Authors Talk About It


I know it’s been a minute, but thanks for sticking with me! With things getting crazy at work and at home, I really need to stick to a writing schedule. Anyone have any tips or tricks?


I recently discovered a writing blog, Authors Talk About It, and it’s a really great resource for writers. They offer a podcast and classes on how to market your book. Maybe once I get my butt into gear and start writing, I might use their services!

Currently ATAI is taking nominations for their second annual Book Award Contest. The great thing about this contest is it’s giving new authors a chance at exposure and critiques.

ATAI was created by Rob and Janelle Alex, both doctors who are passionate about marketing and teaching people how to market themselves. They have created courses tailored to authors, like “How to Write a Powerful Bio for Authors” and “Outside the Box Marketing for Authors”. Both of these sound really interesting!

This year ATAI is hosting a Book Award Contest, and the prize package is pretty sweet. The Grand Prize package includes:

  • promotion of your work on all their sites
  • features on their sites
  • podcast interview
  • invitation into private mastermind (sounds so swanky)

Everyone who enters receives a critique/review, which I think is extremely helpful for up-and-coming writers. The more exposure, the better…right?

If you’re a writer and want to enter your book into the contest, check it out here.

Good luck everyone!


GTA Presents Beauty and the Beast

Hubby and I were fortunate enough to have a date night, and we decided to see Beauty and the Beast performed by the Gainesville Theater Alliance. GTA collaborates with our local colleges, Brenau University and the University of North Georgia, as well as local theater professionals to provide quality entertainment to our community. We had previously seen Dracula performed with this organization, so when we heard that Beauty and the Beast was included in this season, we knew we had to go.

Beauty and the Beast was performed in the Hosch Theatre located in the Burd Building at Brenau University. This was the view entering the building. How beautiful is that! Once you enter the building, you see two sweeping staircases that lead into the theater itself; the top level was for the balcony seating, and the bottom level was for floor seating. That entrance could have been a great backdrop for the play.

We were lucky enough to get front row seats! This was our view as we were waiting for everyone to file in. We were fascinated by the staging. I never had experience participating in theater, so I’m always curious about how the stage crew put together the props. You can’t really tell by this picture, but the trees were attached to netting! I thought it was wonderfully clever. Scenic Designer Dennis Mauldin really transported the audience into the Beast’s castle with his set designs.

I couldn’t take pictures during the actual show, but to be honest I didn’t want to. I was so entranced by the performance. You could really tell how much time and effort the actors put into their performances. There were many moments where my jaw dropped. I adored all the musical and dance numbers, especially Gaston and Be Our Guest. The choreography was so beautiful and fun. Barbara Hartwig, the choreographer, did a fantastic job. I was very impressed with the Gaston dance routine. The coordination with all the performers was amazing. They must have practiced that routine for days! I’ll admit: I was comparing the play to the animated Disney version. Because of this, I wasn’t expecting to get the Broadway version of the story (silly me). I was pleasantly surprised about the new songs I didn’t know. I feel that Rick Gomez, Music Director, really worked with all the actors to make sure they could emote through their songs.

The actors’ individual performances were wonderful. They all really made me believe that their characters were real people. I think my favorite performances were Gaston (Marcello Audino) and Lumiere (Benny Higgins). I have a soft sop for comedic reliefs, and although Gaston is the villain, he’s pretty ridiculous. I loved how genuine Belle (Lauren Hill) seemed. I’ve always felt a connection to Belle, and I think it deepened because I saw Belle come to life!

GTA put on a great show. If you’re ever in the North Georgia area, you have to check out what the Gainesville Theater Alliance is up to. You won’t regret it!

Erin Condren 2017 Life Planner  

It’s getting closer to the end of the year, and you know what that means: time to get a new planner! I’ve had the ECLP before, but this year I decided to try The Happy Planner. I wanted something similar to the ECLP, but without the large price tag. As the saying goes, you get what you pay for (I’ll go into more detail later). I’m going to show you how I set up my planner this time. Feel free to use it as inspiration!

At the beginning of every month, there’s a blank notes page. I’m using it as a sort of month-at-a-glance page. I have my goals for weight loss and student loan payments, and also a card schedule. I’d like to send cards out for birthdays and anniversaries this year. The month dividers have great motivational quotes on them. I love to flip through and see what each month says. 

This is one of my weekly spreads. I bought the washi tape from Target; they have some really cute rolls! The top washi strip is my proofreading schedule, and the bottom strip is for decoration. I added some fun quotes to them. Almost all of the stickers I have are free. I found some through Pinterest. I just downloaded the file and printed them myself.

I have the vertical layout, and I decided to separate my boxes into three sections: Work, Life, and Stuff. Work is obviously for work deadlines. Life is for birthdays, anniversaries, and appointments. Stuff is mainly going to be my blogging schedule.

There are fun note pages at the end of the planner. I tried to be consistent with what I did. Almost all the grid pages are for health tracking. One is for weight loss, one is for exercising tracking, and one is a mental health checklist. I found awesome stickers to track my steps, water, and weight, and those are in my weekly spreads. Every two weeks I’ll weigh myself and see how far I’ve gotten.

The regular lined pages are book-related notes. I’m currently listening to an awesome book podcast called What Should I Read Next?. In every episode, there are three book recommendations. If it’s something that piques my interest, I’ll write it down there. The other pages are reading challenges that I’ve found and would like to complete at some point.

If you like what you see here and want one of your own, please use my referral link to get a discount!

*This is not a sponsored post. I just really like my planner!*