An Autumn Tag

It’s no surprise to anyone that I love Autumn. I am every basic autumn meme you see floating around the internet, and I don’t even mind. Everything about autumn is perfect, especially in the PNW. It began to feel like fall a little over a week ago, and I went from shorts to leggings in a second. My music and viewing choices shifted toward fall themes. It’s perfect. (Also technically yesterday was the first day of fall according to the meteorological calendar, to which I ascribe. So.)

Looking at Autumn Tags around the internet, I’ve curated my favorite questions to answer and ask the rest of you! If you want to be tagged, consider it done – link me to your answers below,because I’d love to read them!

fall activity

It’s cliche to say everything, but everything is better in fall. If I had to narrow it down to just one thing, I would say existing. That’s not too vague, right? If I really had to choose one thing, it would be getting dressed, because autumn clothes are my favorite clothes and I can finally get back into looking like a vagabond wizard-woman.


So back when I was writing Paper Crowns and Paper Hearts (which is due for a rewrite pretty soon here), I had a very specifically-curated playlist I would listen to while I wrote. I always have a playlist for my novels, but often the songs are mostly interchangeable with other playlists – I listen to my Salvation playlist while writing No Dark Disguise, for example, but I also listen to it sometimes when writing Ye Stars That Shudder despite having a YSTS playlist.

The songs I listened to for the Paper series all feel like fall to me for some reason – they have that wonderfully cozy, soft, vaguely eerie feeling that makes you want to toss on an oversized sweater, tuck a book under your arm, and go walk on some crunchy leaves. Lenka, A Fine Frenzy, and Novelette make up the majority of this playlist – if you’d like me to give you a full-fledged autumn playlist with specific songs, let me know!


I can’t choose between the two, because a cozy autumn is a spooky autumn and vice versa (at least in my mind). Half the coziness of autumn is feeling like somewhere between the crisp air and the earlier nights, something is waiting. It’s right around the corner. Growing up we chose to spend Halloween with blankets over the windows watching movies and eating a special dinner, pretending we weren’t home and hiding from trick-or-treaters, which always gave the night an extra special kind of secrecy and probably created the feeling I still have despite the fact I now hand out candy and dress up on a pretty daily basis.


Monster, for sure. I’ve always loved monsters. Give me all the monsters.


Over the Garden Wall now has to be at the very top of my list, along with Stranger Things, Fantastic Beasts, The Odd Life of Timothy Green, Gilmore Girls, and any and every Studio Ghibli movie (but, when is it NOT time for those?).


While I never stop drinking strong black coffee (two cups in the morning are necessary), I have to go with eggnog lattes. There’s a small coffee shack a few miles from here that starts serving them early, mid-September, before anyone else does. It is a gift from God. As far as food goes, I don’t have a specific autumn food that’s my favorite – autumn is for baked things. It’s for pastries. It’s for gaining back the handful of pounds I lost with exercise during the summer. It’s worth it (and provides free insulation).


A Wrinkle in Time, The Silmarillion, Brambly Hedge, the Fantastic Beasts script, and The Hobbit. Oh, and Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury. That’s very necessary and one of my all-time favorite books.


Definitely NaNoWriMo. This year will be my…tenth? NaNoWriMo (I think. It might be ninth; there’s a JuNoWriMo in there somewhere also. And a Camp NaNo.) That said, I do love watching artists do InkTober or DrawTober and I plan to join in on at least one of those this year. I don’t like the official InkTober prompts, so I’ll probably search for another less-popular list to draw from. If you know of any, hit me up!


There is a harmony in autumn, and a luster in its sky, which through the summer is not heard or seen, as if it could not be, as if it had not been! — Percy Shelley
That country where it is always turning late in the year. That country where the hills are fog and the rivers are mist; where noons go quickly, dusks and twilights linger, and midnights stay. That country composed in the main of cellars, sub-cellars, coal-bins, closets, attics, and pantries faced away from the sun. That country whose people are autumn people, thinking only autumn thoughts. Whose people passing at night on the empty walks sound like rain. — Ray Bradbury

If there are any other questions you’d like me to answer, or questions you want to add onto this for YOUR blog,, please feel free! For now, happy autumn; and may the wind blow you to good places.


of leg warmers and nano

IMG_1076It’s the first day of October. I always find that more monumental than the first day of autumn, usually, because things don’t really start to feel autumnal until October. Even the word ‘October’ sounds crisp and cold and orange, like a pumpkin or apple cider or the crunch of leaves under your feet. Do you see what I’m wearing here? Leg warmers. That’s because a) the date and b) it’s not supposed to get over 67 today (so says accuweather. Dad says it may surpass 84 degrees but if it does, I’m staying inside where there’s air conditioning, so it doesn’t really change anything).

Also, today marks one month until the start of NaNoWriMo. This will be my sixth year, and I have my notebook prepared and full of scribbles. Every time my mom or sister sees the word ‘NaNo’ they give a kind of shriek and go into mourning because during the month of November I hibernate. I turn on iTunes, put on fingerless gloves (yet to be acquired this year…they have a habit of unraveling from hard use) and slippers, and write with brief stops for caffeine and sleep. I get far more caffeine than I do sleep.

I know I’ve been a bit absent from the blog this last week and a half (or so) and I’m sorry – but I haven’t had anything to write about. My life has looked something like this –

– wake up

– coffee, family Bible study, breakfast (if I remember breakfast)

– retreat downstairs to make myself look pretty (yes, it’s important to look good even if you aren’t going anywhere)

– turn on something Marvel – Agents of Shield, a comic-con panel, the Winter Soldier, etc. – and work on art commissions

– spend half the time forgetting to draw and laughing

– spend some more time crying

– finish the drawing, maybe write 500 words in something

– eat dinner. shower. sleep.

– did I remember to eat lunch?

And now I’m going to have to find room to plot for NaNo. What about you? Are you doing NaNo? Is this your first year, or are you a veteran? What are you writing?

Happy autumn!

//crisp and golden as an apple


There’s something about throwing open all the windows and taking a deep breath of autumn that makes me want to do everything and nothing, all at once. It makes me want to draw all my art commissions in a day, to write three new novels and find a long stretch of grass to run barefoot in and wear sweaters and kick up my feet and read a magazine. It makes me want to light candles and not bother doing anything with my hair. It makes me think of pumpkin spiced lattes and buying Christmas presents early and watching the new episode of Forever and starting a journal for the umpteenth time. As a result, I started plotting my 2014 NaNo (I’m re-working Acceso, remember that one?) and wore funky patterned pants, blue mascara, and went on an impromptu photo op with my sisters. It’s autumn again, and it’s time to do everything and nothing, all at once.