#WomensHistoryMonth Celebrate Independent Female Writers

Being a female to me has always been such a blessing. I have always honored my femininity and relished in surpassing obstacles left and right in order to show myself and the world that a woman of both strength and power is one who doesn’t back down from a challenge, one who looks to break records and defy stereotypes, and always is there to lend a helping hand to any and all, but especially to fellow women.

Releasing my poetry book was a very trying experience for me. Not traumatic as that would have been ironic as my collection is about my traumatic experience working in a toxic workplace, falling in love, and getting my heartbroken, also while discussing my asexuality, my perserverance despite mental illness and struggling with suicidal ideation multiple times in my life, and being unaware that I actually was suffering with symptoms of Asperger’s Syndrome since birth.

It took me a bit to wrap my head around this diagnosis following my book release but honestly I didn’t get the fanfare I thought I would have with my release but I think it just takes time and resilience.

Yet, as March is Women’s History Month, I decided I wanted to ride and die alongside 11 other writers that I’ve befriended over years, months, and even weeks before and since releasing my own poetry collection.

Without further ado, let’s celebrate these 12 powerful women and their incredible feats in literature and poetry.

  1. Das Herz by Sayda Hope

My review for this book is forthcoming but this book is a great mix between Dracula, 1917, and the Vampire Diaries. It’s only 170 pages so it took me a few hours to read, and the battle scenes will have you on the edge of your seat. Sayda Hope’s series Das Herz is a part of a forthcoming series. Read this first installment today so you are ready for the next book’s release.

2. Betty by Tiffany McDaniel

I already reviewed this book, I raved about this book, if you can’t tell this book really resonated with me.

There is so much power in this story, the main character is a female, the poetic prose is lyrical, and it was nominated for a Goodreads Choice Award.

I personally got excited for Tiffany the other day while in Books a Million browsing and seeing her book on the store shelves was very cool for me.

This female writer also waited 20 years to see this book published and in print as it’s inspired by the true story of her mother Betty’s upbringing.

3. When My Mind Winds Up by Jennifer Ervig

This book opened doors for me I always believed I would never walk through. It opened up my personal discovery of my mental health which then led me to find out I had Asperger’s so I basically feel very attached to this book but if you or someone you know is struggling with anxiety or any other mental health issue, this book has practical entries like a devotional that allow you to read it and apply the tips each and every day. It’s something I plan to re-read often throughout the rest of my life.

4. Grandfather’s Will by Rebecca Lange

This book has yet to be released but the summary looks enticing if you are looking for a Danielle Steel novel with a whodunnit spin. The author, currently resides in Germany, has written several other books that are historical fiction or Christian fiction. Definitely set your alarm for April 3, 2021 and get a copy when it releases exclusively on Amazon.

5. I Found My Heart by Stacie Ann Green-Taylor

My review of this book will be available in April but as soon as I found this poet was releasing a poetry collection, I rushed to support her because it’s what you do, and her words were filled with absolute brevity and truth. Plus, I am aiming to support more black voices as well because once again, it’s what you do.

6. Sticks and Stones by Chelsea DeVries

Did you really think I would share about fellow female writers without including myself. This book is broken up into two sections: Sticks and Stones. It is a themed around the overall metaphor that you can and should turn your pain into poetry, whether that pain was from undiagnosed Asperger’s, being bullied and ostracized, bullies in the workplace, falling in love with the wrong person, or falling in love with a twin flame who ran away, and broke your heart.

It is written with the intention to help all those who hurt find healing and strength that resonates no matter what obstacles or giants we face.

So far: It’s been an Amazon India best-seller, nominated for Book of the Year, and turning readers who don’t read poetry into fans.

For me personally, it is the beauty in the ashes of a terribly dark time and I have no shame in sharing it as well as what may come from it being out in the world in book form. I just pray it reaches those who feel stuck or as if they have no way out in time, and reminds them their story, your story, our story is far from over.

7. The Evolution of a Girl by L.E. Bowman

I didn’t know of this poet when I published my collection but as someone who is also a fan of poetry, I found this poet recently and found her words to be relatable, timely, and cookie-cut for Instagram-sharability. She’s also from Florida and I’m honored to be among her company as a fellow female poet.

8. All the Things I Should’ve Told You: Poems about Love, Grief, and Resilience by Shayla Raquel

Talk about fierce. This poet announced she was releasing her first poetry collection and I was eager to support it. The other day, March 16, 2021, she did a surprise launch and became #1 best-seller on Amazon. Since her book was released only three days ago, she has remained within the top 5 of all three categories her book fits in on Amazon. That’s definitely what I should have did with my poetry collection but next time, I will be consulting with Shayla to ensure my launch reaches the same heights.

9. To Walk on Moonbeams by Zombear Writes

Following moving Instagram accounts due to toxicity on my old one, I was searching for poets to follow to connect with. This poet is very sweet and has actively engaged with anything I’ve commented on her work or story. And she made me feel like I finally belonged in the community which is why I made a new Instagram in the first place. Originally published by Blurb, this collection about heartbreak and healing will help you find the light in the darkest of nights.

10. Bare Roots by Molly S. Hillery

Talk about somebody who’s just the kindest despite that she’s got a huge audience and has so many cool book reader photos.

This poet wrote and published this collection in 2017 but it is still charting as a best-seller on Amazon this year even. I happened to spot it on there and reached out to congratulate her because that feels entirely huge for anyone who struggles or suffers with any and all forms of mental illness or also dealt with several traumatic events.

The little wins are the moments when you feel like your strength through your trauma or struggles truly has dug roots and bloomed nicely.

11. The Sunflower With Thorns by Kleio Musa

She popped on my IG feed and I was like ok, she’s gorgeous. Then to find out she was a poet too was also inspiring. Then, I learned about her heritage and how she struggles with anxiety and depression. My review of this collection is forthcoming but there isn’t much about Kleio Musa that doesn’t act as a muse for me, as both a female and a writer.

12. Pretending to Be Normal by Liane Holliday Wiley

She doesn’t need this feature nor does it makes sense to me that someone so cool follows me on Instagram but ever since I announced that I found out I have Asperger’s, Liane has been so engaging and supportive. Reading this book for me was very cathartic as some of the same struggles also existed with myself but Liane’s story inspires the reader and proves that disability isn’t an inability just a societal label that seeks to limit the beauty and educating that people with autism and asperger’s bring to this world.

There you have it. Please be sure to add some if not all of these women to your TBR, your next book haul, and to your Instagram feed.

Each and every one of these women inspire me to keep at it, push past the disappointments and hurts, and share my empathy and caring poetic soul with the world.

#BookishThoughts: The Haunting by Melissa M. Combs will have you healing from all those skeletons in your closet

We love, we lose, but does what we love ever let us go?

This is the beckoning question that readers must ask themselves as they experience the chapbook “The Haunting.”

Combs writes of a dead lover who’s ghost-like presence reminds you that love is force far beyond death and the grave.

Heartbreak comes in phases: it hurts, it heals, and it haunts.

The Haunting by Melissa M. Combs seeks to spook the loss of love right out of you and remind you that first comes the unfinished business of heartbreak and then comes the healing. This chapbook will quite literally eat you alive and help you survive the pain, the sting, the lost feeling of being left for dead by an ex-lover. Combs’s words will leave you in chills and help you heal.

Her full length poetry collection is due out November 17. You can check out a sneak peek of Love in Other Realms on her Instagram and buy poetry based merch inspired by the poetry featured in her collection at her website.

I look forward to being haunted by the words of this poet long after I finish reading any of her books.

Wolves, Love, and Adventure: The Makings of a Great Novel #BookReview

Lately, I’ve noticed I really enjoy historical fiction. Even though, it’s no surprise that this novel grabbed me by the shirt collar from the first page. It reminded me of the amazing books I couldn’t get enough of as a child,¬†Little House On The Prairie¬†books.

Buy it now on Kindle for only 0.99.

 

Title: Maggie Elizabeth Harrington Vol. 1

Author: DJ Swykert

Rating: 4 cookies

This book had all I love in a novel. A strong female lead, a girl trying to make sense of her surroundings, and a love story. Maggie Elizabeth may be 13 but because she questions everything, she’s incredibly intuitive. Did I mention that she lives in 1893? Despite that huge gap in centuries, the issues discussed throughout this novel are still relevant in 2017.

Some issues discussed thematically are animal cruelty, religious sects, the Bible, life, death, and the in-between.