Friday, December 16, 2016

11 Sites and Apps to Help Writers Get Organized


Set a deadline. Fill out a questionnaire about your characters. Lots of other nice features.

Hit TRY in the lower right-hand corner of the black box to use this tool for free. Write or get a punishment (an annoying sound).

Don’t like negative reinforcement? Written Kitten uses positive reinforcement. You get shown a kitten as a reward for writing.

Lock yourself out of all websites except the ones that will help you with your productivity.

This app is a real life saver. Tells you about sentences that might be too long. Tells you about adverbs. Just in general, a nice editing app.

Write stories, create characters, brainstorm, and set deadlines

Organize your novel and save it to the cloud.

I swear by Google Docs. I write all my first drafts here, just in case! If your computer randomly restarts or crashes or something else awful happens, your work will still be waiting for you in Google Docs.

Write 750 words (or 3 pages) a day. The site is in French.



Set deadlines and reward yourself if you meet the deadlines. Sends you reminders about your word count.

Character Story Planner

Like WordCradle, but a phone app.

Did I miss a good one? Please let me know in the comments!

Saturday, July 2, 2016

The Princess Who Rescued Herself: A List Of Princess Books to Inspire

If you are raising a girl, then I'm sure you've heard of "princess culture", but who wants their daughter to end up with a Cinderella complex? That's why I've put together this list of princesses who can rescue themselves. Some of them even rescue others. Overall, this is a list of books with princesses AND positive messages.

#5 Don't Want To Be A Princess by Kally Mayer

This little girl isn't sure why she would even want to be a princess! Are princesses allowed to fart or do fun things. The whole book is a fun romp for those who don't REALLY want to be a princess. This book also shows that girls can be whatever they want to be and shouldn't just limit themselves to princesses.

Amazon Link:

#4 The Smartest Princess by Mary Lee

You don't need to be pretty or dainty in The Smartest Princess. You just need to be smart. Princesses compete in an annual competition and if the winner is not already a princess, then she will become one.

Amazon Link:

#3 Princess Charlotte And The Pea by Sally Huss

The prince wants to find a girl sensitive to find a pea under dozens of mattresses. You know, the classic story. And he finds her, but the story doesn't end there. Oh no. Princess Charlotte would also like to test the prince on how sensitive HE is. And that's why I love this retelling of The Princess And The Pea.

Amazon Link:

#2 A Moat Is Not A Goat: Poems For Clever Little Girls By Elsa Takaoka

While this book isn't completely princesses focused, it does include princess characters, which is why I chose to include it on this list. It's also completely focused on empowering girls and encouraging them to be their authentic selves. I have a paperback copy of this book and I treasure it.

There are lots of adorable poems and the stories will make you feel proud to be a girl!

Amazon Link:

#1 The Mystic Princesses And The Whirlpool

This is one of my absolute favorite princess books for a multitude of reasons. The biggest one is not only are the princesses in this book capable of rescuing themselves, but they also rescue someone else. A girl named Harmony needs protection from the children of Ares and the princesses are up for the job. Kids who read this book will learn about important life skills like self-defense and being aware of your surroundings while sliding down rainbows, riding dolphins, turning into birds. What more could you ask for in a princess book?

I own a paperback of this one too and cherish it as well!

Amazon Link:

I'd love to hear from you. What books would you add to this list?

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Disney's Zootopia Sends A Much Needed Message For Everyone

Disney's Zootopia is cute from front to back, especially with an adorable bunny as the lead character. All Judy Hopps has ever wanted is to be a police officer, and she'll stop at nothing until she achieves her dream. Despite several setbacks, such as being beaten up by a bully, being told by her father, "It's okay to have dreams, as long as you don't believe in them to hard", and being pushed around in the police academy, Judy never gives up.

But that's not the only take home message in this great movie. There's a not-so-subtle message in this movie about how prejudice can hurt groups of people. And it's a message that kids today need to hear. I won't get too deep into detail, because I don't want to spoil the movie for you, but I will say this. In this movie, predators and prey live together in "harmony" in the city of Zootopia. However, prey still have some internalized beliefs about the predators that may be harmful. But here's the question, can they overcome their prejudice to once again live in harmony? Or will the predators be banished.

Aside from the good messages, the movie is cute, funny, and smart. And while the ending is somewhat predictable, the movie is still sure to become a favorite of kids and adults. 

Upon checking other reviews, after writing this one, I've noticed that some people think Zootopia's anti-prejudice message is a miss. I disagree.

Have you seen it? What are your thoughts on Zootopia?

Saturday, March 12, 2016

New Book Announcement: THE FAIRY'S BUBBLE WAND

I'm pleased to announce that over the last few months I've been working on a new children's book, The Fairy's Bubble Wand. 

In The Fairy's Bubble Wand, two girls from entirely different worlds must go on the journey of a life time and learn to believe in themselves while they're at it.

Here is the description from Amazon:

Fay feels like a fairy failure when she doesn't pass her test. Because her father is the king, she worries that she'll just be a disappointment to everyone. But when her father turns out to be missing, Fay knows she's the right person to search for him. 

Vidaya doesn't want her sister to go away for college. She has very few friends and is worried that she'll be lonely. But things change for Vidaya when her sister's gift opens up a magical new world. 

Vidaya and Fay go on a journey to remember, taking on marshmallow pirates, ice fairies, and even a changing forest. 

99 cents until April 5, 2016 only! Regularly priced at $2.99

Why do I believe this book is so important? It's essential for kids to learn to become independent, and in order to become independent, they need to believe in themselves. I hope that kids will read The Fairy's Bubble Wand and absorb that message. I can believe in myself. I can be independent. I can do anything I put my mind to.

The Fairy's Bubble Wand is now available for pre-order and will be released on March 25, 2016.