between now and my twenty-fifth year. I started religiously writing when I was fifteen, so I can’t wait to see how my skill further develops.

Maybe, just maybe, I’ll finally be agented, with a published book on the way. A girl can hope. No matter what, I don’t think my passion for writing will be leaving me anytime soon, so who knows how many books I’ll have written by the time 25 rolls around.

4. OTHER MATTERS

The first three are definitely the biggest chunk of the future, but there are some other hopes I have for my twenty-five-year-old self. I hope she is happy in all she does, while remembering to keep her focus on family, friends, and God. I hope she bought a house and isn’t living in her parents’ basement (lol). I hope she’s found a church, a hypoallergenic dog (this is debatable, actually), and sees her loved ones as much as possible. 🙂

And hopefully she isn’t addicted to Diet Coke.


TIME

has a funny way of working out. Sometimes, it flies by at the speed of light; others, it goes slower than a worm crossing the United States.

fullsizeoutput_ce
Running Through a Field (Fayette County, TN, around the time I was 15)

Who knows where I’ll really be in five years? That’s okay. I prefer not to know what’s in store, because I want it all: the good, the bad, the mystery, and the clarity. The truth is that there are phases of life, and I believe I’m in a pretty good space. I’m not sure how long it will last–but I am content knowing that I have made some incredible memories, traveled to insane places, and been struck down by altitude sickness one too many times.

But I don’t want this to be just a “where will be in five years” post. This is for you too. Maybe you could journal our your own thoughts or comment below, but you can also look into some of the topics from above: Will you have the same job? How do you want your relationships to be? Are you writing, or are you finding another aspect of your life that fills your curiosity?

The truth is that we can want all day long, but we have to put certain things to practice. If I want better relationships, I have to work hard. A friendship is a two-way street, but I’ve learned that you have to be willing to take the first step to help others, and others will help you in return. Or if you’re unsatisfied with a component of your life, then do whatever it takes to mend it! Some things are easy, and others are clearly not; that being said, we have choice for a reason. We have the blessing to be able to complain and wish things were different, so it is up to us to change the things that drive us up the wall.

Get out of your comfort zone, and sweat the details later. That’s what I’m learning to do…

🙂

-K.

17632335_1863897697161981_3017140771954264930_o
Channel Islands National Park, California (April 2017)

 

travel

MUSINGS FROM THE BALTIMORE AIRPORT

In the past three weeks, I have found myself in seven different states, and I’m about ready to take a long, long nap… While I love traveling, it wears me down, and it’s virtually impossible to work on books when I’m not in one place.

Why have I been traveling so much? Well, I wanted to visit my best friends in Wisconsin, catch a concert in Illinois, and vacation in Washington, D.C. (And I’m not really sure a vacation in D.C. is that good a choice, if we’re being honest.) Throw in Virginia Beach and Annapolis for good measure, and I’m still trying to readjust to being home after a trip way down south…

Anyway, I feel like I am complaining a little, and that is not my intention at all! I love traveling with my entire being. I get some of my best ideas from travel, as I’ve mentioned a few times on this blog in the past, but I also love planting roots and being able to be settled for a little bit too. So, since it’s been a while since my last post, I thought I would update you on some of my summer goals since it’s already mid-June (I can hardly believe this!).


BOOK UPDATE

After finishing a magical realism novel in early May, I was feeling sorta romantic… Which means I am halfway done with a romance trilogy that will be out very shortly! The first book in this series, The Third Wheel, will be out in the next few weeks, because it is just sitting around, collecting virtual dust. I am almost done with the second book, tentatively titled The Wedding Party, which I will finish in the next week or so. I plan on writing the third book shortly after I finish The Wedding Party, so stay tuned for a new romance trilogy on the way! (This trilogy will focus on three Argentine-American sisters!)

I have also begun work on a more serious novel that I labeled on Twitter as my first attempt at a Southern Gothic psychological thriller. A lot of words to say that this will take me a lot longer than a cheesy romance, but I hope to finish that book before the summer ends as well.


THINKING ABOUT THE FUTURE

Lately I have been thinking a lot about the future… Which is not typically normal for me. I suppose I have some stress as to what I want my adulthood to look like, and so I am thinking about who I’ll marry, what career I’ll have, and if I’ll ever be published as a writer. Those are just some of the things.

I’m not really sure why this is happening, but I think it’s a good thing to keep an optimistic outlook even when there is stress in life, because there will eventually be a time when everything will have happened, and it’s important to keep a good attitude through the hard times and good.

Therefore, I just wanted to give you guys a little update on this afternoon in the middle of June. I cannot believe the summer’s already passing this quickly, but I will post some more updates soon about my books (and hopefully some other topics as well)!

Until next time,

–K.