Be It Ever So Humble Playlist

Have you ever noticed that certain songs can take you back to a particular place or time in your life the instant they begin to play? For me, it goes even further than that. Certain songs become stories in my head—to the point that every time I hear those particular songs, I remember the stories they inspired.

So I thought it would be fun to create a playlist of songs to pair with the chapters of Be It Ever So Humble. Some of these songs convey the exact feelings the characters are having during a given scene, and some convey a general emotional theme. I’ve broken down which songs fit which chapters below, and at the bottom, you can listen to the playlist yourself!

SONGS BY CHAPTER

  1. MAKE OVER by Christina Aguliera [Explicit]
  2. FAMILY IS FAMILY by Kacey Musgraves
  3. HOME SWEET HOME by Mötley Crüe
  4. HIGH HORSE by Kacey Musgraves
  5. BYE BYE BYE by *N Sync
  6. WORKIN’ FOR A LIVIN’ by Garth Brooks and Huey Lewis & The News *
  7. YOU BELONG WITH ME by Taylor Swift
  8. WRECKING BALL by Miley Cyrus
  9. UPSIDE DOWN by Jack Johnson
  10. GOLDEN GIRLS THEME SONG (THANK YOU FOR BEING A FRIEND) by Bobby Bones and the Raging Idiots
  11. RUNAWAY BABY by Bruno Mars
  12. BETTER TOGETHER by Luke Combs
  13. DYING IN LA by Panic! At the Disco
  14. YOU DON’T KNOW HOW IT FEELS by Tom Petty
  15. CRY PRETTY by Carrie Underwood
  16. TORN by Natalie Imbruglia
  17. STRONG ENOUGH by Sheryl Crow
  18. TAKE IT EASY by Eagles
  19. DREAM A LITTLE DREAM OF ME by The Mamas & The Papas
  20. I’M YOURS by Jason Mraz
  21. STRAWBERRY WINE by Deana Carter
  22. ZERO TO SIXTY by Rachel Potter / THERE’S NO HOME FOR YOU HERE by The White Stripes
  23. JUST FRIENDS by Caylee Hammack
  24. BREATHE by by Greenwheel
  25. I STILL HAVEN’T FOUND WHAT I’M LOOKING FOR by U2
  26. BECAUSE OF YOU by Kelly Clarkson
  27. JADED by Aerosmith
  28. WOMAN by Kesha (feat. The Dap-Kings Horns) [Explicit] / STARTING OVER by Chris Stapleton

*I prefer the duet version with Garth Brooks for this, but it isn’t available on Spotify. You can find it on Amazon Music Unlimited, though, if you want to create your own playlist there.

Check out the playlist on Spotify!

If you’ve read Be It Ever So Humble, how’d I do? Any songs you think should be added to the playlist?

It’s the day of the book, y’all!

My debut novel officially launches today, and I am equal parts excited and scared (any Into the Woods fans out there?)! I’ve learned so much in this endeavor about writing, publishing, and marketing, but I’d be lying if I said I really know anything about any of it yet.

One unfortunate setback is that I will not have hardcovers for this novel—at least not right away. I had initially planned on using Barnes & Noble for hardcovers (and as a second option for paperbacks), but I haven’t had great luck with their platform. As publishing day approached, I received glitchy error messages from the website, and I didn’t want to take a chance on having print issues. So, unfortunately, my book will only be in paperback and eBook for the time being.

 Although it wasn’t my ideal publishing scenario, I’m not terribly disappointed by it. This simply allows me to learn more about Amazon’s print platform before moving on to the next.

Being an indie author means wearing a lot of hats. It can be overwhelming, especially for a recovering perfectionist. I know I’m not perfect, obviously, but I put far too much pressure on myself to try to be. This process has taught me I’m going to have to let go of that. I can do my best and learn from my worst.

And that’s what every book should be for its author—a learning experience and a chance to grow in the craft. I’m learning more about writing so that I’ll improve every time I write. I’m learning about marketing plans that I can implement for my next book. I’ve learned how to create a website. Boy, that was difficult for me.

I’ve recently started watching YouTuber Sarra Cannon of Heart Breathings, and she had some comforting words to say on the subject of writing and publishing. To paraphrase, she said she had no following and very little knowledge about marketing or publishing when she put her first novel out there, but she kept going. She learned along the way and improved, and now this is her career.

Everyone’s journey is different, and I am proud of what I have accomplished. I wrote a novel (with a second one in the works), put it out there, and put myself out there (the hardest part of all).

So, to summarize: My novel is available for purchase today. I have mixed emotions about it. But I did it, and that’s pretty cool!

Be It Ever So Humble

I’ve been working on my first YA novel since 2016. I know… I know… Four years is a long time to work on one single novel, but I didn’t really start focusing on it until 2018. You see, this novel began as a class assignment for a YA Writing class I was taking back when I was going for my MFA in Writing. Spoiler alert: I didn’t finish because my husband and I moved, and the program wasn’t going to be free anymore. We’ve got enough student loan debt at this point, and I didn’t want to tack more onto it. I’m sure many of you can relate!

The story idea for Be It Ever So Humble came to me even earlier than 2016. In fact, it came to me when I was a teenager (I won’t say how long ago that was) vacationing at a family cabin at the Lake of the Ozarks. It was a long drive to and from our cabin without many sights along the way, so I often made up little stories in my head to pass the time. I remember seeing a house once on the drive and coming up with what would be the basic storyline of Be It Ever So Humble—a celebrity teenager forced to live on a farm, forgoing the luxurious lifestyle she was accustomed to.

At first, it seemed like a fun project for my class; then, I enjoyed writing in the main character’s voice so much that I just kept going. Of course, I stopped and started quite a few times along the way, and I edited and revised obsessively.

If there’s one good thing (for me) to come out of 2020’s new normal/stay-at-home lifestyle, it’s that I have had more time to focus on this. So after four years of stop and go, I finally have something that I’m proud of, and I’m ready to share it with whoever would like to read it.

I’ll get into more specifics soon about some of my challenges (and successes!) in formatting and prepping to launch a book with absolutely no experience and only YouTube videos and internet articles as my guide. But that’s all for future posts. In the meantime, I’m so proud of the amazing cover my husband, Wes, designed for the book and wanted to share that with you.

I mean… He’s the best. I’m so pleased with it!

Have you self-published or thought about self-publishing a novel? Have you written a novel? What are some things you wish others knew about the process, or what are some things you wish YOU knew about the process? Let’s chat in the comments!